Today we’d like to introduce you to Ruben Jimenez and Phil Geronilla.
We met at our corporate jobs almost ten years ago now. EastsideLED started out as a passion project: Ruben has extensive experience working with audio and video in various capacities and is super passionate and knowledgeable about all sorts of technology. Phil is a musician at heart, having been in various bands, and focuses his time on producing live music and arts events. Music is what initially brought us together, and we soon discovered we had much more in common.
A few years back, we were asked to provide some visuals for a neighborhood block party, the Reseda Summer Series out in the Valley. After providing projections two years in a row, we wanted to up our game, so we decided to create an LED video wall. It was a total DIY setup having purchased parts from various manufacturers, building our own mounting frame, and assembling all the hardware and electronics ourselves. It ended up looking amazing, we received super positive feedback, and we started doing small-scale installations at different live events.
People loved it! We soon realized what was possible with these types of displays and that’s when we decided to get serious. We scaled up our inventory and started to aim ourselves at higher profile events and clients to work with.
Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
There were definitely struggles and frustrations along the way. Just the logistics of acquiring led panels was a multi-step process. We had a few hiccups along the way: from doing technical research, to the ordering and shipment process, there were some challenges like time delays, not get.
This stuff isn’t a consumer product you can just grab off the shelf so we had to find a manufacturer to work with, made sure they could make what we wanted and also provide support. The day it was delivered to us the delivery guy dropped a few of our road cases and damaged some panels, and the logistics company didn’t want to take responsibility.
At the end of the day, we figured it all out and emerged with more know-how about importing goods from overseas and how to handle international shipping logistics. After months of waiting, we were stoked to finally have our LEDs, when we powered them on for the first time, we discovered that our style of content produced artifacts on the display.
It was incredibly frustrating when you invest so much time and resources into something only to find that you can’t use it the way you wanted. We stood our ground with the manufacturer, and they were super helpful in making sure we were happy. Moral of the story, find a good manufacturer to work with that will listen to your feedback and actually help you out. Without a solid supplier, you won’t go far in this business.
EastsideLED – what should we know? What do you guys do best? What sets you apart from the competition?
Eastside LED specializes in LED video wall installations for artists and events. Our vision is to complement and enhance performers and artists to take their expression up to another level, so whatever vibe they put out, we’d like to enhance that.
Same thing for events, LED walls to do a wonderful job at activating a space. What we’re most proud of is that we are doing something new and we get to work with amazing people. This is an emerging market, and there are still many unexplored ways of using this stuff.
Immersive and interactive experiences are quickly becoming something that more and more people want to participate in and we are excited to be a part of a community that can make these experiences a reality.
What is “success” or “successful” for you?
Success for us is having a sustainable business model that will allow us to continue doing what we are doing, but there are many ways to define success beyond economic terms. Whenever we see people’s reactions to our installation, we can’t help but feel proud of being a part of that.
Smiling faces, phones popping out to take pictures or video, or overhearing someone say “hey check this out!” is always very motivating and gives us great satisfaction that we are doing a good thing.
After all, our goal is to enhance experiences at events and seeing that happen in real time is an incredible feeling!
Susa Carvajal (@susajean.jpg)