2011 Rough Cut Reviews Are Getting Underway!

Rough Cut Review season is getting underway for Adobe Youth Voices sites across North America.

Marisa Vitiello, media mentor for Adobe Youth Voices in the Seattle region, says the Rough Cut Review process is one of her favorite parts of the year. The events energize students, she says, getting them excited to be a part of a community of artists and encouraging them to “rally” to finish the year’s projects.

Each partner site in the region is invited to bring several students to a city wide Rough Cut, which is also attended by Adobe employee volunteers and professional media makers from the local community. Students bring the unfinished project they have been working on, and the Reviews allow students to screen their work for the group, receive feedback and incorporate the audience’s thoughts into the final edits of their work.

Prior to beginning the Review process, the group is given a demonstration for constructively critiquing the work. “It’s a giving thing,” says Marisa. “The Reviews are meant to be a generous process.”

The audience is asked to give feedback in the following format:

1-The audience is asked, “What did you notice? Give specifics…”
For example, an audience member could say something like, “I noticed you used a lot of the color red.”

2-The artist then has the opportunity to ask questions of the audience.
For example, “What did you think of the background music? Did it detract from your ability to hear the dialogue?”

3-The audience can then ask questions of the artist.
This is an opportunity for the audience to clarify aspects of the plot, direction and artistic choices that may have been ambiguous or confusing.

4-The audience then makes suggestions for “bringing the project to the next level.”
Adobe employees and local media mentors contribute professional advice, allowing students to see their work with an expanded set of possibilities.

After the Rough Cut Reviews, students have complete discretion over what feedback they wish to incorporate into their work.

In addition to receiving a set of recommendations, students receive something harder to quantify – a sense of themselves as serious artists with valuable ideas to share. “What is striking is that you will see 10 year olds critiquing the work of high schoolers, you’ll see students sitting side by side with professionals, each contributing equally to the discussion,” says Marisa. “It’s amazing to see students diving into the process of working together, explaining things together, teaching each other.”

The Rough Cut Review dates will vary from one location to the next to accommodate the different schedules for each site, with some locations holding their reviews this February and other locations waiting until March or April for the reviews. Check back for updates from our partner sites as the Rough Cuts roll out throughout the spring!