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Old January 4th, 2005, 09:48 AM   #1
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Would appreciate ANY feedback on my editing reel:

Hey guys - well, I have put together a "professional" reel as an editor. By professional, it contains segments from the work I've been a part of over the past year. Previously, I had one cut together that looked like a music video, but it wasn't helpful for those trying to get a sense of my work. So here's a reel laid out in the suggested manner for finding jobs etc. It's like 8 minutes long and I'd love to hear ANY feedback (if one of the sections stands out as sucking pretty bad, it looks good, correct order, etc. etc.) There are a few things to keep in mind after watching:

1. I've only been really editing a year and a half
2. The final clip blends frames between some cuts (see quick dissolve) due to mixing frame rates and compression etc. When it's on a hard copy DVD, it plays correctly. The long of it is, I somehow misplaced my original copy / the director is impossible to get in touch with so I had to use a web version but on DVD, it looks much better.
3. I have After Effects listed but don't really have any AE clips other than the opening. This is just to show I can use the program somewhat. Also, I have corporate vid listed even though I don't show a clip, just to say, hey I can easily do some corporate work as well.
4. The white blob is where my phone number is.
5. All the editing programs I can use and other info would be listed on a resume so I don't think there's any reason to show them on the reel.

Again, if you have something bad to say, that most likely will be the most helpful thing I can hear. Any comments / suggestions are welcome as always. Right click, save as. 60 meg Qt file.

http://www.DefiningFilms.com/BryanRoberts.mov
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Old January 4th, 2005, 12:22 PM   #2
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The intro started off nice, good energy, nice layout. I would substitute some video clips for the still images since you are a "video" editor. Then it comes to a SCREECHING halt! Some kind of short film begins. It lost me there. I'm looking at an "editors" reel, not a "filmakers" reel. There were some uncomfortable long black cuts, maybe they made sense in the movie but they didn't in the reel. Then, here's the kicker, the next section is the "Editor, Sound". The audio and video were about 2 seconds out of sync! I tried it again by just skipping to that section and it played correctly but it was worth a laugh the first time.

I would suggest first cutting the whole thing down to a couple of minutes tops! Try to keep the same tempo you set at the beginning because after the first 30 seconds I was excited to see more but the action stopped and you put me to sleep. Really if you gave the first 30 just a little more spice you could end it there and have more of an impact than this whole piece did.
If you want to show short films you have edited or worked on, do it on a separate reel and make it known it is a sample of short films. This way the viewer is in the right frame of mind.
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Old January 4th, 2005, 03:13 PM   #3
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Thanks for your response Rhett -

Well, if you noticed in my original post, this reel is supposed to contain actual clips, it's known as a professional reel as opposed to a quick cutting music video esque montage which I used to have. I've read on howto reel making sites and talked with some professionals who edit and they all say the reel should run between 5 and 10 minutes. As for the sound being out of sync, that's a problem with your computer not being able to play a QT file correctly I believe. I have a question then, was the pace from the intro to that particular scene a screeching halt or would any change from the intro to an actual scene feel slow? Finally, on my resume which would accompany this reel, it says which are short films, feature length, music video etc. which I figured would be suffice but I guess not for a web only post.

Well, thanks for your input!
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Old January 4th, 2005, 04:24 PM   #4
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I guess the "SCREECHING halt" would be less noticeable if you opened with one of the more vocal or active scenes. You start with some nice motion graphics, good music, lots of energy and the next scene is dead quiet with no dialog, music or action for another 45 seconds. I'd move something up front to hold attention and ease into the slower, quiet parts.

The audio problem was just a fluke on my machine that one time, I just thought it was funny at the time. If the attached resume points out the times and descriptions of what's on the tape it should be alright. I was just expecting something a little different based on the first 30 seconds.
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Old January 4th, 2005, 04:39 PM   #5
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Rhett - yeah, it might be a good idea to start with a higher energy section. I was trying to put in my stronger pieces first, which personally I like the first one the best, but coming at it from a pacing perspective, it would make more sense to have something else first. I'll see what some others users say but I bet that'll be a consensus. Thanks again for your feedback and I do see how it would be a little funny about the audio...
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Old January 6th, 2005, 05:11 PM   #6
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That bad? That good? Anyone?
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Old January 10th, 2005, 03:39 AM   #7
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Why did you include the car shot with the girl driving? It had no
editing! This happens a couple of times in the reel where you
include shots that are just one take. Or are you trying to show
editing in the reel itself? Not sure if that is what is commenly done.

I agree that the beginning is too slow. It's nice that you introduce
your titles of what you did, but as you say, this is an editing reel.
So just have one card with your name, contact details and that
you are an editor. I don't see how the other positions are
relevant (in this case).
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Old January 11th, 2005, 01:01 PM   #8
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Rob - thanks for your feedback. I'm not sure what you mean by having single shots of certain things. I know what you're talking about with the driving shot but other than that first segment (Brie first clip) , I have no idea what you mean. The one take of the girl driving went along with the story when she left the house with the two people passed out and then was driving to school, it was simply to show her reaction to their previous night. It seemed as though that shot stood out to you as very weak. Is this correct? A little more detail would be very much appreciated. What about the other pieces and the final music video?

I think you have a good point regarding not listing all the different jobs I did on each piece. I wasn't sure if I should have a reel to pitch myself as an overall filmmaker or just as an editor.
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Old January 14th, 2005, 01:54 PM   #9
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That's a nice real. I especially liked the editing in the movies, but the last videoclip is good as well.

Mabye you could add scenes with more action where continuity and shot flow is more important?

Anyway, nice work.
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Old January 14th, 2005, 05:57 PM   #10
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Can you post some links on where you found info on making an editors reel ?
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Old January 18th, 2005, 07:22 AM   #11
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Hmmm, how to explain better what I meant.

You seemed to have lots of shots side by side that had nothing
todo which each-other. So in other words they did not show the
cutting (where you are in one scene and you cut etc.). The only
cutting they showed was the cutting from clip to clip and the flow
that create IN YOUR REEL.

In other words, it didn't show your original cutting (for the movies
where those clips came from), but the cutting of the reel.

I hope this clarifies it a bit. Not sure I can explain it differently <g>
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Old January 18th, 2005, 07:43 AM   #12
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Rob - Ah, I understand now. Well, I think it's rather difficult to show a real sample of cutting from scene to scene in the same movie or piece without running over the suggested reel time of 7 - 8 minutes. If I dedicated the whole time to show several scenes from one piece, I think it'll end up feeling one sided and not give the feeling of encompassing the range of projects I'm pitching myself as being adept at, but I see your point.

John - I can't seem to find the link to the editing reel tips site. However regarding the suggested time, that comes from two different sources: 1) a senior editor at a large corporate production house here in Raleigh and 2) my Avid certified trainer I learned from at the Avid 101 and 110 class I took a few weeks back in Arlington, VA. They all said (among other things) that the reel should never ever be more than 10 minutes and should usually hit around the 7 - 8 minute mark.
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Old January 21st, 2005, 06:34 PM   #13
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Bryan, the start is hot, it's active, and it's high power. Then you sink into some short film you have worked on, and honestly, the first three edits in there are horrible jumps. I don't think you picked good material to show yourself in action.

You are better off picking more dramatic scenes with back and forth and whatnot.

Honestly, you lost me right there, and it made me thing that the start was a series of steps you learned in school, and not something all that original. You only have one chance to make a first impression - do you really think this does it justice?

Alex
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Old January 22nd, 2005, 03:59 PM   #14
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Alex - I see what you're saying. I have since changed the order, dropped one of the montage clips and put in a little section on After Effects so the reel is now only 5 minutes long and doesn't start with the weird Brie piece. It was intentionally edited in a very different style than a conventional piece and those jumps were intentional jump cuts which after some consideration on my part regarding target audience of the reel, it would be wise to leave that until after I establish my conventional editing skills in the earlier segments or rather not at all. Here's a link to my actual portfolio page:

http://www.definingfilms.com/BryanRoberts.htm

I appreciate your feedback and would really value a second look at the new version if you have the time. How did the other segments seem to you if you could pretend the first Brie section wasn't in there? I didn't understand the comment regarding steps learned in school - you mean the After Effects intro? The only formal training / classes I've had was Avid 101 and 110 in DC last week. Thanks again for your time-
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Old January 23rd, 2005, 09:58 PM   #15
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Okay, the new clip is a little more lively, but now I am truly confused. Why would you want to put "sound editing" as the first (ie: primary) part of your portfolio? Seems like a sort of secondary skill set, rather than the primary purpose of a video editing reel.

That's just me.

When any of those clips go more than about 45 seconds, you have lost people, I think.

Not sure, hopefully someone else can help out here.

Alex
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