So the natural path of my project makes me wait a substantial amount of time while others finish writing articles and submit photos meaning I have to use my break in order to put the magazine together in time.
Before the break I should be able to put together one featrure and the final draft of the cover leaving me with at least two features over the break, as well as ad placement and a few shorter articles.
The porblem isn't me having enough time to build the layouts and put everything together as I have become extremely streamlined in this process. It is having poeple submit everything on time.
I also will more than likely have a few graphic design jobs as I am meating with Futurpreneur Canada about working with their Manitoban startups early in the new year.
Looks like time management will be my friend.
oA few months back when I was in Texas I wondered into a local surf shop to rent some surfboards and while in the back getting everything organized a noticed a door absolutely littered with stickers. Some were interesting and creative and some were as simple as the brands name.
This sparked the idea to develop some Vision stickers that would be given to as many people as I can afford. You might be thinking that this is a idiotic way to blow what remains of my miniscule budget I have accumulated for Vision but I disagree. Let me walk you through the benefits.
An obvious benefit is having your logo everywhere which generates brand awareness and increases brand recognition. Also by utilizing my conncections and sending them to some of the most notable riders in the industry I am creating a sort of 'cool kid' vibe around the brand. Another huge benefit is something I'm not entirely sure hpw to explain but I learned from "The Thank You Econmoy", a book by Gary Vaynerchuk. The theory is that in this world where more content is created in 48 hour period than was created from the beginning of time until 2003, social media is extremely noisy and it's the people that actually give a shit about their customers that will win. Here is an example.
If you were in a cafe and somebody right beside you starts bragging about your brand, you probably would interject and say thank you for their support. Well that happens millions of times each day on social media and the majority of brands stay silent. You see if you were to reply and say thanks, their brand loyalty would dramatically increase. If your were to take it to the next step and reward them for their support (not everyone but a select few), they would become advocates and tell everyone about your brand.
By giving away stickers to people who have shown their support for the magazine I am building brand advocates.
People need to worry a little less on about what they are going to talk about on social media and start listening.
Somehow another opportunity has managed to precisely place itself right in my lap, this time it's being an official photographer at the We Day event in the MTS Center.
We Day is youth empowerment event featuring speakers such as Chris Hadfield, Paula Abdul, and Nico & Vinz. All names that need no introduction and if you are unfamiliar with any, a quick Google search will answer any question.
This will be a great event to prove my talents in a real world situation and build my photography portfolio which will help me to find more paying work within the industry. The only problem is I don't have the most expensive gear and will most likely get looked down upon and probably chirped by the other photographers. However, is it really reasonable for a seventeen year old to have ten thousand dollars worth of camera gear, even the three thousand I'll be carrying around seems like a lot for my age.
I truly believe that it's what is in front of your lens that matters the most, which means the difference between a good and great photographer is creativity. Telling an entire story through a single image in the most engaging and captivating way possible. A story that motivates you or makes you feel some sort of emotion, which is what I'm planning to do at We Day.
Walking in to the Career and Post-Secondary Symposium I had no idea what to expect and felt it would be a waste of time. I thought that this event was made for the students who don't have a clue of what they would like to do with their lives and it wasn't until after I realized it could be so much more.
As I entered the board office I was greeted by an overwhelming crowd filled with people who had no idea where they were going, so I fitted in perfectly. I made my way to where all the post-secondary institutions where located and doing so passed by countless crowded booths featuring industry professionals talking about careers I had no interest in. My want to leave grew as the more booths I passed. Finally I found myself at the end of the labyrinth, standing at the Red River College booth, slightly eavesdropping on the conversations being had about how Red River students are taking all the jobs over other universities students. I took the pamphlet outlining the courses they offer and made my way to the door. However it wasn't my want to leave pulling me towards the exit, but my final Volleyball game ever played in the Glenlawn Gym.
Now looking back I realize it would have been a great event to network with fellow graphic designers and marketing personal to find current openings in local agencies. CAPS is what you make of it and I made the mistake of not considering the possibilities. I also realized that I have never been to a networking event before but I have met and talked with CEO's, World Champion Athletes, and many accomplished professionals in industries I am very interested in. I did this by reaching out on my own.
What I've learned is in order to succeed you have to seize every opportunity, but you also have to make your own.
"If opportunity doesn't knock, build a door" - Milton Berle
Dru and I recently started shooting the first scenes of The Hire and everything went well other than a few issues with the sound. It's kind of tough for me to take a back seat on the project since it was my idea but a lot of exciting things are happening with Vision which seems to be keeping my attention.
I think later in life we may go back and remake this film when we are more skilled and experienced because I believe the story has some potential. Also some higher quality gear and a budget, as tiny as one may be, would help a ton.
I keep going through these moments where I want to pursue film and then even faster than I get into that mindset, I fall out of it thinking that pursuing film is far from the best way to accumulate wealth. Lately I've been toying with the idea of getting into corporate and commercial video production for local businesses and then slowly and painfully move up the ranks and one day shoot professional commercials and music videos. It seems like with the growing need for original content something along these lines may be viable but it sure won't be reliable.
I have begun to venture down this path by volunteering as a photographer for We Day at the MTS Center. I figured shooting an event at one of the cities biggest venues could only help in finding future work.
The reason for my pursuit in this area is a simple one. Working in graphic design, photography, and filmmaking doesn't feel like work.
This past week I decided on running a Kickstarter to help make the next issue of Vision everything I want it to be. The worlds best riders telling tales of whimsy and inspiration, featuring some of the industries best photographers and displayed in a modern layout. Another reason for the Kickstarter is to pay everybody for their work in order to maintain a good relationship with them. This is crucial as without a good relationship with others in the industry, getting content becomes very difficult. Also supporting the riders and photographers allows them to keep creating great content which is mutually beneficial.
Within the Kickstarter I will have rewards ranging from apparel to printed copies of Issue Three. I think it will not only be a great way to build capital but also to show everyone in the industry how strong of an audience is around Vision. It also will act as bit of a PR stunt to grow the audience.
Even if I don't reach my goal, I believe it will be beneficial by attracting new readers. Recently a Kickstarter launched for an apparel company, and by the end of the campaign they had gone from 0 to 70K followers on Instagram. Now I would be happy with a small fraction of those results.
Since my audience would most likely grow from this endeavor, it would make it easier to sell ads and build capital. It's a win win situation.
I have a somewhat clear vision (get it?) of where I want the magazine to be by the end of the semester, and I'm going to put it out there for two reasons. Reason number one is I want to write it down somewhere so I don't forget, and reason number two is that some philosopher came up with "Law Of Attraction" which is a name for "like attracts like". Essentially it means if you focus on positive things, those positive things will happen and the same with negative things. Now I don't necessarily believe this but I'll take all the help I can get.
By the end of the semester I want Vision to be to kiteboarding, as what Stab Magazine is to surfing. A publication with a strong online presence, and loyal following that is geared towards the younger generations, great balance of comedic, inspiring, and informing pieces of content that has a huge bias to telling it as they see it versus making sure everyone is happy.
It's going to be a bumpy journey and I'm sure I will make some people a touch sour, I already have, but I see a hole in this industry and need for something new and fresh. With the recent release of Chapter One, the industry is booming like never before.
This past week I was in Texas on a family trip, hence why there was no post from me last Friday. The whole point of the trip was to Kiteboard in one of North Americas top locations but when we got their and checked the forecast, the wind disappeared. So I spent the week playing beach volleyball and surfing, which is still better than being in the peg.
The day after we got back. it was the release day of Chapter One, a kiteboarding film that was made to put the sport on the map. Now being a bit of a film geek and having looked up to all the riders in the feature length movie for over a decade now, it was like Christmas morning, on steroids. I watched the film not once, but twice that day and had previously talked to the directors and producers about organizing a local showing. They where all for it but the price tag was a little high and the local kiteboarding shop wasn't too interested in helping out.
As I'm completely locked into the film, enjoying a stunning cinematic sequence of now world champion, Liam Whaley, and his biggest competitor Carlos Mario Bebe, who is a kid in his early twenties that lives in a fishing village steps away from possibly the best kiteboarding location on the planet, riding in a Brazilian lagoon (the one steps away from Carlos' house) my phone buzzed. Now being the stereotypical teenager that I am, I reluctantly pull myself away from the film to check my phone and I received an email. An email from Liam Whaley. The man who is frozen on my TV, starring in the biggest thing to happen in kiteboarding in the last ten years.
This is when I realized, after I pinched myself, that I am so close to what I have been dreaming of since I was seven. The people I have always consider my heros are now becoming my peers which gives me even more motivation for issue three.
Alongside the magazine I am going to be making a short film within the next month. I have set a few limitations to help with creativity like the film must be completely finished by November 1st, it must be made on a $0 budget, and a run time between three and five minutes.
The main reason for the limitations is to improve my ability to create with limited resources which will make me a better filmmaker and once I have an actually budget, I will really be able to seize the opportunity. This idea is an adaptation of the "thinking inside the box" mindset which (I believe, although not proven) stimulates creativity.
I've also recently decided to focus less on the story and more on the visuals as I am more interested in becoming a cinematographer rather than a writer. I know this is completely backwards from what you are supposed to do but I guess I'll learn the hard way. I'm not trying to prove I can write a good movie, I'm trying to prove I can make a cinematic piece. I feel like I could have spent a few extra weeks on the story but that is time I don't have as I want to get going with the magazine.
You might be wondering why I wouldn't just start working on the magazine. Well I also want to further my skills in filmmaking as I plan on creating some original films with my magazine and utilizing my connections to world class athletes.
This week we visited the Assiniboine Zoo to learn about sustainability, a topic I'm quite familiar with for absolutely no reason.
I was slightly disappointed with the sustainability in what was shown to us since the Journey To Churchill portion of the Zoo is said to be world class. I was hoping to see some mind blowing ideas that if implemented world wide would stop global warming. Instead my mind was blown by the two polar bears playing just a few feet above us (pictured above), and was left wanting when it came to sustainability. Also, some of the enclosures where definitely lacking, I would even go so far as to say it was sad.
The visit to the Zoo got me thinking about how I can be sustainable when it comes to the magazine and business in general. With a magazine, it is each issue that keeps bringing people back in and generates revenue but we are in a world where magazines are fading away. so the key is to find an alternative way to pump out contact.
In the video production or photography industry, to be sustainable you need to constantly pump out content. Whether that be personal or contract work, it needs to keep flowing.