Most job interviews require that you provide work samples, so you can show that you can do the tasks of the job. There are multiple ways for you to organize your work samples from building a personal website to cutting together a demo reel. In this video, author Richard Harrington discusses the importance of building a demo reel.
- Depending upon the job you're applying for, you'll likely need a demo reel to showcase to clients. The best demo reels not only show what you can do but also show a bit about your personality. Before you can build a demo reel, there's a few questions you need to ask yourself. First, is the work you're going to show the result of your creative efforts, or are they part of a lesson or a class or an online tutorial? You want to be careful not to pad your demo reel with a lot of tutorial content. There are a lot of learning sites, and this type of content is easily recognized by professionals in the industry. Next, ask yourself, are you proud of the work you've done? Every clip and every frame that you put on your demo reel must represent your best work. Last, do you have enough different short clips to equal at least 60 seconds of content? You want to have a nice, fast-paced demo reel. Now, if you can answer yes to all of these questions, then you're probably ready to build the demo reel. And if not, don't worry. It's better to take the time to build up a body of work that you're comfortable and proud to show to strangers, not just your friends and family. A successful demo reel doesn't need to show all of your work, but rather, should show highlights of your best work. Most editors say 90 seconds is the sweet spot, giving people enough samples of your work, but not boring them. I suggest that when you put the demo reel together, start with your name or company logo. Let them know right away whose work they're seeing. Then, throughout the reel, highlight the work you've done, particularly if it's for recognizable brands or projects. If relevant, give a little extra screen time to logos that people will recognize, and always include those on-screen credits of what you did and who the work was done for. If you are applying for certain jobs, before and after clips can be really useful, particularly if you're a colorist or an audio engineer. It's also good to show sequential shots if you're applying to be an editor, or to show something that builds, like a 3-D modeler or a composite, where you walk them through the different steps to the finished project. At the end, close it off with your contact information. This is the call to action. Include your full name, phone number, website, and professional email address. Your reel is really pretty worthless if people don't know how to get in touch with you about the job. Along the way, make sure you don't take credit for work you didn't do. Clearly label any clips in your reel, and identify the part of the work that you were involved in. Adding a simple overlay like Premiere Pro Editor, or 3-D modeler, or responsible for motion tracking, goes a long way towards clearing up any confusion and speaks volumes about your professional character.
- Networking for job interviews
- Interview types
- Crafting an effective resume
- Building a creative portfolio
- Researching the company and position
- Holding mock interviews
- Preparing physical materials