In a few weeks, I’ll be spending time with more than 60,000 colleagues in media, tech & entertainment at @NABShow, producing our first-ever #GALSNGEAR Women’s Leadership Summit there, and sharing some of my production and business strategies at these conference sessions.

If you’re headed to Vegas, too, here are some of my tips from years of navigating this town for business (which isn’t quite the same thing as going there for fun, although we definitely have that, too). One of the big challenges is food, since this is a large event. Luckily you can get discounts with your NAB Show badge. You can also try some of my top local food picks:

1. Lotus of Siam.  This Thai restaurant–now with two locations!–offers beautifully made, authentic, and seriously spicy cuisine. Try the spicy prawns or the sea bass in any of the three sauces–I had the ginger sauce with mushrooms one year and it was divine. For folks who love spicy (me!), beware. The scale at Lotus is the real deal. If you ask for 10, you might need a tableside fire extinguisher.

2. Kaizon Fusion Roll. Step inside this strip mall sushi place and discover a chic Asian fusion dining experience. On offer are unique (and gigantic) sushi roll combinations in a low-key, hip bar atmosphere. Just across street from Hard Rock Hotel but not nearly as pricey as their famous sushi place.

3. Sen of Japan is another local favorite, with consistently high reviews and more authentic Japanese fare.

4. Lindo Michoacan A local Mexican 3-restaurant chain well regarded, including by my local friend whose wife hails from Mexico.

5. Echo and Rig Vegetarians, avert your eyes. This place let’s you pick out your cut of steak, then have it grilled up at the restaurant next door. Talk about “on-demand” dining!

6. Piero’s A Las Vegas institution and close to the Convention Center where we’re all living for this conference. Dinner only.

7. Tamba Indian A family owned place with plenty of tables for big groups. Except heads up, don’t go the Tuesday night of NAB Show (4/26) because Women in Streaming Media, RISE and #GALSNGEAR are hosting an event there (email me an I’d be happy to send you the RSVP link!)

8. The only Vegas eatery on the strip that makes my list consistently every year is Beijing Noodle No.9 at Caesar’s. Try the soup dumplings (they’re not IN the soup, the soup is IN the dumplings!) and a bowl of Lanzhou noodle soup.

9. The Peppermill. Everyone tells me about this place and I’ve never actually made it there. But they say the breakfast will keep you alive on the show floor for an entire day!

10. Walgreens. No I’m not kidding you. There are three on the strip. With food truck lines at the Convention Center often long, and with little turnaround time between sessions, I’ve come to learn that grabbing some yogurt or a freshly made sandwich in the morning from Walgreens is a reliable go-to food solution. And that saves more eating fun and funds for dinnertime. There is one exception–the Indian carry out in South Hall, which is excellent.

I hope to see you soon at NAB Show in Vegas!

Amy DeLouise is a writer-producer-author-speaker and foodie who operates out of Washington, DC but travels the world.

I was recently asked “how do you nurture your creative soul while advancing your career?” It’s a great question. I believe there are four keys. Today, I’ll take a look at the first: curating experiences to inspire your creative self.

At my company, when we launch a video project we often start with inspiration boards—something to inspire us; a visual framework within which we can build the story.  In the same way, it’s important to create your own “inspo board” for life. For me, that means going to a lot of museums and installations. Earlier this year I experienced Man Ray: The Paris Years at the Art Museum of Richmond–a fantastic look inside the creative process of this great photographer, as well as the creative milieu in which he soaked daily while living in Paris. And one of the things that surprised me the most was how much of Man Ray’s archetypal photos were created for commercial projects—commissions for magazines, book covers and the like. One of his most iconic and insightful images is of Ernest Hemingway with a bandage wrapped around his head. At the time, Hemingway had been struggling to write. At a party, he drunkenly mistook the chain of a previously broken skylight for the toilet chain. The glass came crashing down on him, he was rushed to the hospital, and reportedly spent hours on the operating table. That night, Hemingway almost died. Man Ray snapped the photo a few days later, capturing Hemingway’s vulnerability, courage, and a slightly rakish look with his hat off kilter as he looks into the middle distance. After the accident, Hemingway’s creativity was unblocked and he wrote A Farewell to Arms, probably one of his greatest works. Some of my many takeaways from this curated experience: a crisis can move us to action. The pivot point in a story can be unexpected. And getting paid to work doesn’t mean the work isn’t worthy–it’s a gift that allows us to keep creating.

Some of my other favorite inspirational experiences are outdoor installations, sculptures and murals. Living in Washington, DC, I’ve got plenty to choose from locally, including the haunting Korean war memorial, Some of my other favorite inspirational experiences are outdoor installations, sculptures and murals. Living in Washington, DC, I’ve got plenty to choose from including the haunting Korean war memorial, including life-sized statues by Frank Gaylord[ making you feel as if you are right there with them in the cold and relenting rain.

And the joyful murals surrounding Ben’s Chili bowl done by artist Aniekan Udofia.

I was also lucky enough to catch the multi-floor Adam Pendleton exhibit at the Museum of Modern Art in New York when I was there last month for a project.

Now that Covid restrictions are lifting, I’ve got lots more places on my list to inspire my creative work this year. I can’t wait!

What art or installations have inspired you?

 

 

What trailblazers inspire me?  For International Women’s Day, I immediately thought of five world-changing, badass conservationists I met recently—women working in biodiversity hotspots to save their local habitat, species and communities to help save our planet.

As global citizens, we’re so lucky to have women like Awatef Abiadh working in North Africa, Ingrid Parchment working in Jamaica, Leah Mwangi in Kenya, Martika Tahi in Vanuatu and Le Thi Trang in Vietnam—check out their videos to learn more about the challenges they face and how they are bringing communities together to save biodiversity.  Biodiversity hotspots are Earth’s most biologically diverse yet threatened terrestrial areas. The Critical Ecosystem Partnership Fund (CEPF) empowers civil society organizations–with leaders like these fearless, focused women–to manage the global biodiversity crisis at a local level, one initiative at a time.

One of the great things about being a digital storyteller is learning about people who make a difference in our world, and thanks to @Interface Media Group (IMG) I was lucky enough to get to know these five inspiring women and their incredibly important environmental work, partly funded through grants from CEPF, as part of the IMG production team which produced the CEPF Hotspot Hero Awards videos and the entire virtual awards event where all 10 heroes were celebrated. Let me take this opportunity to shout out the incredibly talented creative team at IMG, including Director of Experience Design Jordana Well, Senior Project Manager/Line Producer Frankie Frankavilla, Director of Visual Effects Dave Taschler, Editors Luke Blackwell and Abbey Farkas, Sound Designer Dennis Jacobsen, and Sound Mixer Pavel Sinev—it takes a village to create great content!

You can watch the entire virtual awards event produced by IMG here and learn more about the important work of CEPF, their global partners, and all the Hotspot Heroes.

 

Here’s a surprise: my biggest challenge last year wasn’t Covid. Not by a mile. Exactly one year ago, I broke my right wrist. So badly that I needed surgery. One 3” titanium plate and 10 screws later, loaded up on painkillers and still unable to feel my entire right arm due to a surgical nerve block, on Day 2 I assessed my situation. And it freaked me out.

Writing was my first challenge. As a multimedia producer, I do a lot of writing. The week after my surgery, a major deadline loomed for an 1,800-word blog post for one of my clients and a video script for another. Thankfully I had already done the background research. But boy, left-hand typing and non-dominant hand mouse-ing was quite laborious. (Speech-to-text was not the easy functionality I had hoped, which I’m sure my friends with different abilities already know.)

But here was the biggest challenge of all: playing the violin.

playing on a street corner at age 13 with my duet partner Jeff

You see, I’ve been a musician since I was six, and a violinist since age 9, having apparently begged my parents relentlessly to play that instrument.  Growing up, I spent hours taking violin lessons, playing in youth orchestras and competing in solo competitions acro

The only photo I have of Giuseppe DiLuisi circa 1906

ss my region. On weekends, various musician friends and I would play on street corners in Georgetown, a tony neighborhood in Washington, D.C., to earn money towards our college funds.  Years later, when playing in my college symphony orchestra, I learned from a relative that my great great grandfather Giuseppe DiLuisi had played the violin for a living, in summer riverboat orchestras on the Mississippi and

winter music halls in New York. At the age of 9, he had arrived in this country from Italy with only the clothes on his back and his little violin. So my passion stems from long family roots.

Flash forward, and I’ve been playing at a professional and semi-professional level for, well, a bunch of decades now. In the Washington DC area where I live, I’m lucky to be surrounded by great musicians, and often play in churches, in various chamber groups, and with my amazingly talented colleagues of the NIH Philharmonia.

Back in March of 2021, the thought of never playing again was devastating.

Music has been essential to my life—not only personally, but also professionally. As a content creator, I spend a lot of time curating just the right music, reviewing sound mixes, working with talented sound designers. Because sound is more than half the picture.

So when I broke my wrist, I did what I always do when producing a complex multi-media project: I threw myself into the details.  I read everything I could about rehab for string player injuries. I showed up religiously for painful physical therapy sessions twice a week.  I took my PT “homework” very seriously. And my talented surgeon Dr. Peter Fitzgibbons—who had been briefed in advance on my absolute need for full flexibility again—brought great confidence to each of my check-in’s. At one point, I brought in my violin and the Bach Brandenberg Concert #3, which the NIH Phil planned to play in December, and demonstrated a passage to show how far short I was falling to manipulate the bow into Bach’s many nuanced sequences. I was determined to not just play the part, but play the principal 1st violin solo part for this concert. And that was my goal every single day.

Focusing on one overarching goal has a way of putting everything else in perspective. Whether you are managing young children through Zoom schooling, grappling with your evolving career, or facing the trial of you or a family member struck by Covid.  Take the climb in small steps. Break the challenge into manageable pieces. You will get there.

Today, I plunge into the work of 2022 with gratitude. I can write and produce videos. I can play the violin again. The healing took so many steps. But I’m finally there. And you will be, too.

 

It’s brand planning time! Photo by Unsplash.

“We should do more with our brand” is the lament of a lot of busy nonprofit, corporate and association communication professionals.  Here are three ways to boost your brand engagement this  year.

  1. Engage Stakeholders in Social It’s not enough to have staff schedule regular social media posts. Build ways for your donors, your customers, your board members to engage with your brand story. Give shout-outs to the people who help your organization deliver on its mission, and be sure to tag them. Give tutorials to members of your leadership team who might not be as comfortable with social on ways to engage across platforms. Send emails to board members with a link to your latest LinkedIn post and ask them to comment on it and share it to their channels. Every share expands your community and the impact of your brand.

 

  1. Ask Influencers to Share. The social tag is the modern equivalent of getting an autograph, but actually more useful for your brand. When one of my nonprofit clients gave a hospital tour to Justin Bieber (and encouraged him to tweet about it, which he did), they got 10,000 new followers in a matter of hours. Find out if any key personalities or well-connected board members are already known to your institution and encourage them to make a social mention or tag your organization. You can’t hit them up every time, so make thoughtful decisions about when it would be most important to have this extra amplification, such as before a major event or fundraiser.

 

  1. Create Platform-Friendly Content. If you want your content to be mobile- and web-friendly, make it a priority to upgrade your acquisition and output specs. For new video content, shoot in High Def, at a minimum of 1080p (29.97 frame rate, or 24fps which looks nicer in many cases and saves you some file space) but optimally at 4K for maximum flexibility and image quality. This larger acquisition size takes up more space, but storage is cheap. And you can easily make 1080p versions of content for web distribution. Whereas having your fabulous year-end video look dated and pixelated on your social channels when 5G is fully in place is an expensive mistake. For photos that you might want to re-purpose in videos, be sure you prioritize horizontal framing, not vertical. And if you want to post photos to IG, then you’ll need to collect vertically-framed scenes, too!

Merry Branding in this (relatively New ) Year!

You need to explain an issue, product or service to an audience through video. Where do you start? Begin with these three keys.

  1. Know Your Target Audience

When creating branded content, you naturally want to start with “what”. What work does our nonprofit do? What benefits does our association offer? What product or service does our company provide?  But starting with WHY is better. Asking Why We Do What We Do inevitably leads you to the people who benefit. Who are they? Why do they need what you offer? What impact are you making in their lives? My team and I guide clients to talk about “why” when we start developing a creative brief for any video. One of the very best “Why” videos I’ve ever seen is the Girl Effect. Just over a decade old, with more than 2.5 million views, this video is still making its point of Why girls matter (and by extension, why the work of www.girleffect.org is needed. Also note there is plenty of “data” presented, but all through clever motion graphics and a powerful cello score, with no boring voiceover. In fact, no narrator at all!

 

  1. Know the Viewing Environment

In years past, my production company’s videos for clients would often be shown on giant displays at large live events, and only later online. Today, snippets of our videos might be played on social platforms while extended play versions are screened at hybrid events, where they are viewed simultaneously by a live audience on a large screen and a remote audience on mobile devices, iPads, or desktops. And those virtual audiences might be listening on earbuds, headphones, or computer speakers. How we approach each project—from the visual design to the audio planning—must take into account these multiple viewing and audio environments.  Audio is particularly important to both engage the audience and ensure that the video can be understood well, even in a less than optimal viewing environment. This Pew Trusts Mobile Banking explainer is a great example of audio that connects the viewer to the content without overwhelming it, and motion graphics that also tell the story, so that it works on screens and sound systems both large and small.

 

  1. What Action Should Viewers Take?

Companies want you to click and buy. Nonprofits want you to get involved or write a check (or both). These goals require the right kind of crafting of the story and message, because causing behavior change is no easy task. As video creatives, we spend time in pre-production getting to understand what makes viewers care and take action, so we can choose among strategies to prompt action.  The four most common ways to promote action are: FOMO (fear of missing out), Freebie (creating indebtedness), Authority (trusted brand), Validation (testimonials of community members or influencers). In this #GALSNGEAR sizzle reel, we are using Authority of several trusted industry brands, Validation with soundbite testimonials, and a dash of FOMO to drive prospective #GALSNGEAR participants to the website (where they can sign up to get involved).

https://vimeo.com/manage/videos/602111635

https://vimeo.com/manage/videos/602111635

Whatever your explainer content, starting with Audience, Environment, and Action will help you craft a message, a creative plan, and a technical plan that delivers impact.

Photo by Chris Yang, Courtesy Unsplash

Think Big Picture First

If video is part of your content plan this year, it will be important to start by stepping back and think big-picture as you budget. Why? Because budgeting project-by-project is inefficient in terms of time, audio/visual “assets” and money. You’ll want to consider all the assets you collect for any project to be resources for the next projects. So for example, maybe you want to create some short and snappy Tik Tok videos. While you’ve got people in front of the camera, could you also be creating testimonials or other content for longer videos?  If you are videotaping speeches at a conference, could you also have a roving crew capture in the moment footage of participants, or set up a booth for attendees to tell their stories? And once this footage is created, don’t just use it and lose it. Plan to archive it in such a way that other content creators in your organization can locate and repurpose this footage (see my January post on this topic). In other words, build a content library that reflects your brand, your mission, your organization. (Pro tip: get interviews transcribed so that you can find and use excerpts more easily across media, and for easy captioning.)

Set Realistic Parameters

It’s best to set some realistic parameters for your video project, including the number of reviews you want to be able to have, whether you want live-action or animation, and any specific turnaround deadlines. Without these, I can just give you some rules of thumb on cost. If you’re project is entirely animated, and you have a very small team helping to guide the project and do reviews/approvals (i.e., there aren’t layers of bureaucracy or board members etc who might make significant changes along the way), then you can get an explainer video produced for as little as $4,000. Live action videos tend to start at about $10,000 for a video with one day of shooting, and go up from there depending on number of shoot days, length and complexity. Be careful about “we can make your video for $500” pitches. Most of the time, these videos ending up being boilerplate creations that don’t really fit the bill for most organizations.

Watch Out for Hidden Costs

Remember that either you or your production vendor must use properly licensed music or stock images.  You don’t want a DCMA takedown notice requiring you to prove you own various licenses in order to get your video reinstated. There are lots of creative and affordable libraries for this type of content, and an experienced producer can help curate just the right image or song mood to augment or support your production. If your organization produces lots of videos every year, it’s probably more affordable to purchase a blanket license, which gives you a certain number of downloads or usages for a flat rate.

Another hidden cost is unusable footage. Meaning, if you are acquiring video for multiple purposes, the best way to future-proof it is to acquire in the highest quality–4K UHD. Even though lots of organizations are still using videos on the web for online events, for example, at some point soon we’ll be back in person and you’ll want to project that video on a big screen. Footage shot at 1080 won’t look great and anything you recorded at 720 over Zoom will be blurry. So think long-term to avoid costly reshoots.

What Variables Go Into a Video Budget?

Pre-production should be one of the biggest categories for any video budget. And it’s a big red flag if a vendor gives you a budget with little to no pre-production time in it. Our team typically spends several days, if not weeks, of planning for every shoot day. If live-action videography is involved, for example, then our pre-pro time is made up of location scouting (virtually or in person), pre-interviewing subjects, writing a rough outline or story arc, writing a shooting script (which might include “fantasy soundbites”), compiling a shot list, developing our gear list, and planning for any travel.

Production categories include director and/or producer on set, audio, video and lighting crew and equipment, media cards and laptop for backing up footage.  If travel is required, most crews charge ½ to ¾ of their usual day rate for each travel day (since they are basically fully booked and cannot take other work on those days). If producing in a studio, we might add fabrication of sets, wardrobe needs, or the purchase or rental of props into our production budget.

Post-production categories typically include voiceover recording and narrator fee, editing (a minimum of three rounds–rough cut, fine cut, final cut), graphics, music licensing, sound design and mixing, and color grading. For a short nonfiction video, my team plans on at least 1 day per finished minute to get to rough cut, 1 day per finished minute to get to the fine cut, and then ½ day per minute for the final delivery. So a five-minute video could take several weeks from the start of editing to delivery.

The opportunities and the options are endless with video. So start with your big picture needs, be sure to cover your bases on licensing, and engage professionals to help get you across the finish line.

If you want more details about how to produce a video for your company or organization, try Amy’s newest LinkedIn Learning courses. If you message her on LinkedIn, she can unlock a segment for you for free!

Photo: C. Morillo, Unsplash

Each year, my team has a project that begins something like this: “Yeah, we have photos/videos of that. But we don’t exactly know how to find them.”

We are all awash in content. Every time you hire an event photographer you end up with thousands of photos. Every time you produce a video, you end up with hundreds of minutes of interviews. But to adapt an old saying, if a chunk of content lives on your network and no one knows how to find it… Yeah, exactly. So kick off your New Year with this one resolution: plan for tagging and using metadata to help you find, create, and repurpose content.

Workflow Matters

Before you start shooting photos or videos for an event, make your metadata and folder plan. As you ingest and transfer material from in-house producers or outside vendors, how will you tag groupings of images? By day? By event? By content? (Hopefully all of the above.)

If you regularly hire event photographers, go the extra step by paying them to make selects. The images will be much fresher in their minds than yours. (Your brain will still be full of event details and other follow-ups you need to make.) You still want to purchase the raw images.  But having those selects handy – and asking for a batch converted group as smaller jpgs for social — will make your post-event promotions go much faster.

You also want to ask both photographers and videographers to tag their footage in a way that makes it easy for your team to use it later. If you don’t suggest the tags you want and need, trust me you will end up with drives with folders called “Day 1” “Day 2” “Day 3” etc.  So taking the time in pre-production to let your production teams know how you want cards ID’d will really help. And they’ll be happy to add more useful information such as “DallasINT_1” “DallasINT_2” for two days of interviews in Dallas.

For an event photographer, you could ask them to use a series like PLEN1, PLEN2, PLEN 3 for plenary speaker photos at a multi-day event.

If photos are being taken on cellphones, there are ways to both add to and access the metadata beyond those long strings of numbers and letters in the file name. This article offers some helpful tools for adding and finding phone metadata.

For photos or video that’s already been shot, you can also add metadata as you import it into your photo or video editing system. For example, in Premiere Pro, there are a number of built-in tools that let you harness the power of metadata. In fact, here’s a blog post with that very same name, explaining some of the steps!

So take a few moments this year to create a system for tagging content as you create it. And make this a cost-effective, creative and Happy New Year!

It’s that time of the year. So what gift do you get for your favorite media-maker? Here are some of my favorite things (hint, hint, family!).

Low Cost, Small Cameras and Rigs

The OSMO Mobile 3 hand-held gimble can help you create motion shots with your phone.

These days, content creatives are really multi-platform producers. We are simultaneously creating content for social platforms, live and virtual events, the web, streaming channels and more. So we need as much coverage of a given shot sequence as possible, plus BTS (behind-the-scenes) for promos. Several cameras fit the bill for an affordable price. Priced under $500, the Insta360 1X2 can augment any production, giving you added angles for social media and BTS. The micro-sized Insta GO2 is another option if want a motion camera you can drop in your pocket! For $99, the foldable DJI Osmo Mobile3 gimbal turns your phone into a mini Steadicam that can give you some added motion and flexibility for video storytelling. Or for just under $350, you can get the DJI Osmo Pocket with integrated 4K camera to add extra motion and angles to your next project.

Drones!

For advice on favorite drones, I turn to my friend and award-winning producer, editor and master trainer Luisa Winters, co-owner of Mid-Atlantic Drones.  She tells me she loves her DJI Mavic Pro 2, which she uses to get those classic, cinematic shots for a wide range of clients. DJI has since come out with the Mavic Pro 3. If you don’t want the Pro price tag but still need those soaring shots, the DJI Mini 2 is a solid, affordable choice.

Here’s my friend Luisa Winters with her many drones! (The Mavic is the white one)

I love my Blink 500 that allows me to record good audio wirelessly at distance from my phone.

Sound Matters

Without good audio, picture is less than half of the story. Luckily there are plenty of great audio tools on the market today. The Saramonic Blink 500 Pro B2 is just one of those tools, and a “favorite thing” of producer/director Danilda Martinez of Datzi Media. With an 8-hour battery run time, this 2.4 GHz dual wireless system offers broadcast-quality sound for 2-people to cameras, mobile devices and more for just under $300. Whether you conduct interviews, are a podcasters or Youtuber, this portable, lightweight dual mic system includes a charging carrying case and shoe mounts for any camera. If you’re solo vlogging and don’t need a 2-person setup, I’ve been really happy with my Saramonic Blink 500 with one wireless remote for $169. They offer systems for both Android or iPhone.  When I’m not using my Blink to connect to my camera, I actually plug the lavalier into my Blackmagic ATEM Mini to record webinars and zooms. (See how I did that? Got another great item onto the list!)

The Blackmagic ATEM mini pro is a great switcher for podcasts and webinars. You’ll never “screenshare” again!

Lights, Action!

Video lighting has been getting smaller and more portable for a decade now. And there are several fixtures that can serve as a nifty last night of Hanukkah gift or Christmas stocking stuffer. Producer Danilda Martinez loves her Aperture MC lights. The MC lights are part of the Aputure M-series. This one fits in the palm of your hand and can be mounted using the built-in 1/4″-20 threaded mounting hole or—and this is pretty cool—you can attach it to metal with its built-in magnets! You can control it from your mobile phone or tablet, selecting a color temperature from the color range between 3200 to 6500K, in increments of 100K.

The Rugo mounts onto any camera or drone.

Another great small light tool is the Rugo Mini from Fox Fury. I’ve been throwing these lights into my run bag for a while now, and they are a life-saver. A Rugo can work very well in lieu of a “pepper”—the term for a small light fixture–to throw some extra love onto a background feature of a scene, or light up a dark interior for a b-roll shot. But a Rugo Mini can do so much more. About the size of your fist, these small lights come with a bag of mounts and adapters, making it possible to mount them on a drone, on a DSLR camera or on a traditional light stand. They are also battery-powered, have three interchangeable lens settings (spot, area, flood). And—get this—they’re waterproof. They are always on my holiday list.

Asynchronous Video Edit Feedback Software

Getting feedback from clients on works in progress is one of the most challenging parts of the job as a video producer. Luckily there are several tools that pre-dated Covid workflow that got even more sophisticated, to help us along.

The main go-to in the industry these days is Frame.io, which recently got bought by Adobe. One of the coolest features of Frame is Camera to Cloud, which means you don’t even have to wait for your files to arrive in the edit room to begin reviewing shots. Immediately after your camera records the originals, C2C-certifed devices capture high-quality, low bandwidth H.264 proxy files with matching timecode and filenames that live in the cloud.  (You still need to back up all your data in the field, people!)

Notes are never easy, but with Frame.io, everyone can see frame-accurate comments.

I’ve been using both Frame and Wipster.io for many years. Their integrated review panel for Adobe Premiere and After Effects means my editors can see comments right in their timelines. They can also share their work-in-progress directly from the timeline.

Vimeo has come up with similar features for reviews. But their real strength lies in the Video Library feature which is targeted at teams that may not themselves be video producers. Inside the branded Video Library, an organization can house all their videos and livestreams in a single place—divided into handy folders—so everyone can find the content they need.

 

As you can see, our industry has a vast array of wonderful tools to help storytellers succeed. I wish you and yours a very happy and healthy holiday season.

Interviewing with masks on is a real challenge–especially in a warehouse!

For all of us, it’s been a challenging 20 months. But I’m so thankful for intersecting with so many wonderful people, causes and communities through my work. I thought I’d take a moment here to shout them out.

CREATIVE PARTNERS

In the storytelling business, clients are not so much customers as partners. I’ve been lucky to create content with wonderful teams telling important stories. Generate Impact (@MikeForster @BrianGreenwald) Jewish Federations of North America (@AlexandraCoffey) National Association of Chemical Distributors (@AileenSmith @LucindaShofer). The LuminarAI team at Skylum Software (@DougDaulton @RichardHarrrington) . US-Japan Bridging Foundation (@TomMasonJr @LaraMones). I was also privileged to work with team Interface Media Group (@AdamHurst @TimLorenz @JordanaWell and more) to create a hybrid event for a foundation and a virtual event for an environmental impact organization.

PRODUCTION TEAM PARTNERS

A special shout out to video editors @CarolineAllnutt @AbbeyFarkas and @LukeBlackburn, who have made my ideas look good and thankfully have added many more great ideas of their own. And to shooter/editor/associate producer @David Godbout, who kept me sane through some challenging projects. To producer @AmyJohanson for saying yes when she should probably have said no. To @JaySchlossberg

Collaborating on an edit in person, even with a mask, is the best!

Media Central and his always excellent crews wherever we travel to film. To @ZuryHammond for making social media happen. And to @ChrisNoble and the team at Noble Transcription Services—hooray for human transcribers! Thanks to the team at Otthouse Audio for making our sound mixes rock, whether for live or remote content. I can’t wait to work with all of you again soon.

Finally got back on the road for this shoot, which was great.

TRAINING PARTNERS

Helping others tell a better story has always helped me be a better director/producer myself. I’ve been privileged to present at multiple conferences with the team Future Media Conferences. And to work on many LinkedInLearning courses with @RachelLongman at the team at RHED Pixel, where I tape and produce my classes. I’m also grateful to my publishing team Routledge Press for helping me bring forth yet another book this past year. And to my co-author @CherylOttenritter, who is also the world’s best sound mixer!

Putting together my latest LinkedIn Learning course, with Covid-19 spacing and masking.

GALSNGEAR

Back in 2016 I had a crazy idea while walking into the ladies room with no line (!) at an industry event to get more women there, and diverse women, and to amplify their work its stages. That’s grown into our #GALSNGEAR movement to empower women in media and tech, and last year we launched a Leadership Accelerator to get more women upskilled for whatever kind of leadership journeys they want. We are buoyed by the volunteer hours, financial support and just sheer resolve in the face of obstacles of so many. We’re grateful to our colleagues at NAB and NAB Show (@DonnaPage @JonathanToomey @MichelleKelly @JessicaCurtis @RachelleMuckle), at DELL (@CindyOlivo @MollyConnelly), Blackmagic Design

Check out our new #GALSNGEAR Career Accelerator for women in media/tech December 15-16 https://linktr.ee/galsngear

(@TerryFrechette), Platform Communications (@GayBell), our core team @DanildaMartinez @ESamanthaCheng @KimberlySkyrme @AdryennAshley @EllynMcKay @SusanBorke), new friends @FrancesIlla and @IsabelMcLane, and old friends and colleagues at Women in Film and Video @wifvdc . You are all amazing women and men making our industry just a little bit better every day.

FAMILY AND MORE

Of course you can’t be an entrepreneur without being grateful to your family for putting up with your crazy hours, distracted moments, and random shouts of joy. Thanks, guys, you know I love you.

Last but not least, I’m thankful to you readers, whether you’re a regular” at my blog or just stumbled here. It’s great to share ideas with you. Have a wonderful giving season, and if you’re in the states, a great Thanksgiving holiday!