Posts Tagged ‘Oregon’

twilight1Everyone by now has heard of “Twilight.” You have either read it yourself (meaning you are probably a woman); you’ve heard about it from your girlfriend, wife, or daughter; or you’ve seen it publicized on TV or the Internet. I admit, I am a die hard “Twilight” fan. I have almost completed the entire saga; I only have 300 pages left of “Breaking Dawn,” which I’m absolutely loving so far!

Contrary to what some critics said about the movie, I thought it was very well done and stayed true to the book. I had very high expectations for passion1 the film and especially of Edward Cullen in particular. Sure the screen writing could have been a bit stronger, but overall, the on screen passion between Edward and Bella felt real, and the beautiful, Northwest filmed cinematography was spectacular. Even my boyfriend, who is a film major, thought the movie contained some stunning outdoor cinematic shots. My favorite scene of the movie is when Edward is climbing (or more like running) up a 200ft tree with Bella on his back. At one point the camera pulls from a close up to a panoramic view and reveals them standing near the top of the 200ft tree. It’s remarkable camera work that you can tell was not green screened!edwardbellatree

Since I am a PR major, my mind is often naturally thinking about public relations things, such as how I could creatively promote something, or how a company could promote something better. While I was in the theater thoroughly enjoying “Twilight,” I noticed some definite intended product placement. Can anyone guess what I’m referring to?

Well, I can tell you that it’s not Bella’s 1953 Chevy truck, or Edward’s Volvo S60 R, or even Rosalie’s BMW M3rainier506d1 convertible. I’m actually talking about Charlie’s and Billy’s drink of choice: Rainier Beer.

If you don’t know already, Rainier beer is a Northwest born and brewed beer. Stroh Brewing company has slacked local thirsts in the Georgetown area of Seattle for more than a century now! Once prohibition ended, the owners of the brewery installed a giant, red “R” neon sign (visible from I-5) that later became a local landmark. In the 80s, the climax of Rainier Beer’s popularity, the brand produced some of the region’s quirkiest and popular advertising, such as the running of the RainBeers (a herd of bottles with legs sticking out of them) and a motorcycle whose gears shifted to the whine of the product’s name. The brewery became the fourth largest in the world. In 1999, Rainier Beer was sold to Pabst brewing Company and soon after the famous “R” sign was taken down.beer091

I thought it was very clever and refreshing to see the movie use a locally brewed and nationally recognized old-time beer favorite. Charlie, the protagonist’s dad, referred to Rainier Beer as “Vitamin R.” There were at least three scenes that showed Charlie getting back from the store with two, 6-packs of Rainier “tall boys,” or slugging down a can of Rainier Beer while listening to Bella talk. There’s even one scene where Bella says something like, “Here dad, have another one of your favorites,” referring to the beer. I found the product placement to be very appropriate. Obviously Pabst Brewing Co. had to give Summit Entertainment permission to use the beer in the film. You would also have to assume that they probably agreed on some financial arrangements for the beer to be used, because I can assure you that Rainer Beer was not incorporated into the “Twilight” books, written by Stephenie Meyer.

It’s interesting because Pabst Brewing Co. has not really invested in advertising in over 20 years. It’s also interesting that it is hard to find Rainier Beer these days. Many stores and restaurants do not even stock it anymore. I worked at a restaurant this summer, and we sold Rainier Beer… let’s just say on more than one occasion I made guys’ days because of that.

I would categorize this type of PR promoting as “guerrilla PR.” I don’t think the intention of Pabst Brewing Co. or director, Catherine Hardwicke, was to revamp the brand name of Rainier Beer, as so much as to honor the Northwest region by using one of its own products as a prop.

I wonder how the product placement of Rainier Beer in “Twilight” will affect (or not affect) sales. What do you think?

Even at a vampire movie my mind is still thinking PR. Is that strange?

If you have a minute you should definitely check out this old-school Rainier Beer commercial. It’s pretty darn funny.


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picture-151Over the holiday weekend “Glory Rose the Gloaming” was given the gift of being featured in three more regional newspapers! It is amazing to watch the progress since Glory Rose’s release in September 2008. Since her initial media coverage on Nov. 16, Brandsma has continued to receive fan mail and inquires about the book through e-mails. She is hoping that people will continue to follow their interests and curiosities by buying the book and spreading the word.

The Gazette Times entertainment reporter, Theresa Hogue, wrote an excellent review of the book that portrayed Glory Rose and Brandsma’s writing in high regards. This is the first published book review of Glory Rose, and I’m happy to announce that it was a success! The article that ran in the Gazette Times, also ran in the Albany Democrat Herald on November 28, 2008.

Today, an article in the Bend Bulletin came out, which featured a more detailed look into Brandsma’s background and how she began writing Glory Rose.

It has been refreshing that all three articles have had different angles to them. Each reporter has personally told Bransma how much they enjoyed the book, which they have all clearly shown in their writing.

One PR concept that I have learned from doing this project is that reporters usually need (or highly prefer) an event or special occasion to tie in with a story, especially for something like promoting an author and book. It was much easier to pitch the story idea to reporters after Branssma landed a book signing or reading somewhere.

The next steps for Glory Rose are to continue to promote and market the book to even more areas of Oregon, including Salem and the Portland. I will keep you all posted on Glory’s Rose’s escalating journey to success!!

Since I am Brandma’s publicist, it would only be appropriate for me to remind you that Glory Rose is available on Amazon.com and Target.com for only $14.99. Books are great gifts to buy for friends and family. I’m sure many of you gave the “Twilight” books a chance, so why not give an Oregon author a chance?

Here are even more reasons why you should give a book as a gift:

  • “A Book. Longer-lasting than a fruitcake, cheaper than a flat screen, more fun than a partridge in a pear tree.”
  • “Books return dividends for life.”
  • “Why a book? Because a new tie never changed anyone’s life.”
  • “Affordable. Portable. Memorable. Books are a gift beyond measure.”
  • “Give love. Give time. Give joy. Give books.”
  • “A Book: The perfect gift for someone who has everything. The perfect gift for someone who has nothing.”

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Two of my close friends, Tyler Macklin and Michael Miller, recently finished creating a music video. Tyler directed, filmed and edited the piece, while Michael helped with creative input and lent his skills in visual effects. The video is far beyond amateur quality and deserves to be seen, so I figured I would take the initiative to try and help them promote it (since I am a public relations major and all).

I’m not just doing this because they’re my friends; I’m doing it because, like the book I’m promoting, I believe in their work.

Their most recent collaboration is this music video titled “These Few Percepts,” the song was written by Shawn Cook, and the lyrics are based on a soliloquy from Shakespeare’s play “Hamlet.” I was lucky enough to be a part of this project as well. I hope you enjoy it!

On Sunday Nov. 16, they entered this video into Diva Studio’s monthly Video Slam and won first place, which qualified them to be a part of the annual Video Slam Festival in February.

Now, here’s some background on these two incredibly talented filmmakers.

Tyler Macklin started working with video at an early when he began to film himself and friends

Tyler Macklin

Tyler Macklin

skateboarding. In 2004 Tyler scripted, filmed and edited a professional TV segment that aired on Fuel TVs “DC Shoe’s Project Detention.” That was really when he realized that he had an “eye” for video, and he wanted to pursue a career in film.

In his time at the UO he has worked on many class and freelance projects that have helped him improve his skills and get noticed. From 2005-2007, Tyler produced, filmed and edited weekly TV segments for “Duck U.” He also produced, filmed and edited safe-sex, anti-drug and drinking PSAs for the University of Oregon Health Center. Last winter, Tyler was featured on the front page of the Register Guard for his extensive online video work with YouTube, and during spring term he won second place for “Best Dramatic Short” at the 2008 UO Student Film Festival. Right now, Tyler is working on many class projects and as being a multimedia reporter for the Oregon Daily Emerald.

Michael Miller started doing video workwhen he was young as well. He used to make stop motion videos where he would try using practical effects, like making his brother look like a giant, with various camera angles. At the age of 12 he got a job as an acting extra on the movie “Drive Me Crazy” with Melissa Joan Hart. He soon realized that acting was not for him, and he dropped out of video making for a short period.

Michael Miller

Michael Miller

Michael started to get back into video about two and a half years ago when he made a Star Wars/Nintendo spoof that ended up winning a small award. The excitement from that was enough to launch him back into film making. Michael’s specialty and concentration with video is working with special effects and graphic design. He is currently working with Amsel Media, and Behind-the-Scenes Productions, from Eugene, Oregon.

Michael has been recognized for his work with visual effects by winning first place and the “People’s Choice Award” in the 2008 Open Lens Film Festival at Diva Studio in Eugene, Oregon. He also won an award for Technical Merit in the 2008 Salem Film festival. Like Tyler, Michael has an extensive YouTube account with an array of fun, creative videos.

If you ever have a minute and are browsing through videos on YouTube, you should check out both of their sites. I promise that you will not be disappointed; in fact, you will be highly entertained.

Since they both have so many videos, I would suggest checking out these ones in particular.

Tyler’s videos: “Green Eugene –Hippie Hunt,” “Safe Sex Condom PSA,” “Hike of Terror” and “Inner Child Revelation.”

Michael’s videos: “The Conflict Within,” “Escape from the Clones,” “Human Torch Effect,” and “Dos Lunas.”

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Do you enjoy well-written, action-packed, page-turning books? Well, then you may be interested in what I’m doing right now.

I’m currently working as a freelance PR intern with a Eugene author, Sharon M. Brandsma, who just finished writing, illustrating and publishing her first teens-to-tweens fantasy novel Glory Rose and the Gloaming. I’m more than excited to work on this project, because I love the book myself. It’s up the alley of Harry Potter, yet with a female main character. I’m dying to get the word out about this book!

If you want to hear more about Glory Rose and the Gloaming, read on!

Eugene author tells her tale of empowerment through her new teens fantasy novel

“No cricket chirps, no frog song, no calls of night birds…just a few, quiet, gauzy fingers of mist clutched at the silver moon. In the hushed forest, his Master Merlin lay paralyzed and dying…and the beautiful fairy Oriya spirited away by some unspeakable evil. The Gloaming had begun.”

Eugene author Sharon M. Brandsma recently released Glory Rose and the Gloaming, an inspiring and magic-filled teens-to-tweens fantasy novel.

Glory Rose and the Gloaming is book one of a trilogy. The first novel features a female heroine named Glory Rose who sets out on a bold and dangerous mission to save the Magic Realm from an evil sorcerer. Along the way, Glory Rose encounters an assortment of magical creatures including, witches, fairies, giants, trolls, leprechauns, dragons, and an alchemist.

“My book is an empowering story for children and adults. It’s about never doubting your own ability to achieve ‘magic’ in your own life,” said Brandsma.

The series came to Brandsma after she had an idea to write a book with a realistic young heroine, as opposed to the common “perfect” hero. She says that “Heroes have been overdone.” She wanted to write a book about a character who was not perfect at all, who was in fact, flawed, yet still achieved what she set out to do.

Brandsma has had several short stories published, and won a short story writing contest sponsored by Family Circle Magazine. She is also an award-winning artist, and did the cover and inside illustrations in this book.

The book was published by MoonFlower Press from Eugene, Ore., in conjunction with Studio Absolute, from Sisters, Oregon. Brandsma received no funds for advertising or publicity, so she has literally gone door-to-door to local bookstores, schools and libraries to market the book. Glory Rose and the Gloaming can be found in a few small, local bookstores, schools, and libraries in Cottage Grove, Florence, and Reedsport. The fantasy tale is also available on Amazon.com

The book has been well received by many readers of all ages. “It humbles me so much that people truly love the story,” said Brandsma, who is receiving rave reviews and fan mail from readers. In the near future, she hopes that more bookstores and libraries in the Eugene area will stock her book.

Brandsma has a book signing on Nov. 15, 2008 at the Thurston Book Exchange, and she has been invited to the Authors & Artists Fair put on by the Lane Library League on Dec. 6, 2008. You can visit her Web site at www.gloryrosefriends.com to learn more. You can also check out my social media release on Pitch Engine. picture-15

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