Kylie Flavell, intoxicated by possibility
Ultimate indie artist creates shows from start to finish with help from Adobe Creative Cloud
Kylie Flavell will be presenting the session “Creating Shows from Start to Finish with Creative Cloud” in the Adobe stand 7.G27 at IBC 2015 on Sunday, September 13th at 10:30 am and 2:30 pm and Monday, September 14th at 10:30 am.
Kylie Flavell has the tenacity and talent to make her dreams come true. When it comes to making her hot travel TV shows, including Hooked Up—which has 1.5 million YouTube viewers per episode—she does it all as host, producer, camera operator, editor, color grader, lighting engineer, sound engineer, post-production specialist, and distributor. To help her accomplish her ambitious goals and fuel her creative freedom and passion, she relies on an Adobe Creative Cloud workflow that includes Adobe Premiere Pro CC and Adobe After Effects CC.
Adobe: Tell us about your background.
Flavell: I’m Australian and worked as a magazine editor and publisher. One day I decided to quit my job and run away to live in Italy. While there are people who say life can’t be like it is in the movies, I say yes it can! My generation is the luckiest ever, because literally all we’re limited by is our imagination, and I take that to the extreme.
I wanted to live a more cinematic life, so I ran away to live in Rome, learned the language, and started a magazine. Then I got the idea to do a travel TV show that was cinematic and real. But when I pitched the idea I met with a lot of rejection. I finally got a production company to let me do a pilot of a road trip from Milan to Sicily, with me as the producer and host. The show When Patrick Met Kylie: A Love (of Food) Story sold into 68 countries and got picked up by National Geographic and Discovery.
Adobe: What challenges did you face producing the show?
Flavell: The film crews, editors, and production people were mostly just working to pay the bills. I wanted to do more. Just because it’s television doesn’t mean we can’t make it really beautiful and experiment more. In the film industry people revere the creativity in feature films and short films, but in TV people talk about formats that need to be followed. I completely disagree. All of the wonderful ways you can get content today are so exciting. After completing that first show I decided to forget the old TV model and make a show from start to finish on my own.
Adobe: How are your travel shows different?
Flavell: I’ve worked on my travel shows in airports, tiny Italian towns, or even from the back of a camel in the Sahara desert. It isn’t just about the freedom and flexibility of being on your own, it’s that you can heighten the intimacy. When I’m on screen with a person and shooting up close with a macro lens, I’m not just thinking like an editor. I’m the narrator, too. Every single shot, every cut, I do myself. Audiences want authenticity, almost a conspiratorial voice of a real story told by a real person.
Adobe: How have you learned your skills?
Flavell: I didn’t have enough money to go to film school but there are so many great tutorials online and a community of filmmakers who want to help. When I was teaching myself to rotoscope in Adobe After Effects CC, people wanted to support me just because they were excited to see what I would do. I’ve found that if you have tenacity and are willing to work hard, you can make a serious living and produce work with high-quality production standards.
Adobe: What are you working on now?
Flavell: I am editing my 13-episode travel and food series in the town of Positano, Italy using an HP workstation and Adobe Creative Cloud. For the series, I interviewed more than 100 people about what it means to be happy. I spent time living with a shepherd in the mountains, a billionaire on his yacht, and a family in the small fishing village.
I was also approached to do a series called Hooked Up for a new online travel channel. It’s about experiencing countries through the people. Every two weeks I’m in a different place—the Atlas Mountains, Monaco, Barcelona. For young filmmakers today the technology is very liberating and there are more ways to be creative. You don’t have to be in a big city with a huge production studio to do great work.
Adobe: What is your workflow?
Flavell: I started editing on a MacBook Pro using Final Cut, just assuming it was going to be the easiest to learn and use, but it was really awful. I also tried Avid briefly but it wasn’t intuitive so I switched to Adobe Premiere Pro CC. I’m the ultimate “micro indie” filmmaker and I need to deliver on time. That means I need hardware and software that I can completely rely on; otherwise, I’m too big of a risk.
I literally learned Premiere Pro in a day because it is so intuitive, and it integrates with Adobe Photoshop CC and After Effects CC so well. I shoot on a lot of cameras and work with different types of footage and frame rates. Premiere Pro can take on everything; I find it quite simple and I’ve never felt limited by it. If you’re using something for 16 hours straight, you have to love it. To me, Premiere Pro feels like a second skin.
Adobe: Have you tried any of Adobe’s new mobile apps such as Adobe Premiere Clip?
Flavell: Not yet, but they sound very exciting. Audiences are intrigued by the behind-the-scenes story of how an episode is made. People from all over the world—Latin America, Canada, Australia, and even Mumbai—ask me how I create shots. Being able to capture and edit clips on my phone and send out short snippets to share what I’m doing would be really interesting.
Adobe: What’s next?
Flavell: I’m trying to get better at audio. I’m also trying to get my drone license so I can be flying a drone and seeing the footage on my phone. Wouldn’t it be cool if I could use Premiere Clip to edit the footage straight after in the middle of the Sahara desert? That’s the kind of thing that really excites me, because you’re really only limited by your imagination.
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