Success on Kickstarter

So it's been an adventurous whirlwind of 24 hours. Our clients, GUSTIN, had the most successful first day in Kickstarter's history for any fashion brand and of course, our work has been all over the Internet in all kinds of different blogs and news. If you haven't seen our video yet, check out below, or go to our promos/commercials page to see it. Keep reading for some behind-the-scenes on the making of this video. In less than 24 hours, GUSTIN surpassed their original goal of $20,000 and they are now just over $33,000, less than two full days up. How incredible is that? You can go to their Kickstarter page, or you can go to see the video here.

We are proud to have worked with such awesome clients like GUSTIN and couldn't be happier to see them succeed. If you want to hear more about how we can help YOU and your company, product or idea, send us a message.

So it all started when we sat down together early in the process for a first meeting. As soon as I saw the product that the GUSTIN guys brought along with them and I heard their history, what they wanted to achieve, their experience and everything, I knew that I wanted to help them out any way I can. And I knew that we could create something pretty great. They had ideas of a cinematic piece, which is always hard to do on a low budget, but fortunately it's what I like doing. From my experience in the film industry for over ten years, this would be a challenge that I would gladly accept.

So the process started. Lots of emails back and forth to maintain always a good brainstorm of ideas and know that we were all on the same page. Creating a Kickstarter campaign is not to be taken lightly, since a lot of the success of it comes from engaging the viewers, and potential clients and investors, in bidding on the actual product. And a product of high quality demands a campaign of high quality too.

Starting with the photos. I rented out a studio I tend to use for some photography shoots, which would provide plenty of space and conditions for a productive shoot. They brought a model who was patient enough to try different jeans and be photographed a gazillion times. We decided to go for something really simple, after all, we wanted to show the product. So all the photos were using a white seamless backdrop. After the photos were edited on Lightroom and Photoshop, we quickly had setup a private client space on this website so that GUSTIN could access, look at the photos and choose the ones they wanted at full-res immediately.

We then used DropBox for transferring all files as necessary.

jeans

jeans

While working on the photos, I kept studying ideas and doing tests with the camera to make sure of what could work or not when the actual film shoot took place. I decided that using a slider adds a lot of cinematic quality to any shoot, since it gives many more possibilities to create an added level of cinematography. And it would work with the kind of thing I had in mind for some of the shots. We used the KesslerCrane Cineslider for the shots and the Sony FS700 camera for the whole shoot.

carry

carry

The shoot itself was done over a period of five hours, on-location. The audio was a combination of wireless lav mics and a Zoom H4n to get some of the environment sound. And also, record the actual monologue that GUSTIN had decided to go with for the Kickstarter campaign. It was a very efficient shoot, a lot of fun, and despite the rain, it actually added a great level of grit to the feel of the video, which is exactly what we wanted.

machine

machine

Now that the video was shot, lots of editing and post-production to do. We did everything in Final Cut Pro, with grading through DaVinci Resolve. I actually added some film grain in post, to add even more to that old-school feel of the film, the denim and the music we chose through Smartsound.com, this great blues track that I just felt it was perfect for the film.

And since I wanted to take the cinematic level of this the best way we could, a great example of this is the opening shot, where you see the letters "San Francisco, CA", coming in on lower right.

opener

opener

To make them appear belonging more to the environment, I actually added them as a reflection in the street right below. Since it was raining and the ground was wet, this was perfectly justifiable, and even though it's very subtle it's one of those things that just makes it work even better.

But since I was doing that, it also means that the letters would be placed in space at precisely that spot. And since a car comes in from screen right towards the end of the shot, I had to make the letters go behind the car for a while. The car was rotoscoped using Apple Motion so that everything could be composited properly in the end.

The result is pretty subtle but it works really nicely with the piece visually. It adds a lot to the whole film and it's the kind of level of quality and professionalism that Sutro Studios will always provide.

We couldn't be more grateful on having worked with GUSTIN and looking forward to hopefully many more future collaborations.

You can see the whole video again below.