Earlier this week, I had the pleasure of visiting Washington, DC, to celebrate a really great project we’ve worked on for the past couple years with our client, InterContinental Milwaukee. The hotel was named a finalist in PR News’ Corporate Social Responsibility awards in the category of Corporate-Community Partnership for its Pink Room, a program in which a portion of the proceeds from each guest’s stay in one of the pink-clad rooms is donated to a local breast cancer support organization, ABCD: After Breast Cancer Diagnosis.

The awards luncheon took place at the National Press Club, just about two blocks from the White House and one of the most famous conference facilities in the country, known for hosting global leaders in government, politics, and business.

While the Pink Room didn’t come out on top in its category, it received an honorable mention award—which truly is an honor when listed among companies like Toys R Us (category winner), Craftsman, and WWE.

Prior to the awards luncheon, I participated in the PR News’ PR Writing Workshop led by Michael Long, Director of Writing at Georgetown University. During the three-hour class, we got back to the basics of good PR writing. After you’ve been in the industry awhile, you start to get swayed by what clients want (even though they might not have any experience in PR) and can sometimes lose sight of how things should actually be done to get results. The class was a great refresher course, reminding me of simple principles that can be forgotten in the hustle of the workday. Some examples:

  • Think before you write
  • Keep your goal in mind
  • One sentence equals one idea
  • Adopt the perspective of others

Sunday afternoon, I also had the opportunity to do some exploring. The weather was beautiful as I took in the sites.

 

 

A big congratulations to the Pink Room team and everyone who has worked to make the program a success! I’m honored to be a part of it.

February 14, 2013 · Posted by in event, pr  

Story

In the world of technology, things happen fast. Each day you can read about a new camera, the latest computer, or the next iPhone. Film and video production are no different.

RED, a camera company based in California, is pushing the industry forward–and fast. Higher frame rates, bigger sensors, more detail. Edit in RAW, shoot in 5K and soon 6K.

Trust me, I could go on and on. This is all good and well, but how does this relate to telling a story?

I am the first to admit that I often get lost in all the tech and gadgetry of video production, and at times it’s permissible. Recently, though, I have found great inspiration and fascination in storytelling, moving past the technology of it all and looking more at the content. Being the viewer of a great story is a special experience and it has brought to my awareness the true value of a powerful story.

A great story captivates and engages the viewer in the subject, like in the video below.

Great Wooden Boats: RED EPIC from Philip Bloom on Vimeo.

As I revisited this favorite of mine, I found myself moved by the story all over again. And you know what? Not once did I think to myself what camera was used, or how a particular shot was achieved. A great story rises above all the technology used to capture it and displays with beauty the subject at hand as if you have known him, her, or it for years.

Technology is important and shouldn’t be ignored altogether, but a great story will always win.

For your viewing pleasure, here are a few others I enjoy.

Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

Paperman by Disney Animation

On Assignment

Happy Friday!

February 8, 2013 · Posted by in video  

Farmers

If you watched the Super Bowl (I didn’t) or like to see the ads online (I did) you probably saw the “So God Made a Farmer” commercial from Chrysler. It was a powerful ad, consisting of still images and voice over from speech Paul Harvey gave back in 1978.

If you were born after 1978 you may not know who Paul Harvey is, or that the United States used to have a lot of farms, but I think you can still appreciate the simplicity of the commercial. I think it goes to show that a good concept doesn’t need to be overly complex or filled with larger-than-life special effects.

The photos are mostly still, but a few have some subtle motion, such as clouds moving, or a lens flare. None of the effects were overdone to the point of being annoying, they were just enough to almost avoid being noticed.

One thing I didn’t realize is that the commercial was based on an earlier video created by Farms.com. Check out the PetaPixel post for more, and to see both videos.

February 5, 2013 · Posted by in photo, video