The Lifestyle Video Brand Creating Seriously Good Content - Meet Business Owner Tom Precey of TEEPEE FILMS
"Although I’m annoyed I didn’t leave my previous job sooner, it’s vital to prepare for the jump so that you can hit the ground running... I’m working more hours now then I have ever done in my life, but because I love what I do it simply doesn't phase me." - Tom Precey, Founder of TEEPEE FILMS
We've had the pleasure of speaking with Tom Precey, Founder of TEEPEE FILMS. A brand set on bringing other brands' stories to life through the marvellous mediums of lifestyle video and audio production.
Content creation is at the core of everything TEEPEE FILMS does and it's Tom's self-belief and fervour which sets him and his business apart from many competitors.
By embracing any given environment and highlighting the strengths of those captured on film; his work is both breath-taking and refreshingly real. (And on a quick side note... we've not seen any other video that makes us want to demolish a chocolate gateaux like this one does...).
By taking the plunge and setting up his own business, leaving behind a stable job and throwing caution to the wind, Tom has quashed the fear and made huge headway in the film industry in a minimal amount of time. With some fantastic results.
Read on for tips and tricks to help prepare you to set up and grow your own business or startup. Discover the natural struggles any new brand faces. And get that extra nudge you've been waiting for to go it alone and pursue something you actually love.
Q. Tom, tell us about TEEPEE FILMS - who you are and what you do?
A. TEEPEE FILMS is a Lifestyle production company based in London, founded by myself in 2018. We have a versatile team who handle the whole life-cycle of content creation from creative pitch to delivery.
Our creative vision focuses on Branded content, Music, Documentaries and the Arts – specialising in the telling of stories through engaging formats (from short film to online campaign to behind-the-scenes docs) for commercial release.
Q. What/who inspired you to start TEEPEE FILMS?
A. Coming from an entirely creative family and studying Economics at university, I was always seen as the black sheep, so to speak. However, despite working in the finance sector for a few years, I had been continuously following my creative routes by freelancing in video production for the past 7 years.
By collaborating with videographers, directors and musicians any spare moment I had at university or outside of my job, it reached a point where I realised that I could combine both my love of content creation and the project management skills I learnt in banking. This lead to me making the decision to create my own production company - TEEPEE Films.
Q. What else makes you tick besides producing films?
A. I love my photography and music, so you’ll often find me snapping away with a camera in my hand or at a gig. Sport has also always been a big part of my life and despite my working schedule dominating much of my spare time these days, I love to run as much as possible to keep fit.
Q. Your shoot with Orca is breath-taking. What's the planning process that goes into a shoot like this?
A. Thank you very much! I was lucky enough to be introduced earlier this year to a very talented director - Chris Parton, who had been working on a creative concept close to him. The pitch was about the benefits Wild Swimming can have on you physically, but more importantly - mentally.
I instantly connected with the story and it was my job as a producer to make it a reality. Along with Chris we then found a brand and talent who could both resonate with the message and do it justice. It took a fair few months to take it from concept to finished film, but it was a fantastic experience from beginning to end.
Q. Favourite moment on a shoot so far?
A. My favourite moment would have to be whilst filming with Josh Collins and the team up in the Lake District. For the final shot of the film we wanted an epic view across the lakes and so we hiked up above Moss Force Waterfalls in the hope we would find one.
It took a fair while lugging the heavy kit up to the summit, but once we got to the peak, we just sat in silence for a good half an hour looking down over the whole of the national park. It was absolutely stunning and the fact that no one else was there made it even better.
The beauty of this job is that no project is the same, so it can take you to all kinds of places to tell all kinds of stories.
Q. It's an extraordinary video and what a voice! So how do you choose who you collaborate with?
A. I’m very lucky in this instance that Josh is a great friend of mine and he got me on-board with a brilliant creative team to shoot ‘Hold You Back’. But in terms of collaborating with other artists, it can be entirely subjective. I personally think it’s very important for the Director and Producer to appreciate the artist they are pitching to, so as to be inspired and believe in the product they are trying to sell.
However, nowadays it is becoming increasingly common for musicians to have very clear pictures in their head of exactly what they want shot, almost taking the Director role themselves. If the vision is shared then that works fine, but I strongly believe the Director and Producer should be given creative freedom on a project to work to their best abilities.
Q. Dream collaboration?
A. Working for a top sporting brand like Adidas or Nike has always been high up on my list, as their adverts always inspired me growing up.
Then again there are a number of brilliant musicians & bands I would love to have the opportunity to shoot with such as The Blaze and Tom Misch.
I don’t have just one dream collaboration really… I’m a bit greedy like that.
Q. From an idea through to reality; how long did it take to start your business and what were your biggest new business hurdles?
A. In honesty it was between 2 to 3 years. The biggest hurdle was the fear of the unknown of leaving a regular paid job and having to fully trust your vision 100%. From a young age you’re told to get the grades and make sure to get a stable income, so setting up your own business is almost seen as a taboo and isn’t really touched on in education.
Although I’m annoyed I didn’t leave my previous job sooner, it’s vital to prepare for the jump so that you can hit the ground running. For me this meant working every spare morning, lunch break, evening and holiday editing, producing and creating my brand to make it a reality. It pushed my old boss’s nerves to the limit, but it was well worth it.
Q. Any tips, dos and don'ts you would share with someone who is turning their business idea into a reality?
A. Collaborate and talk to as many people as possible. The number of meetings I have with people in positions where I want to be in 5-10 years time really pushes me on and keeps me hungry.
The most important factor of all is make sure what you’re pursuing is your passion. There are times when you will be stretched in all directions with pressure hammering down on you, so you have to really want to do it. I’m working more hours now then I have ever done in my life, but because I love what I do it simply doesn't phase me.
Q. We use words in everyday life and via marketing techniques; how have they helped TEEPEE FILMS so far?
A. Words are integral to us here at TEEPEE FILMS throughout the whole creative process. In the early stages when a treatment is made, they are the tools that structure and paint the clearest picture to the clients of what we envisage. When it comes to shooting, they are the words spoken in our films and can take rewrite after rewrite to be perfected, before they’re set in stone when the film is released to the public.
Q. And finally, what's next for TEEPEE FILMS?
A. We’ve made a great start since we’ve opened and the main goal is to keep this momentum up. With the increased demand, we’ll also be looking to expand the team in the next 6 months. But to see what we’re up to... you’ll just need to keep an eye out and give us a follow on social media (@teepeefilms on Instagram and @teepeefilmsuk on Facebook) or check out our website for all our latest content: http://www.teepeefilms.com.
Can you handle anymore inspiration? If so, click here to read about the startup triathlon brand reinventing sportswear for women.
Words Do The Talking
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