Guest blogger | Pique Toronto founder: Imad Elsheikh
Social media has shortened our attention spans throughout the years. It can be difficult to keep the audience engaged for an extended period of time. PIQUE Toronto's focus is to pique the audience's interest using short teasers. By doing so, I was able to introduce one artist in 15 seconds or 100 artists in less than 25 minutes.
Lucky for me, I was able to do this in just a few months. I worked with visual artists, dancers, poets, fashion designers, skaters, beatboxers and more, all hailing from the Great Toronto Area. The project plays with the idea of short attention spans by shooting 15 second (or under) videos of the artist showcasing their talent. The videos were part of an artist profile that also included photos and a short bio. PIQUE hopes to introduce a new and creative way of showcasing and promoting artistic talent in the city.
When I launched the project on May 2nd, 2014, I posted one artist a day for a 100 days. Once this was completed, I hosted an event called SNEAK PIQUE where I screened a 25-minute film which was a compilation of all 100 artists. You can think of it as a huge 'Vine Comp' filled with talented Toronto artists. It was a huge success, a big turnout, the artists had a blast, and it truly felt like Toronto was under one roof that night.
It's a once-in-a-lifetime experience. In just a few months, I managed to collaborate with artists of different backgrounds, cultures, art disciplines, genders, and age groups. You learn from them and their craft and eventually it molds you into something new. Together we are all helping each other become better artists, better performers, and better people. I've envisioned this project as the start of a movement and something that would raise the bar of our city collectively, rather than individually.
I understand that I am not the greatest photographer or blogger, but I have learned that I am always willing to improve on my craft and be the greatest I can be in what I deliver. It doesn't necessarily mean taking a great photo or shooting a cool video - its more about the overall message and the meaning behind it - promoting talent in a unique way through technology and helping Toronto's talent while I'm at it.
I'm always grateful and appreciative of the accomplishments I've made but I am never satisfied - and I like to keep it that way. It has turned me into a perfectionist, and keeps me motivated. I'm always chasing excellence.
Watch all episodes of Pique Toronto now on TV1.