Bold statements aren’t always easy to make.
No, wait, scratch that -- bold statements ARE easy to make, but actually making them (depending on your current set of circumstances) isn’t always easy.
As my year progresses, my creative life develops in all the ways I never expected. It’s counter-intuitive (at least in my head) and because of that, I don’t always acknowledge it when it’s happening. My instinct says that my creative work is personal, the stuff that I do out of pure passion.
As my professional career continues to take up more time, my passion-projects have dwindled to the point of nonexistence. And I can’t help but feel guilty.
But the fact of the matter is that my professional creative career has taken priority. And although it may not look it, I’ve been more creative than ever. And I get paid for it. Finally.
The big struggle in producing commercials and web content for a corporation (family-owned or otherwise) is that you have to work within guidelines that someone else established. Some of these guidelines are important; others are dated. My personal goal is to make a mark and do something different, but sometimes the best I can accomplish is to do something different in the business’s history.
The following is a TV spot for our Mazda dealership. It’ll be airing on WRDQ in Central Florida starting in a matter of days. Holler-Classic has never produced or aired a commercial like this (to my knowledge) and it is one of the most unique local dealer commercials I’ve ever seen.
If you’re familiar with local car dealer commercials (and who isn’t??) then you know that every spot advertises an offer -- dealers seem to be scared to promote something other than a monthly payment and APR. The result ends up stripping all originality from not just the video, but the product they’re trying to sell.
Think about it: manufacturers spend a lot of money developing a vehicle as art -- and that’s how they pitch it. Audi and Cadillac are great examples. And then when the creative trickles down to the dealer level, that piece of art is described as the mass-produced copy that it really is, and that “we’ve got tons to choose from! Every make and model!”
It’s the difference between saying “this is a beautiful car” and “have I got a beautiful car for you”.
At any rate, my goal is to create something different; something that puts a little bit of that art back into a local dealer commercial. Is it there yet? Probably not, but it’s gotten a lot closer. And if it catches an eye or two, then all the better.
The process on this Mazda spot started with a sixty-second radio spot (another monumental departure from the norm this month!). I had an opportunity to write something that took full advantage of the sixty seconds (usually we only have about thirty seconds to play with) and after the spot was produced, I asked the radio station to give me a version of the VO without any music under it.
After cutting the VO down to thirty seconds, I was able to build out the rest of the video. I shot the stock footage of the dealership a few weeks back and created the .com title in Motion. The photos and sparkler video at the front of the commercial were actually the hardest part, slogging through tons of stock pictures trying to find the perfect fit. This commercial is actually the second draft, having to change and add an additional photo.
So that’s what I’ve done creatively in the past week. Is it truly great? I dunno, but when I look at it -- especially in the context of my other work at Holler-Classic -- it makes me proud.
Stay bold and stay creative.
The anguished musings of a jack-of-all trades creative professional based out of Longwood, Florida. Find out more about him here. You know, if that's your 'thing'.
Most of my production music is original but if I need something extra-special, I usually get it from AudioNautix.com: