Steven Webster is not only an American hero but an entrepreneur making big strides in the entertainment industry. As his career heats up in Nashville, he is pushing forward to expand his skills as a videographer and director — and people all over the country are taking notice.
At 31 years old, Webster is the owner of Hy Def Imaging, located in Nashville. An Owensboro native, Webster graduated from Owensboro High School in 2006, where he also he took his first video production class. The class taught him the ins and outs of handling the equipment and served as a guide in teaching him how to tell a story from behind the camera. Now, 12 years later, Webster has taken some of that knowledge along with him on his artistic journey.
“I started filming stuff there [at OHS] in a video production class and fell in love with filming there,” Webster said. “At heart, I’m a videographer. Right now, 85 percent of my work is music videos,” Webster said.
Versatility is one of Webster’s strengths as his primary role for each video rotates between directing, editing and serving as director of photography, all jobs he often does himself. As an adult, Webster first tested his curiosity for filmmaking and video production while deployed overseas with the U.S. Air Force.
“I got some really good footage, but when I was at Camp Bucca in Iraq, my hard drive got damaged in a sandstorm,” Webster said. Adding that he hasn’t been able to use the footage since, but he holds onto the hard drive because he hopes that somehow that footage will one day be able to be used.
Business is very good for Webster, who has recently worked with big names such as rapper Jelly Roll and Struggle Jennings — the grandson of legendary musician, Waylon Jennings. Currently, Webster says he’s in the midst of juggling five different projects.
Aside from music videos, Webster also shoots promotional ads and commercials for companies, including a recent promotion for Creek Water Spirits’ new whiskey brand, as well as a promotional video for a company that makes high-end backpacks.
Webster, who’s lived in Nashville since 2010, says he shoots, directs and edits videos for a wide variety of musicians and musical genres. As often as Nashville gets called “the country music capital,” Webster said, it’s truly “the music capital.”
“I’m privileged to be able to see so many types of genres, and these artists are really, really good,” Webster, who also played the trumpet for many years of his life, said. “It’s really great to be able to hear the rawness of these songs and musicians.”
As for the future, Webster said he’d like to extend his craft into the art of filmmaking. He and a partner recently completed filming a reality show about bail bonding companies in Nashville, focusing on rehabilitation instead of punishment for criminals. Webster said the documentary is already gaining interest from investors.
An artist by nature and desire, Webster originally wanted to be a painter, but he admits that painting just wasn’t one of his strengths. Rather than paint, he discovered a different medium could be used as a creative outlet for his ideas.
“I just use the camera as a paintbrush,” Webster said.