Events are so back

Recapping a big night launching LTX Studio

Hi, everyone! When you’re one of the most sought after supermodels in the world married to one of the richest broskis in New York, there’s only one thing left to do: buy some archival media properties to pair with your archival couture collection. 

Karlie Kloss and Josh Kushner’s Bedford Media, a “new media holding company focused on artisanal storytelling, creator authenticity, and reviving legacy brands with storied histories and cultural resonance,” just bought LIFE Magazine to Frankenstein back into print, digital, and video.

What do we think—can this work? Hit reply if you want to gab about media M&A and the relative likelihood of generating positive margins on a print product with yours truly.

—Kinsey, cofounder & head of editorial at Smooth Media

Final Verdict: Events Are So Back

Last night, the Smooth team capped off months of work to help our friends at Lightricks launch an astoundingly cool new generative AI visual storytelling platform called LTX Studio with a splashy, very well-lit party in New York. And the results are in…events are so back.

The Smooth Media NYC Bureau

Here’s the rundown on what LTX Studio is, why we got involved, and what we think about the future of knowledge creator-powered events.

What is it? LTX Studio is a text-to-video AI platform that, in layman’s (read: Kinsey’s) terms, spits out a whole d*mn movie based on a single text prompt. 

Users input their ideas for a film, video, commercial, etc., and LTX Studio generates an in-depth storyboard, a roster of characters, and collections of fully articulated scenes—all things that creators can pretty infinitely customize, from camera angle to cinematic style.

LTX Studio is the brainchild of the team at Lightricks, the tech startup most widely known for giving the world Facetune, Photoleap, and Videoleap. They’re some of the most talented people I’ve met in a while—and what they’ve built with LTX Studio is breathtaking.

Why were we there? At its core, LTX Studio is a tool for creatives and creators that breaks down barriers to artistic productivity. And that’s kind of catnip for our team. 

We started working with Lightricks a few months ago to source creators who’d be perfect fits to help them generate excitement about the launch. As we managed those partnerships, we were also hard at work with the Lightricks team planning last night’s launch event.

Picture this: 100 of New York’s most interesting leaders in tech, journalism, filmmaking, and the creator industry. Three giant demo bays for people to interface with some of the most impactful new AI tech to hit the market in recent memory. Actually good passed apps.

Okay, now literally picture it:

One thing we were especially amped about for the event: creating thoughtful programming that both 1) made a big-brain tech product more tangible and 2) gave our attendees something interesting to talk and think about.

How we did that:

  • We enlisted the enormously talented video journalist Cleo Abram to host our programming, which showcased both the Lightricks story (featuring Lightricks CEO Zeev Farbman and VP of Product Alon Yaar) and the ways creativity is changing (for the better!) as technology advances so rapidly (featuring Oscar-nominated filmmaker Ari Folman and Theoretically Media founder/AI creator Tim Simmons).

  • We think event programming doesn’t have to feel like a mandatory lecture, and we’re grateful to our speakers for sharing that belief. They each showed up fully committed to helping Lightricks accomplish its goal of not just announcing a new product, but creating an immersive experience.

  • One moment that really stood out: Tim and Ari answering a particularly poignant question from Cleo about the historical moments that represented as meaningful a shift in creativity as this one—IMAX film, the portable video camera, etc. We really are on the cusp of something game-changing with LTX Studio and generative AI.

Cleo Abram interviewing Lightricks CEO Zeev Farbman

What comes next? First and most importantly, we’re so excited to see how people use LTX Studio to get creative in new ways—one of the biggest highlights of last night was seeing people trying out the platform at the demo bays. As Delaney on our Smooth team put it, last night truly showed us that any creative with an idea can make something worthy of a movie screen!

We were all iPad kids last night

Beyond that? We’re bullish on events like this one that center knowledge creators and creatives of all kinds. The future is both digital and IRL. We’re pretty efficient on our keyboards, but meeting creators face to face for the first time after months of working together is really something else.

A little POV from Ali, our account management queen: “To see creators’ enthusiasm in real life and watch them interact with each other, teach each other about both the tech and the industry, and ask thoughtful questions throughout was so cool. They really put the knowledge in knowledge creator.”

So while I’m spending today nursing a hangover from one (1) glass of sauvignon blanc, tomorrow we start thinking about what we can do next to bring knowledge creators, great brands, and talented people together more often. We’re heading into Q2 feeling so energized by this week, and we’re really grateful to the Lightricks team for everything.

See you IRL soon?

  • Over in The Publish Press, the team covered how the creator duo behind Devour Media is building a multi-six figure business helping restaurants make social content.

  • Spotify is testing out video courses in a freemium model. This could be really interesting for education creators. 

  • Digital culture critic Jules Terpak with a knockout video about media addiction vs. smartphone addiction. This really feels like the future of digital journalism.

Thanks for reading! Have a great weekend—I’ll be spending the next several days partaking in my time-honored tradition of caring about college basketball (or basketball of any kind, for that matter) for one month and one month only. See you next time!