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Old October 7th, 2008, 05:25 PM   #1
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Wokflow/Asset Management Questions

Video- and photography are a couple of my hobbies and I知 trying to get a handle on how to best setup my workflow.

By day I知 a software developer, so I知 used to working with Microsoft SharePoint for document collaboration and Team Foundation Server (TFS) or Visual Source Safe for managing source files. Both of these tools provide features to track versions/revisions. Unfortunately, neither of these tools to handle image or video metadata.

I致e looked at Adobe痴 Bridge/Version Cue product and was unimpressed mainly due to the slow performance of opening files. I am still not sure how to search across a group of directories using metadata.

How do folks handle storage of original images/video?
How do folks handle versioning of project files (like Premier Pro files) or intermediary files (PhotoShop, Illustrator)?
Do you copy the original images locally to the editing PC or access them across the network?

Thanks for the insights,
Roger Wilson
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Old October 8th, 2008, 08:56 AM   #2
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Roger,

I suspect that VERY few of us here come at video production from the kind of massively collaborative "work group" flow that you describe in your post.

The video production industry has changed tremendously over the past decade. And much of that change has revolved around PERSONAL production empowerment. In other words, the craft of making videos today is arguably becoming increasingly more and more a personal task as opposed to a collaborative one.

Yes, there are still lots of "large scale" productions where specialists gather together in a group work environment. But in my experience, most of those projects are actually groups working at the DIRECTION of a relatively small core team of "direction setters." That group needs to collaborate on message, scripting, and overall video structure and architecture, but everyone else simply implements the results of the core collaboration, rather than functionally driving it.

Today, the typical affordable Camcorder-desktop computer NLE toolset enables any individual who has learned the whole production process to implement that process without much outside help.

So my advice is not to concentrate too much on wide scale collaborative tools such as you describe.

Instead, concentrate on the core skills of personal videomaking. Videography (beyond the button pushing and more the aesthetic art of shot composition) , Lighting, Audio Recording, and, of course, Editing.

These are the skills that will help you create satisfying videos.

Concentrate on the workgroup stuff, and I suspect you'll find your career path pushed inexorably more towards systems administration for other videomakers and less toward actually making videos.

Oh, and to directly answer your questions, most of us have developed simple numeric "versioning" and folder systems that we use while our videos are being built. Beyond rudimentary binary friendly numbering skills (e.g. 001 is a better first number than simply 1) it's simply a matter of developing something you understand and that others can come to understand with only simple instruction should that be necessary. Occam is instructive here.

My 2 cents worth, anyway.
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Old October 9th, 2008, 08:40 AM   #3
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In the professional world Media metadata is generally handled by Avid, on Avid systems. Having a tight control over the metadata situation is Avids major hallmark in professional editing.

In a collaborative situation - Avid tends to be used for this very reason - but it's complexity and 'locked in nature' is part of what has lead to the single user revolution, as other software packages targeted other parts of the market where tight media management wasn't as vital as media flexibility and software accessibility.

Recently Apple have introduced Final Cut Server to help with Media Management - but I can't really comment on that as I have no experience for it.
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Old October 9th, 2008, 04:59 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill Davis View Post
The video production industry has changed tremendously over the past decade. And much of that change has revolved around PERSONAL production empowerment. In other words, the craft of making videos today is arguably becoming increasingly more and more a personal task as opposed to a collaborative one.
Bill, thanks for the great insight. I'm trying to figure out what my workflow for a project should look like before I start to make sure I'm not mssing any steps. Coming from a background of building software-based collaboration systems for various companies, you're right, I assumed that there would be more collaboration with video editing.

For my raw footage, I'm planning on using CineForm's Aspect HD codec and store the compressed footage on a RAID system for performance and to protect in the case of a drive failure. (My camera, Canon XH-A1, doesn't support capturing uncompressed video.)

Editing, effects, collor correcting, and exporting will be done using a combination of Adobe's Master Collection Suite (PremierPro, After Effects, PhotoShop, Illustrator, etc.). I'm still playing around trying to determine the best workflow through this phase of the project. Any book suggestions on a good video workflow would be greatly appreciated!

After you've completed projects, is it normal to delete the original video footage? If I decide to work on the project again, I'm assumng I can re-capture the footage and tell PremierPro where to find the files and everything will "line-up"?

As for finished projects, I plan to export to DVD and HDV tape.

Thanks again!
Roger
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