A good crew equals a successful photo shoot

I've been doing photo production management for 8 years now but I never grow tired of the challenges and fun situations I get to experience. So far, 2016 has been a great year with a consistent flow of production management projects both in Colorado and around the country. Recently, while on a job in Vermont, I had the opportunity to work with a group of people that truly exemplified and understood solid teamwork. There were only four of us that knew each other going into the week (and none of us well) but by the end, we were a cohesive team of 12. So, what makes a great team? I've spent some time recently trying to figure that out hoping in the future I can recreate this experience.


First, everyone was willing to give, give, give. There was a lot of work to be done and even before we even showed up in town, everyone was pitching in and lending a helping hand. I appreciated the pre production time the crew took to send me referrals or just let me know they received my emails. This was a great way to start building the cohesiveness that was going to be required to work together for five, labor intensive days.


Long days, no complaining. We started the first of four days at 5 AM. We had two location moves and multiple models, hiking shots, various set ups and long drives in those first 10 hours. The crew was great about jumping in and helping out on whatever needed doing, even if it wasn't in their specific area. As a producer, you set the tone for the team. If you're tired or cranky or sarcastic, you can bet you'll see some of that back. In production management, I'm always willing to jump in and help out where needed and I want my crew to be willing to do the same. These guys did that and more. They never stopped moving, which in turn, motivated me to do the same even when that 5 am call time (3 am my time) started to catch up with me.


Good food. Feeding your crew lot's of good food goes a long way. It shows them you are taking care of them when they're working so hard to take care of your shoot. This goes hand in hand with making sure they have time to eat and that they take that time. Things get hectic and people skip their lunch. Make sure to have grab and go food available and keep your crew hydrated!


Respect your crew and trust them to do the job they're hired to do. This is ideal and, I know, doesn't always work because not everyone has the great work ethic you want them to have. It's important, though, to start out with that trust and offer support. If they show they're able to do the job (and they should be if you hired well), then let them do it and give them some space. Production management is about organizing, supporting, delegating and problem solving. Check in often and be available but don't hover.


Have fun! I strongly believe in having fun at work. I'm not talking about goofing off but just the simple act of making a work place enjoyable. Get to know your crew. Ask about their families. Put a good play list on and sing along while you work. Find out what foods people like to eat and provide those. Take your team out for a beer after a long day. Compliment often. Smile. Don't take yourself too seriously. Be thankful. Remind everyone to wear comfortable shoes and bring a jacket. Have coffee in the mornings. Over communicate. Enjoy your time together.


I promise I'll be writing more often so check back in.




Processed with Snapseed.
Processed with Snapseed.

February 22nd, 2015

Snow day! I love snowy weekends where I can sit inside with the fire going, watch movies and get a little work done. Why? Because if I get all my work done on the weekend, I can take the next three days to SKI! Snow is falling like mad and rather than trying to make my way up to the resorts in traffic today, I'm going to play hooky the next three days and ski my little heart out. Anyone want to join me?

Work has been steady, which is great for the beginning of the year. We have a few projects coming up that I've been preparing for as well. We just finished up a drought video, did some location scouting for a yoga company, cast a couple of voice overs and we're gearing up for a shoot with Vail Resorts and a couple more videos. It's been nice and steady, which never happens! Generally when it rains, it pours so this consistency is fantabulous. I'll try not to get too used to it.

Have a great week and I hope you all get some fresh tracks in. Take advantage of Colorado and get out there! Everyone needs a snow day.



January 21st, 2015

It's a SNOW DAY! What a great day to stay in, crank up the fire, wear pajamas all day and get computer work done. The last two weeks we've been in the car the majority of days location scouting, meeting with clients, running castings and going to shoots. We've been to Colorado Springs, Lyons, Brighton, Boulder, downtown Denver, Castle Rock and Broomfield all in the past week. Today was a nice change but tomorrow will be another day on the go, which is what makes this job so fun.


Quick question, does anyone know a place where I could take some additional production management courses? The beginning of every year always brings with it a desire to grow and learn and although I feel we have a good handle on the various aspects of production management, I know there's always more to learn when it comes to being productive and efficient. I searched online and didn't find much that wasn't just a class or two in a film degree. Hit me up if you know of something in or around the Denver area (or online, of course).


January is more than half done and this year has already started out with a bang. Generally January is pretty slow so I was giving myself permission to ski, clean out my closets, go to yoga in the middle of the day and read a few books but so far, no chance to do a whole lot other than work. Here's a recap.


On MLK Day, I had an awesome shoot with Mark Woolcott Photography. How amazing are some of these shots? He's so talented! And thanks to all of our young models, they were professional and fun to work with. You'll be seeing more of these guys and check out more from the shoot in the portfolio section.



Sunday over the long weekend, we had a casting for B. Media LA. Awesome and talented photographer, videographer and hair stylist. We were looking for a Spanish speaking woman for a commercial and we had some wonderful talent to choose from!


We spent much of last week location scouting for a yoga company looking to shoot three days for their upcoming catalog. We found around 10 different locations and 5 were pretty good options. They made their decision today and chose two of the spots to shoot in the last week in January. These are both new locations we haven't used before so I'm excited to see how the catalog turns out.


More exciting news! We got a new client a week ago looking for someone to be "the voice" of their new ad campaign. We found a wonderful woman with a fantastic voice that the client was thrilled with. She recorded the greeting and all the prompts for their new phone system and will soon be the voice of their radio ads as well. She's so excited for this opportunity and we're thrilled to have found her! It sounds as though this is just the start of a fun rebranding for the client and a great new relationship for all of us.


We've been doing editing for a variety of clients but we have one really fun one that we started working with in November. So far we've done three videos with them with a couple more on the horizon. Great people to work with and interesting content so we're exited to have future work with them.


Looking forward to a fabulous 2015 with lots of friends, fun, work and passion!


The Run West Team


Beautiful November

Where has this year gone??! I blinked and almost missed it. I love this time of year in Colorado so I'm trying to squeeze every last drop of summer out of my days. We had a few mountain biking shoots recently and the mountain biking bug bit me so I've been trying to get out a few times each week and enjoy these beautiful days of fall in Colorado before we have snow and I'm forced to choose between work and skiing. Ah, the life. You'll never hear me complaining.

We've been crazy busy here at Run West Productions so rather than bore you with the details, here are a few highlights...
- Cadence at Union Station video
- 2020 Lawrence Apartment video
- Todd Reed Jewelry Shoot
- Gaiam Yoga warehouse video shoot / location scouting
- 2 Shea Homes Lifestyle Shoots
- Agency Shoot with Mark Woolcott Photography
- Smart Hunt Event in Frisco and Denver
- 3 Coleman packaging shoots
- Band Photo Shoot
- Vail Resort Ropes Course Photo Shoot

A lot more coming up so stay tuned!
You only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough. - Mae West


The mind of Kari White

Wecome to Run West Productions and the mind of Kari White.


We've been busy lately so here's a highlight of the past couple weeks of shoots as of June 3rd, 2014.

- The Coleman catalog - This consisted of 6 days of shooting at various locations around Colorado. The Coleman catalog consisted of 12-15 models per day with different wardrobe themes for each day. We ran into various obstacles but honestly, the wardrobe was the least of it. Three inches of snow, police confiscating our props truck and detaining our driver about a homicide (there isn't a contingency plan for this) and last minute model changes but we charged on and the end result was amazing.


- Pioneer Drama - This is our third year shooting for this awesome company and we always have a blast. It generally consists of 22 kids in three different costumes each and full hair and make up over the course of five hours. Talk about coordination! We had a great crew and everything went as smoothly as always. The kids were awesome and so fun to work with.  A shoot with Mark Woolcott (markwoolcottphotography.com) is always a shoot to remember. He's got more energy than anyone I know.


- Club Ride - An apparel company out of Sun Valley specializing in hip cycling clothes that can be worn on and off the bike. We rocked four or five locations in 10 hours and got some awesome shots. Thanks to Mark Woolcott (again), Raleigh bikes and our awesome models, including Brandon with the C-Lot.


-The Stearns Water Recreation catalog. Twelve 3-year olds in four hours? No problem. Finding two guys that can hunt and fish and look good doing it. Sure. Rescheduling the shoot four times due to ridiculously cold temperatures? Of course, it wouldn't be a Colorado spring without a random mid May snow or two. We did get it done and it was a lot of fun. Thanks to all the parents who were so accommodating to changing shoot dates. We finally found a warm day that actually worked for everyone. Now that wasn't so hard, was it?? IMG_5868_72dpi_9X13

Welcome to Run West

Welcome to the official site of Run West. Stay tuned for future production and behind the scenes posts, as well as frequent updates from the mind of Kari White.