Art Tests in Demo Reels/Portfolio?

Hey y’all, so I was wondering what your opinions are for having completed art tests put into your demo reels and portfolios. In my opinion, I don’t feel right to claim it as personal work since it was a requirement to make an effect for a specific studio and not having as much iteration time. It just makes me torn since I believe I made some pretty effects (in my opinion) that I haven’t shown publicly. Just wanted to see what your 2 cents would be!

If it looks good, put it in! (and get permission) :grin:

Used an art test in my reel.

I don’t personally like when I see art tests in people’s portfolios/reels, I definitely judge their inclusion somewhat harshly and usually ask followup questions about it once we get to a phone interview stage, for a good explanation. It’s often surprising to me that people believe their best work was done while testing for a company, and often when I ask people about it they agree that it isn’t their best work either.

IMO portfolios are for personal original work, and shipped game content.

I’m sure some will disagree and that’s totally fine, it’s simply personal preference although it does color my opinion somewhat.

Yeah I think I’m going to keep my art tests out of my portfolios. It just didn’t feel like it deserved to be called something that was truly my work. At the end of the day, I could probably use my tests as reference of what to do right and wrong. I liked to ask for feedback on those tests and it really helps to progress further. Glad you guys put in the time to put in some of your input!

Another thing, be careful about using tutorials you’ve done in your demo reel. I sat in an interview where the applicants reel was most tutorials from Digital tutors and other vfx sites i had seen or done myself. Learning from a tutorial is fine, but make something different with the knowledge you learned :slight_smile:


I’ve actually done this when I was graduating and had to make my first demo reel. I was using imbuefx’s explosion tutorial as a template for a silo explosion haha but I eventually scrapped it. I do recognize others using tutorials as their own as well, since resources can be very recognizable. The good ol times!

So long as it is clearly labelled as such, and the artist has permission to use it, I am not opposed to seeing art tests in someone’s portfolio (although I would keep it separate from the show-reel).

It can help to show me someone is able to work to specific instructions/follow a clear brief. I mean, that’s the point of the test right? Albeit it was done for another company :slight_smile:

If in doubt? I suppose it would be worth letting a potential employer you have art test footage should they wish to see it; an optional extra as it were.