Saturday, January 19th, 2019

S Shopper Stories


PROMEDIA VIDEO SERVICES

Preserving precious memories for generations to come

by Sheryl Williams


Inspired by a life-long love of working with visual media, Suffolk-native Arthur Bradshaw preserves old home movies, videos, audio recordings and photos so that families can pass them on for generations to come.

Inspired by a life-long love of working with visual media, Suffolk-native Arthur Bradshaw preserves old home movies, videos, audio recordings and photos so that families can pass them on for generations to come.

It is indeed rare to find a family that doesn’t have a box of old video tapes or 8mm home movies gathering dust in an attic, garage or closet. “We really need to organize those and do something with them before it’s too late,” is a common refrain heard in many households. Still, years pass without anything being done to preserve the precious memories that such old tapes and film hold. “I don’t know what can actually be done with them, or how much it might cost,” has become the reason that many give for their inaction.

Arthur Bradshaw, owner of ProMedia Video Services on Bennett’s Pasture Road in Suffolk, has heard all of this before, and he is quick to assure people that, most of the time, he is able to help.

While growing up in Suffolk, this Nansemond River High graduate always enjoyed capturing special events with his camcorder and creating slide shows for friends. After graduating from college and working in the world of product distribution, he decided to return to his lifelong love of working with visual media.

“In 2010, I started working from my house,” he recalls, “but soon, I began searching for a new location. I found the perfect spot on Bennett’s Pasture Road. We  moved into our new facility this past July, and recently celebrated with a ribbon-cutting and reception. ”

The digital revolution has taken Arthur a long way from his days of shooting family get-togethers with his trusty camcorder. Now he can transfer data from any audio, photographic or video medium—old home movies, photos, negatives, slides, audio recordings  or VHS tapes—into a digital format that will last for generations to come. Customers bring him old envelopes stuffed with slides, dusty boxes of video tapes and bins filled with old movie reels—media they have been unable to view for years—and return home with digitized photos and videos that can be easily shared with family and friends. “It’s a good service I can provide for people,” Arthur says with a smile, “and it makes them happy.”

“Until recently, the format of choice for most customers was DVD, but today, a lot of people no longer have DVD players,” he continues. “Many new computers don’t even have disc drives. Now, there is more demand for digital media that can be saved on a flash drive, hard drive, or even uploaded to the cloud.”

When the subject turns to flash drives and the cloud, many people’s faces glaze over with a blank expression. “We get that all the time,” Arthur admits with a laugh. “The cloud is the newest innovation; while data seems to be invisible, it is safe, protected, and accessible from almost anywhere. You might have fifty videos, but you can log into your account, quickly locate the one you want, and share it with friends or family with the click of a couple of buttons.”

Arthur always takes the time to talk with customers. Once he understands their goals, he recommends the medium that is right for them.


“I get to make a lot of people happy.
Many of them don’t realize
how much it will mean
until they see the final product...
It’s great to be able to provide a service
that brings people that much joy.”

—Arthur Bradshaw


All work is done on site, so there is no worrying about irreplaceable records getting lost in the mail. This also facilitates a quick turnaround.  On a recent Saturday morning, customer Rob Lauer dropped off a 22-year-old VHS cassette to be transferred to DVD. “I hadn’t been able to watch it for over 15 years,” he explains. “Because Arthur does all the work on site, on that particular day, he was able to have a DVD for me by the early afternoon.”

In addition to his wealth of knowledge and experience, Arthur is quick to praise Blythe Dohey, his lead audiovisual technician. “I’m so fortunate to have her,” he says. “She does an outstanding job.”


Arthur is able to digitally preserve a variety of media including most video tapes and cassettes, <BR>audio recordings, slides, photos and old home movies.

Arthur is able to digitally preserve a variety of media including most video tapes and cassettes,
audio recordings, slides, photos and old home movies.


Arthur advises everyone not to wait too long to transfer their old videos, audio recordings and film to a digital format. Photos and videotapes will eventually fade, depending on the environment in which they’re stored. (Attics and basements are the worst.) Movie film becomes brittle and, in time, will crumble when pulled off its reel. “I hate to have to tell customers there’s nothing we can retrieve,” Arthur says. “Fortunately, that doesn’t happen very often.”

Besides data transfer, ProMedia offers a wide variety of other services—such as video production. There is a studio onsite, in which promotional videos can be shot. Arthur and his staff can go on location if needed to shoot weddings, seminars, or corporate events. They can also edit videos previously shot by others.

Arthur is FAA-certified to produce drone videography. Using this technology, he can provide clients with spectacular aerial shots from varying  angles. Time-lapse photography is also available; a project that might have taken a year  to complete, can be viewed in a minute and a half.

Arthur can even help preserve documents. Recently, a family brought in a disc containing an old family cookbook; the format was old and unusable. He was able to convert the cookbook to a newer format so they could work with it in Microsoft Word.

The Shoebox Scanning Kit is a popular service that Arthur offers to those who have hundreds of photos they would like to save. Customers purchase a box, fill it with up to a thousand photographs, and for a flat rate, they have them scanned and digitized.

Whether the service is preserving memories or videotaping special events, Arthur clearly enjoys what he does.

“I get to make a lot of people happy,” Arthur says with a smile. “Many of them don’t realize how much it will mean until they see the final product. Many times, as I show them clear images of loved ones whose faces they haven’t seen for years, the tears come. It’s great to be able to provide a service that brings people that much joy.”




Pro Media Video Services

5501 Bennett's Pasture Road
Suffolk, VA 23435

757-238-9102
http://www.homevideostudio.com