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Old March 12th, 2009, 07:51 PM   #1
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2009 Demo Reel

Hey everyone, Here's my 2009 Demo Reel. Please take a look and let me know what you think. Comments and criticism welcome. I plan on making a shorter faster paced version shortly but this one had to be three minutes for class.

YouTube - Kevin Myhre's 2009 Demo Reel
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Old March 12th, 2009, 09:44 PM   #2
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There is some really nice stuff on there!

I was always told ONLY put your BEST stuff on the reel. There are some very nice shots in all the categories of production work you do, and a few that are more lackluster.

I'm guess I"m focusing more on the camerawork section than anything else. The shot with the racer(?) looks very high end, while the guy with the tripod behind him is a little meh. Ditto the flower girls (unless that was under motion graphics, then, my bad), and the blond woman standing against the window (which is also in the wrong aspect ratio, by the way). The ones with the really nice lighting, rich colors, etc., are the keepers. If you're going to use less spectacular footage, for whatever reason (you wanna show that you've done sports videography, for example) jazz it up with some color correction, vignette, etc. to make it pop more.

Other stuff looked real nice, though you might shorten up the beginning a little. IT sort of looks like you're diving right into the reel, when in fact you're just showing quick clips from each category, so maybe speed those up?

Here's my camera reel. I don't really have one for anything else; I just point people to the stuff on my site for proof of editing "skill" or whatever.

I"m sure it's not perfect, but it's gotten me work.


You'll notice toward the end a few shots from a corporate video I shot. Those are heavily color corrected for "sexiness", though I do like the compositions outside of the color correction. And that drill/press/machine thing was lit really oddly (by me, in a hurry!), which is why the background is black. But it makes the corporate stuff blend in better with the lit interviews and film clips.

Oh, another more psychological aspect, and I don't know how much this applies anymore, but the advice was given to me by a very talented DP, also friend and mentor, that a lot of times, when folks are looking at reels, they don't really "settle" for a while. Some guys walk into the room, pop in the DVD (if that's how they received it), push play, but they're still screwing around, getting coffee, joking, not really WATCHING for a few moments, maybe half a minute. Keeping that in mind, maybe don't put your absolute best stuff out there as soon as the thing starts playing, give it a little time to get warmed up so these jerks can PAY ATTENTION.

ON the other hand, that may be a load of crap, in which case, best stuff first. Grab 'em from the start, put the worst of the best toward the end.

MIght also want to make different reels if you're sending them out or submitting to people for jobs. . .if it's a fulltime production company job and they do everything, then keep it as is. If it's a wedding company that doesn't do anything else, don't put movies, interviews, etc. on there. JUST wedding stuff. Likewise, if it's a high end production company that wouldn't touch a wedding if they were hemorrhaging money and about to close, DON'T put that stuff on there. KInd of tailor the reel to the (potential) client. LIke a resume. If you just have something on your personal site/youtube/whatever, make it more all-encompassing like the one you have.
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Old March 12th, 2009, 10:08 PM   #3
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Thanks for your reply. I agree with you about taking out some of the shots the problem was this had to be three minutes for a class. I plan on taking most of the shots you mentioned out once the class is done. We were told to put our best stuff first to grab their attention but I can see your point too seeing I'm sure some pop it in and if what they see right away doesn't hook them they may take it out and others may not be paying attention right away and may miss the good stuff. Also this is more of a general reel and tailoring it to a specific job is a great idea.
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Old March 12th, 2009, 10:21 PM   #4
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Sounds like you have the right idea.
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Old March 12th, 2009, 11:34 PM   #5
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I have often heard that the commercial buyer/viewer is captured in the first 20 seconds or not.

If I was a buyer, JOSH's reel did that for me. Yours seemed a little long, slow and duplicative. I'd hire him over you, and not necessarily based on talent.

You have some great stuff. You need to hit me in the face with in, in under 2 minutes, maybe less. Best up front is my opinion - make it move and keep my attention.

That is my honest feedback.


ps. the credits stuff left me cold. Dump it.
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Old March 12th, 2009, 11:53 PM   #6
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Thanks, but what about my meth problem and the stealing?

Also, I forgot to tell you (the OP that is):

I haven't done in this in so long I nearly forgot, but in addition to the montage, on those rare RARE occasions I actually send a reel out (I mostly just refer people to the online links), I have a DVD with the montage of clips, but it also has selectable clips from interviews, movies, whatever, edited in their original form. Each clip is about 20 seconds or so, though if I included a movie scene they might be longer.

So an idea of how to structure a DVD to mail out might be a menu menu with each of the following selectable as a separate clip):

-the comprehensive clip montage
- a sample (or several) of a good looking interview (I think I actually ran three :20 samples together with fades in out and between)
-a scene, or part of one, from one of the films you've shot, or several scenes (if you do several, they should show different "looks". . .you don't want three scenes in the living room during the day. . .different locations, different lighting, that's the ticket)
-clips from a wedding you're proud of (this might apply if you made a "all in one" reel so you don't have to have 800 different reel configurations. They don't have to look at the wedding clips if that's not what you're applying for.

In place of the montage I mention above, you might also do a separate wedding clip montage, movie clip montage, interivew clip montage, or just an all in one montage. All up to you. YOu can make several different reels with montages and complete, edited (i.e. from the final product) clips, or one uber-reel with everything on it, but separated so that your potential client doesn't have to look at all the stuff you've done just to see if you're qualified to shoot a wedding/movie/interview etc.

Also, a little more general advice; before I decided to stop trying so hard or I might accidentally get a real job and get too busy to work on my own projects (those are my babies after all), I used to occasionally cold call production companies around town, ask if 'em if they were looking for camera guys, send out reels, etc. How much work did this get me? VERY LITTLE. Unfortunately, you just have to be in the right place at the right time for the most part to work steadily or anything approaching it. Some of that is just talking to the right person right when they're about to put together a team for this or that project, and part of it is luck, and part of it is the snowball effect of working for this guy, which introduces you to these five other crew members, one of whom needs a guy for something, you get called, that leads to something else, etc.

The reel is a part of it, sure, but a lot of it's just contacts and word of mouth. Can't tell you how many clowns I've met with, shown my reel/resume; they're impressed tell me that we'll be working together soon ("I'll call you Monday"), and never hear from again. But again, maybe that was the meth and stealing.
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