15 Second Stories-Jen Lewis Instagram Videos

Screen Shot 2014-11-12 at 8.43.15 AM

Remember when we did this little teaser? Well, we’ve been turning it in to a full-on Instagram campaign for Jen (if you follow her on Instagram, you’ve seen these as they’ve been released).


We love that Jen wanted professional videos for her Instagram, and we really believe that they set her apart. Her photos are always great, but she wasn’t comfortable ensuring the same standard and quality if she tried to make the videos herself. Plus, the logistics of starting and stopping recording on your phone while also trying to focus on making the drink or food dish can be complicated. Not to mention phone video doesn’t compare to camera video. It’s not as interchangeable as still photos.). So we stepped in to make sure that the video looked great and professional so that she could focus on creating great recipes.


Instagram videos are fun for us because they force us to think differently: square instead of a rectangle, 15 seconds to tell a complete story, thinking of how it will be viewed on a small screen. I love anything that forces me out of my usual practices while filming is good for my creativity, so being able to create Instagram campaigns–that can then be easily shared on Facebook and Twitter–for Jen and some of our other dreamy clients is so much fun.


So, here are some of our videos we’ve created for Jen’s Instagram! (Just a Note:  these are best viewed on mobile screens because that’s what they were made for, but we just couldn’t stand to keep them away from our internet family. Follow Jen or Truebadours on Instagram to see them in their native state.)


Series Intro:

Jen Lewis Instagram Campaign | Series intro from Truebadours on Vimeo.


First Round of Recipes: 


Jen Lewis | Vanilla Bean & Orange Old Fashioned from Truebadours on Vimeo.


Jen Lewis Cocktail Recipe | Ginger and Cassis Cooler from Truebadours on Vimeo.


Jen Lewis | Apple Brandy Champagne Cocktail from Truebadours on Vimeo.


Holiday Series (we brought in some food recipes for your entertainment inspiration):


Jen Lewis | Holiday London Mule from Truebadours on Vimeo.


Jen Lewis | How to Build a Cheese Platter from Truebadours on Vimeo.


Jen Lewis | Under the Mistletoe Martini from Truebadours on Vimeo.


Lemongrass Salmon from Truebadours on Vimeo.


Then we upped our game even more and brought in Anna Cottrell and Hope from Lola Boutique to help style Jen.

Jen Lewis | Bitter Sweet Manhattan from Truebadours on Vimeo.


Jen Lewis | Brussel Sprout & Butternut Squash Salad from Truebadours on Vimeo.


Jen Lewis | Pazza d’amore from Truebadours on Vimeo.


Jen Lewis | Roasted Beef Tenderloin from Truebadours on Vimeo.


Jen is so good at what she does (and she looks good doing it!). We can’t wait to keep creating more Instagram videos for her.



Want to step up your Instagram game? Let us know and we’ll work to create a campaign just for you.

On Progress



Spring is the new “New Year” for me, it feels much better to make goals and resolutions when the plants are blooming and the sun is out. So I’m in major goal setting/dreaming mode right now but over the past couple of weeks I’ve found a mental trap that I’ve set for myself.

Yesterday, I posted this on my personal Instagram :   “I’m the person who expects the future now: I’ve been working on my health, why haven’t I lost 70lbs in three months? Why does the life I dream of and person I dream of being seem so far from where/who I am now? That disconnect sends my self esteem on a huge downward spiral. But here’s the truth: I’m a work in progress (and I’m working hard), inspired by other works in progress and we’re all in this together. That’s why I get to pick myself up and keep going with my head held high.”

Lately I’ve been spending a lot of time dreaming up my future: what does my ideal day look like? How do I want my home to look like? What are my goals and dreams for the future of Truebadours? What about my health/fitness goals (and my goals to help others)? How do I create as much as possible with the time I have and then work to make even more time? What adventures do I see James and I on? How far can my dreams take me? How does my future feel?

Then comes the self-doubt: Why am I not there yet? Why am I scared of my own dreams? Why don’t I have my life together already? From there it goes down in to blaming myself for being incompetent and whatever else my mind wants to trick me in to.


But I meant what I said on Instagram. I am a work in progress. and that’s what I need to remember. Nobody has it all figured out, but if we’re doing any sort of forward motion, that’s what sets us apart as dreamers. I repeat:

 Nobody has it all figured out, but if we’re doing any sort of forward motion, that’s what sets us apart as dreamers.


So keep going. Small steps, big leaps, whatever you need to do right now to get you that much closer to your dreams, that’s what you need to do. Right now. And whatever you feel like you need to do? That’s all you need to do.


Just. Keep. Moving.


We’re all works in progress, and most importantly, we’re all in this together.




*If you want help/accountability with your health and fitness OR if you want encouragement and accountability on your dreams/career goals or anything else in your life shoot me an e-mail at truebadourjess [at] gmail [dot] com. I want to personally help and encourage you any way I can. If we’re works in progress together, our progress will be that much sweeter.


SxSw Film: a Truebadours adventure

Untitled-2This year as I was looking for some professional development, I realize something about my industry: the community is totally different. We don’t have huge conferences where we talk about trends and new systems, etc because the way we work is totally different. Yes, we want to know about new technology in cameras and programs that make what we do easier, but we don’t want to know trends on how everyone is making their films because we want to be making our own projects in our style our way. I started feeling like maybe you’re supposed to be an island in the film industry, but then I found SxSw. A mix of film screenings and lectures and sessions. A perfect blend to be inspired visually, creatively, and practically.


So, here’s a few highlights of our time in Austin:


Day 1:

A conversation with Ryan Gosling and Guillermo del Torro.


Let’s get this point out of the way: Ryan Gosling is the shy, beautiful man we all hope he is. Also, he never said “Hey Girl” and doesn’t understand why that’s a meme.

Now. on to the real stuff. Ryan Gosling was about to have his North American premiere of his writer/directorial debut, Lost River, and he sat down with his mentor and influence Guillermo del Torro. Note: if you don’t know Guillermo and his creepy/beautiful mind, go watch Pan’s Labyrinth. I will totally understand you leaving this blog to do that.


Okay, welcome back. This session was incredible to watch. This conversation was an hour of two brilliant minds that are on the same page (one just farther ahead than the other) sharing processes and some struggles, seeing the passion and dedication to just do what you need to do and not what people expect you to. It was the perfect way to set the tone of the week.

Lessons learned:

Make your movie through research. Use a fantastical story to tell real feelings and real things. Wear who you are as a badge of honor.


Movie screened: the little death. a funny story using different couples to tell stories about real people in real relationships. Hilarious, surprising and beautifully shot.


Day 2:

Ava Duvernay Keynote:


Ava Duvernay is a powerhouse. You felt her when she walked on stage. She was honest and open about everything from the very beginning of her career to being tasked by Oprah to make the first feature of MLK (ps. she was the 7th choice. sometimes it’s just about the timing being right).

Lessons learned:

The intention of our attention. the cause that produces the effect, the effect is our life. Everything we give our attention to (accidentally or on purpose) is based out of our intention, so make your intentions on purpose. Serve the story–at all times–serve the story. Set aside ego and a realm of beauty will open up for you.

Films screened: Hello, My Name is Doris: Sally Field brings one of the most endearing characters I’ve ever seen to film. so precious and fun and quirky.

                              Lost River: Ryan Gosling’s directorial debut. A dark fairytale that is all things creepy and beautiful (my favorite combination).

Day 3:

Mark Duplass Keynote


This was possible the best keynote/session/advice I’d ever heard about being in our industry. Mark Duplass is the epitome of the entrepreneurial filmmaker who has managed to maintain ownership over his work. He works hard, switches from comedy to indie in a split second, acts, directs, writes, produces–I will watch anything that has his name on the credits. You felt so realistically prepared and inspired to make what you’re created to make and to go forth in your career.

Lessons Learned: The cavalry isn’t coming, you put in the work. There’s no excuse to not be creating on the weekends with your friends. You are what you know best, so it’s okay to be your own subject. Do what you can do to own your work from beginning to end. Have fun. It is hard, but you can do it.

Processed with VSCOcam with a5 preset

#creativecrush (for both James and I)

Movie Screened: Spy. I don’t even care that this is a comedy and not “artistic”. I have so much love and respect for Melissa McCarthy (smart and funny women for the win!)

The rest of the week were smaller sessions, but were equally incredible. We learned about the tech side and the inspirational–how to tell true stories, how to make movies on no budget, how to stand for something in your work, working with people in other tech industries to take your story to another level.

Basically, I have a huge google doc of notes I keep going back to of incredible insights for things I’m doing right now and things I dream of doing in the future, but here are the over-arching themes of the week:

1. you are never too young or too old: your story is your story and your timing is your timing, own it and make the best work you can.

2. find a community: nobody makes great work alone

3. the world is democratized, take advantage of it: your tools are cheaper, and anyone in the world can see the work you do, so make work.

4. who you are is never a disadvantage: tell your story

5. just start making: and then keep making, eventually you’ll find what you’ve been looking for and making the work you dreamed of from the beginning

And now, for the hardest part-keeping the momentum. James and I came away with so many hopes and dreams and ideas, but real life starts and it’s so easy to lose that focus. What do you do to stay inspired?

I think over the past few weeks, we’ve hit some pretty incredible turning points for Truebadours, so stay with us on this adventure. Who knows where we’ll go from here?


Kelsie + Evan | Springfield Missouri Wedding Videography

Kelsie and Evan coverpic


Kelsie and Evan’s wedding was the perfect, classy New Year’s Eve Wedding. The venue, her dress, the guys getting fresh haircuts and shaves? All perfect details to set the tone for Kelsie and Evan’s day.

They wrote their own vows and said them before their loved ones, and they danced the night away. The freezing winter weather wasn’t about to stop Kelsie and Evan and their friends and family from celebrating.

A countdown at the end and ringing in the New Year was such a special way to remind everyone in the room that this day was for new adventures–the biggest one being love and a life together as husband and wife.


So without further ado, Kelsie and Evans New Years Eve Springfield Wedding video (this is just the teaser, watch the full highlight here):


Kelsie and Evan | Springfield Missouri Wedding Teaser from Truebadours on Vimeo.


Kelsie and Evan, you started 2015 in the best of ways, may your life be sweeter and sweeter each year. Thank you for letting us witness your love and share it with the world.



Want Truebadours to capture your wedding? Contact us.

You’re doing okay



Good Monday, friends.


I just want to take today to remind you that you’re doing okay. Promise.


I’ve talked before about how you are good enough (here), but I want you to do know that you’re also doing enough. We get so caught up in making sure we’re hustling, organized, Pinterest perfect, exact work/life balance acheived. Always obsessing over how to improve, making sure we’re going at the right speed. Vowing to not sit on the couch and turn on the tv for the rest of your life just so you can beat the doubters or the competition.


Stop. Breathe. You’re doing okay.


You’re working hard enough, there’s enough room for you and everyone else in your industry to make it. Whatever your balance looks like right now, it’s good enough. Your house is just fine, your hair is too. You’re doing everything you can the best you can do it. Don’t look to the left or right or Instagram for someone to tell you how you measure up, because there’s actually no measuring stick.


Use what you have. Where you are. Do what you can. You’re doing alright.


Articles from the internet to help:

You’re not doing life wrong

The Futility of Always Pushing Myself to be More

Sonder: a word and a way to look at the world

Handle Competition like a Pro (Part 1, Part 2, Part 3)

Why would a successful artist share everything he knows?

You’re doing just fine

Dealing with Uncertainty for Creative Entrepreneurs.