Archive for January, 2015

Guest Blog: Why Editing Can Make or Break
Your Corporate Video

January 28th, 2015

On this site and in my books I’ve written on this subject but I thought it would be good for editors, producers, and other filmmakers to hear it from a company of professionals. I welcome guest bloggers with informative articles so here’s one submitted by One Inch Punch Pro, a Toronto based video production company that creates corporate videos, music videos, short films, reality television and more.

Why Editing and a Good Editor Matter
If you are tasked with creating a corporate video, you should be aware One Inch Punch Pro Video Production companythat the mere production won’t be the end of the road. There is another critical step that can make or break your video and that is the editing process. Some mistakenly brush off editing as a final touch up that doesn’t significantly alter the content of the production. The truth is that editing really does matter and it has the potential to make a video a hit or a dud.

Editing takes experience, technical knowledge and an eye for what looks, sounds and feels good. Lean on the expertise of a corporate video production company if you have any concerns over the editing process. The editor you hire will know all the ins and outs of the editing process including motion graphics, soundtracks, compression formats and more.

Plan the Editing Process: Getting Started
CalendarWhether or not you proceed with the help of a professional video editor, you should establish a plan for the editing of your footage. Take a few minutes to plan out how you’d like your final production to appear. Think about your target audience and your motivation to create the video in the first place. Then think about how you’d like to supplement your video content with things like animations, text and graphics. Re-watch your footage and take notes about what you’d like to improve and how you’ll go about doing it. Once you’ve established a vision, it is time to start editing.

Convey a Story
A story is the foundation of just about every video production. It is imperative that storyboardyou keep this in mind during the editing process. An editor has the power to make subtle changes that will shore up a story and connect events in a manner that engages the audience with the plot. The editor should be able to determine which parts of the script don’t carry over well onto the screen and then re-craft your video to fill in the gaps to help reinforce the plot.

Establish the Pace
The pace at which your video proceeds can make a big impact on the audience. Use the editing process to focus on the length of time that shots are held. Pay attention to how quickly you cut from scene to scene and how much time you let the camera hold certain images. This is a delicate balance that can be refined during the editing process. Be careful to not linger very long on one image or scene as it might serve to turn off the audience and cause their minds to wander. Over cutting or rapid cutting between shots can leave audiences confused and feeling as though they are watching a video that is rushed. Just because a video has a lot of cuts doesn’t mean it is good. Part of an editor’s job is to find the emotion in a scene, and sometimes holding on one shot is the best cut of all.

One key area where corporate editors exerts control is the music. While editors don’t always choose a video’s full score, they often have a say in the style of music, where it is implemented and for how long. Music really does make a monumental impact on the quality of the final production.

music scoreWhen you think of the typical corporate video’s soundtrack, you likely think of extremely cheesy music that sounds generic and flat out bad. It’s the type of music that doesn’t hold a viewer’s attention. This is exactly what you want to avoid and where the editing process can play a key role. When editing, ask yourself, “Does this music make the viewer want to stay tuned in?” The proper music has the potential to do even more than that. Ideally, the audio will actually pull viewers in and spur them to pay closer attention to your video’s story.

When editing, be sure to fit the music to distinct parts of the video as appropriate. For instance, if you have an intense segment that transitions into a hopeful scene and further evolves into a humorous ending, select different music for each part. The right music will establish a foundation for the actions, words and animations that occur on the screen.

Problem Solving: An Important Role of Editing
The editing process is in place to make a video production “work.” While the editing suitedirector/cameraperson invests plenty of time and effort filming all sorts of shots, the editor is there to piece it all together into a cohesive production. This is extremely challenging; many editors actually fail to solve all of the problems in an artful manner. Sometimes there is a missing segment of the script because actors weren’t available on certain days. Other times, there are problems with audio, images and animations. The editing process is key to ironing out these issues and building a final product that is greater than the sum of its parts. It’s a bit like piecing together a jigsaw puzzle.

Editing practices, Editor’s role, Technical & process

Beyond Gunsmoke: Practice Footage for Serious Editors

January 21st, 2015

Are you a beginning editor who desperately want some practice cutting footage Turf War framebefore striking out in the world? A film student or a college looking for footage beyond the tired all scenes (such as the scene from Gunsmoke which I and others taught over the decades)? Misha Tenenbaum, an editor whom I met a few years ago at a LAFPUG* meeting, has created Editstock for you. Editstock has carefully selected contemporary scenes from different genres – comedy, drama, commercial, music video – for you to practice with. The scenes – and there’s a short film too – are rated for beginner, intermediate, or expert. So whatever level you are, you can ratchet up your chops.
*Los Angeles Final Cut Pro Users Group

Expert Feedback
Creative feedback frameBut wait! It gets better. Re-cutting and learning how to take notes from clients, directors, and producers are important skills every professional editor must develop. Even if you’re working on your own projects you’ll want to get feedback from members of your target audience. Editstock also provides feedback on scenes from Misha and from no less that the likes of Norman Hollyn, a film editing veteran, author and the resident editing guru (an Associate Professor) at USC’s School of Cinematic Arts.

Building the Bomb frame frameEditstock believes “that any individual, regardless of their access to film school, should be able to get practice materials that are as ambitious as their own career dreams.” If you read this blog you know that I rarely go commercial or give endorsements but I recommend Misha and his team. We’ve all been there, waiting, hoping, anxious to get that first job or that next job and to be confident that we have the experience to handle it. Misha’s dreamed up an invaluable service to help beginners, intermediates, and those growing rusty waiting for that next job or wanting to retain their proficiency on an editing system they’ve just learned.

Let Joy know what you think of Editstock if you use it.

Editing practices, Editor’s role, Technical & process

100 years of Rotoscoping

January 16th, 2015

Confession: I’ve watched “Glee” since its first episode in May 2009. I like the message of the show – acceptance – seeing GBLT characters as well as hetero-and metrosexual characters, and its often non-formulaic plots, issues, and nuances not to mention its musical numbers. As a member of Academy of Television Arts and Sciences (the TV equivalent of the Motion Picture Academy where you get to vote on the Emmys) I enjoyed a Glee cast and crew night (Cory Monteith, RIP, was more good looking in person). However, last season (#5) I thought the show died with Monteith, unfortunately.

So I tuned in this week for the beginning of Season 6, the final season, as creator Ryan Murphy has announced, ready for the show to end. I was elated to see new directors and a reboot of the show. I loved this number on Episode 2, “Homecoming.”

It is a scene designed to be completed in post and a nice homage to a particular type of animation, still used and appreciated today. Can you guess the two filming techniques the filmmakers used?

Dissecting the Scene
If you guessed green screen and rotoscoping, you are correct. This energetic scene, uniquely combines green screen (the frame the characters hold and characters jump through) and rotoscoping (the B & W animated part of the scene).

Rotoscoping is where you draw an outline over live action to create animation. This technique was patented in 1915 by its creator, Max Fleischer who put the Bop in Betty and animated Superman, Popeye, Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer and more.

The more you know and understand about film techniques, the more creative you can be. Enjoy this succinct tutorial

on how you can rotoscope your own films today as well as brief history of Fleischer and his rotoscope machine.

Editing practices, History/research, Technical & process, Television, Visual FX editing