Agape was founded in 2009 by two young entrepreneurs wanting to offer the world something inspiring. The journey began by creating cinematic wedding films. Since then, Agape has grown and we needed to rebrand. Our passion is storytelling. We wanted to take that passion and apply it to our commercial work so we started pitching the idea of doing mini-documentaries for businesses, organizations, or a cause. Storytelling is a powerful and effective way to reach a target audience.
We did an interview with Ashley, co-owner of Agape, to learn more about our vision and future plans.
AGAPE: What do you guys love doing, and what is Agape Creative Studios?
ASHLEY: Agape Creative Studios is a media production studio, so we do film production, video production, graphic design, logo & branding, web design, and also photography. Really, we’re storytellers across the board. I think that whether you have a brand that you’re trying to communicate or whether you have a message or a story that you need to tell, we’re the ones that are going to be able to help you formulate a strategy for that story but also convey to your target audience the passion and the message.
AGAPE: You mentioned storytellers, what is a storyteller?
ASHLEY: So let me back up a little bit. I think the easiest way for me to explain what storytelling is, is to compare it to what the current video production industry offers right now. In the past, a lot of times videos are heavily composed and prioritized based upon how cool a shot looks, or how epic something is, or how many effects can I use on this video when really the message of the video should be the most important factor. I say video, because that’s my personal field but it could be in relation to anything: graphic design, web design, or logo and branding.
Really, a storyteller is someone that can communicate the story in a creative way that will have a huge impact on their audience. It’s simple, you’re telling a story. You’re not trying to make somebody something, you’re telling their story for what it actually is. That’s really what we do.
AGAPE: How do you tell stories?
ASHLEY: We connect with our clients on a deeper level. We involve them in the process, it’s much more than just them hiring us and saying, “Hey, this is due next week, you know, have it ready”. It’s us sitting down with them, getting to know their business or organization, their cause, or them individually, meeting their team, seeing their location, and all of those things play into telling their story. Who are the people, what are the places, and what does that story look like from beginning to middle to end.
AGAPE: What are a few things that client’s have told you that stand out?
ASHLEY: First, I just want to say that I think feedback from our clients is very valuable for us. As artists, we are more than just business owners, I mean when you get down to it, I’m a filmmaker, that’s the career I chose, that’s the craft I’m working on, it’s who I am. One client, Paul Reimer, told us that we were able to capture his story and that’s something that he has not been able to find in another video production company. Someone who understood his story and then translated that to video.
Another client that we work with a lot is Fresno State. Fresno State has told us many times that they enjoy working with us because of our professionalism, because of the quality that we produce and also for the way that we handle their vision. They trust us to be creative with their projects. They are a large organization but because of the relationship that we’ve developed with them, they can trust us to create something that’s amazing.
One thing I hear from clients a lot is that they just really appreciate the way we listen to them. When we go through pre-production and we’re hashing into some intense details about their business, or their cause, it matters to listen, because that’s really where you’re going to get the direction for the video or design or whatever it may be. It’s your job to be a good steward and listen to your clients. That’s something that clients have said we do really well which makes me really happy, that people are happy with our work.
AGAPE: What does the future look like for Agape Creative Studios?
ASHLEY: When Sergio and I first started Agape, the vision was to have a full media production studio with graphic design, web design, logo & branding, and of course film production. We’ve just been a film production company for a long time. 2014 was the year that we just decided to go for it. We added a designer to our team, she’s very talented. 2015 is going to be a very interesting year for us. We are developing three new departments and we’re very excited about being able to offer our clients more than just film production. Of course, it’s going to be the same quality and the same dedication and purpose that we have with our films.
Also, one of the things I’m really excited about is that we offer something that’s very unique in the Central Valley when it comes to film production. Our focus is documentaries and that is not something that has really been focused on in Fresno. I’m really excited, personally, as the Director of Photography to tell people’s stories in Fresno. Myself and the other members of our team, we love this city and we want to tell it’s story.
We couldn’t be more excited about 2015. We are excited to meet you and tell your story.