Entrepreneur helps people to create video memoirs
Debbie Marks has learned how to capture history with a camera. Marks has started up Marks in Time, a Barrie business that captures people's history and milestones on film. (J.T. McVeigh Photo)
Debbie Marks learned more about her father through a video camera lens than she did growing up with him.
Capturing his life story in a memoir is something to share with her family, and brought Marks closer to him.
“I always hoped my dad would’ve taken on the role of storyteller. I would get little tidbits about his life, but never the whole running story,” said Marks, pictured at left, owner of Marks in Time.
“Then I sat down with my dad and my video camera. It took two hours, but he started opening up and remembering things he’d forgotten for years.
“It was beautiful and I got experience that, and now my family will get to because it’s on video,” she added.
Marks has started up Marks in Time, a Barrie business that captures people’s history and milestones on film.
“The older generation especially, the baby-boomers’ parents, they are very humble and don’t believe their lives hold any interesting stories,” said Marks.
“Yet, they’ve lived through so much history that their whole life is a great story.
I find it’s their kids that want that memoir of their parents.”
The business officially launched on Oct. 24 and Marks runs it from her home.
With 20 years of previous TV and print journalism experience, Marks has taken her storytelling to a new level.
After six months of planning and enrolling in the self-employment assistance program (SEA), she can finally help others preserve their memories.
“We don’t often tell our life stories to people, and I love the creative side of helping people to tell those stories,” she said. “I wanted to do more of that kind of work, and I’d heard that a lot of people are writing their memoirs. I thought, wouldn’t making a video of them be a better way?”
Marks in Time help families, individuals and even companies capture and preserve their histories, impart wisdom or share their dreams for the future on video.
“I typically start by sending them a questionnaire for them to fill out, to help them spark their own stories,” Marks said. “Pictures are nice, but having someone’s voice on video, using their own words to describe feelings or tell their stories, that’s a living legacy. It’s a gift to others.”
And there’s no limit to what type of story that video captures.
“You can do a business history video to help employees understand how the company started and it’s great for branding,” Marks said. “It can be someone who’s terminally ill and wants to share things because they know they won’t be around later.
“It could be an engagement video that a couple wants to play at their wedding, or a retirement video, looking back at someone’s history with a business.”
She’s even been approached about a birth memoir, documenting a pregnancy up until and on delivery day.
“I’m happy to go wherever the story is,” said Marks.
Marks does all the shooting and editing herself with a high definition video camera and professional lighting. Clients can choose to include music, photos or have people interviewed for the video.
Each project averages four to six weeks for a finished copy, and prices range from a few hundred dollars to a few thousand.
Although she’s only been open for business a week, Marks said she’s already had interest.
“I’ve been talking to five different people about possibly doing videos for them,” she said. “I’m so excited. How lucky am I to get to hear all of these amazing stories and help people share them with others?”
For more on Marks’ services, call 705-330-6674, visit www.marksintime.com, or search Marks in Time on Facebook.