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Demo Reels


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#1 Thomas Tamura

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Posted 01 September 2006 - 08:56 PM

I'm looking for advice from the pros --

I'm currently adding new material to my "reel". I'd like to know what structural approach I should take (whole sequences or just shots)? Should I have a bunch of fancy editing effects? I'm looking to produce a reel that will get me jobs, so any advice or suggestions are welcome. As it stands now my reel is basically a montage of my best material -- it runs about 4 mins. When the DVD goes in it starts playing then goes to a menu with my info and some options.

Thanks, in advance, for your help
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#2 Michael Collier

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Posted 01 September 2006 - 09:07 PM

On mine I have a montage of shots, a title sequence and a story I broadcast (mostly to give a feel of my run&gun work)

I at least try and keep things grouped together. Like I have a section of just still lanscape work, a section of talking head interviews and a section for narative movie work. I also have a splash page as first run on the DVD with a film still (just because it looks better than the video, techincally)

As for editting, Try and keep it simple. Nobody cares if you can do 800 effects. Cut and disolve is all you need. make sure to use them right. Nothing is more anoying than a video that is all disolves or a video that has no real concept behind the disolves used.

One question you should answer before cutting: what jobs do you want? (I get mostly ENG, with some narrative work. when I move to california to focus on DoP, my reel will change greatly, ei the sweet handheld shot of the soldier hugging his mom as he returns from iraq will probably get the ax.)

if your just getting out of film school, why not just show your student film (assuming its short enough and good enough to hold interest) I am thinking of just putting my 16mm short as my demo reel when I make the move.
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#3 Thomas Tamura

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Posted 03 September 2006 - 08:08 PM

Guess you're my only reply -- I was under the impression that some peeps' might be doing something different. In any case what you described is exactly how mine are: shots grouped in categories, 3 different cuts to appeal to the different employers needs. I have seen some more original stuff online, but don't know how that would carry over to DVD --- for example I was considering using and entire scene from the last short I photographed, it's an action scene and I'm very proud of how it turned out. I guess I'm not changing as much as I wanted to, thanks
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