Take 5: FIDM Interviews Director Isaac Rentz

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Director Isaac Rentz talks music videos and film with FIDMDigitalArts.com.

Directing music videos for bands like Blink-182, Cage the Elephant, The All-American Rejects, Pistol Youth, and Manchester Orchestra, Isaac Rentz has built a reputation for his highly stylized, quirky approach to film-making. His videos have earned as much airplay as they have acclaim, and Rentz’s career has only just begun.

In this exclusive, one-on-one interview on FIDMDigitalArts.com‘s Take 5 web series, Rentz talks about his personal experience working with major record labels and musicians, the impact of social media on the music industry, and his advice for aspiring creative professionals.

“Anything you can do to stay curious and stay creative is not only going to make your work better, but it makes you happier as a person,” he says. “I think that a lot of times people get discouraged when [after] one or two years into what they’re doing, they’re not seeing enough of a forward movement. You hit sort of a wall at a certain point and you just have to keep on going.”

You’ve probably seen Rentz’s recent work without knowing it. Perhaps it’s Cage the Elephant‘s videos for Aberdeen (all in claymation), or the sentimental Shake Me Down video, both singles from the band’s second album, or Thank You, Happy Birthday, which debuted at number two on the Billboard 200 Chartthat have caught your attention.

Or maybe you’ve heard of Rentz as the music video director helping to redefine Blink-182‘s darker image in their After Midnight and Up All Night music videos, two singles from the band’s Neighborhoods album, the first that the trio has released since their 2006 hiatus.

On Take 5, Rentz talks about some of the intense situations he faces as a film maker. For example, when filming Up All Night, he felt added pressure to succeed after arriving to the set to find Kanye West and Jay-Z filming their music video with film director, Spike Jonz, just a few yards away. Obviously Rentz overcame any stress he may have been feeling since Blink-182 invited him back to direct After Midnight.

In an interview with Spinner, the bands states, “we trust Isaac, he did a great job.”

Other notable Rentz-directed videos include The All-American RejectsBookkeeper’s Daughter, Manchester Orchestra‘s Shake it Out, Pistol Youth‘s In My Eyes, Lissie‘s When I’m Alone, and a promo video for feature film Take Me Home Tonight featuring Topher Grace and Anna Faris.

Despite his success, Rentz says he has a lot to learn and is excited about the opportunities that lie ahead.

“I don’t feel like I’ve ‘made it,'” he says. “I hope that I’ll have the opportunity to always be inspired, and I’ll always be wanting to create new things.”

Check out more of Rentz’s work at isaacrentz.com.

Director Isaac Rentz on FIDMDigitalArts.com's Take 5 web video seriesBlink-182's Up All Night music video, directed by Isaac RentzExcerpts from music videos directed by Isaac Rentz

Questions/comments? Email the editor, Mani O’Brien at mo’brien@fidm.edu

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Author: Mani O'Brien

Mani O’Brien is the Online Editor for the FIDMDigitalArts Blog and the Social Media Marketing Manager for FIDM/Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising. She earned her bachelor of arts degree in print journalism from the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism & Mass Communications at Arizona State University in 2006, and Associate of Arts degree in Graphic Design (Professional Designation) at FIDM in 2010. When she’s not brainstorming social media marketing ideas or writing about the graphic design and digital media, she enjoys practicing yoga, reading magazines, and hanging out with friends and family in Los Angeles.

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