Hi. I’m Mike.
I’m excited to come alongside you in the path to producing great videos. But first, a little backstory.
I got into video when I was in middle school. My early days of production included hooking up multiple VCR’s to edit and then filming my computer screen with a video camera for credits. (Actually, my “credits” technique started with taping multiple pieces of paper together and pulling them across the floor in front of the camera with a fishing line. Filming the computer screen came a little later as I advanced in my craft.)
Fast forward to my early days of college when I produced a video called “Bandage Wear.” It featured numerous friends wearing a scrap piece of cloth in various unique ways. It was bad. Like really bad. In terms of production value, I’d say it was significantly worse than the worse thing I’ve ever received from some young person asking me to review their work. The best part about it is that I convinced a Creative Director from a large advertising agency to review it to consider me for a job. I didn’t get the job. And he would have been very justified in passing that video around the office to entertain his colleagues at my expense.
About a year after Bandage Wear, I joined the video team at my church where I met my future business partner, Josh. His childhood videos were well-produced Star Wars remakes with all of the light sabers done quite accurately in After Effects. One video even included an “outtake” where the actor accidentally had his light saber turned up too high and the beam exited the earth’s atmosphere. As you may have guessed, I let him focus on the production side of our business while I focused on the business side of things.
Josh and I started Reliant Studios during our senior year at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. As we worked to grow Reliant, the questions, “Who are we?” and “What can we do better than anyone else?” always plagued me. I was determined not to be another corporate video production company that always stuck to the standard MO of “interviews and b-roll.” Yet that’s what we kept doing year after year. Finally it hit me. Let’s own interviews and b-roll. Let’s tell real stories, but let’s make them awesome!
Ten years after we started, we’ve built a brand around telling real stories in a way that truly captures the hearts of viewers. As a result of the creative process we’ve built, we’re often hired to produce videos that motivate people to want to be a part of something and to give generously to it. While we love working with all kinds of organizations, nonprofits have been a natural fit for us.
We’re also passionate about teaching others, so we started building Nonprofit Film School to share what we’ve learned with the masses. It took over two years to develop, but it was so worth it. I am excited to watch you learn from us and to see you start producing your own videos that capture the hearts of your audience.