“Ask him about the land.”
That text popped in at 9:26am on Wednesday, July 28th. We were quite literally in the middle of nowhere, and yet the middle of everything.
Liscomb, Iowa. Population: 274.
Two of those 274 sat underneath boom microphones, facing two cameras and a host of people behind them. We’d already been at it since 5am, when we met in the hotel lobby, filled our YETI’s with crappy coffee, and set out in chase of a sunrise and a storyline.
Jim and Brenda were settled in, weaving us through the story of Mosher Angus Farm. A rolled up video brief in one hand, phone in the other, I kept going with my questions. Trying to draw out the depths.
My phone buzzed.
Jeremy Parsons was texting me. From less than 3 feet away.
“Ask him about the land. Ask him about Iowa.”
“Of course. Brilliant.” I said in my mind.
“Jim, Brenda, what’s the significance of the land itself…” I said to them.
If you watch this video, you’ll recognize it only takes a few seconds to get into the story.
And it centered around the land.
Unlike any other video we’ve produced in the short history of Guild Content, the team spent hours and hours and hours on the front end. Building shot lists, planning timelines, communicating with the client, thinking of all the possible scenarios, getting all of the gear ready. It was a massive lift.
And then the shoot itself was crazy. People everywhere. Cables and tripods and cameras and light kits. But it was all according to the plan set in pre-production.
Something magical happened at 9:26am that morning. The plan was being executed, and things were going great.
Because we were prepared, we were free to be present, and Jeremy allowed the moment to speak.
“Ask him about the land.”
As he would say later in a text to Racheal Burnett and me, “One thing I’m very aware of is that you do your best to plan ahead of time, and then I think it’s appropriate to ask the Divine to show up. That’s the birds. That’s the red sun in the sky. That’s Jim saying ‘what a wonderful life.’ We work to put ourselves in a position to do the job. And then keep our eyes open for the gifts we can’t control. And the Divine seems to be pretty generous.”
I’m grateful to our friends at National Beef Packing Company LLC for paving the way for how brands can tell stories that foster trust, grow their companies, and change the world.
I’m grateful to our new friends who feel like lifelong ones, the Mosher’s, who invited us into their precious, generational story.
And I’m grateful for our team, who showed up at every step and gave a big damn about story.
I hope you enjoy this story, because for me, it shifted something inside, fundamentally.