22Jul

Long-Form Video Series Production

Most of what we’ve done so far at PatrickOrtman, Inc. has been short-form video production. You know, TV commercials, web commercials, PSAs, and corporate videos. So this summer, when we were given the opportunity to produce a long-form video series, I jumped at the opportunity to do something new. It is good to stretch.

It’s been a great experience, so far. It’s different than commercial production, in that you have to move more quickly, and your unit needs to be very agile. The approach demands different tools, too- instead of RED cameras, we chose Canon C-series cameras. And instead of heavy tungsten or HMIs, we’re using a variety of high-powered LED systems. These LEDs are impressing us, by the way. We’ve had Litepanels and Kino Celebs for a while now, but the new high-powered, hard, shapable LEDs we’re using in places we’d normally place, say, a 1K, are just lovely- very little heat, so tear downs are fast, and the quality of the light is really, really good.

With the schedule we’ve had, and the number of locations and scenes we’ve needed to get each day, this has truly been vital.

Our healthcare client loves what they’ve seen so far, and we’re about halfway done with the project. Fingers crossed, but it feels like we’ve really hit our stride with these long-form projects, and that’s an important addition to our skills and experience.

18Jun

Two More Telly Wins for PatrickOrtman, Inc.

telly

We’re pleased to announce that we’ve won yet another two Telly awards for our video production work. These two are for our 2013 project for MPAC in Los Angeles called “American Muslims, America’s Leaders”, which celebrated MPAC’s 25 year anniversary.

The project was written and directed by Patrick Ortman, and MPAC’s executive producer was Hasnain Syed. Special thanks to Jessica Rothert, and the MPAC staff and volunteers.

The concept behind the video was to imagine how American Muslims would be seen, 25 years from now. We imagined a world where American Muslims are an even more vibrant part of our country’s political, artistic, and corporate landscape.

“I did some thinking about my own heritage- especially the Irish part of me” says writer-director Patrick Ortman “and I realized that when the Irish came over to America, it took some time for them to really become known as a strong part of our country. It’s the same for any group. And America’s this amazing place, because we’re the melting-pot. We all have strengths and points of view that can make us stronger, that make our country better. I wanted to show this process in the American Muslim community, which is a community a lot of us don’t know much about, and one filled with stereotypes.”

Patrick teamed up with Oscar-winning special effects makeup house B2 Productions in Hollywood to help realize his vision. “Those guys, wow- it was fantastic watching them take our 20-something MPAC interns and turn them into middle-aged people. I’m glad we reached out to them, and I’m grateful they took the time to do the job right. Of course, I spent some time wandering around their shop and taking in the amazing body of work they’ve done. You have to, right? I mean, they did Mr. Spock’s ears!”

MPAC’s Hasnain Syed adds “Going into this project, we wanted to make a bold statement on our vision of the future and a manifestation of America’s diversity as it’s core strength. To achieve this, both the message and visuals had to be impactful and visionary, without leaning on recycled ideas.

We had to turn to Patrick as our partner in bringing this vision into fruition. From the start, he told us to throw technical & budgetary limitations out the window and just think big. A great partner is one who keeps his eye on the project’s overall vision and emotional impact, without letting details detract from the end goal.

In Patrick, we have someone to imagine with, not someone who just executes or takes directions. If there’s a better way, or a different approach, he’ll say it.

MPAC works to make American Muslims a positive, integral and contributing member in America’s fabric. The video is a reflection of our work and it’s fruits in the future.”

These Telly awards come on the heels of Patrick’s Telly and ADDY-winning TV commercial “Meet Biff” for the Paffrath Organization

Both winning videos are also online at http://patrickortman.com

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28Mar

A New Telly Award for “Meet Biff”

Photo by SoulPhoto (http://soul-photo.com)

Photo by SoulPhoto

Guess what? We won another award for our TV commercial “Meet Biff”, for Realtor Kevin Paffrath! It’s awesome having to make yet more space in the old trophy case for yet another metallic award for our video-making prowess. Yay us! We’re soooo brilliant. And modest, of course.

Thanks again to the cast and our lovely crew. Love ya’ll. Mean it!

 

11Mar

National Video Agency PatrickOrtman, Inc. Wins Los Angeles ADDY Award for Real Estate TV Commercial

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

National Video Agency PatrickOrtman, Inc. Wins Los Angeles ADDY Award for Real Estate TV Commercial

 

Los Angeles- March 11, 2014– National boutique video agency PatrickOrtman, Inc. has won an ADDY award of merit trophy for its TV commercial “Meet Biff” directed and produced for California real estate company The Paffrath Organization.

“Kevin (Paffrath) has a vision for his company’s marketing that is unique, and wanted to create a commercial that really turned heads”, says agency founder and TV spot director Patrick Ortman. “When we were awarded this TV commercial project, our mandate was to create a spot that looked like a national TV commercial, but at a much lower budget. It was an experiment- can we compete with the work of bigger agencies, with fewer resources, and come out on top? We did, and we’re very proud of the results. This ADDY award, knowing we were up against far-better funded projects, is a nice validation of that success, and of our partnership with Kevin’s organization. Los Angeles is a highly competitive place- we feel honored.”

“Take the leap of faith; do what no one else is doing. Go all in” agrees Paffrath CEO Kevin Paffrath. “Patrick did a phenomenal job. Patrick has my business for life!”

About The Paffrath Organization
With the trademarked “No-Pressure Agents” slogan, their goal is becoming their  clients’ Realtor for life. It’s not just about one transaction; it’s about helping clients grow their aspirations while making educated investment decisions to build long-term wealth. Visit their website at http://www.meetkevin.com.

About PatrickOrtman, Inc.
PatrickOrtman, Inc. is a leading boutique national video production agency with offices in Los Angeles, New York City, and Austin. The company has worked with 9 Fortune 500 companies, and is known for creating national-quality work for clients across a variety of industries. Learn more at http://patrickortman.com.

Contact:

Crystal Cartwright
http://patrickortman.com
(818) 505-1988

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11Mar

Purpose and Values: 2014 Edition (Part Two)

The power of purpose

And now, after a couple months’ worth of crazy work deadlines and 18-hour days, here is our Part Two. Finally! I can’t complain, we love doing what we do, and the realities are that sometimes clients have immutable deadlines. It’s been a nice week so far, enjoying a bit of downtime at SXSW while we spin up for new projects.

Our Purpose and Values:

Our corporate side of things exists to do great work for good clients that fulfills and exceeds their expectations and baselines, while making a fair profit.

Great Work
We’re not interested in doing crappy work. We get calls all the time from clients who want us to cut corners. We will not. Everything we do reflects upon us, and short-term gain for putting out garbage work never ends up well (for the client, or for us). What we love is making films that tell stories which educate, entertain, and inspire your audience to action. Every project we do has to be done well.

Good Clients
We choose our clients carefully, as the kind of work we do tends to reflect upon us. We don’t need to always agree with everything our clients say, but we certainly will not work with a client who comes across as ‘evil’. What this means is, we will do work for clients who may not be perfectly aligned with our values, but who believe in what they do, and want to make this world a better place. We’ve worked with clients from a multitude of religious, political, and social differences. But if all a company is about is greed, or screwing people over as part of their business plan, or hurting others, then no thank you.

Fulfilling and Exceeding Expectations
Not every project we do has to win an ADDY. But everything we do needs to meet our clients’ needs and beyond. We exist to wow our clients and to give them the tools to help them further their causes.

A Fair Profit
We charge a fair price. We don’t gouge our clients, but we demand and deserve a profit from every project we do that isn’t pro-bono. Our prices are quite a good value compared to other video agencies of similar stature, but we don’t respond well to potential clients who try to lowball us or compare apples to oranges: we are a world-class video agency, not a couple of kids with DSLRs right out of film school. We take on projects that help our clients grow their businesses in a major way. That requires mutual respect, and part of that is charging a fair price for the work.

 

 

 

 

22Jan

Purpose and Values: 2014 Edition (Part One)

The power of purpose

Cool image by net_efekt

I’ve always been about purpose and values. I act in an ethical way, and I expect the same from our team and our clients. When I started my first company, it was with an almost intuitive sense of purpose and values. It was never just about the money, it was about creating cool stuff that delighted people, and that made a difference, too. This ad-hoc approach mostly worked throughout my 20s, but time goes on, and things change. For instance, my shop has grown in size and geographically, and continues to grow as we add strong teammates. And we are constantly approached by potential clients of all kinds, asking us to be involved in their businesses. The old ad-hoc approach from my 20s wasn’t cutting it, anymore. It became time to codify what we do, and why we do it. I wrote a post about that, and it really helped my team focus on what’s important to us, and it helped drive our decisions for the company.

It was fantastic, and quite helpful.

Well, it’s been a few years since my original post about purpose and values. It’s time for a redo, it’s time for an update. Founding father Thomas Jefferson suggested the need for a revolution every 20 years. I tend to agree, although this isn’t quite a revolution, but more of an evolution.

I’ve been thinking about this post since our work with PepsiCo, as their ‘Performance With Purpose’ is such a driving force for their business. It feels like companies who have strong, codified values tend to do better at the things that matter. As we’ve grown, it’s become incredibly important to me that everyone here knows what we’re about. It’s important that potential clients do, too.

I’ve recently been involved in another company’s efforts to create their own purpose and values program, as the director of their company video. Unfortunately, as the project progressed it became clear that this company didn’t ‘walk the walk’ with their values (and they really weren’t 100% sure what those values were, either). It was all just words to them, calculated to extract incredible loyalty and instill fear among employees. The company practices management by intimidation.

It made me really think. ‘We can’t be blamed for what happened’, I thought ‘How could we have known?’. Well, in fact, there were a few red flags in preproduction that I ignored: 1) they tried to lowball us, and only grudgingly accepted a fair project price, 2) they insisted on splitting the project into two videos instead of one great one, and 3) my initial dealings with the CEO and his minion made me feel a little icky inside, from his sportscar parked across 3 parking spaces, to the minion being insanely late to our kickoff meeting, at a purposefully-snooty locale.

At the time, we were just opening one of our studios, and we didn’t have much local work, yet. I ignored the red flags, and we went in full speed ahead- even when they started making adjustments to our working relationship, ignoring their part of the contract while insisting that we follow every word on our end.

Thus began my re-education about the importance of a strong, well-thought-out purpose and values manifesto. We needed- I needed- a roadmap, updated to our current business realities, that could guide us in our day-to-day dealings with clients, as well as in our more long-term decision making. We needed to revisit the core of our business, and figure out what we’re really all about. And we needed to refocus ourselves so that we can identify both good and bad opportunities, before it was too late. It’s easy to get caught up in the craziness of day-to-day life in a creative agency, and miss out on the chance to not just do cool stuff, but to do the right cool stuff. To create work that delights, and work that makes a difference. And furthermore, to build a company that radiates these values so brightly that it attracts the good, and discourages the bad.

Every company, nay, every individual should take the time to occasionally think about- and write down- their own purpose and values statement.  Next time, I’ll share our company’s shiny new purpose and values manifesto with you.

 

1Jan

Our 2013 in Review

It’s hard to believe it’s 2014, already. Last year was a really interesting year for me as a director, and my company as a corporate video production company and film production company. Thank you to everyone who played a (positive) part in our journey in 2013, and here’s to a fantastic 2014!

Last year my film “Unlaced” won BEST DIRECTOR at FirstGlance Film Festival in Los Angeles. It also won a PLATINUM REEL award at the Nevada Film Festival, and played at about half a dozen other festivals, big and small, around the USA. We’ll be continuing to promote “Unlaced” in 2014, as I work on a new film.

On the TV commercial front, I directed a number of TV commercials in 2013. My favorite, though, was for Southern California realtor Kevin Paffrath, because Kevin’s one of those guys who’s extremely picky about quality, and yet creatively open. I loved producing and directing his “Meet Kevin” TVC, and it’s currently airing.

I got to be creative for several other clients in 2013, too. One of which is MPAC, who gave us almost total creative freedom to come up with an original way to show the impact MPAC has had in the community over the past 25 years. I suggested that, instead of looking back, let’s look forward. They trusted me, and we worked together to create something special- a vision of MPAC 25 years from now. On that project, much of the budget went to special effects makeup, and we worked with Academy-Award-Winning B2FX in North Hollywood to realize our vision.

I have a feeling both of these projects will win some awards.

In April, we tried something new- creating lawyer videos for members of NARAS at their San Diego convention. I had a lot of fun, and met some interesting characters there. It’s not the kind of work we’d usually go after, but it’s nice to stretch, and we got lots of compliments on the work. I like working with small businesses, and attorneys qualify as that, as part of our client mix.

We did a lot of corporate video production work in 2013, too- including work for Seattle’s Real Networks, a large university and nonprofit company that had us in NYC, Boston, DC, and Minneapolis, a large pharmaceutical company, a company in the United Kingdom, a startup in Toronto, Canada, and a real estate company in Austin, Texas. Among others- we did a LOT of corporate films in 2013. Some of those projects will end up on our reel, and I thank everyone who’s trusted us to tell their story in video in 2013.

Some video agencies look down their noses at corporate work. We don’t. I have always believed an important thing is to treat every client with respect, and to raise the quality of the storytelling and production whenever possible. Because good work begets good work.

And in 2013, we did a helluva lot of good work, for clients big and small, all over the United States.

Last year we also expanded. Bigtime. We kept our Los Angeles location, and added a local New York City presence, and a full-on Austin, Texas post-production studio.

Why’d we do that?

Well, simply put, as a video and film director, I want to work on interesting projects for interesting clients. And there were so many potential clients who’d call us up, asking if we would work with them. But they did not want to travel to Los Angeles. This was especially true for NYC clients. And rightfully so. Of course, that meant I spent a LOT of time in the air in 2011 and 2012, flying to clients and working with ad-hoc crews. I quickly realized that having a small permanent network of reliable resources across the country would better suit the nature of the work we were getting. I knew this was something only the largest video agencies out there had, but I saw the opportunity to grow in a way that would keep us responsive (which our clients love), yet give us the ability to cater to these clients and their interesting projects located throughout the USA and Canada. So, I did it. I put it all on the line.

And it paid off. Our LA office is still super-busy. But our NYC presence is getting serious action now, too- and our Austin Post Studio is coming online in an exciting way.

So that’s it, in a nutshell. That’s 2013. A lot of fun creative work, a lot of bread-and-butter, but still good work, and a massive expansion of our capabilities that required us to put it all on the line- and which is paying off, fast.

There’s always challenges in business. But I’m grateful that our little company is growing, and growing in a way that stays true to our mission of providing world-class video production services to clients at a reasonable price

16Dec

Los Angeles Video Production Company PatrickOrtman, Inc. Completes High-Profile 25th Anniversary Web Video For The Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC)

(This press release was posted to the world, but never made our blog. Oops!)

PRESS RELEASE: Los Angeles, California- Los Angeles based video & film director Patrick Ortman announces the completion of the 25th anniversary promotional video for Los Angeles and Washington, D.C. based nonprofit Muslim Public Affairs Council (MPAC).

The video’s unique concept, traveling 20 years into a possible future where Muslims are more accepted in positions of impact and leadership in American politics, the entertainment industry, and in media, was realized visually through PatrickOrtman, Inc.’s partnership with Oscar-winning Barney Burman’s B2FX special effects company. “Working with B2FX was critical in realizing our vision. We had to age them realistically 20 years into the future, and the client absolutely did not want it to look cheesy” says Ortman “MPAC trusted us with a concept that was perhaps a bit creatively risky, so we went to the best- and we’re thrilled with how it turned out.”

Hasnain Syed, Creative Director at MPAC, added “Having had previous experience working with Patrick, I turned to him to help us create a unique video about our organization. Patrick loves to think outside the box. We needed someone who was not going to follow convention, but throw ideas out of left field – which is exactly what we got. What makes Patrick stand out is that he values ideas before execution. If the idea is great and catchy, he’ll figure out a way to make it happen within your time and budget. That there is an awesome partner to create awesome projects.”

MPAC is an American institution which informs and shapes public opinion and policy by serving as a trusted resource to decision makers in government, media and policy institutions. MPAC is also committed to developing leaders with the purpose of enhancing the political and civic participation of American Muslims.

PatrickOrtman, Inc. is a leading Los Angeles-based video production company with offices in New York, NY and Austin, TX.

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