compositing reel


hi guys
here is my new reel (compositing and Vfx)

c&c are welcome. let me know what you think



Hey Nico,

I’m going to pick apart your reel, don’t be offended as I’m only trying to help.
I’ve worked at ILM, Imageworks, Digital Domain, etc and taught classes at the college level for VFX and compositing.

The first shot of the car is unclear to me what you did other than comp in Shake 201 text.
If that’s all you did, get rid of this shot…especially since you want your best work on your reel to be reserved for the first shot.

The second shot of the spaceship needs more attention for this to be successful.
I always look for an understanding of photography when reviewing students and artists’ work. Pay attention to light falloff, how sharp the ship is in relation to the background, film grain, and bloom.

The next 2 or 3 shots need to be scaled so they are not stretched. Make every shot on your reel the same letterbox format. I would do this as a mask on top of the entire reel project once you sort out the stretching issue.

I really like the shot with the man and woman dancing. Its your best shot and should be first on your reel.

The two other shots that I don’t think are working are the monster in the car and the tree brach removal shot. I don’t think the monster shot is working well because of the darkening mattes on the top and bottom. Light would never behave that way. Think about the properties of the surface your trying to darken…look at the highlights, the mid-tones, and the shadows. Pick a range of values instead of an overall gain reduction.
The tree shot isn’t doing anything for you…dump it.

I really how short and sweet your reel is. Its not too short or too long but could use a bit of housecleaning to make it even tighter. I really like your choice of music. I also like the before and after presentation on some of your shots.

Keep it up!



many many thanks for yopur suggestion!
in the first shot (the car shot) I’ve put the shake written but also add the car nameplate. In the second shot I have to decrease the light effect over the starship. I’ll move the woman dancing shot as first on the reel!
do you think I can keep the rain and tornado shot or when I can I have to dump it?

another question …do you think that this reel can be used for a junior compositor position? it’s enough? or I have to put more things?

many thanks for your answer



the dancing shot is indeed the best one, while the moster one beeing the weakest, aside from the lightning inconsistencies it’s the animation and the posture that bug me, somehow it feels as if it doesn’t belong there.

The branch removal just screams gnomon tutorial so I’d remove that one, I really like the tornado and the rain one

For the car one, don’t know if it would be too cheesy in the eyes of a reviewer, but how about moving it to the end and changing the text with something more functional like your email?

arvedse :thumbsup:


I think the tornado and rain shot is ok…its not spectacular.
This is what I’d do, go out and film (either borrow or rent for the day a DV cam) and start shooting. Pick a subject like a busy intersection and shoot several different angles, with a fixed camera, with a camera move, etc. The idea is to give yourself a project to work on that demonstrates skill. For this exercise you could replace the sky with a still photograph, track it in, color correct it. You could use the same footage and create a day for night shot to show off your color skills. You could pick an object and paint it out or augment it in some way like a building.
The idea is to give yourself a challenge. You could even use a digital still camera and create something.

When I was just starting out in the industry, I never stopped creating my own projects.
Some sucked, some kicked ass…but after the first year as a professional artist, I had a good amount of work on my reel…and over the years its accumulated. I just finished co-directing a music video and supervising the VFX for my band…completely self-financed and produced. Never stop being an artist.

Employers like to see initiative and self-motivation. If you can prove yourself as a serious artist who gets the job done on time and with expert quality, then there’s nothing stopping you.


update: corrections, editing and new works



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