Friday, October 26, 2012

To Reel Feedback -- and Beyond!

If you're planning on attending this evening's Reel Feedback event, it's important to come prepared. Here's a quick check-list you can use in preparation for arrival.

Your Work

Although we talk about the event as a great place to meet people, it is first and foremost about the opportunity for really, really great critique. If you have one piece -- show it. If you have 50 pieces! -- well, you should pick your favorites and show them. Make sure you're not missing out on getting feedback straight from the proverbial horses' mouth, it is truly an invaluable opportunity to improve. All work should be brought on a flash drive or an external hard drive.

A Backup Plan

If you're not on the ball about this, Murphy will most certainly get the best of you. Bring a back up drive. Make sure you have a drive that works on both a PC and a MAC. Don't have a spare? Put it on your friend's! Don't let bad planning get in the way of getting this crit.

A Notebook and Writing Utensil(s)

Again, the feedback you will receive here is invaluable -- TAKE NOTES. You're doing yourself an injustice by not trying to soak up as much of the info as you can, and you'll be insulting your reviewer for not taking his feedback seriously. Even if you have some kind of amazing photographic memory, at least pretend to scribble on a page so you don't look arrogant. Additionally, like the back up drive, make sure you have more than one! Pen, pencil, don't want to be "that guy" that gets up there and looks unprepared. Plus, you only have about 10 minutes to begin with, don't waste two of them harassing prepared strangers for their stuff.

Don't Be Apologetic

When  you actually get up with your reviewer, it can be intimidating. Fight the urge to prelude your work with excuses or apologies or things you 'already know'. i.e. "When the guy takes that first step, you'll know the one, I know it's slipping already, so just ignore that..." No matter what you say before hand, your reviewer is still going to see the same thing. Besides, to someone who hasn't been staring at the piece for hours upon end, they might not even see whatever blip you're concerned about!

Be Confident

Again, it can be super intimidating sitting side by side with a professional as they judge your work, but don't worry! They are there for you. The entire platform of their company is designed to help students become better animators. Be proud of your work -- or at least be proud that you've got courage to sit down and have it lovingly ripped to shreds while you sit there and take it.

Do Some Research

It can be really beneficial to take an hour or so and look up the board of reviewers planning to attend. It doesn't take long, and it saves you from potentially embarrassing moments (of which I, personally have had too many). Find out who they are, where do they work, their official title, if you can! Save yourself from accidentally mistaking important people for homeless men (long story...).

Turn Your Cellphone Off

I know it's difficult to part with how popular you are, but at least turn that thing on silent -- and I'm not talking vibrate. SILENT. I don't think anything could be more disrespectful than your phone going off in the middle of a critique. Not only is it a rude interruption, but it says that you were never 100% invested, because someone more important might need to get a hold of you.

Contact Information

If you've got business cards -- bring 'em! If not -- make some! I'm not talking design some in 20 minutes and get them rush-printed from Copy's easy to make something in an hour or two that's faster and looks nicer than pieces of loose-leaf ripped out of your notebook. Get some card stock, printer paper and glue from Walgreens, and you can easily have some cute, double-sided cards. Did you take color and design? Print as neatly and nicely as you can on old swatches, and those are some pretty cool cards! Obviously it's not the most important thing about the evening, but it's certainly a nice thing to have.

Remember, you can use many of the points from same check list for every review you get. Whether it be in class or in a full-out interview, it's important to keep these things in mind

If you want to BART with the group, we will be meeting outside of 180 New Montgomery at 6:00 pm. We will be leaving by 6:05, so don't be late!

See you at Tea Time.

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