Ringling Team Turns On Blinker Messaging



There may not yet be an app that allows you to make your car transform into a pile of money, but a Colorado-based business hopes to let consumers do the next best thing, and they’ve employed the talent at Ringling College of Art & Design drive that message home.

Blinker, a smartphone application using patented vision technology, assists private parties in buying, selling and financing or refinancing a car entirely using the program. Right now, the software can be used for transactions in three states—Colorado, Texas and Florida—and can be used to look up information on a car throughout the U.S. CEO Rod Buscher hopes to soon open up the California market, at which point the three most populous states will be covered, and to have all 50 states ready for business by the end of 2018. “In addition, we have a multitude of software licensing opportunities to some largest companies in insurance, lending, automotive services and in the sharing economy,” he says.

The technology gets demonstrated effectively in an ad campaign developed by a team of filmmakers based at Ringling College of Art and Design. The ad shows user taking pictures of the back of automobiles to use the app to gather information about the vehicles, then in a memorable flash, the car turns into cash in the shape of the vehicle that then starts to float to the earth.

So how did a startup in Colorado connect with a visual team in Sarasota. Some of the initial investors in Blinker, which launched in 2013, including Trudo Letschert and son Jordan Letschert. Trudo knows Buscher from days on the golf courses in Colorado and from back when Buscher ran traditional car dealerships with now-Denver Broncos general manager John Elway. The Letscherts now live in Sarasota. “The main reasons we used Ringling is because our family have been staunch supporters of Ringling and their sound stage-media development,” says Jordan, who sees the campaign as a way to both grow the success of the local video production program and promote Blinker’s potentially disruptive technology.

The investors reached out to David Shapiro, whose Semkhor Productions works with Ringling grads and facilities on commercial projects. “It was a good fit to work with Blinker,” Shapiro says, “and for them it really the full creativity available at a reduced price.” Semkhor produced the ads utilizing a team of Ringling alum with student talent in the mix as well. Shapiro said Florida company Digital Brew also helped with special effects.

A team including Michael Cardwell, Beau Benson, Sean Benson, Jason Letkiewicz, Nick Morgulis, Andrew Price, Alex Ryden and Tony Stopperan, along with Digital Brew, just won a Suncoast Regional Emmy, with Benson also picking up an additional Graphic Arts Emmy for the groundbreaking digital effect of the car turning instantly into money. “That was a big piece of making that campaign work,” Buscher says, noting it works with messaging on selling cars, saving on purchases and generating money on financing.

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