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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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barackLast night Americans witnessed a historical and landmark election come to a close with Barack Obama as the clear winner of who America trusts to be our next leader of change. I am very pleased and relieved with our decision.

After watching a segment on CNN talking about Obama’s campaign as being the best political campaign in United States history, it got me thinking about how and why it was so successful. The first thought that popped into my head was how they used social media as an outlet to reach the American people. I honestly don’t think he would have won (or at least by such a landslide) if it weren’t for his strategic use of social media, marketing, public relations and unprecedented grassroots donating strategies.

On Obama’s very interactive Web site you can find out just about anything you want or need to know about him…and you don’t have to dig for it! He has it clearly laid out for you to seek. Obama used his blog as a powerful tool that allowed him and his campaign team to directly communicate and connect with Americans. He also created BarackTV where you could watch any rally or event that he spoke at in the last two years. I believe both of these social media tools were vital to his campaign, because American’s needed to feel like their voices were being heard during these hard economic times.

Obama’s dominating presence on the Internet was phenomenal. I mean you could hardly find a Web site that didn’t have a plug for Obama somewhere on it. Whether you were browsing on Facebook, Myspace, Twitter, Perezhilton, The New York Times or You Tube, Obama was there. His campaign did a great job of never making it seem like you were donating just to donate. In some cases you got something in return like a t-shirt, button, sticker or sign, in other cases, the campaign promised to have someone else double your donation. When you have incentives like that why wouldn’t someone donate $12 or $20 dollars and get a t-shirt of the candidate you support? I know that his presence on Facebook was the reason why I donated $12 to get an Obama shirt. What a way to reach young people!

If I were not a PR major I probably would not be sitting around thinking about the ways in which Obama reached the American people through social media, but I am, so I did. As if everyone I come across in my PR world is not already telling me how wonderful and important social media is, I now have a real life example that I can look back to, relate with and remember just how influential social media can be.

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