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Different philosophies: which one is better?

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Paulo Jan
Different philosophies: which one is better?
on Sep 26, 2009 at 6:37:26 pm

Hi all:

After watching quite a few demo reels, it looks to me like there are two basic philosophies:

-One is to keep each of the works you've done in separate "blocks". Use music and editing to keep the pace and have the piece flow, but the viewer can tell each work apart relatively easily. (Example: Sascha Verwiebe's reel at http://reels.creativecow.net/film/sascha-verwiebe-broadcast-design-motion-g... ).

-The other one is to "mix and match": just use cool footage from the stuff you've done and make a video with a nice rhythm. An example would be the our very own Shane Ross and his reel ( http://www.shanerosseditor.com/ ).

Now, which one do you guys consider the best? In my particular case, the problem is that I don't really have too many "stand-out" credits, the kind of works that I'd consider good enough to put in a reel (nor I have too many chances of doing works of that kind in my current company... which is why I'm updating my reel in the first place), so if I followed the first approach, my reel would be quite short. OTOH, sometimes I feel that the second approach is a bit... amateurish (as someone else posted in this forum a few days ago, "anyone can edit images following music beats").

Incidentally, my current (but outdated) reel, which follows approach #2, is at http://www.vimeo.com/3020976 . Since I first made it I've done a few more "worthwhile" works, so I was wondering how to add them to it.



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Kate Sheldon
Re: Different philosophies: which one is better?
on Sep 26, 2009 at 9:26:57 pm

This is something I've been wondering about too. I ended up organizing my reel by starting out with a short intro of shots from different projects cut together to music, and following with longer excerpts from several stronger projects.


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Stephen Smith
Re: Different philosophies: which one is better?
on Sep 28, 2009 at 2:51:50 pm

I think it depends on the message. For example, check out my Graphics Demo Reel. I'm show casing the ability to create graphics, so I want to show as much as I can in the shortest amount of time. If I was showcasing my ability to edit dialogue in movies the style I choose for the Graphics Demo Reel would not demonstrate that. Instead showing snippets from projects would. I hope this helps.




Stephen Smith
Utah Video Productions

Check out the Graphics Demo Reel I did.

Check out my Motion Tutorials


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Stephen Eilers
Re: Different philosophies: which one is better?
on Oct 3, 2009 at 11:47:20 pm

I've discussed this issue on another website. One person there had some good points about showing full scenes in the reel. He was basically saying that the people who hire directors and editors generally have to be fickle. If you don't show them exactly what they want, then they'll move on to the next reel. They want to see the scenes to judge a director's ability to get the performance and they want to judge how an editor has good rhythm and knows when to cut.

He thinks that the montage type of reel works well for visual effects, DPs, color grading, etc.

So... I'm going to redo my reel that I just posted here.


Stephen Eilers
Director - Editor - Visual Effects Artist
Please comment on my reel at http://forums.creativecow.net/readpost/173/857874


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Stephen Smith
Re: Different philosophies: which one is better?
on Oct 13, 2009 at 2:44:00 pm

By the way, on an unrelated note, but has to do with Montage reels. I think the power of a Montage reel is to show a vast amount of work that you have done. I've seen a bunch of montage reels that cycle through three projects a person has done over and over and over. I call that variation of the same thing. Meaning, I get it, I see that you can do that, show me something else. I find that a turn off. It may just be me.




Stephen Smith
Utah Video Productions

Check out the Graphics Demo Reel I did.

Check out my Motion Tutorials


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Wolfgang Niederhoffer
Re: Different philosophies: which one is better?
on Nov 16, 2009 at 11:06:45 pm

I find this to be a good discussion. I'm just going back into my works to find all the material for my edit demo reel. I'm really pondering the structure. I've done lots of documentary, some fiction, some corporate and some music video. And even some motion graphics to boot. How to make this all into a seamless piece?
I think doing a short (20-30 sec) intro with highlights from all of these works, then going into 10-15 second chunks will work best for me. I also want to make an interesting and engaging opening image. Its amazing how many different ways people make that first impression.
I'm torn because with documentary you might want to show some longer pieces, but with fiction and the rest it should be short. With doc should it be broll or a talking head?
I'd also like to stick with one piece of music throughout to keep the reel together, but if you start with something really fast paced and want to slow down for a doc portion that might get tricky. I'll post my reel here when I think I've found some answers. Then we'll see if I'm right or not.


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