One day I was clicking through my SnapChat stories list when the story for WOW Air popped up. I had been following WOW Air for a while because one of my favorite Snapper’s traveled with them earlier in the summer. When the story began this guy with a scruffy beard, excellent hair, and a super energetic personality jumped out of my phone.
His name is Dave Keystone and he is probably the most exciting person I have never actually met. I jumped at the opportunity to follow his personal SnapChat. And now I look forward to watching his Snaps every time I see his name in my stories queue. I know my introduction sounds a little fangirl-ish, but I am just excited to introduce everyone to Dave.
So without further ado, here are
10 Questions with Dave Keystone
1. Can you tell our audience a little about yourself?
My name is Dave Keystone, and I’m a television host, content producer, snapchatter, and storyteller from Toronto, Canada. I’m a 35-year-old who’s 26 for life, single, father of eight ten-year old plants, and brother to three older sisters and younger brother, whom I love deeply, and would marry if they weren’t my siblings. The pursuit of happiness is my primary motivation in life, and I care far more about creative expression than money-making – almost to a fault.
2. You are a co-founder and the host of the YouTube web series Kids On. Where did the idea for this series come from?
I was at an event, where there was a woman I had a crush on but was too shy and nervous to go over and talk to her. I happened to be sitting beside a ten-year old boy, who when I told him my problem, his response was, “you could just go over and say hello. What’s the worst that can happen?” His response seemed beyond his years, and I knew in that moment there was something special there that could be turned into some kind of programming. I called up my partner, co-producer, and director of the series, Nolan Sarner, and we put the wheels in motion to shoot a pilot, raise some money, find a production partner, and produce the series.
3. What have you learned since creating this series? What do you enjoy the most about this series?
The most important lesson I’ve learned (which makes me crazy) is the amount of patience, persistence, and time it takes, to take the seed of an idea, and see it through to completion. Historically, my style has been to shoot, edit, and post ASAP. Kids On, has made me reel it in and move slowly, and more methodically. We had to shoot a pilot, raise money, find a production partner, produce the series, [and] post the series. [Then we had to] shop the web series around to find a television production partner and we’re still likely a year or two out before it becomes the bigger project we’ve been striving for. This will have been a five-year project from the day I had that conversation with that kid, until we’re able to monetize it properly.
What I enjoy the most about the series, is definitely when we’re auditioning kids, and on the shoot days talking to them. It takes time to get them comfortable in front of the cameras and crew, but once they calm down, and feel comfortable and safe, the conversations (as you can see) are amazing.
4. What are you hoping people will learn/take away from watching Kids On?
For me, the series helps show how insightful kids can be. I think sometimes we underestimate them and don’t realize that their life experiences, can (in many instances), be tied to our own, and so their insights can relate to things we’re still trying to figure out.
My partner Nolan, often comments on the fact that we as adults tend to overcomplicate things, and kids help simplify them. We put so much pressure on ourselves to make the “right” choices, but since kids feel less pressure, and have less to lose, they give advice and insights that are unfiltered, unbiased, and honest.
5. What do you find to be the most difficult aspect of creating content for YouTube?
Amplifying the content once it’s online is very difficult, namely, getting eyes on your work under tight budget constraints. We learned early, that we can’t depend on one or two videos going viral. It’s a process that requires regularly scheduled posts. I personally, find the social media aspect a tough racket.
6. I found you on SnapChat when you took over the WOW Air SnapChat, how did you become a Snap Traveler? Will you continue to be a snap traveler?
Snap Traveling started with WOW Air’s campaign. I submitted a two-minute snap story that was a marriage of my hosting abilities and snap chat. It looked very much like a television host audition tape. A few weeks later, I received an email inviting me to Iceland to meet the team. It was very exciting.
Through the WOW experience, I developed a snap traveler “style” that seems to work well for the audience. I’ll continue to snap travel as long as I can afford to.
7. I really enjoy your snap stories because they are always unpredictable – will it be a shower snap or a group picture or a snap about your car Betty Sue. What do you like about being a SnapChat Storyteller?
Originally, I liked Snapchat because of the interface. I liked the fact that I didn’t need to gather a production team to create content. I could do it all myself. I saw the audience as a bonus, but was only an extension of the app. After the WOW summer of travel, I used snap so much that I became accustom to thinking in stories and identifying “snap-able” moments.
To be honest (and I apologize that this may seem ego-centric), I find my stories really funny. I’m just as entertained as anyone else by the stuff that comes out of my mouth. I usually have an idea of what I want a snap to convey, but once the ten-seconds starts, I have no idea what I’m going to say. [If I] watch [it] back, and I laugh, I post.
I find snap chatting to be [a] good exercise in comedy. It allows me to play. I have friends who are of the opinion that I’m dumping too much good material into a space that doesn’t last, and is a waste, but I save every snap, and I see it as collecting footage and archiving ideas for something bigger.
8. Do you have any “geek” related interests, such as Star Wars, Marvel/DC or anything of that nature?
I’ve boarded the Starship Enterprise more times than I can count. If we knew we were going to make first contact with another species, I would trust Captain Picard to be our representative. I think Star Trek TNG is an excellent source of conversations about humanity, life, our existence, and philosophical breakdowns of some of life’s greatest questions and mysteries.
I’m also secretly a napkin origami enthusiast.
9. Do you have any new projects coming up that you can tell us about?
I’m in production on another web-series that has a slightly more serious tone. We have conversations with people who share incredible life stories that are extremely personal. It’s called, Who We Are, and [it] is an opportunity for people to share in a very safe environment, with the hope that by sharing their story, they can help others who may be experiencing something similar. It’s really an opportunity for me to sit with people and have candid conversations, to better understand each other. I’m not sure how the audience is going to receive it, but it’s very personal, and a passion project of mine.
10. Where can our audience find you?
My Youtube channel where I share stories, comedy, and my web series’ is: Youtube.com/DaveKeystone. My Facebook is Facebook.com/DaveKeystone. Kids On, can be found at Youtube.com/CanoodleContent. And I also have a series called Sex On The Street TV, where we have candid conversations about taboo sex subjects, which can be found at Youtube.com/SexOStvCom.
Thank you so much Dave for taking the time to answer our questions. On behalf of Temple of Geek, we would like to wish you luck on your new passion project and we look forward to tuning in when it’s ready.
Follow Dave on SnapChat you won’t regret it!
*This interview has been edited for length and clarity.