Making Air


Erika Graffeo, from airline stewardess to television personality….

What we are talking about here is ‘video literacy’.

That is, the ability to tell a story in video.

Now, the door is open to anyone to have their voice heard or their work seen.

Take Erika Graffeo, former airline stewardess for Southwest, now one of the TJs as we are calling our Travel Journalists on 5Takes. Out of literally thousands of likely applicants, we gave her a camera, a laptop, training in shooting and in using iMovie.

And now we’re going to spend 8 weeks travelling her all over Latin America, while she blogs and vlogs her impressions on the travel channel website.

A week ago she was explaining how to unbuckle seat belts and ‘cross checking’ (whatever that is). Today, she was learning to dance the tango in Buenos Aires.

Not bad for a life changing event.

She’s a success story – but there are easier ways to get seen and heard.

We’re opening whole new portals and platforms for anyone with a camera, a laptop and a story to tell. Particularly a travel story.

Our pilot, “What’s Your Trip”, hosted by Anthony Bourdain aired last night, and it rated well. So well, that we’re going to continue with the series.

But the series is your work! As Bourdain says in the opening, “my show.. your video”.

And we’re going to pay for your work: $250 a minute up to $1000 for anything that makes air. That is not a bad deal. But more significantly, we’re going to provide you with a platform to ‘be discovered’.

We’re looking for talent – new ideas, fresh voices; people who can show us the world though their own eyes. Something creative and unique. So while we’re very excited about “What’s Your Trip”, we’re even more excited about discovering hidden talents – talents we always knew were there, but could not find.

Are you the next Anthony Bourdain?

Could be.

Only one way to find out – upload your work!

It be the start of a whole new career – and earn you some cash at the same time.

We’re not just looking for pieces, we’re looking to find and nurture new talents.

Go to the Travel Channel website, follow the links for ‘SHARE’.

If you have any questions, let me know.


4 responses to “Making Air

  1. Up to a thousand dollars and a chance to be discovered!


  2. Rick evidently doesn’t know what it’s like to first start out in this profession – I sure do. To get my first few tear sheets by just submitting to a newspaper – hoping I would get published (and did) was what started my career as a freelance and staff photojournalist – winning several regional awards for my work. It’s called paying your dues – look into it.

    The opportunity to be discovered is worth more than $1000 but you fail to see that part of the equation.

  3. I’ve been extremely motivated by this blog and by watching 5 Takes – Latin America unfold.

    I’ve taken out the DV camera and have had endless hours of fun shooting and editing my own vlogs (on a pc and with a consumer camera).

    I would note, however, that it is quite difficult to find the video content on the 5 Takes website. I know the premiere hasn’t aired yet, but there are now 6 vlogs and 3 webisodes there, if you can find them.

    I’ve been checking the video links every day, and only came across the webisodes when I did a search on “5 Takes Latin America.”

    I think that this VJ paradigm, and even the web-driven aspect of the content is incredibly cool, and as Mr. Rosenblum’s blog points out, these two factors are a recipe for captivating television and webcasting.

    But, if you don’t know the material is there, it’s hard to enjoy the web aspect. I have posted on the 5 Takes forum and that is interesting as far as it goes, but the web video content is becoming more and more important (just look at you tube.)

    Clicking on the “Video” tab on the top of the Travel Channel site, gives two new shows (one of which is advertised frequently on air) and a contest. 5 Takes, which airs in less than two weeks, is nowhere to be seen. Also, 5 Takes no longer shows up in the “New Video” tab, though content was just posted yesterday.

    I certainly don’t mean this as criticism, as all of the TJ material has been excellent, and I imagine that the web designers have their own problems to deal with, but I really think that the web video part of the equation is not there yet, or at least is hard to find. Maybe that’s just because the show hasn’t launched yet, and so is not a priority for the web designers.

    The success of you tube should tell us one thing: that the web as a conduit for short, interesting video clips is here to stay, and to be successful, one had better have content there for the surfer to find, and make it findable to boot. Google is willing to spend 1.65 billion dollars for youtube, so there’s probably something there worth noting.

    This is especially important with a TJ show like 5 Takes, where so much is captured on location that it can’t all be packed into a weekly broadcast. Though the forums may help to tweak the content, I think that loyalty to the program will come from an emotional bond with the viewer to one or more of the five. Since the broadcast program only gets 44 minutes (9 minutes per TJ), if the program is truly captivating, one would logically expect the viewers to want to see more. And there’d better be something for them to find on the site once you convince them in the broadcast to go to the website.

    Thanks again for this blog. I’ve been enjoying reading it and have found it inspirational in clicking on the “edit” tab in my terrible editing software. (I’ll buy a Mac as soon as I can afford one!)

  4. I have submitted my video in hopes that it will air. I think it is great that Mr. Rosenblum has given the opportunity to people to share there talents and passion with others. It has always been a dream of mine to be a television/travel host. Although I know that there is stiff competition out there, it never hurts to try. I know I did my best with the resources I had and learned from my mistakes and that is what counts.

    I am also excited about watching 5 Takes Latin American; it has a small interesting twist to it, which I like. I got hooked on 5 Takes USA, so I am really eager to see the next one.

    I am glad that people have responded well to the first show of “What’s Your Trip.” I watched it and loved it; my favorite clip was of the nurse visiting India for the first time. I am a big fan of Anthony Bourdain, I love to cook and travel as well, so I like to think of us as having that it common:)

    I am going to stop rambling and just say that I would like to thank Mr. Rosenblum for giving people the opportunity to be creative and pursue their dreams.

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