Wednesday, 19 February 2014

Time to build a Showreel.

 Its that time again when the familiar animation cogs start turning and the future starts to rear its beguiling head. It’s time to make a new showreel.

 For the last year I have spent my spare time fiddling with different animations just for fun with no pressure but as 2015 grows closer and I am ready to set out into the Australian animation market I want a brand spanking new showreel to take with me.

Showreels are a mysterious object. They have endless rules but also no rules at all. In preparation for my preparation (yes I definitely am an animator) I listened to countless podcasts and read endless articles on ‘showreel tips’.
There are reoccurring rules we all know:
  1. Don’t make it too long
  2. Show your best stuff first
  3. Aim it at the job you want to get

But I feel like we all listen to these podcasts trying to find that one mysterious ingredient we can all add to our reels to make it stand out from the crowd. The honest answer is, the only way you can stand out is to work your comically kitsch socks off.

So I have put together a rough years plan for getting back in the old showreel saddle.
I should also mention that my showreel method is based mainly on the way I was taught at uni. I had a fantastic bunch of tutors and the layout has always felt right but there are many ways to set out yours.

A Showreels Beginnings

Stage 1 content
(Stage 1 is what I would call mechanical animation. Runs, walks, jumps and animal movement are all counted in this category)                                                                                               Finish by early April

Stage 2 content
(Stage 2 is a shift in emotion. This is animation that shows a clear separation of two different emotions. A lot of this stuff will come from past work that I’ve done but I’d love to get a few new ones in there two. Think pantomime for this stage )                                                                                Finish by early July

Stage 3 content
(This is my favourite stage by far. This is dialogue and interaction. I love animating emotion and dialogue pieces so I will try to do a few new pieces in this stage because in a dream scenario this is the work I’d love to be doing                                                                                                     Finish by early September

Stage 4
(Work done in previous jobs and under strict deadlines)

Personal shorts and other skills
(This is a new area for my reel but I’ve spent the time out of the animation field to learn new skills so I can create my own shorts. Modelling, rigging, skinning and animation ideas will be demonstrated on the reel)
                                                                                                                    Finish by early October

The edit of the reel will take time because it really is one of the most important parts of a reel. I really enjoy this stage of the process but if you are new to editing there are lots of helpful tutorials on line that can help you.                   
                                                                                                                  Finish by early November

CV,Website, CD’s and breakdowns
Self promotional materials need to be ready to support the reel. When you are applying for jobs you will be expected to share all of these things so I need to have them as polished as the reel or there wasn’t much point spending a year working on it J
                                                                                                                   Finish by early December

I will be moving to Australia early April 2015 so this will give me a very large chunk of time to apply for all sorts of jobs. In a perfect dream scenario I’d love to do cartoonie animation but sinking my teeth into some realistic animal’s animation would also be a great way to spend a few months. Unfortunately my VISA for Australia only allows me to work for 6 months in one job so I may be the only animator ever to not complain about short free lance contracts.

Anyway that is my plan. I will be aiming to keep an online diary of events. I am currently doing lots of design work for people here in Korea which I will share with you soon. Other than that I’ll be keeping you up to date with my reel diary , pulling my hair out and drinking more coffee than Korea can hold (And that’s a lot of coffee…I’ve never seen so many coffee shops in my life).

Happy Feb everyone x

No comments: