So, this year has held a lot of travel for me…way more than I had anticipated! It started with a 1 week stint in Calgary for the NHL Heritage Classic (the outdoor hockey game). Canadian Tire was a sponsor for this amazing event and I was commissioned to go along and shoot. More on that story later, this story is about the second project that included lots of traveling for the year…the Grand Openings Tour. This tour would find me traveling around in the Canadian Tire Community Events vehicle as well as flying around courtesy of WestJet to a number of Canadian Tire Grand Openings and Grand Re-Openings.
Now, when I first started my corporate gig I was told that there would be about 15% travel…well, I hit 15% really early in the year, let me tell you! The purpose of me traveling and shooting was to gather footage (video and photo) to create a Sizzle Reel that showed the excitement of the Grand Openings, what the Retail Events Team is capable of doing and how the involvement of this team, when a store is having an opening (or re-opening) does things like increase sales, improve customer awareness, etc…basically, the benefit to having the team do their thing. So, my mission began in March and ended in May 2011.
Cool highlights of my multi-location project:
- I got to hang out with NHL greats like Curtis Joseph, Darryl Sittler, Johnny Bower, Lanny MacDonald and Matt Carkner. Drivers extraordinaire such as Scott Steckly and Ron Fellows, and chilled with TV personalities including Chef Corbin and Cesar Millan, not to mention city Mayors, and the cool Canadian Tire Executives that showed up to the various events.
- I was shooting soooo much, both photo and video, and was really able to expand my creativity in both the photo and video realm. Also got to play with all of my videography toys including the GoPro (see this link for my 1st GoPro video).
- I rolled with dual 7Ds everywhere I went. (maybe not “cool” to the non-shooter but dual cam is big time in my world! ;))
- Got to know the inside of hotel rooms and rental cars really fast…what I really mean is that I got to do a lot of traveling to places that I never knew existed…like Kemptville Ontario.
- And I got to hang with a really cool team…The Retail Events folks.
Quick side-story: When we arrived in Kemptville, we pulled into the motel around 11pm and believe me when I say we were skeptical about the place. However, we decided that since this was the only hotel in the city of 14000 that we would check in. When we all got to the front desk and started checking in and being put into our rooms we thought he was joking when the owner said to one of the girls, “you’re room is the one on the left but there might be someone in it”. We realized that he wasn’t kidding when he called in and said, “Hey (whatever the guys name was), you have to come out now, the guests are here”, and then someone emerged. What?! We couldn’t believe it…then to top it all off, there was a floater in the toilet! Yeah, that’s right! You all know what a floater is! Glad that wasn’t my room! Anyways, that aside, it did turn out to be a good 6 days in Kempville. And the owner of the motel ended up being really cool and even took us out for an evening on his boat. It was probably the hardest one for me being away from my family for that much time but all the overtime was enough for Lex and I to take off to the Mayan Riviera for a week, so the payoff was good.
This week I have a meeting scheduled to discuss the schedule for this years Grand Opening Tour and as much work and travel as it was, I am looking forward to this years. I really do love the run-n-gun style, guerrilla videography type of shooting…and the overtime isn’t bad either! I’m already thinking about next years vacation! ;). Some people may say, “Kemptville?! That’s not a cool place to go!”, but I say that anything is what you make it. That’s why I think that I am able to shoot anything and be excited about it…I’m shooting, and doing what I really love to do. When asked “what’s up?”, some people answer back sarcastically, “living the dream bro”, but I truly believe that I am. Living the dream and loving it! and I got lots more to talk about…ttyl!
Here’s the video, I’d love your opinions.