Secrets To Creating Stories That Connect With Your Audience - An Interview With Kenneth Kebow

Kenneth Kebow with Richard Dreyfuss
Interview with Emmy award winning documentary producer Kenneth Kebow - part 2. Ken shares his secrets to creating stories that connect. You can listen to the interview here:

When you create a video to tell a story, do you sometimes feel like you are shooting in the dark?

Or, because you're not sure what to shoot, you record everything and it makes it hard to edit?

Wouldn't it be great to know the secrets behind creating stories that connect with your audience, every time?

I can remember in my early production days feeling the same way. Sometimes I would shoot too much video, and other times, not enough.

Other times my audio was poor or I didn't have enough light. It was just plain frustrating and I could spend hours in editing trying to fix the mess I had created.

It took making my share of mistakes, getting my education and working with talented mentors to learn how to create stories that connect with your audience.

Here's the good news, it doesn't have to be that way for you!

Today's blog is part two of my interview with Emmy award winning documentary producer, and director Kenneth Kebow as he shares Secrets To Creating Stories That Connect.

Transcript of Episode 26 of Camera Ready With Val Brown

On today's podcast, my guest is Emmy Award winning documentary producer and director, Kenneth Kebow. Ken was here last week to share his production secrets to creating great looking videos on a budget. Today he's going to talk about his process for creating award winning stories that connect.

I’d like to to tell you a little bit about Ken.

Ken is a friend and a colleague and a mentor, and he's been in the television industry for more than 30 years. Some of his clients include Google, American Airlines, Ford, CBS and the United States Marines.

Ken's been honored with a number of awards for his corporate work as well as his documentary work, which includes one on one of the original Disney imagineers, Rolly Crump, and another with Academy Award winner, Richard Dreyfus, in a documentary about Lincoln's second inaugural address. Both are amazing pieces of work, and at the end of today's podcast there will be a link where you can find out how to watch both of them.

On this week's podcast, Ken is going to take us behind the scenes and talk about his process for creating stories that connect. So let's go ahead and get started. Welcome back Ken.

Ken: Thanks for having me back Val, I appreciate it.

Val: I'd like to get started by asking you to briefly summarize the last two or three documentaries you completed in a broad brush stroke. I'd like our listeners to get an idea of the type of work that you've done.

Ken: That’s great Val. Now I'll preface that with saying the word passion and the reason I'll kind of throw that out, at the head end here is I think it's really important that when you pick a topic that you're passionate about it, because documentaries take time. There's a lot of moving pieces and if it's not something you're passionate about, a lot of times you may lose interest and it may never get done. So I've, I've gotten smart over a couple of documentaries then really just take on projects that I really enjoy.

The last couple that I've done, and we're actually doing one called, it's called Conflict, Community and Love. And in a nutshell, it's a story of a young pizza delivery man, 21 years old here in San Diego who was shot and killed by a 13 year old gang member.

And the crux of the story there is the father of the young man who was killed joined forces with the grandfather of the young man who killed him. And they started a foundation to stop kids from killing kids. So in this scenario where usually they would be hatred and, and really nothing that the two men had in common, they were able to create something good out of a horrible situation. Amazing story. And it continues on as Tony, the young man who killed the older gentleman is up for parole this year and the plan is for him to come work at the foundation created in the honor of the gentlemen he murdered. So it's quite a story and we're excited about that.

After that, this is an interesting story too. I did Lincoln's Greatest Speech, and to put a little hook in there for the listeners, it's not the Gettysburg Address, and that's right from Lincoln's own mouth.

He considered the second inaugural address his greatest speech. And I saw a speaker named Ron White, who's a Lincoln scholar, he has written some best sellers on Lincoln speak down at UCSD here in San Diego, and I was mesmerized. He's an incredible speaker, explained it beautifully, and through a series of, contacts and getting him, we did the program together called Lincoln's Greatest Speech. And through some folks that he knew, Richard Dreyfus got involved, who's a huge Lincoln, fan himself and a quite a historian, and we had Richard ultimately read Lincoln's Second Inaugural. So it's a great program if I may say so, about Richard reading this speech and Ron White kind of interpreting it.

Val: Yeah, I’m going to have to break in because I got to see that the night that you debuted it and Ron was there and I literally had goosebumps watching that piece. It just touched me to my soul and I want to say the same thing about the first documentary that you just talked about, that content is so soul gripping when you think about that.

Ken: Well, thank you Val. Thank you. I really appreciate that. It's always good to hear that you know,