18.4 | In Focus – Quality over Quantity
Big Wes knows a thing or two about quality (photo: Mathis)
In the age where content is literally everywhere you look, how do you filter out the good from the bad? When did every video clip or photo turn into quality material? These days, people’s attention spans are becoming shorter and shorter, so the best way to grab and keep their attention is to constantly push out content, right? Well, yes and no. It’s a fine line to walk and some have it figured out while others, not so much.
So what defines “good content”? That all depends on what you’re using it for: self-promotion, an ad for a specific company, a hyped-up video section, or whatever it may be – it should be clean, well-thought-out and, most importantly, something that takes time to create. Yes, once in a blue moon you go out with an idea of a specific clip or photo you want to get and you’re able to knock it out in the first couple tries, but that’s usually not the case. I’ve personally gone out multiple times to shoot and not come away with what I or the rider wanted, for various reasons: equipment issues, lighting/weather, the rider not being able to put it together, the list goes on and on. And while this is frustrating, it’s all part of the process. So when videographers or photographers try to look past these issues, that’s when you get content that just isn’t up to par and when that content is released it not only makes the one behind the lens look bad, but the rider as well, and that’s not good for anyone involved. Putting the time in shows that you care about what you’re creating and not putting something out just to put it out. The people viewing it will appreciate it.
The best way to keep solid content flowing is for companies to work with quality videographers and photographers. For the larger companies that’s no issue, but when it comes to the smaller companies, it gets a little tricky. While riders are great for putting out content (thanks Instagram), nothing beats having a dedicated cameraman not missing any of the action. The more you stockpile, the more you have to pull from. So when you hit the inevitable content shortage, just go back to your saved stock and pick some bangers from there. They also concentrate on the editing process while the riders concentrate on, you know, riding. I realize I may be a little based, and that it adds another expense, which can be a tough pill to swallow for some. But I feel the pros outweigh the cons.
With so much content coming out all the time through all sorts of outlets (aka the Internet), it’s refreshing when you can take a step back and have something tangible to thumb through, just like you’re doing now. Nothing beats the feeling of getting the newest issue of your favorite magazine and ripping through it, reading all the articles, soaking in all the photography, and just getting amped on riding. Not to take anything away from quality content online, because I enjoy it just as much as the next guy, but there’s something about print that gets me more stoked than anything. The moments online seem to be so fleeting – gone before you know it – but when you’re holding a magazine, those images are set in stone and you know that the people behind the creation of the stories and photographs really took their time to make something worthwhile for others to get excited about. I truly hope you get that feeling every time you pick up a copy of Alliance Wake, because that’s what my main focus is – to make cool sh*t that gets people excited to go ride. So get out there, shoot some video, take some photos, but take the time to do it right and you’ll be thanking yourself for it down the road.