Demo Reel: A Few Simple Tips

demo reels animation

A few tips on how to show yourself off…

If you don’t know what a demo reel is, you might be studying in the wrong field. The demo reel is your selling point in the industry. It is a showcase of your skills, experience and expertise in order to entice a potential employer. This means it has to speak for itself. But what makes a good demo reel and how can you make it different from the rest? This article will outline a few tips that can aid in creating a good demo reel.

1. KEEP IT SHORT
People generally have a short attention span. If you want to impress a future employer, keeping your demo reel short and concise might possibly help land you that dream job. Aim for no longer than 5 minutes to show off your stuff; even 30 seconds could be enough. Sounds impossible? Pay attention to your TV ads and you will find that they only have a few seconds to sell their product. Basically, you can leave them wanting more in the end so keep it short!

demo-reel

2. PUT YOUR BEST WORK FIRST
You know the saying “save the best for last”? Well this doesn’t apply for demo reels. Especially if you are applying for a big company who receives hundreds of applications every week. It is good to always put the best work first as sometimes employers do not watch the whole demo reel. Focus on your strengths with your skills to impress your future employer.

3. DON’T INCLUDE UNAPPROVED WORK OR WORK THAT ISN’T YOURS
Make sure that the work you add in the demo reel is not under a contract condition as you may face some legalities for breaching contract. If there is any work included that was collaborated with other people, make sure you note down what aspect was made by you. You don’t want the employer getting the wrong impression regarding your skill set as you might end up with work that you won’t have any idea how to do!

4. LEAVE THE MUSIC OUT
Nobody really listens to the soundtrack of a visual demo reel. If your artistic skills are strong enough, the employer should be impressed with your work even without a background music. Music tends to be subjective as well to the taste of the person so to be on the safe side, leave it out.

5. ASK FOR FEEDBACK
Ask your friends or family for feedback. There is always room for improvement and it is always good to have a pair of fresh eyes.

Keep these five tips in mind when creating a demo reel and you might just land your dream job! Remember that you are trying to sell your skill sets to the employer and that there is always competitors out there trying to do the exact same thing as you.

REFERENCES:
Creating a Demo Reel (2015). Pixar. http://www.pixar.com/careers/Creating-a-Demo-Reel [Accessed: 23.01.2015]

How to Make a Demo Reel (2015). Mediacollege.com. http://www.mediacollege.com/employment/demo-reel.html [Accessed on: 23.01.2015]

Tips for Creating a Demo Reel (2015). Digital-tutors.com. http://www.digitaltutors.com/11/demoreel.php [Accessed on: 23.01.2015]