Author Topic: Ken Stillman Interview 19/25th May  (Read 6548 times)

Flash

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Re: Ken Stillman Interview 19/25th May
« Reply #15 on: May 19, 2008, 02:19:03 PM »
Hi Thelma,
I have a new DVD coming out at the end of this month.
The subject is life size princesses using 660s and 16 inch hearts to make the body. There is a picture of one that Graham posted. I will send him a front view. I am pretty happy with the head, but I would still like to see some specialty shape balloons made specifically for feminine heads.
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Flash

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Re: Ken Stillman Interview 19/25th May
« Reply #16 on: May 19, 2008, 03:17:36 PM »
Hi Graham,

I hope to have a link on my web site up by the end of my day where people can purchase my books and DVDs. My site is going through a face lift at the moment and I took the store down momentarily. I am working on a program that has been in my mind for years and I need to just get it out there. I may have some intros finished for everyone to view by tomorrow.
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Flash

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Re: Ken Stillman Interview 19/25th May
« Reply #17 on: May 19, 2008, 03:19:22 PM »
I do have a story about David Grist that I  would like to share.
I had arrived in Japan for the JBAN convention and because of jet lag, my eyes would open up at 4:00 am. I could not sleep and I was hungry so I went for a walk to find a restaurant. nothing was open but Denny's ( an American food chain that David hated ) I was sharing my experience with Vanessa Lever at the prep room and she told me she would wake at 4:00 am also. My hotel room was between Vanessa’s and and Alberto Falcon’s.
when I woke the next day, I thought I would ask Vanessa to go to breakfast. but when I heard a deep voice answer the phone I knew I had awakened Alberto and I also knew I had added a number to my room instead of subtracting. Anyhow when I finally got Vanessa on the line she said, What? are you crazy it is 4:00 am! I laughed and went to breakfast by myself. David arrived later that day and I related the story to him. He told me that I had better not ever call him at 4:00 am. I awoke the next day and looked over at the clock it was 4:00 am again. Just then the phone rang and the voice said, hey Ken you want to go to Denny's. It was David.
That evening Vanessa asked me what was so funny at 4:00 am that I would laugh so loud to wake her.
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Flash

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Re: Ken Stillman Interview 19/25th May
« Reply #18 on: May 19, 2008, 03:44:02 PM »
6, What's your favorite age to entertain?

The ages I like best are between seven and nine.
They are old enough to respond with humor themselves.

7, Do you have the same act but vary the presentation for all ages or do you have set acts for different ages?

Yes I do. It is probably time to change it, but I have come to rely on it, because it is proven to work for the kids as well as the adults.

8, What’s your favorite thing to make at the moment?

I think that hats have always been my favorites I have some classics that I do. Fred Harshburgers swan in heart,  a mokey on a palm tree, a flamingo.
hitch hiker a skate boarder.
 I should do a DVD on Ken’s classic hats.

9, What is the most asked for model?
The thing I get asked for most is the alien hitch hiker.

10, What do you tend to do more of if stuck in the 'balloon production line' model?

There is a bow and arrow that Andrew McDonald does that is the most awesome balloon weapon ever made, and it is quick and easy.
I usually break this out when kids that know me start asking for complicated stuff. The girls even like it. I just make it in pink.
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Graham Lee

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Re: Ken Stillman Interview 19/25th May
« Reply #19 on: May 19, 2008, 05:04:22 PM »
Ken,

I actually remember David telling me that story, it brought back some happy memories :)

Graham Lee
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Graham Lee

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Re: Ken Stillman Interview 19/25th May
« Reply #20 on: May 19, 2008, 05:06:37 PM »
Full frontal of Ken's princess;
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Graham Lee

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Re: Ken Stillman Interview 19/25th May
« Reply #21 on: May 19, 2008, 09:17:53 PM »
Ken,

A few more compiled questions, dont worry we only go up to 30 :D

10, What do you tend to do more of if stuck in the 'balloon production line' model?

11, Who is your market aimed at?

12, What kind of work do you do mostly - parties? Corporate? Etc

13, What is your favourite/ideal gig to do?

14, What irritates you most at a gig?

15, How do you book yourself?

Graham Lee
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Flash

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Re: Ken Stillman Interview 19/25th May
« Reply #22 on: May 21, 2008, 02:08:56 AM »
10, What do you tend to do more of if stuck in the 'balloon production line' model?

In my travels I have noticed a difference in the way one performs in Europe and in the States.
I have had the pleasure to watch Louis Baerts in Holland do a Birthday Party Show with balloons.  He chose children from the audience, and had them come up on stage as part of the show. Not all the children from the audience got a balloon. Even when he was finished with the children on stage they did not immediately get their balloon. Instead he wrote their names on the balloons and then decorated the stage with them. After the  the show ended, he then invited only the children's who's names were written on the balloons to come up and get their sculpture.

I do not believe this would fly in the states.
The thought here is that every child needs to get a balloon.
Consequently, I do become a 'balloon production line'.
i would really like to emulate what I saw Louis do but I will have to take the time to create a show.

11, Who is your market aimed at?

My market has been the Birthday market
it is the one I have had the most success at.

12, What kind of work do you do mostly - parties? Corporate? Etc

It seems the Birthday parties just come my way.
I would love to do Corporate but I honestly have not made any attempts to land one.

13, What is your favourite/ideal gig to do?

I love the Hispanic parties here. It is the only exception to the rule. There are always hundres of kids and there is no way all of them will get a balloon and they know it. but it is fun to be a part of such a large festivity.

14, What irritates you most at a gig?

I think what irritates me the most is when The parents go to the trouble of having a party for their child and then they are not mentally to attend it. At the conclusion of the balloons that I do, I perform a short magic show in honor of the birthday child. at one occasion when this came time The father and his buddies were drinking and watching a baseball game. I set up next to the TV and then I shut it off letting them know it was time
to give their attention to the birthday child and then started the show.


15, How do you book yourself?

Well to be honest Graham I have been so busy traveling lately I have not had the time to promote myself.
Most of the gigs come by word of mouth and from doing restaurants.
I also work as a electrician from time to time.
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Graham Lee

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Re: Ken Stillman Interview 19/25th May
« Reply #23 on: May 21, 2008, 08:49:55 AM »
Some more of the compiled questions for you Ken.
If anyone else has a question for Ken, please post away;

16, What’s the biggest thing you’ve ever made?

17, What has been your proudest achievement in our wonderful world of twisted latex?

18, What advice would you give to someone starting out, or wanting to increase their business?

19, What road in latex do you see yourself taking in the future

20, What is your personal goal when you set off to work? Is it money or to entertain etc?

Graham Lee
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Graham Lee

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Re: Ken Stillman Interview 19/25th May
« Reply #24 on: May 22, 2008, 10:44:35 AM »
Ken has kindly sent over a couple of picture's of when he worked with David in Japan.
The second picture is of David making his racing car which is on his weaving DVD which we do sell;
http://sempertexballoons.co.uk/index.ph ... ent=9&pg=1

Please note that all money raised from the sale of David's DVD's goes to his family.
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Bad to the Balloon

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Re: Ken Stillman Interview 19/25th May
« Reply #25 on: May 22, 2008, 01:36:33 PM »
Ken,

What exactly did that florescent green goop you ate in China taste like? :o

How are the Master sessions coming along?
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Re: Ken Stillman Interview 19/25th May
« Reply #26 on: May 22, 2008, 10:44:21 PM »
Hello ken
Are you thinking about bringing out speed twisting 2 if so what would be on it and have you any pics?

I have speed twisting 1 when i first saw it I have to say it was a bit of a let down as the supper heros was so good BUT now i have looked at it more I use the stuff so much I love the griffe and the rhino people just are so shocked to see what can be made fast and big 2 things i love

If you do speed twisting 2 it would be nice to see some other ideas for them? body, hats, wands, made from other size balloons?
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colin myles

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Re: Ken Stillman Interview 19/25th May
« Reply #27 on: May 23, 2008, 01:11:53 PM »
Hi Ken this has been a great interview so far, I love the two pictures of David that you posted,
I really should ask you a question instead of just letting everyone else do the work,
So when are you coming accross to see us all   :D  :D
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Flash

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Re: Ken Stillman Interview 19/25th May
« Reply #28 on: May 24, 2008, 04:00:47 AM »
16, What’s the biggest thing you’ve ever made?

I helped with the soccer players in Belgium but the actual work that I did was miniscule. The biggest sculpture that I worked on, where I actually did some of the work was in Italy with David Grist. His famous pirate ship. Other than that my ninja turtles are the biggest I think.

17, What has been your proudest achievement in our wonderful world of twisted latex?

That is a tough one, I would like to say the hitch hiker hat, but that was not really my idea. I think it’s a toss between the Genie head and the Superhero head. I was so jazzed when I made them for the first time.

18, What advice would you give to someone starting out, or wanting to increase their business?

(1)  make sure people know where to find you. Have a good web presence.
Make sure you have a dot com name.
Domain names are cheap and the dot com names are going fast.
Choose an easy name to spell and remember.
godaddy.com is where I buy mine.
Make sure you are in the phone book.
This is only so people can find you.
I would not pay for any adds.


(2)  Raise your prices and get comfortable quoting them.
This accomplishes two things.
(One)
Now you have gifts to give away.
Create a gift card worth the amount you have raised your prices.
Hand them out as thank yous to everyone you meet. ( people love getting gifts, and it is better than a business card because of its value they will not throw it away.
(Two)
You have just increased your self worth.

(3) Make sure your presence is known.
Take awesome bouquets into your community and showcase them everywhere, at banks, (not just yours) at restaurants, at hair salons, at photography shops, at the bridal shops, in the pubs, anywhere the public can see them. Present the delivery as a gift to the manager or business owner leaving them with a hand full of business cards and a 25.00 gift card for them. Only give them one gift card. More than one will cheapen the gift and make the gift card look like a coupon. No coupons.
People get excited about their gifts and they will showcase them to the public and will hand out your cards for you.

(4) Create a gift card page on your website that only you can get to.
No matter who calls you after you have quoted them prices, you can now  ask: Do you have a gift card? If they do have one they will tell you, if not, you can email them the web page for the gift card.

19, What road in latex do you see yourself taking in the future

I am working on an interactive website where balloon artists can create and color their own creations before making them with real balloons.
I am also working on a video instructional site.

20, What is your personal goal when you set off to work? Is it money or to entertain etc?

I can’t honestly say that the thought of money is not there with all the financial pressures in this world, but all in all it is the love of this medium that keeps me in this field. I have heard it said; Do what you love and the money will follow. I will keep you posted.
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Flash

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Re: Ken Stillman Interview 19/25th May
« Reply #29 on: May 24, 2008, 04:01:49 AM »
Hey Mark,
I can’t remember eating that florescent green goop but I think it effected my new website.          http://balloonclick.com/

I haven’t really pushed the master classes the way I should have.
I have gotten feedback and I need to change a few things.
I have taken the classes off the website for now.
I would still love to do some east, coast west coast classes with you though.
I will let you know when I am ready.
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