Get to know... Jason Blankenship

by Emily Ferguson

Known For: Owner of Bad Cloud Media, Drummer in Best of Synthia. Jason has directed five music videos thus far, for flo.wav and Alex Peramas as well as Best of Synthia. He also shoots and edits videos of live performances.

NE Florida Born and Raised: Jason was born in Jacksonville, but moved to St. Augustine at six years old - an elusive St. Augustine native!

360 Degrees: He attended the University of North Florida and changed his major from Visual Arts to Construction Management. He worked in the construction field for four years after graduating, which saw him bouncing all around Florida, including Miami, Fort Lauderdale, and Space Coast. However, while the management skills proved quite valuable, he began to grow restless spending so much time at a desk and craved more time for creativity. He quit his job in 2017 and came back to St. Augustine to start Bad Cloud. The rest, as they say, is history.

What’s in a Name?: Bad Cloud Media is actually named after a song that was written years ago while Jason was in a different band with Andrew Bowlby (of Best of Synthia). The tune dealt with living in a small community, and trying to make waves and change. Feels fitting.

A True 'Blank Canvas': Jason says the most fun he’s had shooting a video was on the set of flo.wav’s “Breathe Easy.” They went in with nothing but themselves and a white screen, and just started shooting. Jason had the duo find odd props, including plants and a fishbowl, and shot their hands from different angles and framing. Add some color to that white screen, and lo and behold - a music video! He adds, “You can always under-plan a shoot, but you have to be careful not to over-plan as well.”

Wash, Rinse, Repeat: Jason derives inspiration for music videos right from the source. His favorite method? Putting a song on repeat and driving around. He says that the music turns to colors, then to textures, and images, until it finally becomes a story.

Travel Bug: The furthest Jason’s ever traveled has been to Dublin, but has also spent time in Costa Rica and Rio de Janeiro. If he could go anywhere in the world, he says his next pick would be the Himalayas. “I try to jump in my car and go somewhere once a month.”

Jason of All Trades: In addition to making music and videos, Jason dabbles in some occasional carpentry, and also paints. He prefers portraits and abstract art, and says that the various art forms feed one another, making him a better cinematographer because of his art background.

Out to Sea: Something he’s never done but has always dreamt of is learning to sail, saying the idea of being in the middle of the ocean, under the stars, is “one of the most romantic things in life...the most free thing I could think of.

In a Not Too Distant Future: Ten years from now, he sees himself settling somewhere, with a studio of his own. He’ll still be traveling though, and always making music. “It all goes back to music.”

Speaking of that Studio Space: Apparently an empty racquetball court with broken lights makes for a fabulous makeshift, middle-of-the-night studio.

Send Noods: This month's GTK fun fact: Jason loves ramen. Best he’s ever had was at Kapow, in Boca Raton.

What’s Up Next?: Best of Synthia is currently recording an EP set to come out in the fall, accompanied by a tour and music video. Bad Cloud is working on a video for Cody Jasper, a musician out of Texas, which will see Jason traveling to the state.

dave kosciolek