Thanks for your feedback! It's good to know which parts made positive and negative impressions. I'll say, for the budget we were working with, we are pleased with the cg vine and fly trap footage. This was my first experience directing a video that mixed live action with cg, so I appreciate the feedback in that regard.
In reference to not seeing the band enough, that is certainly a valid creative decision. We may do another video for this band that is more performance-based. We pitched Guides as a heavily narrative video. I really appreciate the thought and insight of your critique. Thanks again!
Personal taste, I wasn't interested in the 1st or final third of this video - from a narrative perspective. The story chunk in the middle was interesting, showing the ice cream guy trying to profit off of the weird wood block girl. That vaudeville angle for the modern beggar was legitimately funny and kind of clever.
About the flat color grade (or, lack of?). Not the first to say this, but it's obvious. I don't know if it was intentional or just a lack of effort, but whatever the intention just know that by choosing an incredibly flat look, you're not making your video stand out from a mass of similarly low-budget videos that choose an ungraded look. It's beginning to look like a hallmark of amateur editing even if your choice was motivated. That's just the perception it will create among industry professionals, right or wrong.
Who are the guys with the bat? It doesn't make sense to me and is really jarring. On top of that, there's an odd cut at 3:20 from blurry guys with bat to blurry guys with bat. It looks like a jump cut and the clip that follows doesn't do anything to advance the story at all. I would work on focusing next time.
Overall, for a no-budget effort, it's an entertaining piece with some room for improvement.
I've directed and edited a couple music videos this past year, and here's what I would say for a directorial debut:
1) Get everyone involved but not "too" involved. When your crew feels like their role is important, that it plays a critical role in the creative expression of the project, that creates important buy-in and enthusiasm, and boosts morale. I've found that for low-budget gigs, there is a very fine line in directing between getting everybody to feel that scrappy/indie vibe, and losing control of hierarchy on set. Direct, candid communication is key. Explain to your crew members (succinctly) how a seemingly minor role will contribute to the overall vision and success of the project.
2) Art direction and story concept are more important than the equipment you want to rent. You may be tempted to splurge on production equipment. I'd suggest this flow chart for order of compensation: pay crew --> pay for craft services --> pay for coffee at concept meetings until the concept is clear --> pay for art direction/set dressing --> pay for rentals/purchases --> pay for everything else... For my first music video, I bought 60 mason jars and painted the inside of them a semi-translucent ghostly blue, put little LED lights in the lids, and strung them up with twine in an apartment loft. It was one of the cheapest expenses for the shoot, but it's the first thing people talked about after watching the video. You can dress a set for cheap a lot easier than you can pay for nice equipment. And it will create a longer lasting impact.
3) To avoid sounding overly critical, offer up something positive before critiquing a crew member's actions. You don't need to make it sappy, just be honest. There's probably something he/she is doing well - find it in your heart to express that good with the bad. However, if a crew member is totally out of line, pull them aside and discuss privately. Don't ever make a scene or call attention to a situation; it's unprofessional and it affects morale negatively. The professionalism of your production will be defined by the way you conduct yourself as a director, not by the scope of the production.
4) Get everyone to sign liability release forms.
Mad Anthony - Haunt Mehttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hYwULoLUiF0
Infinity Spree - Guideshttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qlhly3zqP28
We as filmmakers need to hold ourselves to a higher standard. Just because creative work can be emotionally rewarding doesn't mean we have to sacrifice financial compensation. I agree with Johnny - if it were a burgeoning band with a young filmmaker looking to do something symbiotic for no pay, that would make more sense. But Sigur Ros can afford to pay for a music video, so they should do it - up front.
Couldn't agree more. Aside from the issue of personal connections, I'm scratching my head wondering how $1000 was enough to even cover paying the crew. The most important part of producing a truly professional video is paying your crew. I don't want to get into the math for this particular video, but the subject probably deserves attention in the article.