Atomic Demo Reel 2013

AndrewAndrew Website User Posts: 379 Enthusiast
edited May 2013 in General
Hey guys. I've put together a demo reel with a collection of our work from the past couple of months, and I'd love to know your thoughts on it. Thanks!


Comments

  • ArkticArktic Website User Posts: 52
    Very nice.  Beautiful, even.
    But I'd personally like to hear some upsounds.  It reminds me of a perfume advert.  Lots of pretty imagery, but no... meaning?  A couple of well selected soundbites would give it a bit more context and story for me, personally.
    But it's phenomenally good looking.  Really good stuff :)
  • AculagAculag Website User Posts: 708 Just Starting Out
    edited May 2013
    I don't really think a demo reel needs to have a "story", but I do see what Arktic means, and I agree that there's not much depth there even though all of the shots are really beautiful.  I think the song choice has a lot to do with it; the song isn't bad, but it doesn't really inspire me personally, so I watched it once with the song, and once without it, and thought it worked better without it.  There are a lot of exciting shots in there, and the music doesn't really have any excitement to it at all.  I want to say, "Hell yes, Atomic!" at that logo reveal, but instead it's more like, "Alright, Atomic."
    But yeah, really great looking stuff there, as always.
  • DanielGWoodDanielGWood Moderator Website User, HitFilm Beta Tester Posts: 1,021 Just Starting Out
    Lovely shots there.
    The jetty shot at 0:32, how was that done? I don't recognise the police/explosion shots around 0:39, what are those from?
  • B3NB4ILB3NB4IL Website User Posts: 74
    After watching your demo reels improve throughout the years, I'm glad to see you've taken a step away from the rap soundtrack! The soundtrack for this one was a great choice, and the editing in time with the beats was done really well.
    I have to agree with the above comments though, as much as I don't think reels need a story, this did seem lacking in something content wise, but I can't quite put my finger on it. Otherwise I loved this, and you've really improved with your cinematography! Great work!
  • fredclipsfredclips Website User Posts: 228
    Nice. I liked the music choice as well.
  • AndrewAndrew Website User Posts: 379 Enthusiast
    edited May 2013
    Thanks for the kind comments, guys. The song is "Keep The Wolves Away" by Uncle Lucius, a folk/southern music band here in Texas. I felt the song was appropriately dark, somber, and reflective- without feeling super depressing or negative- similar to the Nick Cave track "O, Children", which I used in our last demo reel.
    Much (most) of the work in this demo reel is unreleased as-of-yet. The explosion shot, however, is from our Christmas film 'Tis The Season. The jetty shot is from a short, dialogue-less romance drama I've been tinkering with the past year.
    I initially had quote and soundbites from a few projects we've yet to release peppered throughout the opening 30 seconds of instrumentals, but it felt a little bit too pretentious and vacuous, so I left it at the shots. Sad to see it doesn't seem to have the emotional resonance or intrigue-factor I wanted it to.
    I work at demo reels all the time, mostly as exercise in editing or to take a break/find inspiration during editing larger projects. For a while I committed to the Imagine Dragons track "Radioactive" a couple months ago, which gave a totally different feel (and features slightly different work), which I thought would fit in nicely with the 'Atomic' theme being 'radioactive'- but then that song got so wildly popular, and I stayed away from it after that. This is what that looked like, though, for those interested:
    www.youtube.com/watch?v=0QfV08Y0-kg
  • AculagAculag Website User Posts: 708 Just Starting Out
    For a while I committed to the Imagine Dragons track "Radioactive" a couple months ago, which gave a totally different feel (and features slightly different work), which I thought would fit in nicely with the 'Atomic' theme being 'radioactive'- but then that song got so wildly popular, and I stayed away from it after that. This is what that looked like, though, for those interested:
    www.youtube.com/watch?v=0QfV08Y0-kg


    That's the stuff.  I've never heard that song before, but I think it fits the footage so much better. I can see why you'd want to skip it if it's become super popular though.

  • MatthiasClaflinMatthiasClaflin Website User Posts: 674 Just Starting Out
    Yeah I'm glad you didn't use Radioactive, it would have seemed cliche as it has become very popular recently.
  • BenBen Website User Posts: 51
    I think part of the 'story' or 'edge' people are referring to might've actually come from setting the older reels to rap music in the first place. Even watching one of our shorter (and weaker) reels from recent memory set to hip-hop, I'm liking the 'style' more in terms of fitting that je ne sais quoi everyone is mentioning.
    Just food for thought:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AIlliDEYal4
    A
    lso, guys, thanks for watching!
  • ArkticArktic Website User Posts: 52
    edited May 2013
    Nah, it's not the track, it's a lack of 'substance' beyond the visual.  Not necessarily a story or a narrative, but something that takes it beyond pretty pictures and gives it meaning.
    I've said it before and I'll say it again, a few choice soundbites just give it more depth and create a better connection with the audience.  Seeing people talking, but never hearing what they're saying... it just doesn't resonate at all in a showreel, for me at least.
  • BenBen Website User Posts: 51
    Hmm....interesting. But where are we seeing people talking? I can see that point, for sure -- do you think we indeed  need to see/hear voices, and these 'pensive looks' in this reel aren't enough?
    In our last demo reel, we tested only two lines of dialogue ("Do it!" being said waaaay toward the end, kinda strangely) and thought they worked, but couldn't find a way to work more words in naturally, so for this one we opted again for no dialogue; and therein no lips moving to distract the viewer.
  • B3NB4ILB3NB4IL Website User Posts: 74
    I think for this particular reel, there was a lot of actions being carried out, perhaps having the sound design just come though under the audio track would have given more to the reel? I re-watched it again and as much as i can clearly see this is a reel showcasing your cinematography strengths, and it does it's job in that field, I did also feel like I was watching one of those fan-made-montage videos that float around on YouTube.
    Although, like I said, it does it's job as a reel.
  • MatthiasClaflinMatthiasClaflin Website User Posts: 674 Just Starting Out
    I think I can agree that this reel is more of a cinematography reel than anything else. To me the only thing I'm seeing here is some very nice cinematography. I'm not sure if that is all you wanted to showcase, or if there was more to it than that, but for that, it did a nice job. But heck, what do I know?
  • AndrewAndrew Website User Posts: 379 Enthusiast
    edited May 2013
    Seeing people talking, but never hearing what they're saying... it just doesn't resonate at all in a showreel, for me at least.


    I totally agree with this, and hate when I see it in reels. It's precisely why no mouths move in mine. ;)
    The best example of what I was going for, which I consider overall as a set to be some of the most-inspired editing in the promo/reel realm consistently the past 5-10 years, is to look at an HBO Image reel. They put 1-2 out each year to show their offerings for the season, and they're always really moving in my opinion. Here's an example of what I mean, which I think hits a similar chord to ours above.
     

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2oys713KB68

  • SimonKJonesSimonKJones Moderator Website User, HitFilm Beta Tester Posts: 4,450 Enthusiast
    They put a mental amount of post work into that promo reel.
  • KahvehRobinettKahvehRobinett Website User Posts: 443
    Too bad Radioactive got so popular, It seemed to work great in that little test video I saw.
     
    Great reel! I'm not a big fan of the music, but it does seem to work ok for this video.
     
    What camera(s) was most of this stuff shot on. Those are some pretty good looking images!
     
    I forgot how much I liked Tis the Season. I might need to go watch that again.
     
    Great work :) I hope that someday I can shoot such amazing stuff.
     
    Kahveh,
  • AndrewAndrew Website User Posts: 379 Enthusiast
    The majority of the footage in the reel was shot on Canon 60Ds, though there are a handful of shots in there that were photographed with the Sony FS700 (all the black-and-white footage) and there are a handful of shots that were photographer with the Canon C100.
    As of current, we use the C100 for all of our general, regular-motion narrative stuff; then use the 60D for quick slow-mo stuff if needed (the C100 doesn't do over 30fps) and, with proper planning, bring a friend out for longer or more-complex super-slow-mo stuff with him and his FS700.
  • BenBen Website User Posts: 51
    A more astute response to 'all of our current stuff' would be that we've only used the C100 on one project, ever, and are hoping to move forward in using it on all our future stuff. Even so, I really enjoyed shooting on it for our 24 hour project this year and am looking forward to shooting more stuff with it.
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