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I am a strategy director with experience in all stages of brand strategy and execution. I work with CEO's on the future of their business, and I bring brands to life through tailored content. Whatever you need. I am based in London, but can work wherever you and your clients are.

 

 

The Blog of Camilla Grey Petty

 

Filtering by Tag: vlogging

Those that can, will

Camilla Grey

Earlier this week Grayson Perry asserted that “rich people on the whole don’t create culture”. He was speaking, in an interview, on the subject of London’s housing crisis. But I’m inclined to believe that demographics and location increasingly have little impact on people’s ability to be creative and to nurture vibrant cultures.

In an evening slumped on the sofa elegantly perched in my home office, two videos from a YouTube binge considered research highlighted this perfectly. Together they demonstrate that being “rich” neither limits nor enables you. More and more, we’re in it together and it’s reflected in a blurring of aesthetics and approach that I find very interesting.

To explain. At one end of the spectrum, Beyonce’s new music video “7/11” looks home-spun and low-fi. Take away the backdrop of a luxury hotel suite, and Beyonce could well be just another YouTuber showing off her moves. Beyonce as a wannabe Beyonce. Meta.

At the other end of the spectrum lies the latest “look book” from fashion vlogger Sunbeamsjess. Even as one of many successful vloggers, Jess is transcending her peers with a photographic style that wouldn’t be out of place at Vogue. A little digging into the director revealed Zak Harper, a 20 year old photography student from Leeds.

This is surely positive progress in action. What these films show is that the future we’ve been predicting for years - one where technology fosters a more democratic society - is starting to unfold. Culturally we’re moving away from the “have’s and the have nots”, towards a more open playing field where those that want to can. Whether you’ve got billions and Beyonce, or a YouTube account and a good eye, you’re able to make your mark.

If - according to Obama - the past 200 years of innovation has been shaped by a melding of cultures in the physical world (so hindered by borders, regulations, race, gender and money), then surely the next will be shaped by a melting pot of cultures online - hindered only by imagination. Simple software and tools allows anyone, anywhere to express themselves - “shaping our character as a people with limitless possibilities”.

Lights, camera, click!

Camilla Grey

Vlogging. It’s such a cringe of a word, isn’t it? Associated so closely with lonely, bedroom-based life-casters crying into their keyboards. So, I’m going to stick with ‘videos’, and save you from the linguistic equivalent of fingernails down a chalkboard.

I wrote about the rising trend for videos and video-makers a while back, and it’s not gone away. If anything, it’s grown into a fully-fledged and viable commercial entity. It turns out these girls are making serious coin - a flurry of recent articles cited numbers in the hundreds of thousands. Zoella - a British video maker who’s known for her Primark fashion hauls and up-do how-to’s - was interviewed in the FT, ffs.

Let’s assume, then, that this is going to be a “thing”. That what’s currently limited to young girls talking about concealer, will expand to a broader demographic of makers and audiences. That what’s boosting loyalty and driving up demand, is bound to be adopted by a wider selection of brands and products. That what’s making money is going to keep making money. Except, it’s going to take a while because, let’s face it, it’s a bloody weird thing to do.

As soon as the technological and financial barriers to entry for writing came down, so did our fear of doing it. In a few, short years, everyone got seriously comfortable with their short-form content publishing channels of choice - merrily blogging, Facebook updating, and Tweeting away. The same can’t be said for video. The hardware and software is just as readily at our fingertips, and yet we struggle to push the red button and go big with Vine, Instagram video, or YouTube. People do do it, but it’s millions of them, not billions.

The obvious answer, you’d think, is shyness and lack of self-confidence. It takes guts to plonk yourself down in front a camera and chat away for 5 to 10 minutes, without worrying about bad angles or poor lighting. And yet, the one thing that the leading video makers share, is an admission to anxiety. Sammi (aka BeautyCrush) speaks often about her crushing social phobias, as do many of the others with subscribers in the millions. So, perhaps, it’s a certain personality type - ones that lean towards the introverted end of the spectrum - that find YouTube appealing. Within the safety of the 16:9 aspect ratio, video makers have full control over how they present themselves to the world.

A new way of selling is unfolding, but it could not be further from the “BANG! And the dirt is gone!” world of shouty, extroverted ad types. This revolution is in the whispers from behind closed doors. Only there’ll be no more crying into keyboards - they’re laughing all the way to the bank.







Beauty Crush

Camilla Grey

My name is Camilla and I'm obsessed with fashion and beauty vlogs.  

There, I said it. It's not very cool and it doesn't do much for my "personal brand" but I don't care. I'm finally out and proud about my guilty pleasure.  It all started innocently enough - some casual re-pins on Pinterest, a few late night Tumblr sessions or the occasional hair tutorial video before a party. Nothing my friends weren't doing. It was fun. But, before I knew it, I couldn't raise my mascara wand without watching a how-to online first. Even getting dressed without first watching a 'lookbook' clip felt empty and meaningless. 

I guess this was always bound to happen. It was never discussed openly, but I know that both of my grandmothers had spent time in Paris having clothes made for them.  A photo I found recently in an old album even suggested that my Father once dabbled in white flares and platforms. And even today, my mother struggles to hide her abuse of the Tom Ford lipstick range. The fact that I get my kicks in digital form on YouTube is just a contemporary manifestation of this genetic defect. 

The reason I'm coming clean, is that my compulsion recently reached new heights. I discovered the concept of 'dupes'. Hard core. 'Dupes' stand for 'duplicates' and certain vloggers are experts at matching expensive colours and textures with cheaper alternatives - all handily linked to in the comments section. I'm ashamed to admit it, but I've spent almost £20 just this month on eyeshadows, lipsticks and blusher. That's practically the cost of an entire brunch on Broadway Market! 

 

They say the first step to recovery is admitting you've got a problem. So I confess - my cheekbones look sunkissed, I know how fishtail braid my hair, and I can do a smokey eye that would make Kim Kardashian weep. Damn you vloggers!