Ben Hagarty aka BenRealVsWorld is a creative director, photographer, videographer, editor, musician, podcaster and founder of Black With No Cream. Back in the fall of 2018, he wrapped On The Run 2 Tour with Beyonce & Jay-Z.
Born in Waterloo & raised in Cedar Falls, Iowa, he was into creating from a young age. His neighbor introduced him to music and he would use his father’s camera to record his friends, family and concerts. Finishing high school he toured the country with his punk band in a 12 passenger van, most of the time sleeping in or under it. He attended Hawkeye Community College for 2 years before switching to the University of Northern Iowa where he majored in Communications with a focus on Electronic Media.
After finishing college, messing around with a rap career, saving up 3 months worth of living expenses, he took the leap and moved to Los Angeles. His strategy, supply true value to anyone that gave him a shot and it worked.
He co-edited Chris Brown's documentary, “Welcome to My Life”, directed EA Sports “Mean Guys” piece alongside Lil Dicky, Rob Gronkowski, Von Miller & Antonio Brown, toured the world with Schoolboy Q & even met Donald Glover at a bar. Turning down Kendrick Lamar’s DAMN Tour, he launched Black With No Cream, an active online community curated to help creatives of any type be better versions of themselves.
In this Episode Ben discusses why we should ask the most important questions, learning through people’s stories & experiences, say yes until you can say no, take a chance & worry about the money later and why we should be willing to live uncomfortably.
Watch on YouTube or listen on Spotify, iTunes & more HERE.
Podcast Outline (Time Markers For Audio Version Only)
Ben wears many creative hats: creative director, photographer, videographer, editor, musician, podcaster, founder of Black With No Cream & more (4:50)
Waking up early / creating a schedule as a creative is difficult (8:35)
Grew up in Waterloo, Iowa till 3rd grade, then moved to Cedar Falls, Iowa (13:25)
A neighbor intros Ben into music. Joins a Jimi Hendrix cover band in grade school, becomes straight edge & is involved with hard core punk scene (16:20)
Played drums for his band Long Nights & toured the country in a 12 passenger van at the end of high school (18:20)
Father owned a camera. Ben would film his brother/sister/friends, concerts and anything that he could. He loved creating. (19:25)
Living dollar to dollar, off ramen noodles, to travel the world & gain experiences (26:25)
Attended Hawkeye Community College for 2 years, switched to the University of Northern Iowa where he majored in communications with a focus on Electronic Media (27:20)
Starting up his rap career with his friend Bye & Nate (Schooled). Opened up for Machine Gun Kelly, Timeflies, Hoodie Allen, J.Cole, Chance the Rapper, Waka Flocka & more (32:35)
Landed on the name of “BenRealVsWorld” from putting out his first song (45:50)
Wanting to move to California, Ben becomes a Google Photographer for businesses / shoots videos for real estates to save up money (52:30)
First trip to LA, gets into Travis Barkers studio. 2nd trip, shoots behind the scenes for a Chris Brown music video. Finally makes the move knowing this was the place with opportunities (55:30)
Co-editing Chris Brown’s documentary Welcome to My Life (61:30)
Works on Mary J. Blige documentary Strength of a Woman (65:10)
Directing EA Sports “Mean Guys” content with Lil Dicky, Gronk, Von Miller & Antonio Brown (68:25)
Meeting Childish Gambino (Donald Glover) at a bar in Hollywood (72:30)
Touring the US, Australia, Iceland, Europe with Schoolboy Q on the Blank Face Worldwide Tour (75:40)
Turns down Kendrick Lamar’s DAMN Tour to launch Black With No Cream, “an active online community curated to help creatives of any type to be better versions of themselves” (84:45)
Ask the most important questions (97:40)
Touring with Beyonce & Jay-Z for the On The Run 2 Tour (104:25)
Spending his 30th birthday in Cardiff, Wales of the United Kingdom (117:00)
Best advice to young creators of the world: whatever lesson you learn, give it back to someone else (121:00)
Be Willing To Live Uncomfortably (121:20)
Definition of success: providing value to others (124:30)
Ben’s purpose: to inspire others through his trials & tribulations (124:30)
Ask Bobbay 1 question: Moving from MA, what was the final motivator to get you to move to LA? (127:45)
Where to find Ben + Black With No Cream on social
Advice for finding a passion/purpose (135:05)
Conquer the space you’re in (Boston, New York, Iowa, LA, etc)
Do as much research as possible
Set a realistic timeline for yourself to accomplish your goals