Venables Bell + Partners
3 months ago
Independent agency Venables Bell & Partners announced today that its in-house production unit, Lumberyard Productions, has expanded its leadership team. Raquel Bedard, whose role has recently evolved to Director of Operations, is being joined by creative lead and director Tyler Hampton, production lead Sasha White, and client services Lead Kristin Obi. All three come from VB&P, where they led general advertising efforts and award-winning work for a number of the agency’s clients. In their new roles, they’ll continue to elevate Lumberyard’s creative product, and handle production and post-production assignments for VB&P clients, including Audi, Reebok, Chipotle, and 3M, in addition to expanding their work to include new partnerships with tech and new economy companies.
“It’s an exciting time for Lumberyard. As the market and media landscape continue to evolve, our team can take on new opportunities with clients outside of our agency relationships,” said VB&P partner and COO Kate Jeffers. “Our new team leaders will help us step up our game, work smarter and more efficiently, and better serve the needs of new clients who may not work with agencies, but have multiple content and production needs. We know these businesses can benefit from our passion and expertise, and it’s the perfect time to bring on more creative firepower in this new chapter. We know this outstanding team is up for the task.”
As Lumberyard’s creative lead and director, Tyler will lead the team’s creative development. Recently, Tyler directed four online films for Reebok’s 'Zig the Runway' campaign, a subversive take on high fashion events which moves the fashion runway to people’s driveways. Shot from the POV of a security doorbell camera, these films starred pro-basketball player Montrezl Harrell, comedian Desi Banks, bay area dance troupe Project Level, and other influencers. In addition to Tyler’s directorial duties, the Lumberyard team produced and finished these films, and handled editorial and FX work. Tyler joined Lumberyard after several years as a Creative Director at VB&P, where he led outstanding campaigns for brands, including Audi, Intel, PlayStation, eBay, and Chipotle. Tyler’s agency-side work has earned accolades from several top creative shows, including The One Show, Cannes Lions, D&AD, Communication Arts, Effie, and TED Ads Worth Sharing.
Raquel Bedard now steps up her role at Lumberyard as director of operations, overseeing the development of all Lumberyard disciplines and work flow systems while ensuring the nimble delivery of production in the Covid-19 era. In her new role, she will also lead business development and recruitment for the group. Raquel joined Lumberyard in its early days in 2012, when the team’s primary focus was handling non-billable projects for the agency. Since then, she’s been a driving force in expanding Lumberyard’s services to deliver on the needs of a variety of clients, from massive productions for global brands to quick-turnaround, highly cost-efficient solutions for emerging businesses. Under Raquel’s leadership, Lumberyard has produced outstanding campaigns such as Reebok’s 'Be More Human' women’s campaign and 'Zig the Runway' campaign, and REI’s #OptOutside effort, which earned the Titanium Grand Prix at Cannes Lions. She’s also launched and grown VB&P’s social media division, and developed a thriving team culture where each individual is challenged in their work endeavors and supported in their personal lives.
As production lead, Sasha White will focus on building out Lumberyard’s production department and capabilities. Beyond her client duties, and in response to new world Covid-19 challenges, Sasha and her team recently led the production of Facejar, a virtual face-touching 'swear jar' that lets people turn beard rubs and nose itches during video meetings into money for masks, gloves, and gowns for medical professionals on the frontline of the pandemic. Lumberyard also produced the Facejar promotional video and wrote its custom soundtrack. Throughout her career, Sasha has produced a range of work, including commercials and branded content for VB&P clients Reebok, Westin Hotels, and PlayStation as well as feature films, documentaries, and music videos. She especially enjoys cause marketing efforts, or financially strapped jobs that require creative problem solving. In her free time, Sasha worked with Director Paul Rice to produce his recent documentary about the LGBTQ community living underground in Russia, A Worm in the Heart. The film premiered at the 2020 Santa Barbara International Film Festival.
Kristin Obi is Lumberyard’s new client services Lead, focused on ensuring the firm is a valued partner (and secret weapon) to its clients. Like her peers, Kristin brings extensive experience developing brands on the agency side. Most recently at VB&P, she led Reebok’s much-heralded 'Sport the Unexpected' campaign and led work for 3M’s consumer brands. Prior to VB&P, Kristin was an account lead at Crispin Porter + Bogusky in LA, where she was instrumental in developing brands, including Old Navy and PayPal. At Lumberyard, she and her peers will bring their unique perspective and high creative bar to a range of partners and assignments, from live-action productions to sale videos and social content.
“The time is right for a production company with a strong creative perspective,” says Bedard. Our model is particularly relevant because of the current crisis. Brands still need content, but large-scale productions have been curtailed. We can get creative with how we produce new work without shooting out in the world. We are truly grateful to be open for business – we realize many aren’t so lucky. But as long as clients need work done, we want to be there to help, and we’re uniquely positioned to handle any type of production.
More on the Lumberyard team’s recent work and services - which include creative development work, editorial, motion graphics, print and digital production, content production, and social impact - can be found here: lumberyardproductions.comVenables Bell + Partners, 3 months ago