Exploring Love Through the Lens of White in Revery

Discover the world-traveling love stories of filmmakers Calen and Kristine Rhome (White in Revery) as they share insights, advice, and their reliance on Musicbed for cinematic excellence.

White in Revery

Husband-and-wife duo Calen and Kristine Rhome (White in Revery) have traveled the world to capture captivating love stories. Read their interview below to learn what sparked their interest in filmmaking, their advice to new filmmakers, and why they trust Musicbed for music to elevate their films.

Musicbed: What sparked your passion for filmmaking/storytelling?

Calen and Kristine Rhome: The honest answer is a bit heartbreaking. We had a friend that was newly married and one day her husband went to work, had a work accident, and it took his life. We were a bit ripped apart about it, and then were even more shattered when she made a comment “I just wish I had more pictures of him.” Our new camera arrived in the mail days later and we set out with our Canon T3i to take as many pictures of each other as possible over the next few months. About 5 months later, one of our closest friends, Julia Cox (Darling Juliet Photography), was doing an editorial shoot and needed a behind the scenes video and asked me to do it. She just kept saying “I just think you would be good at this, Kristine!” so I showed up that day and pretended I knew what I was doing behind my little camera haha. Well, actually I showed up and realized Calen had changed all the camera settings and I quietly pretended to be “setting my camera up” in the back corner while I googled why my camera wasn’t working correctly haha. It’s a thing he still does to me 13 years later. I edited that video and she said it was better than any other bts she had ever received, which was just enough encouragement for me to book us a wedding two months later. They paid us by gifting us Final Cut, which I still think was just the greatest exchange ever. We quickly became obsessed and that’s kinda why we’ve continued in the wedding world of filmmaking for so long. We are not exclusively filming weddings at the moment and have honestly added in a lot of brand work and even a short film over the last year, but that is the story of how our interest in weddings started.

What keeps you motivated and creatively inspired?

There are two things that I think keep us creatively inspired: our friends in the industry and our constant creative pursuits outside of our film work. We honestly started noticing the impact of having deep friendships in the film world and it’s one of the reasons that we started hosting our wedding film workshop, Venture Workshop. It’s a lot of learning, but it’s equally designed for networking and making film friends. Seeing the impact of it has been so beautiful. We’ve seen attendees traveling to assist each other on gigs, seen them keeping up with each other online, even vacationing together—it’s incredible. If you’re looking for a way to get creatively inspired, go to an in-person film workshop even if just to make friends. There are several. Outside of that, we just live very playful and creative lives. Creativity is just a constant pursuit of ours in everything we do. Kristine has been working on new music under her artist name WILDCAT because it feels so playful and creative. We host events constantly, like our Creative Nights (everyone attending presents 3-5 minutes on something creative in their life) or our Ultimate Lego Build Weekend where friends fly in from all over the country and stay at our house for nonstop Lego building for three days straight. Calen is always researching and obsessing over things like LED lights and problem solving. We went to a costume party every month for about nine months straight last year. I know none of these are filmmaking, but I feel like being creative outside of your creative work does impact your creative work. There’s a Maya Angelou quote: “You can’t use up creativity. The more you use the more you have.” We just live by that quote. 

What makes a story visually appealing? What role does music play storytelling?

Oh, the combo of visual and music is everything. I think the thing that I want from films is to feel something, and the combination of music and visuals is exactly how to do that. Music, in my opinion, can be a great way to convey mood and personality. Have you ever watched those videos where it’s lighthearted originally, and then they swap out the music and suddenly it’s terrifying? I think they are so funny. One of my favorite compliments we receive from clients is “Watching this, I felt all of the same emotions I felt on my wedding day all over again”. We get it kinda regularly actually, and it’s my favorite thing. Every time we go in to edit a wedding film, we list out 2-3 words that we would use to describe the day and then we make sure that every part of our storytelling lines up with those descriptive words—music included. Words like romantic, epic party, reverent, giddy, classic, celebration, moody, traditional, etc. Then we also take into consideration their personalities and the music that they played day-of. What hits better to describe them: an acoustic guitar or a sick synth? Every couple is different and using music to really tell their story is honestly tricky but very fun. We’ve also worked with brands a lot lately and I think the same advice applies. You use music to set the tone for the viewer and portray that brand’s personality. 

What elements do you think are essential for crafting a compelling story?

Storytelling is funny in the wedding world because, well you basically have this list of events that happen and you can easily just pop them all in order and boom, done, right? Story told. They made it down the aisle. If you’re a high-volume editor, I say do what you gotta do and I’m not here to judge. If you’re looking for a more interesting way to tell the story, I highly suggest starting to research storytelling. All the goodness that you’ll find there with things like character development, storyline arches, drama, creating tension and anticipation, and then resolving it, etc. will all help you create a more emotional and personal story for your clients. It’s a bit more work, but honestly it will make for more interesting work! I often am using audio from the day to guide a story for weddings. It is, in my opinion, the cleanest way to develop characters and build a story. Also, the couple will just cherish having the words that people say on their wedding day. Outside of that, music is so important for storytelling. I mentioned it earlier, but it honestly just sets the vibe. 

How important is music in your work?

I think as a filmmaker, I’m supposed to say that it’s not as important as the footage, but if I’m being honest I feel like half the experience of watching a video is what you’re hearing, so maybe my honest answer is that it’s extremely important. The audible experience is just a huge percentage of what the viewer is experiencing. Sometimes I watch my first wedding edit for fun and it still kinda makes me get a little misty eyed. Our footage was very beginner, but somehow my storytelling really felt so raw and emotional, and the music choice takes me back to that day and all the feelings we all felt. I still love that edit so much. I think that is the power of music. It can kinda transport you to a moment and even to a feeling. That is like a superpower for filmmakers and editors. If you cry at commercials, you know what I’m talking about. Sometimes a commercial is one second in and I can already tell it was made to make cry because of the music!

What advice would you give other filmmakers/creators who are just starting their careers?

Don’t be too hard on yourself, never stop learning, and remember that comparison is the thief of all joy. There is a lot of insanely beautiful, well made content out there that we’re bombarded with on daily basis and it can be so easy to compare ourselves or think we’re not good enough. It can be so easy to forget that everyone starts somewhere and we’re often comparing our three years experience to someone else’s 12 years of experience. Yikes. When it comes to social media,  unfollow if it’s crippling you. Keep following if it inspires you. 

How do you find the balance between pushing boundaries creatively and delivering what your client wants or audience wants to see?

In our work, clients always come first. We are always asking what the client will want—something highly creative or something that really is more straightforward. Are they more traditional and timeless or are they artistic and expressive? Do they value creativity or do they value something that is styled more like a documentary. We book all types of clients, so we’re always asking that. Also, for weddings, this will be a film they have for the rest of their life. For us, it will live in our portfolio for a couple year max. Remembering that, we always prioritize what matches the couple. A huge “ah ha!” moment for us was when we realized a couple years in that we really don’t have to share all of our work. We sometimes only post just a fraction of our work, depending on the year and how much time we have for social content. Sharing only what we want to book really helped us get a higher percentage of creative clients, and that helped us find our voice as creatives so much better. 

What is the most challenging aspect of being a filmmaker/creative?

For many years, our most challenging aspect was the transition into being parents. Pregnancy kinda activated a dormant disease that I have, so I personally spent a lot of time very sick after having our daughter. We travel for most of our work which is so tricky when you have a kid, and we also really spent a lot of time in survival mode from lack of sleep and just keeping a tiny human alive. It’s very tough to pull yourself into a creative state when you’re constantly in a state of survival. Is it weird to say that it also has challenged us in very good ways? The expense of a kid challenged us to be creative with profitability. The emotional needs she has obviously challenged us to create a better work/life balance. For many years, our work was our everything and Zealey certainly helped balance that. It was fun when work was our whole world, but it’s also fun and much more emotionally rewarding now that it’s just part of our world and we’ve balanced in more family and friends. As I put my disease back into remission and we found a better balance with travel, we started to realize that we soon will be teaching our daughter to follow her dreams, and you teach best by living an example right? Knowing that has challenged us to always pursue our career interests and to never hold ourselves back from our curiosities in film and music. Sometimes challenges can be so hard, but often they can be so beautiful too. 

White in Revery with camera

What’s your favorite project that you’ve worked on? or What are some of your favorite projects you’ve worked on?

I, Kristine, love music so much, so I’d say a peak in our career was the moment we got to film a brand film for Good Dye Young and spend basically an entire day with the owner Hayley Williams (lead singer for Paramore). I also found an instrumental on Musicbed and then recorded my own vocals to add to the track to make it a more customized promo video for them, which they loved. I also love challenges, like I am very much a “challenge accepted” kinda person when we’re filming, so some of my favorite film moments are from days when we were working in tricky environments or working with people that were genuinely afraid to be in front of the camera and I end up problem solving in a way that makes them look effortless and natural in their final edit. 

How do you search for music on Musicbed? What are some tips that you’d give other filmmakers to search on Musicbed?

My biggest tip is to just have your descriptive words first before you start song searching. These are just the 2-3 key descriptive words that you would want the final film to feel like—exciting, thrilling, emotional, showy, epic, somber. There are so many different descriptive words you can use, but identifying them and then having them in the back of your mind is just going to feel so helpful. My second bit of advice is to not ignore the key of your song and to utilize that Musicbed tool if you’re using more than one song in your edit. You can search songs according to key, and it’s just so helpful for transitioning songs. 

Why do you utilize Musicbed in your work?

We have used Musicbed from the moment we realized that we had to license the music in our films. It’s honestly just an easy platform to navigate and search through. The customer support has always been very helpful and quick. We especially love the playlist feature. There have been a few times when we felt uninspired with an edit and just put some headphones in and went for a walk to listen to songs until we felt inspired by one. There was one time I worked for three days on an edit and then did this, only to find a song that helped me fully visualize the edit and I dashed into the house kicking off my shoes and ran straight to my laptop and finally got a solid start on my edit. We also see how Musicbed supports our small little wedding focused corner of the filmmaking world by sponsoring events and things like that, and it makes it easier for us to feel comfortable backing and always supporting them! 

Explore a curated playlist of White in Revery’s favorite music to use in their stunning films—all available to license only on Musicbed.