Hawaiian Air using student video for ads
WAIAKEA High School science teacher Dale Olive is already a bit of a celebrity on the Big Island as host of a science segment on the cable show "Living in Paradise," but he could soon be catapulted to statewide stardom for his boogie-boarding, snowball hurling and snowman-building atop Mauna Kea.
That is, if he doesn't wind up on the cutting room floor.
Olive, his son Jordan and daughter Kiyo have been videotaped frolicking on the snow-covered mountain on the first day of spring break as part of a new series of commercials for Hawaiian Airlines. They were videotaped not by a professional video crew, but by Kiyo's TV Production and Media Literacy classmate, Elena Ranan.
Kiyo Olive and Ranan, representing Waiakea High School, are among students from eight high schools statewide selected to create the spots under the direction of Starr Seigle Advertising, the airline's agency.
CRAIG T. KOJIMA / CKOJIMA@STARBULLETIN.COM
Local high school students are writing, producing, directing and filming ads on the theme "Hawaii is ... " for Hawaiian Airlines. Kiyo Olive, left, and Elena Ranan, students from the Big Island, worked with Jay K. Evans at the Montaj 9 studio downtown on the editing of their spot.
Selected schools included Kahuku High School and Sacred Hearts Academy on Oahu; Lahainaluna High School and Kamehameha Schools' Maui Campus on the Valley Isle; Kauai High and Kula High and Intermediate Schools on Kauai; and Kealakehe High School, also from the Big Island.
Other schools' spots center around making poi, swimming in Iao River and a Big Island fishpond and other local-kine activities that the students identify most with Hawaii.
Starr Seigle Assistant Creative Director Brad Osborn -- a recovering teacher -- and representatives of the airline visited the schools to discuss the vision and direction for the spots, which were to complete the thought, "Our Hawaii is ..."
"We wanted to reflect that we are the airline of Hawaii. And what makes Hawaii is the people," said Kirk Smith, Hawaiian Air's vice president for marketing and sales.
Tapping into youth interest in video production was a "wild idea ... but we found out we could make it happen and the results, we feel, are just amazing, because it's somebody's story, not a shiny reflection that's dreamed up in an ad agency," he said.
Not that there's anything wrong with that.
The kids' enthusiasm has proven contagious -- yes, even to wizened and cynical advertising veterans, Smith chuckled.
Other local companies, such as Scion Hawaii, have tapped student talent for commercial creation. Students from the University of Hawaii's Academy for Creative Media created three commercials for the three auto models that hit the air in Hawaii last year. Servco Pacific, Hawaii's Scion dealer, still runs the spots from time to time.
Some high schools are well-known for their media curriculum and achievements -- and have suites of equipment to support them. The schools in this project were chosen because they had a video club or some curriculum that could be enhanced by participation, said Goldyn Zimetbaum, broadcast producer at Starr Seigle.
Olive and Ranan are good friends who have teamed on projects before, work well together and complement each other, they said.
Ranan is a creative person, the shooter and a movie buff who gets into the minutiae of what's on the screen when she watches a film. Advertising is one career she's considering.
Olive, captain of the state championship robotics team for Waiakea High School, is the technical person. She would prefer not to be in front of or behind cameras, but inside them, innovating development.
Olive and Ranan, both seniors, and teacher Ken Okimoto were flown by Hawaiian to their downtown Honolulu editing session yesterday at the studio Montaj 9, where President Jay K. Evans endeavored to whittle down 11 minutes of video frivolity to 30 seconds using Final Cut Pro software across two big flat screens.
He walked Ranan through his process of saving and cataloging certain sequences.
Phil Wood, vice chairman and chief creative officer of Starr Seigle, tapped out copy ideas for the girls' voice-over on a laptop as he monitored the editing process.
"We should get As," Olive said.
The schools did get some high-end consideration for participation -- up front.
For production of the spots, Sony, in partnership with Hawaiian and Starr Seigle, donated to each school a high-definition Sony digital video camera, a tripod and camera bag, valued at more than $3,500. They get to keep 'em.
"Plus the trip here," said teacher Okimoto. Hawaiian is flying each neighbor island team to Honolulu for post-production.
"It's just like you won before you even entered," Okimoto said.
STUDENT COMMERCIALS TO TAKE FLIGHT
The first of a series of Hawaiian Airlines television commercials created by these students from these schools will debut during the Merrie Monarch telecast April 22 on KITV. All eight will eventually be added to the commercial schedule in the coming weeks.
Kahuku High School
Students: Okesene Ale, Jr., Spencer Bangerter, Michael Cheney, Matthew Clements, Joshua Harvey, Amberlyn Ieremia, Tyler Orme
Sacred Hearts Academy
Students: Jessica Casson, Lisa Fong, Li-Hsin Hsu, Alyssa Kushima, Queenie Leung, Shaina Solomon, Sherisse Wong
Kamehameha Schools, Maui Campus
Students: Haylee Kepani, Brenn Nakamitsu
Lahainaluna High School
Students: Xyler Godoy, Joy Manning, Kiana Nip, Jacqueline Owens
Kealakehe High School
Students: Raymond Brasher, Alvin Franco
Waiakea High School
Students: Kiyo Olive, Elena Ranan
Kauai High School
Students: Erin Adamic, Jeff Bumagat-Hidalgo, Lanie Carbonel, Kathleen Constantino, Ashley Fujinaga, Nichole Longboy, Gerilyn Luis, Grecean Manuel, Tron Rule, Chelsey Shibata, Jocelyn Slade, Chasidy Yasay
Kula High and Intermediate School
Students: Ian Clarke, Hannah Scoyni, Jeff Sexton
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