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ELM Rebranded

The journey of developing ELM's identity, drawing from our journalistic roots.

ByDarren Durlach
May 25, 2015

Notice anything different about us? After several months of hard work and deep existential self-questioning, we’re thrilled to announce the new Early Light Media brand and website.

"Who am I?" Derek Zoolander pondered as he stared at his chiseled features in a puddle. He may be a fictitious character in a really funny movie, but his question is one that we at ELM found ourselves asking a lot. "Who are we?"

We're professional promoters of the cool things that others are doing, but we’re not so great at self-promotion. We’ve always held the mindset that if we do great work, the rest doesn’t matter. As it turns out, many of our friends are professional marketers, and they say that other stuff definitely matters.

We talked a lot in the early days about the type of company we wanted to create. Our vast experience in journalism taught us that the most compelling stories were told through people, and we knew we wanted to continue working on complex, layered stories simplified and focused through those people. Telling them the way they were experienced in real life. But how do we talk about our values with the same authenticity we strive for when telling the stories of others?

We didn't know how to articulate who we were, what makes us inherently different from every other video company out there and consistently establish that message throughout everything we do. Up until that point, we’d generally told people something along the lines of "We make videos and stuff."

Clearly we needed help and it was time to bring in the pros. Enter Backroom.

Backroom is cool. They are a boutique agency in Baltimore that developed our brand, visual identity and this beautiful website you’re visiting right now. Their process has been therapeutic in many ways, sitting on Backroom's metaphorical couch deeply ruminating about ourselves on a painfully kafkaesque level only to realize that the answers are right there in front of us. Kara Redman, Backroom's co-founder and lead strategist, simply did with us what we are usually doing with others; she asked smart questions until she had a mountain of information, then began to chisel away anything not adding value, to finally discover the heart of who we are. Suddenly, a shiny, new story emerged. Our story, and a framework for how to talk about what we contribute through the medium of video.

What did we discover about ourselves?

We've always believed that any story, no matter how complex or mundane the topic, can become extraordinarily fascinating if told through the eyes of the human experiencing it. A company isn’t brick and mortar. It’s people. A cause isn’t born of some esoteric belief made up of a faceless group of fanatics. It is often born of the compelling story of just one person.

We promise to present the universally relatable human experience in every video we produce.

The city of Baltimore recently made international news that began with the story of one person.The Arab Spring began with the story of an angry fruit vendor in Tunisia. The most popular religions in our world have a sacred text made up of simple parables. The stories of people.

We believe in the power of these personal stories. We promise to present the universally relatable human experience in every video we produce.

Backroom then designed an online experience to articulate this promise through our new website. We’re most excited about the new blog section, which was inspired by our background in journalism and designed to feel like an editorial piece. Here you’ll read stories about what our team is up to along with stories from our road travels, and learn about the techniques and gear we use—and how we use them. As the blog continues to develop, we’ll be sharing our passion projects, feature guest writers and provide ongoing educational content as our ongoing investment in the creative community.

We hope that our new brand experience will give you a view into our world and make you feel connected to who we are and what we stand for. We hope you’ll be part of our community, and work with us to immerse ourselves and others in our creative passion. Most importantly, we hope that when you experience our work, you’ll feel deeply connected to the heart of the story.

So, why Early Light Media?

Yes, we’re a video production company who, at surface value seems just like many others. We work with ad agencies, non profits, enterprises and small businesses. We produce videos about ideas, products, events and initiatives with high-end equipment, motion graphics and the best tools necessary to do the job. Just like everyone else.

But at ELM, our work revolves around one magic ingredient: People.

We hope to hear from your people soon.

Love, Darren, Dave & Jody

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