Our favorite commercial of last year was one for the very software with which we make commercials. Adobe has stepped up to the plate and proven itself a pillar of the creative realm. Debuting at the Oscars, this is a very flavorful toast to the creative industry and to future generations of creators. They made a 60-second collage video to celebrate all of those who have opened any of their apps. In the video, they paid homage to a few notable visual artists like Victoria Palov and Shepard Fairey while including over 1,000 other creatives.
In our line of work, we watch countless hours of video, but sometimes we see one that really sticks with us. The ones we remember often have similar characteristics – they’re creative, they’re both affective and effective, and their message is crystal clear.
By surveying hundreds of people, television analytics firm, Ace Metrix, evaluated political spots to determine their effectiveness. Politico tells us that Ted Cruz’s ads are the most effective among the Republicans because his ads are 5 of the highest scoring 11 — probably sounds better than saying 4 of the top 10.
We love watching Dov Charney finally get his come-uppings as the most depraved CEO ever to sexually harass his staff, but more joy comes from proof of what we’ve all been feeling for a long time: American Apparel’s advertising sucks.
Sure, the provocative photos seemed edgy, a bit, in 2003. But when you consider that Calvin Klein had already been pushing the amateur porn trope years earlier, Charney’s in-house photo spreads, often shot by the CEO himself, seem hackneyed, at best.
While the brand started with some enlightened ideas — made in America, anti sweatshop, gay friendly — it was never a true fashion house. AA followed its basic, comfy T-shirt with tacky, retro ugliness that could never be more than a fad — oversized glasses, leotards, and leg warmers.
American Apparel’s imagination void is most obvious when you consider its stagnant and stale marketing. Pictures of half clad young people in prurient poses are fine, but for more than a decade, that’s all we got.
It’s well documented that Dov Charney is a sex addicted lothario, but after losing money for four straight years and a stock trading for pennies, the real question is for AA’s board of directors: What the hell is your excuse?
T.W. has been making video and film for more than 25 years. Since 1989 he has directed or photographed over 500 videos for businesses, including Reebok, VH-1, Chanel Fine Jewelry, Discovery Channel, Sears, and MTV Productions.
As a lighting and camera specialist, he directed the photography of 13 feature films including What’s the Matter with Kansas, based on the best selling book by Thomas Frank, and Pilot Season, directed by Sam Seder, and starring Sarah Silverman, Marc Maron, David Cross, and Isla Fisher.
T.W. has taught Cinematography at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, and Columbia College Chicago, and his technical articles have been published in International Cinematographer, the magazine of the International Cinematographers Guild Local 600.
Suzanna Boelter, Project Manager
After getting her degree in electrical engineering from University of Illinois Chicago, Suzanna started her career supervising projects for a video game production company in Atlanta.
She then traveled all over the US, Canada, and Europe, managing tours for folk/roots bands.
Audio is often the least considered when making a video. But without the proper equipment and care, bad sound can sink your video project. Our microphones and mixers are of the highest quality. Good sound is a high priority for us, and that’s what separates the experienced from the newcomers.
We have several cameras and we know how to use them. Some are best for 4K quality, while others are best for running and gunning. Ultimately, gear is the easy part; it’s our people and their skills, both technical and personal, that set us apart.
We’re big believers in being well prepared. From scouting locations and casting talent, to storyboarding and pre-visualization, there’s no such thing as too much planning.
Messaging & Scripting
Words are still the basic building blocks of all communication. You cannot make a good video with a bad script. Our writing starts with a deep understanding of your message and audience, and we keep it clear and concise.
Good lighting is one of the most important ingredients in a high quality video. We’re experts at lighting and approach it with great care. All the people in your video deserve to look their best (not just your CEO).
Kenneth Reed, Post-Production Supervisor
Kenny earned his MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2007. He has done camera and audio work for several networks, including MTV, Food Network, Fox, as well as several Chicago based production companies.
Kenny is an experimental filmmaker, and his short films have been shown in Italy, Germany, Canada, Australia, the Ukraine, and all over the United States.
Ernest J. Ramon, Image Specialist
Ernest is from Texas. He shoots photographs, makes documentaries, and draws graphic novels. He’s been a creative and technical consultant for nearly two decades. His creative work has shown at South by Southwest Media Festival, Chicago Underground Film Festival, Dallas Film & Video Festival, and the Field Museum of Natural History, among others. In 2007, he received his MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.
Editing & Animation
Stellar editing and animation can make all the difference in making a good video truly terrific. We can help with both, ensuring your finished video tells the story you need it to tell.
Dawn Kraemer-Meseck, Accounts Manager
After high school, Dawn began her career in the automotive industry, where she learned the intricacies of accounting on 12 column green ledger paper. This experience led her to a degree in finance, which she obtained magna cum laude from the University of Wisconsin Platteville. She has broad experience in several finance and accounting roles, focusing on client services.
Charles Jevremovic, Producer Director
Plying his craft behind the camera, producer/director Charles Jevremovic has been creating compelling images for more than three decades. He has worked on a broad spectrum of award winning projects, from web-based content, commercials and industrials to corporate presentations for clients including MIT, Jeep, Motorola, Invisalign and CVS.
Jevremovic draws on his expertise and background in teaching, fine art and broadcast engineering to help a range of diverse clients achieve their communication goals and reach their intended audience. His own work has been screened at The Museum of Modern Art, The American Film Institute and Artprize.
Adam Villani, Co-Producer
With a degree from Columbia College Chicago, Adam has primarily worked in documentary, both directing and shooting for many different series and films. He is interested in exploring unique perspectives and giving a voice to social issues.
Adam brings his passion for people and nonfiction storytelling to Video Parachute with the goal of instilling life and story to all the content he produces.