What does it mean to live loudly? Perhaps it’s using art to heal, or embracing the fact that you’ve “always been extra,” or using your film or photography to start a conversation. For husband and wife, Jamie and Natalya Clemens, living loudly meant starting an award-winning video production company to tell the stories of brands and people who are doing the same.
The pair started Loud Life Productions in January of 2016. Jamie has been into video production since high school. “I remember thinking ‘This is a lot of fun – I can make things interesting and energetic and fun,’” he said. “It really engaged my mind. As soon as I got done shooting something, I just wanted to go and edit it.” A source of instant gratification, he liked creating something that others would enjoy.
His first job in video production was filming projects on-staff at a West Palm Beach construction company. His work in the industry extends beyond borders. Clemens has completed projects in Costa Rica with Natalya, as well as in the Dominican Republic and Cuba.
Jamie described Natalya has an avid reader and writer. A co-owner of the company, she also plays the role of producer and director on many of their projects. “She’s actually more into story and storytelling than I am,” said Clemens, “When she grew up, all she wanted was a typewriter, so she could sit next to a window and write short stories.”
The family moved from West Palm Beach to Lakeland four months after starting LLP at the suggestion of good friend and fellow entrepreneur/ video maker, Andy McEntire. McEntire, who owns Indie Atlantic Films and Concord Coffee, has been an encouraging force for Clemens. Indie Atlantic, NFocus Studios, and others in the industry locally have all been supportive. “That’s one thing about the video industry, especially in Lakeland is that everybody, for the most part, is super helpful,” He said. “While it is competitive, we’re all cheering each other on – it’s a great thing.”
As soon as they moved, Jamie and Natalya joined Catapult and set out to become plugged into the city. “Luckily, it’s a shallow pool, you can touch the bottom pretty quickly, which is great. We needed a city like that where, if you wanted to have coffee with your mayor, you could set it up,” said Jamie. They have since plugged–in to Lakeland’s growing, tight-knit community – growing their business within it.
Helping Brands Become ‘The Guide’
The technical side of video can be uncomfortable, costly, and generally not enjoyable for a business. Loud Life set out with a simple mission, “Let’s make this enjoyable for everybody.”
Loud Life Productions has a portfolio boasting clients from CenterState Bank, Bank of Central Florida, Keller Williams, to Gate Arty, One More Child, and Catapult.
They started out doing B2B projects for small business, now working more with agencies and marketing teams. Though agencies and marketing directors may be more comfortable with the technical aspects than most, Clemens said, “We still want them to feel like that experience with Loud Life Productions they felt very communicated to, very catered to, and felt confident where they’re spending their money.”
An intentional focus of the production company currently is brand commercials. “What sparked my interest in brand commercials was a project we did last year for a realtor, Gate Arty,” said Jamie.
Arty hired LLP to produce a brand commercial for his team. The video went on to earn the production company a Golden ADDY Award from the American Advertising Federation. (Loud Life won a Silver ADDY the same year for their video “Fellowship of Christian Athletes (FCA) | Join The Movement”).
“I realized taking someone whether they make coffee mugs or sell houses, you can still write a script and film them in such a way that doesn’t make them feel salesy and gimmicky,” said Clemens. “The best brands talk about their users – Subaru, Nike, Apple.”
Citing author and business owner Donald Miller and his book, “Building a StoryBrand,” Clemens explained, “You have a character who has a problem, who meets a guide, the guide gives them a plan, then calls them to action, then there’s a climactic point, and it either ends in success or failure.”
“That’s how a typical story arc goes and if you break that framework, oftentimes people don’t care to finish that story because that’s how you keep people intrigued.”
Helping brands to establish themselves as that guide to their audience is both challenging and fun according to the producer. To that end, consulting with clients is a large portion of the work they do. To get to the bottom of what message needs to be conveyed and how to achieve it through a video begins with a lot of questions. Loud Life uses the information they learn from consulting with a client – who their audience is, when and why they’re watching that video, and what they would ideally do with that information – to ask questions and simplify the message to find the most easily digestible and compelling way to communicate it.
Loud Life People
Marketing and branding aren’t the sole focus of the production company. “We made the company Loud Life because we wanted to tell the stories of people who we felt live life loud,” said Jamie, discussing a series of artist spotlight videos they’ve produced.
Through the series called “Loud Life People”, LLP has artfully and impactfully told the stories of a few fascinating people. They illuminated Josh ‘Bump’ Galletta’s story of turning to art after a traumatic accident and now using his creativity to make a living. Also featured was photographer Jordan Weiland and her show “Women in Beauty.” Her project was an extension of the conversation surrounding how beauty is defined, a reflection of beauty ideals and standards, and a call to all women to love themselves – flaws and all.
Lindsay Johnson is a gypsyesque fire dancer, performer, artist, and all-around “extra” person. The Clemens’s knew Johnson from West Palm Beach. “We felt like, here’s a woman who feels empowered to be her best self and doesn’t want to fit into a single mold and is going to make a living being who she is,” said Jamie, adding, “We wanted to tell her story and show off something really fun and cinematic.”
Another Loud Life People feature followed, Kevin and Teresa O’Brien. Kevin made the film joining the conversation between the church and the LGBTQ community titled “At the End of the Day.” Teresa, who worked with her husband on the film, has since become the newest member of the Loud Life Productions team as a producer. According to an LLP social media post, Teresa’s experience “specializes in coordinating large-scale events, producing digital streaming content and most recently a feature film.” The post went on to say that they couldn’t be more excited to have her join them.
What does the future have in store for Loud Life Productions?
“We really value repeat clients. Mainly because the more you work with somebody, the more you understand them, their brand AND their audience. We also find that one video is rarely the key to their messaging; it needs constant attention,” said Clemens. “We want to work along clients long term as a part of their strategic planning in their overall marketing plan.”
Clements also recognizes the need for brands to put out a “message void of their brand” and would love the opportunity to partner with a brand “who tells in-depth stories about their audience” in a mini-doc format.
Loud Life Productions