New Talent: Charlie Reddie
Charlie Reddie has been in and around London’s post production community for a few years now, but after a stint in VFX as an assistant Flame operator at Rushes, he decided that editing was more his game. And so he joined the team at Stitch, starting again from scratch as an assistant editor. It’s a decision that has paid off, as, after six months of editing on his own projects, Charlie has just stepped up as a full-time editor with Stitch. LBB’s Addison Capper chatted with him to see what’s in the works for 2017 and why, despite a fear of heights, he’d be a mountain climber were he not in advertising. And while you're here, be sure to check out his reel.
LBB> You’ve just been promoted from assistant to editor – congrats! How are you feeling about your new role?
CR> I've spent the last six months to a year regularly editing on my own projects, so I feel totally prepared to be stepping up to editing full time. It’s really exciting. I'm just looking forward to as many weird, wonderful and interesting projects as possible. Roll on 2017!
LBB> How did you end up as an editor? Where did you hone your craft? Was it what you always wanted to do?
CR> I took an unusual route to editing. I started by lucking out and working my way into the edit suite for a low budget horror film called Creep – my job was mainly keeping the caffeine tap flowing in the direction of the editor and assistant. I tried to soak up as much as possible and definitely learned a lot, some of which I still stick to now. Whilst I was there I got really interested in the online, VFX and compositing side of things so then joined Rushes as a flame assistant. I ended up compositing in flame for commercials but after a few years of doing this I realised that editing was where I wanted to be and I got a job Stitch as an assistant editor.
LBB> Tell us a bit about your role as an assistant editor - how long were you doing it for? What tips would you give someone just setting out as an assistant?
CR> I was an assistant for both editing and online for around five years in total. My one bit of advice for both would be to surround yourself with people smarter than you are and try to learn as much as possible from them. As an assistant I have worked with a lot of different editors and much of the way I work now is down to what I've picked up and learned from them. Every project is a learning experience so you can continue to grow and develop as an editor, and get better because of it.
LBB> What drew you to commercial editing, as opposed to film or television?
CR> I really enjoy the challenge of trying to tell a story in a limited time and making things that draw you in even if it’s only for short time. I also like the variation you get with short form projects – one minute you could be working on a documentary, the next a commercial or a promo, all of which will have varied styles and present different challenges. This makes my work constantly interesting and exciting.
LBB> As an editor, do you have a specific method of working or does it differ dependent on the job? And if there is a way of working that you stick to, what does it involve?
CR> I think there are certain things, like selecting, that are the same no matter what the job, but once you start editing the method can be wildly different depending on the project. I wouldn't say I have a specific method, it's more about being able to work out what the director’s vision is for the project and together coming up with a method that crafts that.
LBB> A big chunk of your role is the communication of a story efficiently and clearly – what are the most challenging aspects about getting to grips with the nuts and bolts of storytelling?
CR> I think with storytelling it’s about working out the core of the story first – the parts of the story that that piece can't live without. Once you've got those you can create something more complex and interesting, whilst always questioning that you haven't lost the moments that create the core story.
LBB> What do you enjoy about piecing those cogs together?
CR> I really enjoy seeing the project come together and the impact it has on others when you present it for the first time. I also really like working through problems and finding creative solutions to solve them.
LBB> Which projects that you’ve been involved in are you most proud of and why?
CR> There are three projects that I’m particularly proud of and for very different reasons. The first is a video for Nothing But Thieves called ‘Last Orders’ with Lewis Cater. This was the first promo I cut with a signed artist and label but I did it whilst working doing online stuff. This job was definitely one of the key things that made me make the switch to editing.
The second is a film for Nowness called ‘Crazy Legs SK8TE’ with Sean Frank. I'm into the fact that it was real people, passionate about skating. You can see how they're all totally in the zone and live for skating indoors and around in circles.
The third is a short documentary about the Notting Hill Carnival with Charlie Robins. This hasn't been released yet but it has been great to work on and a really interesting subject to learn a lot about.
LBB> Where did you grow up and what kind of kid were you?
CR> I grew up in and around London. For some reason my dad didn't like staying in one place for too long so we'd move out of London then he'd get bored of the commute so we'd move back in. I’ve got pretty good knowledge of the London suburbs as a result. As a kid, I’d say I was pretty inquisitive – everything was interesting to me, apart from the things that my schools said were meant to be!
LBB> If you weren't in advertising, what would you be doing?
CR> I'd be a mountain climber even though I'm massively afraid of heights. I like the idea of trekking up Everest one week and then to another mountain (I'm obviously really into this) the next. Maybe it’s the idea of being bearded, grizzled and outdoorsy after spending a lot of my time indoors, in dark rooms with far too much bum fluff on my face after working too much to have a shave.
LBB> Outside of work, what do you like to get up to?
CR> You'll mostly find me in a pub watching any and all sporting events in between regular trips to and from the bar. That, or attempting / training for some stupid sporting challenge for no other reason than I must be missing the part of my brain that should say no. The last one was a cycle from London to Edinburgh and now I'm working up to some stupid sort of ultra marathon. A friend asked if I wanted to go and guess what I said...