Ok here we go again then. You may remember I wrote a ‘filming the ultimate tricking showreel’ a while back, and threatened then to add to it… cause I left soooo much out.
Well here’s part 2.
Jump cuts are tight edits, long shots are the opposite. If you’re good, show that you’re good… ever noticed in youtube edits how a certain tricker might pull up his trouser legs a touch before launching into something? well, little details like that are so easy to edit away, but they often contribute to the characters style. Don’t be afraid to show the prep before the trick and the reaction afterwards
No slam section!
(slam = uncontrolled fall) It only shows you as bad. Period. Remember this isn’t reality, this is fiction we’re creating here. Its not you with your mates, its polished and painted and sparkling for the camera. Watching you pick yourself up off the ground time after time trying something gnarly is dull to watch in a full blown showreel.
Sweat a lot? have plenty of dry T’s at hand.. you’ll want to make your efforts look as effortless as possible… and that isn’t going to happen if you look like you’ve been trying to land something all day. Better still… take the Tshirt off altogether. Why? its not because we’re all gagging to look at bare chested men, but girls will love it, guys with fat guts will hate you, and other trickers will want to compare six-packs (they can’t help it, its the old ‘alpha male’ thing)… oh and sex sells obviously. Next!
Mates that say ‘yeah’ on film.
Not good. why? cause they see you flip all the time and they will only react that way to something that you’ve been trying for ages and/or may rarely or possibly never land so well ever again. And lets face it, if you pull something incredible, you want to give the impression like you do that sort of thing every day. A piece of cake, a walk in the park… not a one in a million, never to be repeated trick! Remember this isn’t a regular vid, this is a visual CV to blow people away!
Speak to the camera.
direct address as its known, is the easist way of connecting with your audience and gives a perfect chance for you to rattle off a few details about who you are. Don’t miss this opportunity. Personality is important. Note: if you’re a dumbass that can’t string a sentence together… say nothing.
Have a think about this. make something out of the ordinary happen, the bigger the better, not dangerous… but memorable… you need something that gets people wanting to rewind and rewatch… it could be staged, it doesn’t matter.. as long as its fitting and convincing, and of course presents you in a good light. Now you’re probably thinking, ‘what’s he on about? stage what?’… and all I’ll say is, think about it. If you can’t think of anything then you’ve nothing to worry about, but those that can… taa-daa! Instant uniqueness.
write a trick list so you don’t forget something. Its so easy to go film, return, re-watch and realise you’ve missed something out. People with a few tricks won’t have this problem … people with a ‘bag’ will need a prompt.
check this little gem out, if you have ever tried selecting your music ‘before’ you edit, you’ll have noticed its makes a sooo much better video… however what about if you select the music before you start filming? Think about it… if you can have the same music you plan to edit to, you can choreograph your movement to ‘beat match’ precisely… it’ll be 10 times easier on the editing and make for a stunning vid too… people will be scratching their heads wondering how you edited it so tight!
They rarely look good and often just make your footage look cheesey too. Most people without a ‘clue’ won’t know when they’ve gone too far with effects. Its too easy to get carried away with filters, effects and colours. Something tasteful at the beginning and end is fine, but leave it out of the centre main content. Your abilities should do the talking, effects just distract the eyeballs, and the bad taste police will come and arrest you. Keep it simple. Which leads me on to…
Don’t over edit.
Why? because if someone wants to enjoy what you’re worked so hard to achieve, then they’ll appreciate your style too… and style is lost by too many tight edits. Repetitive tight edits also makes peoples eyes bleed and scream until their teeth fall out.
Leave out the crap:
Its tempting to put everything you’ve ever done to show your ‘potential’.. but unless you’ve got the move dialled 100% leave it out. There’s nothing impressive about presenting a move that you clearly can’t land yet. People will see straight through it. Equally…
Get the best out of yourself:
Re flim if something isn’t your best. Don’t accept anything less than the best you’ve ever done. This is another good reason to film in the same clothing / location over a few days if possible. Remember, a showreel isn’t reality, its a visual CV of your achievements to date presented in the best format possible for people to watch. Take the process seriously and your video will be recieved seriously.
I’ve probably repeated myself a zillion times here, but meh. Don’t care, hopefully you’ve got some new ideas to try out from it.
If you feel I’ve sucked all the fun out of filming a showreel, then you’re probably right. However people create these things for 2 different reasons. firstly to document their skills, practice their editing, and show their mates (I regard those as ‘samplers’). And secondly to make the best video of yourself you’ve ever made, to impress people seriously and to possibly gain professional work / sponsorship etc from it. Depending on what you’ll want to achieve, will depend on your outlook on this article.
I bid you fair well for now… time for me to go get horizontal and watch some teevee.