World Wide Web Premiere of our Creative Mornings Documentary

It all started with a mishap. An audio glitch that resulted in us not getting the pristine audio we normally get when we film a Creative Mornings presentation. Although it technically was not my fault the audio glitched, as the video producer it was my job to make sure I got the audio I needed for the video I was producing. (I have since implemented dual audio capturing when filming the lectures). But as fate (or providence) would have it, that mishap turned into an opportunity to do something grand.

The Birth of a Documentary from a Lecture

Creative Mornings is a free monthly breakfast lecture series started by Tina Roth Eisenberg. There are chapters all over the world where the lectures are held. We produce the videos for the Atlanta chapter. The series has gotten major acclaim this week as it was featured on

The lecture in question was that of Dwain Cox. Dwain heads up the innovation team at Chick-fil-A. In his Creative Mornings presentation, he gave four insights from his 20+ years as a designer and innovator. Insights that every professional creative should heed.

  1. Listen & Help
  2. Be Truthful
  3. Less is Better
  4. Work in your Sweet Spot

Some of his advice was bold. Dare I say, unexpected. Even kind of hard to believe. But all of it was inspiring and eloquently given with humor and terrific analogies. The minute his presentation was over, I knew I wanted to see if I could get him to re-record parts of it.

At first I just wanted to re-record the inspirational parts of the lecture then mix it with poor audio I got the day. Then I thought, if we’re going to do all of that, why not just re-record the whole thing. It wasn’t that particularly long (as lectures go). Then I thought, “The examples and analogies he gave are so visual. And his Keynote was only a few slides. What if we ‘painted’ his words with a cinematic brush?”

And thus, a documentary idea was born.

This shot from the film captures perfectly how we feel having finished making it.

Be Inspired

I can’t tell you how much went into planning, shooting and editing this project. Well, actually I CAN tell you. And I will. Next week I plan to have a 3-part series on the top lessons I learned during pre-production, production and post. We also shot a lot of behind the scenes footage for a “Making of…” video (that will come later as time permits).

The full credits are below the video. A lot of people donated their time and talent to make this happen. Notice I said “donated.” We were not paid for this. This was a labor of love to create something special. We all as artists wanted to participate in the making of a film that could inspire other artists; not only from the great insight given by Dwain in his talk, but by the story behind the making of this film.

  • The story of turning a mishap into magnificence.
  • The story of rallying friends and colleagues to do something grand.
  • The story of stepping out of your comfort zone to ask for things in order to get your film made.

I hope the film and the story behind the film inspire you in whatever field you practice. Listen to Dwain’s advice. As he says in the video, even if just ONE of his insights resonate with you, do it.

For you film geeks, the footage in this film comes from five different Canon cameras: the EOS C300, the 7D, the 5D Mark II, the T2i and the T3i. It will be interesting to see if you can tell which clips are which.

Many thanks to my show sponsor and friends at LensProToGo for helping to sponsor this project with the C300, Zeiss 28mm/T2.1 CP.2, Canon 14L II, 70-200 f4 and Zeiss 50 ZE f/1.4. And special shot out to Mike Duval for all his help. Yes they do sponsor my show, but even if they didn’t, I sing their praises.

Be sure to check out the other Atlanta Creative Mornings lectures at

“Silver and Gold (Instrumental)” in Act 4 and “The Sweetest Song” in Credits Sequence by Rudy Vaughn


A Dare Dreamer Media Production

Produced, Direcred & Edited by
Ron Dawson

Phil Stevens


Young Creative
Clayton Patterson

Chief Executive
Caroline Avery Granger

The Numbers Guy
Phil Stevens

The Nice Guy
Kyle Goodman

Bike Shopper
Ty Lane Miller

Bike Salesman
Fred Huertas

Boy Tennis Player
Danny Williams

Girl Tennis Player
Megan Dovell

Assistant Director
Monique Shaw

Assistant Camera
Justin Davis

Production Assistants
Clayton Patterson
Akshay Thomas
Jena Jones

Behind the Scenes Photo & Video
Phil Stevens
Jena Jones


Dwain Cox & Chick-Fil-A

Suwanee Creek Bicycles

Frazier Cycling Juniors Race Team and U-23 Race Team

Abigail Aldridge
Justin Bashe
Alexandra Chuck
Jonathan Cucaz
Stephanie Cucaz
Thayne Dean
Emerson Doolittle
Austin Duckworth
Kate Eckrote
Nick Frazier
Zoe Frazier
Adi Gummadi
Teja Gummadi
Madeleine Haney
Parker Haney
Victoria Haney
Caleigh Hebert
Andrew Hodges
Ashley Johnston
Fletcher Lydick
Rishi Mocherla
Harrison Nguy
Isabella Nguy
Ben Rothschild
Dominique Shore
Frances Sledge
James Todd
Holly Wakelin
Sophie Wakelin
Toby Wakelin
Blake Wilson

Driver: Ms. CJ Nguy

President Obama and Congressional footage in public domain.
Footage of Steve Martin used under Fair Use, Section 107, Title 17 U.S.C.

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