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Your awesome new camera has an amazing video mode and you’ve been shooting footage for a while. But you want your finished video to look as good as your still photography does. You had to learn post-processing for still imaging, now you should take some time to learn how to edit videos.
Just like we had to adjust our thinking when we started shooting video after mastering our still photography, a similar change in how we approach editing has to happen. These video editing tips will help you get started or will help you improve your video editing skills.
Start Out with Good Footage
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You know you can save a still image by heavy post-processing, but you can take a good RAW image and enhance it to perfection. Same thing with video. For professional results, start out with the best video files you can produce is one of the most important tips for editing videos.
Besides your high quality cameras and lenses, there are some accessories regularly used by cinematographers and videographers that allow you to control your video production results while shooting.
Lighting is essential, so is using filters. In fact, many of the lighting, filter, and matte box techniques you already know were originally conceived by cinematographers. Interestingly, if you ever saw a feature film being made, the cinematographer was responsible for lighting effects and configuration. Someone else was employed as the camera operator.
We are usually handling all of our own production, lighting, camera operation, directing, and editing.
Shake-free camera support is also vital. In addition to a high quality video tripod, a gimbal for stabilizing handheld footage goes a long way to making your editing easier. You don’t have to break the bank to have the right tools, either. Companies like Ikan have a huge array of equipment at various price points.
Use an Advanced Video Editing Program
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I’m not trying to take your money, I promise! But as an established photographer and videographer, you know that in order to accomplish certain things, you need the right stuff. Pro and prosumer-level gear and software may cost a little more than entry-level, but it’s worth the added expense.
The basic video editing software that came with your camera is pretty good, but in order to get the most out of your high quality footage, a professional level program is required. On Adobe’s Creative Cloud platform, you can either purchase or subscribe to one of the ultimate editors for video, Adobe Premiere Pro.
As an optional video editing tip, I’ve found that the prosumer level of video editors are fantastic programs and often all we may need for our own video projects. Adobe Premiere Elements, Apple Final Cut Pro, and Vegas have advanced features and controls for creating pro quality videos.
Sound Is an Essential Video Element
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In addition to motion, audio is an essential element of videography. Our camera may have an okay built in mic, but a high-quality external microphone will let us take full advantage of our camera’s audio capabilities.
When you start editing audio, you’ll be glad you chose a fully capable video editing program. An important tip for editing video along with audio is to use secondary audio. This could be either a second live feed during recording or adding audio files during the editing process.
Be careful about balancing sound. Background noise can add realism, but it can also be distracting. Using all the features of your A/V editor gives you complete control over sound.
Audio editing is where you add in a musical score, too, if that’s part of your finished product goal. Many free sources of audio and music are available online, or you can purchase licensing permissions for specific needs. If you plan to put your finished video online, make sure you have properly licensed audio for anything that is not your own property.
Make Clean Transitions
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Nothing takes a viewer out of a video quicker than uncomfortable cuts or gimmicky editing. You want to have your own personal style, or brand, of videography. But some types of cuts or certain techniques can easily be overused.
This is true in the visual part of your video and in audio. Unless you’re trying to create a certain feel, smooth seems to work very well.
There are a wide variety of editing techniques to use. Play around with them, get used to them.This where we drop this video editing tip: watch other people’s videos!
Search online, perhaps on YouTube, or take a favorite film of yours, and watch it with the mindset of trying to figure how they made the scene effective. Before long, you’ll be annoying your friends and significant others by doing this all the time! Seriously, though, it’s a great way to open up your own creativity.
Take a Course
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In our online world, you can find out virtually anything with a focused search. Online video editing instruction can be found at low cost and even for free.
This is one of the best video editing tips I ever got. Try as we might, some things just elude our grasp without adequate assistance. Many introductory video classes are as short as 20 minutes, yet are packed full of helpful tips.
Longer courses on videography, lighting, editing, and storytelling are available from established professionals and from accredited universities. You could even get a degree in one or more aspects of filmmaking. How far you want to go is up to you.
Tell Your Story
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Film your video footage, edit it, add sound, make it interesting. Just tell your story. Your story may be guided by what a client needs at that time or it may be a personal project. The main thing is, by developing good editing skills, you are in complete control.