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Old July 16th, 2007, 11:39 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by Sean Mewshaw View Post
As the others have affirmed, vast patience, an affinity for detail (OCD, perhaps), and the lack of aversion to repetition are all essential qualities in a film/video editor. And just as the keystrokes for the editing functions you use most often will become second nature to your fingers, so the most useful organizational systems for your media will become apparent in time.

Everyone has technical cutting techniques of their own, as you say, but -- it seems to me the breaking of raw footage into "take" subclips is wasting you a little time. Personally, I leave strings of takes intact for each camera setup, then just play them back and set Markers at the heads of takes (hitting M as the clip plays), and then at any point in the clip where I like a line reading, or the camera move worked best, or the action timed out right, etc. So I end up with a clip for each set-up and a reveal-able list of "take markers" and "good stuff markers" strung beneath it. This method has the added benefit of allowing you to scrub through other takes on the way to extracting the one you want from the master clip, which is not such a bad thing -- undiscovered jewels have a tendency to wink at you from the river of footage.

Anyway, I'm sure you're well into the process by now, so I hope you're having fun!
I've actually taken a break this last week. I'm well over half way through organizing the footage though. I think i'm gonna seriously begin editing at the beginning of august, because that's after all the summer guests have left.

Thanks for the info. I still feel I need to be able to point and click at a single take, any take, at any moment, and have it start at the very first frame, and end on the exact frame that the camera quit rolling at.
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Old July 17th, 2007, 11:39 AM   #17
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Creating a separate bin for each shot is where I would draw the line - that's just overkill. You'll find when cutting together a scene, you'll want easy access to all the possible shots for that scene. having as many as 10 bins open at the same time will not facilitate easy access. Say you want to try different takes of the second shot in the scene, but that changes the relationship to the fourteenth shot, which then changes shot ten - you'll find yourself jumping back and forth between multiple bins. No good.

If you've used good naming conventions, which it looks like you have, you can have one bin per scene, then all the clips will sort by name into scene/shot/take order. Look at the fields available to you in the log & capture window. That will give you a good start as to proper naming. It's scene first, shot second, take third.

this is because you'll want to be sorting properly by clip name, whether you are in List+Thumbnails View, or Icon View. I have no problem with sorting into subclips, as then you're sure you have the complete heads & tails for each shot, camera start to camera stop.

Remember also that this is non-linear editing - you can easily duplicate/copy/paste bins, sequences and clips, while always keeping just your one original copy of the digitized footage. That frees you up to edit in any style you end up preferring. So experiment! Try editing multiple versions of a scene on one timeline. Heck, try editing the whole film on a single timeline! Or, you could edit each scene on it's own timeline, but copy & paste into a master timeline to check the overall flow. There's more than one way to skin a cat.

The important part about the organization step is for you to become intimately familiar with the footage, to take any notes that will help you jog your memory and make good decisions later, and to organize the footage JUST ENOUGH to allow easy and reliable access when you need it. Anything more than that is counter-productive.

So keep those shot-by shot bins if you must, but seriously, make a whole-scene bin with Icon or Thumbnails, and copy all those subclips into it. See if that doesn't make more sense to you.
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Old July 17th, 2007, 11:54 AM   #18
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I'm no editor but...

Lennon, it seems like you mentioned wanting easy access to multiple angles of a scene next to each other on the timeline. Have you considered using FCP's multiclip function? This would let you work with the scene as though it were a multicam shoot, letting you 'take' each angle as you see fit in real-time.

Just food for thought... it may not work for you, but it sounded like a viable option from your workflow description.

-gb-
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Old July 17th, 2007, 12:20 PM   #19
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Gregs concept is pretty good, assuming the timing on each scene is exactly the same.

AVID has a 'script' editing function. It allows you to paste your script into it, and the actual TAKES show up next to the text. You can click on each thumbnail, and have it play independantly. Just as you would mark a script while shooting it, the SCRIPT view marks the scripts and provides thumbnails for viewing in context with the script. (Now they have SCRIPT SYNCH in Media Composer, which SYNCHS the actual takes with the written words phonetically... pretty handy.)

As to how long it's 'supposed' to take... "How long is a piece of string?"

It's as long as it needs to be.

Every editor has their own workflow. IF it's working for you, then fine. In the film world, good takes (Circle takes) and bad takes are noted in the script and camera log, then when they go to the lab, only the 'selects' are printed. You can do the same thing in your log and capture, you don't HAVE to capture bad or busted takes. This used to be the standard procedure, as storage was at a premium... but with storage so cheap now that you can capture everything... you can find yourself getting bogged down in the minutae. Lost in the trees without seeing the forrest.

For an overview of how different professional editors approach their craft, I highly reccomend "TRANSITIONS: Voices on the Craft of Digital Editing" for a good read.
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Old July 17th, 2007, 05:09 PM   #20
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the list sorts alphabetically, looking at your organization, I can save you a level by putting all of the individual shots in the same folder rather than the last set of subfolders and naming them 01, 02...etc. putting the leading zero will make them sort correctly. It also makes them faster to access.
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Old July 17th, 2007, 05:24 PM   #21
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Every editor has their own workflow. IF it's working for you, then fine. In the film world, good takes (Circle takes) and bad takes are noted in the script and camera log, then when they go to the lab, only the 'selects' are printed. You can do the same thing in your log and capture, you don't HAVE to capture bad or busted takes. This used to be the standard procedure, as storage was at a premium... but with storage so cheap now that you can capture everything... you can find yourself getting bogged down in the minutae. Lost in the trees without seeing the forrest.
That would be fine if you agree with the director's idea of a good take. Perhaps you want to use a reaction shot from a "bad take" ?

I do agree with your broader point about keeping focus.
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Old July 17th, 2007, 07:56 PM   #22
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If there's something usefull in the shot, it wouldn't be marked as 'bad' in my experience.

Here's an interesting quote that I think speaks to the philosophy of editing.

"... after fifteen years working professionally as an editor, I have no solid consistent methodology. The wai I tackle a scene has to do with the nature, quality, and quantity of coverage.... The material will always dictate the approach and the edit. I'm surprised every time that I start a new film that the first several scenes are particularly challenging. The tricks and pace that I applied on past films don't necessarily apply. The material is trying to find its own style and my job is just to let it." - Peter Schink.
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Old July 17th, 2007, 08:42 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by Scott Anderson View Post
Creating a separate bin for each shot is where I would draw the line - that's just overkill. You'll find when cutting together a scene, you'll want easy access to all the possible shots for that scene. having as many as 10 bins open at the same time will not facilitate easy access.
I agree with Scott 100%. I didn't realize you were making new bins for every shot. I'd stick with grouping them by scene.
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Old July 18th, 2007, 02:03 AM   #24
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I'd have to rename the subclips to make them sort themselves properly under one folder. Even within each of the "shot" bins, it seems they aren't exactly in the order I want them. I guess I should've been putting numbers starting with double zeros at the beginning of EVERY clip name.

Well, thanks for the help! I'll begin editing the film once i've finished sorting the footage the way i've been doing it so far, and if I find it's inconvenient, i'll put all the subclips of each sequence into one large bin for each sequence.

Thanks!

Lennon
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Old July 18th, 2007, 09:29 AM   #25
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Good luck Lennon - you've created a fascinating and open thread here.
You can spend an age sorting out and learning the production crafts to then find yourself having to (if you're a one man band/small company I guess) look up the next mountain that is post production.
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Old July 18th, 2007, 10:27 AM   #26
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Good luck Lennon - you've created a fascinating and open thread here.
You can spend an age sorting out and learning the production crafts to then find yourself having to (if you're a one man band/small company I guess) look up the next mountain that is post production.
Thanks! Post Production definitely looks like it's going to be a much larger mountain than Pre-Production and Photography were. However I am very much looking forward to it, and I think it's gonna be alot of fun. Did I mention i'm writing the music to the film as well?

I've got ALOT of work ahead of me.. :)

Thanks.
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Old July 18th, 2007, 10:59 AM   #27
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Yes...I've clunked my brains over the filming side for some time now - at the very least I have a certain control over the basics now (thanks in a huge part to this very forum). Recently getting a little more proficient with the editing side of things now...and then I can also concentrate on the music (which is my 'core' so to speak).
Graphic deign and photography...I'll leave to others I can ill afford to spread myself ever more thinly.
It's tough, frustrating (getting work in...getting the work done correctly etc) but ultimately very rewarding.
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Old July 18th, 2007, 02:23 PM   #28
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Great thread...

Its very interesting to see everyone's workflow here on this thread, thank you all for posting. I do agree with Scott though, importing all clips, setting up thumbnails, and renaming certain thumbnails even with explanations, yes, no, or more descriptive is the fastest way I have used to edit large amouts of data. But there is no perfect system, whatever works to fit your needs, whether suiting time constraints or cohesiveness of editing.
Thanks again for a great thread, and God Bless.

Hidalgo
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