Saturday, April 21, 2007 Online!

After many delays and much cursing, my demo reel / portfolio site is chugging away in the cyber-ether.

Here’s a quick summary for anyone interested: A demo reel acts as a video resume for film/video peeps. Or, as it is in my case, film/video wannabes. Very often, when applying for video work, I have to submit a resume and a reel. The resume is the same as any regular resume. It details my work history, education, and skill set. However, unlike the resume, the reel is what has the power to actually get me the job. It has to be short, fast-paced, and catchy. The goal of a good reel is convince the person watching that A) I have talent and B) They have a strong desire to call me in for an interview.

In its present state, the reel is admittedly rough around the edges. It has flow problems, some of the clips can be improved or dropped altogether, and a few of the animations need to be reworked. I opted to put up an imperfect reel in lieu of spending the time retooling it to perfection. Reels are always a work-in-progress if the video person is working on new projects (I am). To me, an incomplete reel does more good than no reel at all.

In the not-too-distant future, I will have the full flash version of the site running. Non-flash adopters, and there are many and for good reason, will be directed to static HTML page. Those of the more artistic, flamboyant, and non-web standards compliant persuasion who have opted to install flash, will be directed to the flashy, noisy page. I want to make the content as accessible as possible, and I think the simplistic layout of the static page does the job nicely for the time being, but I am trying to persuade artsy people to hire me. I think the flash adds a nice flare to the content.

Special thanks on the static site goes to comrades Mark and Mandy for their help. Mark designed the sweet, swirling graphics that can found throughout the site. It’s funny, actually, I think this is first time he and I have tried to collaborate on a project that has been 100% successful. In the past, we’ve always had large bureaucracies (i.e. Mark threatening to sue to Public Museum for lack of payment) get in the way. This creative process has been a further testament to how liberating it is to the have tools of production in the hands of the proletariat. As Marx wrote, “The workers control the means of video production!”

Mandy spent a good chunk of her Saturday reworking the code to get the video embedded and the image maps to correctly align. She also helped with the formatting and aligning of the fields on the Contact form, as well as numerous code tweaks. This insane attention to detail is something I have never quite mastered, and I’m endlessly grateful that she has helped out. Thanks again!

As previously written, reels are works in progress. As I take on and complete future projects, I will be dropping out weaker segments of the reel and replacing them with newer, better content. I will also develop different reels that appeal to specific clients and audiences. For instance, I may have a reel that just highlights commercial content, while another focuses more directly on cinematography or motion animation.

To help with the evolution of this reel, I’m asking everyone to take a look at it and email me their comments and critiques. When critiquing, try to act the part of someone determining whether to interview me based on the strength of the reel. In other words, be as (constructively) critical as possible. I really need to know where the weak parts are so I can know what to modify and what to drop. Thanks!

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