Short Film Series Promotes Small Businesses in St. Louis

click to enlarge Sign painter Phil Jarvis is a subject of one of the films. - Once FIlms
Once FIlms
Sign painter Phil Jarvis is a subject of one of the films.

Two St. Louis filmmakers have started a film series that showcases people who are rarely in the spotlight, but probably deserve to be.

Once Films, a filmmaking and advertising team headed by Greg Kiger and Chris Ryan, is behind the "Spotlight Series," which is made up of short films that profile small local businesses.

"The point of the Spotlight Series is to kind of shout from the rooftops that there's a lot of cool stuff going on in our town, there's a lot of interesting characters, and people doing amazing stuff," Kiger tells Daily RFT.

So far, the series has two films available for viewing on its website. The first, "Bob the Baker," focuses on the owner of Carondelet Bakery, the oldest bakery in St. Louis. The second, "Signs," showcases Phil Jarvis, a sign painter who does his work by hand and has created some of the most recognizable signs in the city.


Signs - Once Films from Once Films USA on Vimeo.

"A lot of times I think people are really thrilled to know there's an old bakery in town or a guy who does hand-painted signs," Kiger says. "Our thought was, 'Let's put them in a heroic light.' They really deserve that, and in a lot of ways they are keeping some craft or artisan way alive."

Ryan adds that by showcasing individuals who run unique businesses, viewers can also learn about interesting characters -- the kind one only knows by living in a certain neighborhood for a long time.

Click on the next page to see another video and to submit a suggestion to the filmmakers...

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