Aspiring Influencer Grant

A grant for any age the person who has the vision, but lacks the resources & mentorship.


The Story

Our Principal, Spencer Hill, started The Portland Company with no college education, barely graduating high school, no loan and no assistance beyond his generous parents providing him a car and a place to live until he was 18 and some dedicated educators in his life.

It took 2 years to generate a part time wage from The Portland Company while working a part time job at the same time, 4 to be full time (for Spencer and a couple staff) while still working seasonal contracts to invest more money into the business, 7 to be sufficient for a small family and full staff, 10 to begin development of a full media production company, and now we’re approaching 15 years.

Spencer had ideas, which became viable as he worked with limited resources and became endeavors as he saved his money and bought resources to execute his plans to fulfill his vision to create a company that influences the world through media.

It’s from this history that we are preparing to offer a grant and mentorship program.

And so, this grant, which we’re calling the Aspiring Influencer Grant, is to give people of various ages the opportunity to get free access to professional resources and limited mentorship so they can begin to exercise their abilities as they fail, yes fail, to achieve their vision.

Fail? What do you mean? Why would The Portland Company invite people to use their resources to fail?!

Because the road to success is paved with failure. The best boxers aren’t the best because they never get hit but because they know how to take a hit.


Note: Now, to maintain these resources we do have to rent the equipment and turn a profit so we can continue to by more, maintain and care for the equipment, etc… So to those who are able we ask, out of honor, to pay to rent our equipment instead.

But sometimes money is tight and you just need a break. If that’s the case, then this grant is for you. Whether you’re 113 and thinking about a career as a directory or have a 7 year old that dreams of running his own business someday.


The Grant

The grant is a credit with us to rent our equipment for free long enough to execute a short term media project of some kind.

The goal is to give a limited number of aspiring artists and entrepreneurs the chance to use professional equipment, with professional mentorship, to produce a video or photography project.


What resources do the grant recipients get?

  • Small indoor studio space for photography and post-production in Sherwood, Oregon.
    • Sony Bravia 50″ 4k UHD horizontally wall mounted
    • Sony Bravia 40″ 1080p vertically wall mounted
    • Razer Blade 14″ 2015 with 4k touch screen & 
    • 2 iPad Air 2
      • MovieSlate8 App
      • Tradional physical movie slate
  • Sony A7 iii Camera – 4k UHD, RAW, Full Frame 35mm sensor.
    • 2 SD Cards
    • Sony AX 85mm 1.8 lens full frame
    • Sony AX 50mm 1.8 lens full frame
    • Sony AX 35mm 1.8 lens full frame
    • Meade ETC-90EC Terrestial and Extraterrestial Telescope – Sony A7 iii can be mounted to the telescope for capturing space (clearly see close up surface of the moon) and nature photography from long distances.
      • Includes electronic controller for tracking with the earths movement.
  • Portable chroma key backdrop (green screen).
  • 1 Zihyun Crane 2 with Focus Motor
  • 2 Neewer Bi-Color Portable LED Light Panels with Barn Doors
    • Optional Soft Boxes
  • 1 Neewer S400N Portable Flash Light with Wireless Transmitter / Receiver
    • Optional Umbrella
  • 1 Xoom H4n Pro Field Recorder
    • Bose 3-2-1 Sound System in Studio
    • Seinheiser Headphones
  • 1 MXL 991 Cardoid Condensor Mic with XLR
    • With weighted base tabletop stand.
    • Optional portable boom pole.
  • 1 MXL 990 Cardoid Condensor Mic with XLR
    • Wind Sock
  • 2′ x 2′ Photography Lightbox
  • Tripod
  • Waterproof DeWalt ToughSystem with memory foam for storing storing fragile equipment.
  • Chevrolet Suburban for hauling and towing participants (such as actors and crew) and equipment.
  • Mentorship by various established and reputable entrepreneurs and professionals in marketing (entrepreneurs & strategists), retail (entrepreneur), tax (entrepreneur), sales, commercial photography and commercial videography.
  • And, last, but not least, a Playstation 3 with tons of games so you can refuel your creativity!

The Terms & Conditions

  • Not all candidates who apply will be accepted, primarily due to limited resources and availability.
  • While we will open the grant to non-local candidates, for now we’re only able to invite candidates who can commute to and from our Sherwood studio location during normal business hours.
  • This is an ongoing grant, so after candidates are accepted and complete their project new candidates will be given the opportunity.
  • Candidates must reasonably demonstrate you do not have the means or access to similar equipment and resources. This includes a limited explanation of your finances and possibly a credit check.
  • You must provide at least 3 professional references with whom you do not have a personal relationship with. Parents or guardians applying on behalf of their children may provide 3 adult references such as teachers, 
  • It may not be used for anything illegal.
  • It may not be used to produce adult content, gory or excessively violent content
  • Your work must be submitted in it’s entirety, in un-edited and edited format.
  • Your work is our intellectual property until we approve it meets the aforementioned standards, at which point we will sign over intellectual property rights to you or your guardian.
  • Your application is confidential and will only be circulated internally.


The Application Process

Request an Appointment by emailing – add “Attn: Aspiring Influencer Grant” to the subject.

Include your full name, phone, age (we’ll verify with license when you arrive – your age will never be disclosed to the public without your written consent, but our hope is to share with the community how a variety of ages participated), country, state, city and a brief (1-3 paragraph) explanation of why you’re interested and what you would do with access to these resources.


We’re looking forward to seeing what you do!


Know someone who’d be excited about this opportunity? Share this on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter or others and use the hashtag #TPCAspiringInfluencerGrant


Since 2005 we've been offering digital and content marketing strategy and implementation. Including website development, search engine optimization and marketing, search marketing and more.

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