Devin Super Tramp inspires others by following his passion
One year ago Devin Graham aka Devin Super Tramp was busy traveling the globe, making amazing extreme sports videos for clients. Today, his success, and his YouTube subscriber numbers, continue to skyrocket. Graham now has an established audience, deals with equipment manufacturers, and high profile clients, but he’s not the kind of person who rests on his laurels. In 2015, he’s setting his sights on longer-form content while he continues to inspire others to follow their passion.
Adobe: What have you been up to this past year?
Graham: Our biggest focus has been on growing our audience. In just the past year we’ve expanded from three to seven full-time employees. We have almost three million subscribers and over half a billion views of our videos. The more exposure we get the bigger the brands that contact us.
Adobe: What does this growth mean to your company?
Graham: Our end goal has always been to do bigger, Hollywood-style films and storytelling. We recently collaborated with RocketJump and Corridor Digital on a fun, story-driven project for Ubisoft that was shot in Minnesota and will launch in July. We’re looking forward to working on more projects like this in the future.
Adobe: What do you think helps drive traffic on YouTube?
Graham: A lot of success in the social media world comes from everyone pushing traffic to each other. RocketJump and Corridor Digital are top notch filmmakers on YouTube, so working with them is a good fit for us because they’re focused on the same things we’re passionate about.
Adobe: Will you continue to work with brands?
Graham: Absolutely, we love the work we do with brands. We’ve recently been working on some big videos with Sea-Doo and Timex. We’ve also done projects with Crocs, Canada Tourism, Schick, and NetSuite. We love being able to combine our brand work with our service-oriented projects. For example, we have a good relationship with Ford, so we engaged the company to help fund a project in Guatemala where we built legs for people who needed them so they could walk again.
Adobe: What’s your biggest project at the moment?
Graham: We’re currently working on a huge Iceland project. The focus is on our own story as a filmmaking team. We shot most of it in March, and we’re going back in a few months to film the rest.
Adobe: Why Iceland?
Graham: When my YouTube career first started I was hired by a big company in Europe to do a commercial in Iceland. It was one of my first projects and I fell in love with the country and always wanted to go back. Recently I was watching The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, which is all about pursuing your passion and doing things you love to do, and it put it all back in perspective for me. We have a story to tell about why we create videos. I hope that by telling people about what we do we can inspire them in the same way that movie inspired me.
I called up the team and told them that we were going to Iceland, and we left three months later. We documented what really happens on a shoot. Iceland was ideal for this project because conditions are harsh and it’s hard to film, which made it even more rewarding. The Northern Lights and amazing, pristine landscape really exemplify how rewarding it is to fight for your passion, even in extreme locations or circumstances.
Adobe: How do you keep up?
Graham: It’s a fast pace, but it’s all been worth it. I get to do what I love. We’re editing all the time, on site and on airplanes. Working with Creative Cloud and Premiere Pro helps us do what we need to do quickly and efficiently to meet our quality standards and deadlines. We do a lot of work with 4K and it’s great to have an NLE that can handle that with no problem. Our 4K videos are even used by manufacturers to promote 4K televisions in stores.
Adobe: What are you most looking forward to at the 2015 NAB Show?
Graham: Some newer NAB attendees might feel like they are the “under dogs” and many might aspire to do what I’m doing. Everyone wants to be a Hollywood filmmaker and everyone tells you it’s impossible and you’re never going to be able to do it. I was in the same circumstance. My family didn’t have money when I was growing up so I had very little camera gear. When I started my YouTube channel I had an original GoPro and a Canon T2i. I borrowed cameras from everyone and today we have two RED Dragon cameras, a Glidecam, and more. Like a lot of people at NAB, I started at the bottom, worked hard, and learned from experience.
Read more about Graham’s work here.
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