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Topics - David Brenion

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Picture Gallery / Promo Art and Blooper reel!
« on: June 22, 2014, 09:08:40 AM »
My favorite part about making these videos is all the extra stuff beyond just the filmed instructions. My favorite post production piece of the puzzle are Shana's promotional title cards. They are so much fun!!

Picture Gallery / Featured artist!
« on: May 22, 2014, 08:41:10 AM »
A local feather distributor saw what we were doing with their product, and have asked to feature our work on their website. They are LAs largest wholesaler of high quality feathers, so this feature should put our work in front of some of Hollywoods too designers!

-David Brenion

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Picture Gallery / New backdrop
« on: May 21, 2014, 11:31:52 PM »
Danny suggested my photo backdrop should match my vacuum!

-David Brenion

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Balloon Chit Chat / Format of my new video
« on: May 01, 2014, 06:53:04 AM »
So, I have a new video out today, "Olaf", which I have posted pictures of. I don't want to spend too spend too much time trying to self promote, so if you are interested in buying the video, it's now available over at

What I really want to talk about is the format of this new video, and how I think the digital download format is changing the way instructional video may be offered in the future.

I have been offering my content solely as digital download for over a year now. In the past, when making a full length video or DVD, a lot of thought went into what sculptures would fit in the time limit of the chosen medium. This was good in that video producers worked hard to pack each precious minute with important content. But I always find that I have loads of useful things to say about any one particular sculpture, and I have the hard task of cutting out all but the most essential bits.

So, an average instructional video or DVD would have about 10-12 designs and run approx 120 minutes (about 10 minutes per design). When I finally got around to doing the rough cut of this Olaf video I had about a 25 minute video. I intended to cut it down significantly from there to fit into my preconceived mold of how long an instructional video should be.

But then I had a thought. Why? Why cut it down? I'm not trying to fit within a time constraint. So why not let the video be 25 minutes long? It's all good useful information, so instead of struggling to decide what to cut out and what to keep, why not keep it all?

Then I got another thought. I know what it's like when I watch a video. I love to learn all the extra hints and see each step in slow detail, but I also like to get to the end of a sculpture. And I know that if I were to watch this 25 minute instructional video for one sculpture, I would be clawing at my eyes by minute 15. I needed to consider the more advanced twister who can pick up the design just by watching the sculpture being built without interruption.

In the past, with DVD or VHS, the compromise would be to make the video more middle of the road, not to fast, not too slow. It's not perfect, but it was a valid solution.  

If I'm not worried about time, not only can I have my 25 minute instructional video, but I can also offer a whole second video of the sculpture being built without interruption!  That way the more advanced twisters can watch learn the sculpture quickly, and go back to the more detailed step by step instructions for more hints. This second vidoe came out to a more manageable 8.5 minutes (working at a moderately slow pace).

And then I had another thought! Whenever I finish a video, and edit it, and every thing is done...I think of other things I want to include. Usually, it would be too late. But with digital video uploaded directly to the consumer, I can add more anytime I like. At the last minute, days after filming, I remembered a few things I wanted to add. So I got back in the same (almost) shirt and tie as the first day and shot about 5 more minutes worth of tips for this design.

In the end, it all totaled up to 40 minutes of video broken down into 3 separate chapters. I would never have devoted that much time to one design in the past. But now, the one size fits all model of DVD creation and distribution isn't holding me back. I can offer way more than ever before, and for way less money. And I think that's kind of cool!

This is where you, the video consumer comes in. You are now in a unique position start dictating how you want your balloon education to work for you. Content providers, like any other business person, need to pay attention to demand, and what services people like or dislike.

Since this way of offering videos is still in it's infancy, I would love to hear feedback from you all about your experience buying and using online video tutorials. Are there additional features that you think a digital download should include or things that could be improved?

I also want to note that I am intentionally not posting this to facebook, this is just for forum folks! Graham reminded me recently that the forums are a valuable place. With the recent sad news of Tmyers going under, I'd hate to see these forums go the same way. Facebook is great for somethings, but it can never be a community the way a forum is.

Competitions / Balloon Snap Week 40
« on: April 28, 2014, 06:39:08 AM »
Hey, this is my first balloon snap! Here goes...


I have been taking a lot of photos lately, so cameras have been on the brain. And there is always at least one guest at a party with a really nice camera (if not a professional photographer). It's amazing how much they connect with a balloon camera. Even making a simple figure that really captures the camera essence is always a crown pleaser!

My ingredients were:
1 clear 5" round
1 white 5" round
1 black 5" round
1 black 6" Q link
1 black 350
1 black 260
1 grey 160

Here are a couple of angles

And here is a mini version made with 260 in stead of 350, and added to a chihuahua on a hair band on the photographer....I rest my case!

Have fun!

-David Brenion

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Picture Gallery / Shima Jiro
« on: April 23, 2014, 05:36:35 AM »
These are some of the characters from a Japanese cartoon for preschoolers. I have a client looking for table decor in this theme, so I took some test photos to help me land the job. Even if they don't decide to buy them, at least I got some nice photos out of it.

I want to say a big thank you to Pieter van Engen who shared some great photography tips with me!

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Picture Gallery / Belated Easter basket
« on: April 23, 2014, 05:25:58 AM »
It's a few days late, but this is a design I used this past weekend for an Easter brunch.

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Picture Gallery / New holiday promo pics
« on: December 06, 2013, 11:12:25 PM »
Some new promo pics for the holidays. All of these designs will be available as a download at very soon!







Balloon Chit Chat / Tjam on the Road 2013
« on: June 18, 2013, 04:11:18 AM »
Hi Friends,

You may have heard the news already, but in case you haven't...
TJam on the Road 2013 is official. Buster Balloon and I will be hosting this years TJam, and we have LOTS of exciting things to share. More info will be released over the coming weeks and months. If you are in the Midwest-East of the US, chances are there will be a stop on the tour near you. The full schedule is listed here
Sorry we wont see our UK pals on this trip, but we hope to return to jolly old England soon :)


Balloon Chit Chat / Nifty Balloons on TV!
« on: June 03, 2013, 09:06:23 AM »
Hi all,

Shana and I had the good fortune of being featured on a new show called "Culture Pop" (an appropriate title!), It's an arts and culture show that features artists in unusual mediums. We were chosen as one of the features in the pilot episode which aired this past week. The episode is not available online at the moment, but you can see some clips from the show at

Balloon Chit Chat / Using my Promo Pics
« on: April 03, 2013, 02:28:29 AM »
Hi all,

I'm not sure if this is the best section of the forum for this topic, but I hope it's alright.

I wanted to bring up a topic that was brought to my attention today. There are some balloon artists who have used my promotional photos of Jumbos on their websites. I know this topic has come up MANY times, and has been argued back and forth for some time. But in this particular case, I feel I need to say something in support of this practice.

First, I want to say that as a general rule, using promotional photos from some one else's web site is simply wrong. We don't need to discuss that topic any further.

However, I have given this some thought, and in the case of Jumbos, I give full permission for people who have purchased the videos to use the photos on their own sites.

The reason is simple. These sculptures are not cheap to make. I could never in good conscience ask you, as a business owner, to go out and buy lots of expensive balloons, make all the designs yourself and take photos for your website before you can even begin to advertise the product to your clients.

I make and sell videos of content that I know is sellable. And I want you to start selling from day one if you can.

I do want to make it clear, however, that this liberty comes with the purchase of my video content. If I find that people are putting the pictures on their websites without first buying the video, then we have a problem.

I'm curious to know your thoughts on this topic.

Balloon Decor / Jumbos goes live on Monday!
« on: March 30, 2013, 10:04:38 PM »
Hi folks,

The Jumbos download/instant streaming goes live this Monday at 12:00 midnight PST, so that's 3:00 am EST and 8:00 am GMT.
I will update my website with the link at the stroke of midnight.

Also, I want to give a shout out to some other folks who are putting out hight quality online content. I hope this new market continues to grow!
Check out Dylan's PDF's at
And Ken Stillman has been consistently producing great content over at

Picture Gallery / Materials list, as promised
« on: March 12, 2013, 07:54:12 PM »
Several of you requested that I release the materials lists for "Jumbos" so that you can have some idea of what you are getting yourself into. As promised, it is now available for free on my website. Go to and click on "Download the free PDF materials list".
From my last phone call with continental, they are nearly sold out of the $75 packages!

14 Advertising Work / Jumbos DVD Limited run
« on: March 06, 2013, 06:07:18 PM »
Hi all,
Big news (but you better get on it fast). We are doing something unusual...making a REAL DVD for Jumbos. But only 75 copies will be made, and they are on sale for pre-order NOW (shipping Apr 1). Go to for more info. The video will be available as a download starting April First

Picture Gallery / Jumbos! Air filled decor from Nifty Balloons
« on: March 03, 2013, 01:04:07 AM »
Some of the designs on my upcoming video, Jumbos!


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