Three years ago, BBA students Jared Putnam and Ian Brink saw the potential in commercial cinematography. With the help of a drone and some big ambitions, the two were able to establish a reputable video production company across B.C.
The two had known each other since kindergarten, however, after roughly ten years of not seeing each other, they reconnected during their time working at the Tobiano golf course; Putnam was in charge of their social media while Brink worked in customer service. They created a promotional video for the golf course which received tremendous feedback.
“We made a video for Tobiano with my dad’s drone and they were hyped on it,” Brink said. “At that moment we knew we could make something from this.”
“Ian always wanted to start a business, I never really thought about that, I only saw an opportunity,” Putnam added. “I had done a little bit of video as a hobby beforehand which is why he talked to me about drone stuff.”
Brink had already big ambitions for the company by planning out their hypothetical work schedule and thinking of pitching their production services to multiple businesses in the region.
“We were like, why don’t we reach out to every golf course and real estate agent in BC and do drone work for them,” he chuckled. “I was so ambitious, I was like ‘I bet we could make $100,000.’”
The two started looking at the broader picture and began putting figures together to account for additional equipment such as other drones, cameras and sound equipment. They fully invested all their savings into camera equipment.
“We literally took all the money we made at Tobiano, put it aside and bought all this ground gear, we were fully committed,” Putnam said.
Despite their eager ambition to make money quickly, the two discovered a passion for filmmaking in the process. Their business tunnel vision took a slight hiatus while the duo concentrated on building a portfolio and appreciating the art of filmmaking.
“We were really focused on trying to make money out of this thing and we realized we really enjoyed making videos; it was super fun for us,” Brink said. “We started making videos for our own branding and just making videos in general, not for money.”
“We barely had any knowledge of filmmaking, we just came up with the idea,” Putnam said.
“Usually most people make their passion into a business, ironically it was the complete opposite for us,” Brink added.
Interestingly enough, much before the thought of New Parallel Productions, the two young entrepreneurs began with the concept of a practical yet stylish drone backpack for which they happened to earn a TRU student award and received mentorship from Kamloops Innovation. In times where business is slow, they are still very grateful for the skills they acquired from them. In the future, they may return to designing and selling products accompanied with their video services.
“I can definitely see one day going back to other opportunities and not put all our eggs in one basket,” Putnam said. “With a business like video production, it’s a great business to do while you’re young because you don’t have that risk of meeting a quota; you’re only overhead expenses are your cost of living and monthly small business expenses,” Brink added.
Featuring clients such as Mercedes-Benz Kamloops, Interior Health and Tourism Kamloops among others, the duo and the production company have bright futures ahead of them. In the long run, Putnam and Brink plan to finish their studies and fully realize the potential of New Parallel Productions, possibly while doing some more travelling as well.