Wednesday, August 8, 2007

Lending Club's Battle at Kruger

The video was already famous before David Baldwin edited it for Lending Club's video contest. The Battle at Kruger is one of YouTube's most popular videos with millions of views and has even been featured in Time magazine.

In 2004 videographer David Budzinski and photographer Jason Schlosberg were sitting on the opposite side of a watering hole in the African savannah filming a herd of buffalo. As seen in the video, the buffalo approach the water unaware of the lions resting nearby. The lions charge and disperse the herd, picking off a young buffalo and knocking it into the water. While trying to drag the buffalo out of the water, it is grabbed by a pair of crocodiles, who fight strenuously for it before giving up and leaving it to the lions. The lions sit down and prepare to eat, but are quickly surrounded by the reorganized buffalo, who move in and start kicking at the lions. After a battle, which includes one lion being tossed through the air, the baby buffalo (who is miraculously still alive) escapes into the herd. The emboldened buffalo chase the remainder of the lions away.

David, in his re-make for the Lending Club video contest, compares the wild animals to banks and credit cards who are preparing to devour a lender. The lender is rescued from certain financial death by a pack of brave Lending Club lenders. It's a very creative and entertaining video. In fact, it's hard to watch just once. This works to David's advantage since the contest winner is the one with the most YouTube views by Friday. David shared a few thoughts with us on how he came up with the idea and created the video.

How did you hear about the Lending Club video contest?

A client in the credit union space forwarded an email newsletter to me in which the contest was mentioned.

Where did you get the idea to create this video?

Simply put, the idea behind my video was an epiphany. I learned about the contest at about 10:00 AM and pondered through the rest of the day whether or not I wanted to enter. The idea to utilize the popular YouTube video “Battle at Kruger” (an amateur shot of some truly amazing animal behavior on the African plain) came to me and by 4:45 PM that afternoon I had made the decision to throw my hat into the ring and was hard at work.

Tell us about how you made the video.

From a technical perspective I used Camtasia to capture the footage of “Battle at Kruger”, Goldwave, a laptop, and a Radio Shack microphone to record the audio, Premiere to edit the footage, and After Effects to export. From a creative perspective the work was mostly in the scripting. I wrote the initial script in my head and put it down on paper. After one revision I was ready to record. If I had to do it over again I'd make a few minor changes. Total work time was 6 to 7 hours.

Have you used Lending Club or heard about it before this contest?

Though I’ve not heard of Lending Club before, I am familiar with peer-to-peer lending.

What do you plan to do with the $5,000 if you win?

Baby needs a new pair of shoes!

Tell us about yourself.

For my day job I work in multimedia productions. You can see some of my handy work at the below links. I also do some acting which is featured below as well.

Animation - The purpose of this animation prototype for pilot training was to replace more expensive and difficult to maintain video training.

Comedy - These videos were made in conjunction with Doublesharpe Productions to market comedian Tim Hawkins.

Drama - Demo video to market David Baldwin's dramatic presentation of Scripture. Dramatic videos of David Baldwin including renditions of Patrick Henry’s “Give me Liberty or Give me Death” speech and Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount.

‘No shoot’ Video - This marketing video was created without an actual video shoot. By using jumpbacks (video background), animation, screen capture video, voiceover, and images, the client avoided the disruption of a video shoot and got a product with which they are satisfied.

‘Screen Capture’ Video - A training or marketing video of a software product requires crisp, clear screen capture footage. This video for ChurchMetrix provided a useful sales tool to give perspective customers a quick overview of the software’s functionality.

Update (Aug 9): The video has been removed from YouTube. The page now reads, "This video is no longer available due to a copyright claim by Negative Space Buzz." This version of the Battle of Kruger, posted in May by Negative Space Buzz, has over 9 million views and is over 8 minutes long. David was caught off guard by the copyright, "Oh, that was painful! I had no idea about the copyright! Nor did I have any advanced warning. I checked the stats first thing this morning and noticed I was in first place and then...the hammer. I managed to track down the guy who holds the copyright and I spoke with him over the phone but, alas, he was not open to the idea of me using his video for the contest. I wish all the best to the eventual winner of the contest and to Lending Club. Soli Deo Gloria."

No comments: