The Pixilated Podcast

Tim Kerbavaz | Talon Audio Visual, Inc. | Pixilated Podcast Season 2

May 11, 2022 Patrick Rife Season 2 Episode 8
The Pixilated Podcast
Tim Kerbavaz | Talon Audio Visual, Inc. | Pixilated Podcast Season 2
Show Notes Transcript

Tim is Founder of Talon Audio Visual, Inc.

Tim's love for audio technology had already sparked as a child while playing with microphones and stereo equipment. This set him on the path to a career in events and over a decade of professional experience producing in-person, hybrid and broadcast live events. Tim, as he says himself, translates your creative vision into technology reality.
He is the founder of Talon Audio Visual, Inc. His company is specialized in Technical Production, Project Management, Consulting, In-Room AV, Live Streaming, Cloud Productions and Accessibility. Because events are magical and Tim gives them just that bit of extra magic!

You can follow Tim Kerbavaz at:


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Patrick Rife:

Hello and welcome to another episode of the Pixilated podcast. I am your host, Patrick rife, CVO here at pixilated. bring you a another episode in our interview series. For those of you who have been tuning along this season, you know that we have been focusing on interviewing tons of amazing people throughout the event, Prof diaspora Season One solace, doing a lot of that, and then also a lot of other kinds of content pieces. But with this season, we wanted to really just focus exclusively on connecting with other people, building our relationships, and then also like capitalizing on all of this amazing knowledge that people in the events industry have, that maybe doesn't make it out to see the light of day as often as it should. So, without further ado, I want to to welcome Tim from Talon audio visual to the call of a Tim, welcome to the Pixilated podcast.

Tim Kerbavaz:

Hey, thanks so much for having me. It's great to be here. That event, Prof diaspora I like that term, certainly over the last, you know, couple of years, we've definitely seen our industry kind of splitting and dividing and in many cases, folks leaving and so I think, as you rightly point out, this is the chance to kind of reconvene as an industry and kind of come together and share our lessons learned and growth together.

Patrick Rife:

Yeah, yeah. And apply all we got to rewrite the rules again. Well, Tim, before we get into, I got a bunch of questions I'm super excited to dig in. But I like to just try and like cede the floor right off the jump because nobody can kind of frame up who you are and what you do better than yourself. So why don't you let everyone know kind of you know, who you are, and a little bit of your, you know, origin story, and then we'll get into some questions.

Tim Kerbavaz:

Yeah, so I'm Tim Coronavirus, I am the owner of talent, audio visual, which is a production company based in California, although I say that with some hesitation, because as we talk about kind of evolving landscapes events, what I do has evolved tremendously in the last few years, you know, I got my start in AV, as a, you know, Child's, you know, I remember going to RadioShack, with my grandmother to pick up my, you know, Christmas present and microphone from RadioShack. And, and that being sort of the thing that I was super excited about. And literally, you know, it was all downhill from there, you know, so much for, you know, being a lawyer or a doctor, I guess. But, you know, in terms of that level of kind of delight and excitement has has stayed with me. And I really do love the work that we do as an industry. And I think that we do create delight and magic for our customers, to what I do specifically and kind of what my work has evolved into, it's been a mix of, you know, I started out as a basically a local rental and staging company in Davis, California, and grew over the years into sort of a regional provider. And then what I do now has evolved into much less providing equipment and much more providing sort of consulting services and production support. So I call myself a technical producer, I work both with my own direct clients and with other production companies, agencies, bruising events, and one of the things I specialize in particular is event accessibility and localization. So specifically, live broadcast captioning and live broadcast, translation and localization. And so looking at, you know, broadly kind of making events accessible, making events, understandable to your audiences, is something that's super both interesting to me, and something that has carried through my career, I've worked, you know, in kind of accessibility broadly for a number of years. And one of the things that I see as we come into sort of back into ballrooms in person events is that I don't want to leave behind all of the people that we've been able to include with virtual events. And when I say that virtual events have allowed folks who can't necessarily travel or attend in person for a variety of reasons, for you know, disability, for financial reasons, for childcare reasons for, you know, just packed schedule and can't afford to travel. They reasons, there's so many people that are able to be included in virtual events that cannot probably come to our in person events. And so one of the things I'm interested in, as we look at kind of this return to to events in the ballroom and kind of what is the evolving event landscape look like really is how do we make sure that everything we do is adding to our audience, adding to our inclusivity and not taking things away that we've sort of given people accidentally in some ways?

Patrick Rife:

Yeah, yeah. Awesome. What a great great summation I wrote down. You like tweaking my brain in a few different ways. And, and one I want to get back to but but poignantly what you were just mentioning, you know, like this You know, like the accessibility element, right, the way that it really kind of changed things up. And at first, we just, we really tended to focus on it a lot through the lens of, you know, like, oh, well, there could be people that are interested in, you know, like, for whatever for a large nonprofit organization that serves, you know, like a very specific kind of cancer, right, that had that could have a global audience, but it happens to be based in like Des Moines, right. So like, the people that are interested or impacted by it, you know, they aren't able to come. But the other side of it is, is accessibility, like doesn't just have to be geographic problems, right? Accessibility is a far broader conversation. And I think it's interesting that you mentioned that because a previous guest of ours make straily. She works in sustainability, and is based in the UK. And I saw, you know, like, funnily enough, a Twitter thread recently, from her talking about the lack of closed captioning being brought into the live event space again, and how, you know, like, over the past two years, that gap has been able to be bridged for all of those people who were maybe not thought of previously because it was convenient to the way that software was working. And maybe we didn't notice it as much before, but now that you have been able to be in that environment, and you're back in this live space, and it's not closed captioned, people are raising the flag and saying, Wait, you, you're missing something that was actually really valuable to us. And, and by the way, it's not negotiable anymore. Like, we need you to figure out how that comes in. So I'm curious one, if you saw, I think you're probably connected with Meg, or at least are seeing some of her stuff. But I'm curious if you saw that thread or have any thoughts about that?

Tim Kerbavaz:

Yeah, unfortunately, I missed that thread. I am fairly active on Twitter, but in sort of, I think, a different circle. And so, but to that point, I mean, you know, when we talk about accessibility broadly, right, we mean, you know, the ability to access whatever, right, but there's so many facets to that, particularly in the event space. And as you point out with captioning, specifically, which is something that I've been working on for many years, is that, you know, there's all these tools to sort of automate AI based captions for web broadcast. And those tools aren't necessarily as easy to implement in person. Now, I would say, I do not really think that AI captions are adequate. I'm actually using them right now in our meeting, just as to follow along. But I do think that, you know, if you have an event, and audiences that need captions, you really need to pay for human captions. And that's captions are generated, live with a human stenographer. So like a court reporter, someone who uses like a stenographic, cord based keyboard to type you know, two 300 words a minute. And, and that works in person just as well as online where you have a stenographer sitting or they're backstage or remotely, and then their their texts coming up on typically like screens. And I've done that a lot with either in big, big spaces, you'll do like a Ribbon Display across the top or bottom of the big projector screens or the LED walls. For smaller events and theaters, I've done like 7080 inch TV, just sort of flanking the stage in the orchestra. So you know, sort of the best seat for captions would be like the orchestra seats, but I do a lot of did in the previous the, you know, before COVID times a lot of events we had, you know, on on site screens. And I want to clarify, so we talked about captions, and the UK uses different terminology here. But in the US, when we're talking about captions, there's open captions and closed captions, just a little trivia here. Closed Captions are like on your TV where you can turn them on and off, there's a button. So whether it's in a YouTube player or on your television, that you can make them go away. Open Captions are part of the video, like burned into the video, they're actually just always visible to everyone. And then closed captions are metadata. They're not actually part of the video signal. They're they're basically text data sent along with the video just appointed for trivia, they're

Patrick Rife:

awesome. Awesome. That's a good piece of clarification. I didn't realize the difference between the two, although I definitely am familiar with each one. So that, you know, like, I think that I think that that's an interesting, you know, an interesting point. And, you know, what that means, right is investing in, in more event, infrastructure and more production to be able to meet that right. Like, that's an additional person, you know, and, and I think that one of the things that we're seeing already and I think that it's, it's unfortunate, but I'm already seeing lots of clients that are immediately reverting back to live events, and they're just lopping off the virtual, you know, and they're, they're trying to treat it like it's a, you know, an aftertaste that they're ready to, to dismiss. And I find it to be a bit shocking, because, you know, if there's one thing that was true is like your audience that was there for your live events in 2019. Was not got the same audience that you have been directing your, your events to for the last two years, there's a portion of them that are there. But every person that migrated had to build a new audience in some regard or another. And what I thought would happen is I really thought that people would gleaned to this idea of, as opposed to producing a live event for this, like set audience this whole, you know, concept of an ongoing community, right, that you're producing content for. And you're making sure that it's available, whether it's in virtual or it's live, or it's their hybrid things tying together. And the reality of that is, is now that live events are starting to turn back up these planners, they don't have the resources to be able to do that. And they're having to pick and choose because as you know, very well, you can't take a planner that was responsible for producing event in one arena, and all of a sudden have them be able to produce an event in two arenas that have all different tools and resources. So curious what you're seeing, you know, in regards to that,

Tim Kerbavaz:

yeah, you know, I definitely see that where folks are kind of just reverting back to sort of the way things were the way they sort of used to do things. And I understand why, right, as you point out, it's its resources, its budget, its bandwidth, as the, you know, event professionals just can't necessarily manage effectively two events at once. And so, you know, I think, from an event professional perspective, I understand why people are doing that, from a client perspective, it's super frustrating, because I understand that these things cost extra, but I think there's, there really is so much ROI to be had for, you know, adding, you know, maintaining virtual options, maintaining virtual presence, as you said, maintaining online community that keeps that conversation about your company and your product going. And I think it's kind of a communication issue of, you know, are we as an industry adequately defining and communicating that real ROI to our clients, so that they come up with more money, because obviously, they can't expect an event planner or a producer to, you know, just magically, you know, make resources appear, you know, but I think, you know, part of the challenge, not necessarily as an individual, but as an industry, he's kind of making that case to our clients about, you know, why, you know, maintaining virtual options matters, why accessibility matters, why, you know, having captions in your theater or ballroom matters. And, you know, these are all things that are not free. But, you know, I think that there's real reasons that, you know, these things matter, both to audiences and to clients. And so part of it is going to be really defining for whom, on the client side, each of these various opportunities has the best ROI, and then really making that case to them about, you know, for you why this is the case. And I can say that, you know, the big tech companies are not rushing back to in person events, you know, they're having an impersonal and to some degree, but at the big tech launches, even Apple is doing all their keynotes, you know, remotely, or, and, frankly, they're, you know, they're, you know, just basically TV show, right? And I think that I've heard from audiences that, you know, they think the apple keynotes are better now than they have ever been. But it's because they're producing it, like a TV show, not like a conference, it's not a press conference anymore. It's, you know, it's, it's a it's a movie. And so I think one of the things that changes in terms of the way you approach online events versus the way you approach, a ballroom event is you don't have a captive audience, right. And I think that in person events often get away with being boring or really not engaging, because your audience is physically stuck in the ballroom with you and they can't leave. And so it doesn't actually mean them necessarily paying attention. It just means they're physically with you. Whereas online, you're on so many other competing interests, right, are competing, competing for their attention, that you really are forced to really be compelling. And I think when we look at what is a model of a compelling broadcast, first event that happens seven days a week, it's your local TV affiliates, nightly news, right, where they've got a show that has a formula that they have honed over decades to make work, you know, to capture attention. They have, you know, you know, a host segment that introduces the show, they have remote guests who are reporting from the scene. They have pre recorded video segments, buffering live segments, they have, you know, interstitial segments, they have the web write all these various components that keep the show engaging and dynamic. And I think as a virtual event, that's your model of what a virtual event should look like. It's the news. It's not, you know, what your conference used to look like in person. So the challenge is, as we look at how do you translate that to an event that is, both in person and online is how do you maintain the compelling, you know, driven driving timeline of the virtual event, while also like giving your in person events, attendees a lunch break? Right, you know, and letting them stop for coffee. And so I think, you know, when you're looking at it, it really is kind of two different formulas. But I also think that in person events, could, by and large, afford to be much more engaging. And I think that a lot of virtual events, or sorry, a lot of in person was rather have been coasting on the fact that they have a captive audience. And I think, you know, a lot of in person events could could stand for some shakeup, Tim?

Patrick Rife:

Yeah, yeah, I couldn't agree more. I couldn't agree more. Well, so you know, one of the other things that you said in your intro that I, that I would be remiss not to go back to is, is RadioShack. You know, like, I think that, that there are certain people of a certain age will understand what that reference means, you know, like, RadioShack used to be the place where you could go and get transistors, and they had, you know, like little bins of box and bobs, and like, all of those things. And, and it was also like, you know, you look at a Tandy computer, like floppy disks, like all of those, like, there's a lot of, you know, it's like blacklight, posters and Spencers? Well, to a degree. But there's also that thing, you know, it's kind of like the same way that Sonny surplus used to be, I don't know if you guys have them. But on the East Coast, we had a store called Sonny surplus, and it was, like legitimate army surplus, like canteens and it was like all a buck and 70 cents, because it was just all this like war gear, that it was like, We got to get rid of it, sell it to the public at like, you know, pennies on the dollar. But there were, you know, those kind of stores, right, that open up access to those bits and bobs that allow a curious kid to come in, and, you know, like, all of a sudden run his rate his radio and a microphone into one place, and then have a single output and be able to like, you know, produce your own broadcast, I was very much that person as well. So I just, you know, talk a little bit about that talk about, you know, like your that, that, you know, that hook in your mouth, that kind of Yeah.

Tim Kerbavaz:

So I mean, I think as you say, I mean, RadioShack was this as much as it was in a sort of, at the end, particularly kind of this team sort of corporate store. It brought into almost every community, access to electronics, and access to electronics, you know, when it started, and its heyday, at a time when there was not necessarily a lot of consumer access to technology to electronics, right, there were dedicated electronic stores where there was like, an old dude behind the counter, and you walked up, and you're like, I want to whatever, and he glares at you, as he finds it in the back, you know, the RadioShack model that you could walk into a store, and just rummage through bins, and there was all sorts of, you know, cool computer and electronic and stereo gear on the shelves. And, you know, and you're going ham radios for that matter, and the CB radios and having just access to that level of technology in the shopping mall, in you know, the corner of the main street, you know, was definitely, you know, a huge part of my childhood, like going to RadioShack was like an event, right as it you know, as a kid. And, you know, I mean, whether it was for, you know, some a little resistor baggie for some project, or whether it was just to kind of ogle at the, you know, the stereo systems, it was, you know, kind of this window into the world of electronics in a kind of local accessible way. And this is a West Coast thing, but Fry's Electronics is, is is similar in the sort of big box store model, which, unfortunately, just went out of business. But, you know, Fry's had that kind of, you could walk in and anything with electricity, and it was in this one store, and that kind of, sort of heyday of consumer electronics in some ways. You know, really, I think, inspired me and I think other people in terms of, you know, being interested in and being able to kind of visualize what, you know, the world of electronics look like and for me that that went into the kind of the world of production and I could say, you know, and I always whether it was at a science museum or at a theater or movie or play or you know, at the He's been parked, I was always peering around corners and up in the ceiling and I still I cannot go to a play without staring at the lights, you know, and it just, you know that I've always been captivated by the machinations of production. And so, you know, it's certainly a tremendous privilege for me to be able to make my living doing something that I literally dropped about as a 10 year old. Just say, now, you know, as an adult that I own, a successful production company is definitely making you know, 10 year old timberland Brown.

Patrick Rife:

Yeah, yeah. So let's talk about talent. You know, like, so it looks like it you know, like, it clearly has been around for a long time and you evolved to to grow and become what it is, but But you know, tell us a little bit about about its origin. And now a word from our sponsors.

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Tim Kerbavaz:

Yeah, so I started Tallinn in a college bedroom. So my friend Aaron Cooper, and I were just like, you know, geeking out about something Aaron was a DJ at the time. And also like a music producer, and then worked briefly for like the campus AV department doing like costume maintenance, stuff like that, as a student. And then, you know, was just a huge music geek, he was just like, tremendously interested in, in music, particularly hip hop. And he and I were talking about other things we could do together. And I had, like, just bought a set of like QC K 10 speakers, you know, that was when when those were new. And we were chatting and kind of decided to go in together to start like a DJ company, and so talented and sort of embarrassed to say now, but started doing weddings. So Aaron, and I, you know, did did weddings, you know, for a couple of years. And then basically, Aaron had the probably very wise idea to go become a computer programmer instead of a DJ, and went off to work for a software company and I kept the company but the name Talon is actually Tim and Aaron smashed together. That's how the, that's where the name came from. And we just thought talent was the closest word and also sounded cool clausal bird. So I liked it. And then I kept telling going, I was doing kind of small projects, sort of community events in Davis. At the time, I actually worked full time for UC Davis, after I graduated from from college, I was the I was running the event, AV department or like a B service for the university. I worked there for like a decade, but I was keeping this business, you know, as a sort of side hustle, like from college through, through through this job. And I thought I would change the name. People like always think it's like, talent instead of talent. Like it gets confusing. So in the case, I was concerned with the name, and then Aaron died. He died a few years ago. And so I felt like it was important for me to keep the name because it was his name. So what I did in, in 2019, I quit my full time job with the university with a pension and all that to take my business full time evolved a lot in like Q four of 2019, q1 of 2020, kind of just, you know, grew really fast, took on a bunch of new clients a bunch of new work and then got to march 2020. And things really, as everyone listening to this will understand, changed dramatically. But what happened in the summer of 2020 was while I was twiddling my thumbs, you know sitting on the couch staring off in space being like what, what do I do now that I own an events business? I'm self employed in the events world, when there are no events, and it gave me a chance to really sit with my thoughts, and because there was nothing to do but think I really started musing about what does it mean to be in events? What does what does the work that I do distill down to? And what does it mean to do events in a time when there aren't events? And what are my skills? And what are the things that I get joy from doing. And so coming into 2021, as things sort of thought out a bit, as I had a bunch of new virtual event work as a sort of starting to get back into events, and then into this year, where we're, you know, a pretty broad mix of in person and online events. I've really decided that I'm not uniquely good at, you know, warehousing and QC speakers. And so in 2020, I closed my warehouse, because there's a couldn't afford to keep it. And there was no sense in having that and actually downsized got rid of a lot of my gear, just got a fire sale, or a lot of garbage, a lot of it just went to the dumpster. And so, you know, just had to get out, like, it was like, July 30, close the warehouse. So, you know, getting rid of gear downsizing, and then really evaluating what I want to be doing. made me realize that, you know, I'm not necessarily uniquely good or uniquely, you know, there's no, no unique sort of business model in, you know, renting equipment in the local regional markets that I was in. But I had clients that I was doing big, you know, sort of national events for on a production level. And so really focusing on that work focusing on building the accessibility work, which was something that really grew a ton in 2020 2021, when people were going online, and suddenly said, Hey, I need to figure out this captioning thing. And I was getting phone calls about that. And so, you know, one of the things I've really done for this year, really, is to admit to myself that I'm not, you know, an AV rental company anymore, that's really not what I do. But that, you know, producing events, and then helping clients, both end clients, production companies, and agencies really understand the hybrid event model, you know, broadcast overlays, you know, kind of really the bridge between in person and online. And then particularly focusing on accessibility and localization and helping, you know, my production company, clients and friends really understand how to make captions work, how to make localization work, was really much better business model, frankly, for me, than, you know, trying to have a warehouse full of gear that

Patrick Rife:

I don't. Yeah, I mean, that resonates like like, you know, like crazy. I mean, that's exactly what our, I mean, I just, I'm still, you know, I'm here amongst all of like, all of that gear that we like, have yet to, I mean, on a shelf above me, I must have 40 Pelican cases that, you know, I gotta figure out how to sell somewhere at a fire, you know, but also, who has the time to, like, invest in that when we want to do is invest in moving forward. So, like, I get that and, and even, you know, like, recognizing your business model as as, you know, not being unique and wanting to figure out what you know, what you're uniquely good at, and what aligns with where you want to go, like, that resonates a ton. You know, like, I think, I think it will be really interesting to see and you're kind of like setting yourself up, you know, perfectly for the for these following questions. But, you know, I feel like so much of the dialogue over the last two years has been, you know, like, the events industry, like in light of COVID. You know, like, what, how's it going to change what's going on? yatta yatta? Yatta? My, my new question is, you know, like, like, what is going on now that we are in post COVID? Because I think one of the things that a lot of people in our a lot of our colleagues a lot of our peers anticipated was that the warm back would be a much gentler arc than it ended up being and that there would be time to not only move the development of the technology to lend itself to more hybrid experiences, but like the marketing language, like all of those things that you had to read, like your FAQs, Like your landing pages and what messaging it was saying, right off the jump, you know, like, I think we all expected it to be gradual. And instead, you know, like the CDC changed the guidelines. And like, you know, like the train hit the emergency stop button, like pause for like, 36 hours, and then they released the brake, and it was rolling in the opposite direction again, and everything was kind of thrown back into tumult. So, you know, Mike, I'm curious what your thoughts are on that. And the be to that question that I also want you to kind of speak to is just, there's so much technology that has been written in the last two years, that now I mean, like, it's gladdie, right? So like, there's going to be a ton of I anticipate a lot of m&a. Right. There's only so many people, right, we there's, there's a virtual event platform for every company in the world to have their own at this point. So like, clearly, like, we're gonna start to see that, but But what do you think, man, now that we're in this like, weird? Like, post COVID place? What do you think's gonna change?

Tim Kerbavaz:

Yeah, as you say, I mean, they're kind of this roller coaster of up, down, up down, you know, and, you know, just like hitting that last, you know, slope and not really having everyone's plans in order. I mean, I totally hear that. And I see that as well, with clients who are, you know, I think, in many ways, the reason books are rushing back to, as we said earlier, kind of the way things were the way they did things in 2019, is because there's a formula, right? They have notes and reference. And, you know, it's easy to replicate something you've done before. And so I think, you know, one of the challenges for a lot of clients, a lot of the books I'm working with are, you know, redefining the vision of what does an event mean? What does it what, what is an event? Why do we have events? You know, who is our audience? And what can we do for that audience for a specific events audience to maximize their benefits. You know, people go to events, to learn something, to experience something to meet people. And for all the reasons that people go to events, I think there's ways to make virtual hybrid events work. But I think that you really have to think about what is it that your audience is coming to our event for? And who is that audience, and then design the event around that. So it's, I think, you know, it's really tempting to have a cookie cutter, you know, we're gonna do this event in a box. And I think that, you know, that only works if, if the box you've picked your event out of is the box that works best for your audience. And so one of the things that I've been doing a lot of is this kind of just consulting and having conversations with clients about like, what does it mean to have a an agriculture conference? For a global audience in, you know, 2022? Like, what? What do you mean, when you say you want to have a hybrid agriculture conference versus what you mean, when you say you want to have a hybrid technology or, you know, in a tech conference, right, so like, I've done a lot of events with with Google, right, and their audience, you know, they've had events in person in the Bay Area, right? A lot. But the reality is that they're targeting for these, like developer events, what they call their NBU, the next billion users, and that next billion users is not in the Silicon Valley, in California, there is not a single person in Silicon Valley in California, who does not know what Google does, or doesn't know their products we've already right. And so there's not really new business for them there. So the in person event is really like a hurrah, right? It's getting people together to kind of celebrate the products and the community. But the actual money to made for Google is there audiences in Africa and India, in China. And, and that's where they're going to actually find new developers who are actually going to adopt these new products and tools. And that's how they grow. So for Google, the hybrid event is critical, right to their business success. And frankly, they've been doing hybrid events for, you know, 510 years because I've been doing their developer events for at least five years, and they've all been live streamed to the world, you know, including China. And so, you know, it's, it's, it's not really new for them to have a hybrid event with like online audience interaction. They've done like live q&a with the web and stuff like that. So it's funny to me when we talk about hybrid events as the sort of new thing, and obviously, there are a lot of new tools and a lot of new products, but the basic underlying methodology is not new. So I told you, I worked for UC Davis running their events service, and, you know, academic conferences. As are are often global conferences, because you have researchers who are collaborating across continents on research projects and presenting that research together. And obviously, hopefully, right, often they can travel together and present in person, but academic conferences have had what we used to call teleconferences. Right. You know, teleconference presentations and participation and live streams, you know, for a decade or more, because they've had a business need, right, that, you know, the researcher in, you know, Paris or Beijing couldn't travel to the conference in person for whatever reason, so they're gonna give their presentation remotely, you know, or I've done, you know, conferences about immigration, where literally, the immigration lawyers who are presenting couldn't get visas to come in, right, you know, things like sort of the irony there, but the the lots of reasons that, you know, folks are gonna have needed this model for years. And so I think it's as we look at, you know, what does the model of a virtual Harvard event look like? For me, I see that people because I've been doing it for a long time. But I think for a lot of clients, and particularly for event planners, who, as we discussed are stretched thin, are overwhelmed are being asked to plan things faster and faster and faster, with less and less warning, and less and less availability of spaces and crew and all that. That's hard necessarily, to visualize, right? What hypothetical models are when you're being asked to put together an event in three weeks, right? So I think the challenge becomes kind of building these heuristics for the industry. So that folks, you know, when you get that phone call that, hey, my biggest client wants to put on a hybrid event in a month. You know, that, you know, you actually have a box to pull it out of instead of trying to reinvent the wheel while also trying to find a room block in there.

Patrick Rife:

Yeah, yeah. Yeah. giving, giving, giving all the tools and processes in order, right. So that way, it's not starting over. Every single time. Yeah. Well, Tim, we're getting, we're getting to the end of our time here. I love before we button up to to ask some fun questions. Right, right, quickly, so if you'll humor me through these, so where's home base for you now?

Tim Kerbavaz:

I am in Sacramento, California.

Patrick Rife:

So if, if one of our listeners is passing through Sacramento, California, what's one thing that they should absolutely make sure that they make time for?

Tim Kerbavaz:

So it's super silly. And it's not necessarily even like the best restaurant. It's just like one of my favorite restaurants is a place called pancake circus. They're only opening in the mornings. They're a pancake restaurant. They're like a diner. But they have like the weirdest decorations which I love. They're like sort of creepy, not quite trademark infringing Winnie the Pooh characters basically. But they're like, you know, just off enough that it's not trade recommending. And I love it. And it's like, you know, sort of this like, you know, grizzled hostess suits you and, you know, slings coffee at you and then you expect the waitress to pull a pencil out from behind her ear, but then she works with an iPad. It just is really fun. I really like it. Thank you for actually also excellent, but, you know, it's there's so much fine dining in Sacramento that I feel silly mentioning that but it's, that's when I write like, fun fun Sacramento places. If you're like coming through to Tahoe in the morning, stop for several pancakes.

Patrick Rife:

That's awesome. I love that. Okay, and fun question two, a recommendation, a book piece of music, you know, newspaper articles, something that's been getting you stoked. So

Tim Kerbavaz:

and I feel bad because I don't remember the title of this book. But I was recently reading an ethnography and I will have to get it in send it to you for the for the description, but it was an ethnography about sort of what's the right word sort of boutique careers. I forgot how they described it, but it was like it was about like basically barbers, bartenders, craft distillers and talking about the sort of traditionally sort of working class jobs that had sort of waned, right. Having a resurgence in urban environments, becoming kind of arbiters of taste right where you you, you look to the craft bartender to really tell you what is hot and cocktails right now or you go to your record, exactly the record store so that there's these kind of whether it's a restaurant play, whether it's your your barber, your bartender, your you know, there's all these folks who are working these jobs that are not sort of glitzy tech jobs but who so many people in the in the community look to As as tastemakers right. And so just really thinking about that kind of ways that we code careers, but also the ways that we kind of code taste making is really, to me,

Patrick Rife:

that's cool. That's, you know, like, what you say makes me think of two things it makes me think of, I don't know, if you've been to Italy before. But in Italy being, you know, like, being a waiter as a career, you know, like, the waiters in the fanciest restaurants are, you know, like, 5067 year old men that are, you know, it's like a whole thing, like, it's, and they've done it, they've done it for decades and decades, on end, and, you know, like, I think what you're talking about is like, they're, like, These people are the secret keepers, right? Like, they're keeping all of this information alive. And, you know, yeah, whether it's somebody that can talk about like a, you know, like a extremely obscure Scotch or it's somebody that can recommend the best like, stooges record, or whatever the case may be, or, or if you'd like the Stooges, something even more obscure that you may not have known, and it makes me think about, um, I don't know if you've ever read Ray Bradbury's Fahrenheit 451. But you know, like, it's all about, like, just right, like, organized destruction of knowledge to keep people in a place. And you know, like, the book ends, and they're like, there's a community of outsiders on the edge of town, and each one's responsible for remembering memorizing one entire book. So that way, it's all there in documentation. And, you know, like, not all things can be codified in ones and zeros there, there is all that nuance there. So,

Tim Kerbavaz:

and I think they kind of take this home level, but I think, you know, certainly not that I would ever call myself an arbiter of taste. But But I do think that as event professionals, we are creating a space, right, and one of the things that I really think about is as, as an event professional, we use, whether it's, you know, the tools of the internet, or whether it's light and fabric and color and sound, and this tools of statecraft, right, to create a space in almost all cases and ephemeral spaces space that goes away after we're done with it. That is designed for storytelling, right, we are creating the campfire around with our clients to tell their story. And so so much of our industry is about placemaking and about creating the environment to tell a story. And so as we talk about, you know, what does it mean to, you know, give recommendations, was it mean to create, to create knowledge or memorize knowledge to, you know, convey knowledge, you know, our job is not necessarily, it's not necessarily our story to be told, right. But we are creating the environment in which the best stories can be told.

Patrick Rife:

Yeah, yeah. I love that. What a great way to end Tim, tell everybody that's listening. Let them know where to follow you where to get in touch, you know, anything else that you want to share? Please do.

Tim Kerbavaz:

My company is Talon audio visual, and that's t a l o n audiovisual.com. You can find me on Twitter at ticker BBs that's AT T ke R B as in Baker, a V as in Victor a Z as in Zebra, that's my last name. You can also check out my podcast, which is Tim and Tim talk with my colleague, Tim Kay, from another company in the Bay Area. And we talk about event technology and the ways that, you know, kind of virtual and hybrid events are evolving. And we also give some case studies. And so our episodes that are just about to come out are literally like a four part a case study of a big tech conference that we produced in a virtual world couple years ago, and Eric is last year, and you know, so that's a tentative, tentative talk. You can find us at Tim and Tim talk.com.

Patrick Rife:

Love it. Awesome. Well, Tim, on behalf of all of our listeners out there, I just want to thank you so much for taking time out of your day, sharing your story giving such thoughtful answers to our questions. I know that everyone listening is going to just get a ton out of it. So hopefully you will, you will hear the responses hit your inbox,

Tim Kerbavaz:

saying thank you so much for having me. It's great, great conversation. And I look forward to continuing this conversation with you and with our listeners offline.

Patrick Rife:

Yeah, absolutely. All right, guys. So that's it. That brings us to a another final episode of the Pixilated podcast. Hope you all enjoyed our chat with Tim again, all of the things that we talked about we will link up to in the show notes. So whether you are watching this video on YouTube or Facebook or if you are subscribing through your favorite podcast player, hit the show notes, find some links get in touch with Tim. I would also implore you to please if you enjoyed this podcast, take a few moments leave us a five star review your reviews help other people find our podcast and our goal is to spread this information far and wide. So we'll really appreciate that and Last but not least if you haven't yet hit the subscribe button make sure you do so that ensures that you're notified each time we publish a new episode so without further ado until next time I am patrick with pixilated Peace guys