Editing videos can be extremely rewarding, whether you’re a novice YouTuber or you’re doing it for work. Editing is essential in the filmmaking process. The video editor is a crucial player who can contribute as much to the video’s rhythm and timing as much as the director. Just as with any craft that requires creativity, there are rules to follow and rules to break. This article will provide you with some useful and practical ways to grow your creativity and make inspiring video ads.
Whether you’re creating a product commercial, a web series, or a full-length documentary, these video editing tips will help you get started right, prepare and get familiar with the tools you need, and do everything to create an end product that you can truly be proud of, regardless of your skill level.
1. Set Realistic Expectations
Before you even begin making a video, it’s important to have a clear idea of what tools you have available and what you’re trying to achieve (your final product). Take for example, if you want to create a video in 4K, you should consider that this might be at the expense of frame rate. The resolution will greatly affect the performance of your editing software, and could be much more frustrating if you don’t have the computer to match your vision.
If you’re making a video for work, many clients won’t be satisfied if your end product is below 1080p, so you’ll want to avoid lower resolution footage in this case. Compare the strength of your computer hardware and software and set realistic expectations before you start to record. You will also want to use a free video maker online that’s professional-grade, yet doesn’t put massive demands on your computer. You can find many options available for a video maker online.
2. Keep it Organised
If you want to grow your creativity and also keep your sanity, this little step goes a long way. If you’re piecing together a video made of a lot of different little clips, sifting through files with random names will definitely stress you out early on. Before you even begin on the video editing process, you’ll want to go through all your recorded footage and label all files properly (the scene and the take), place them in separate folders according to theme, and organise the folders in a way you can find them easily as you need them.
It would also help if you make folders for your images, sounds, and music. It might go against your creative instincts, but we advise that you don’t send any files to the trash. You never know when you’ll need those takes that you didn’t like initially. Once you’ve organised all your files properly, you can start editing your footage with a high-quality video maker online.
3. The 321 Rule
On the same note, in whichever medium, we’ve probably all felt the frustration of forgetting to hit ‘save’ and losing a ton of work. Saving your files often is a given, but what happens when your hard drive fails and your raw footage gets lost permanently? That’s likely much more disastrous! That’s why it’s important to be creative in backing up your files.
Backup experts swear by what they call the ‘321’ rule – three copies, in at least two different places, and one is off-site. You’ll want to make sure that your raw footage is on at least two physical drives, and you regularly send a copy to your online backup location such as a cloud drive.
4. Try New Ideas
Digital technology has made video editing a whole lot easier comparing it to old-school methods. This means that no matter how crazy you get with editing your footage, you can still save a copy of the original. You can import your footage into a video maker online and edit your cuts according to your liking without losing a thing.
If you’re not satisfied with a transition, use your creativity to play with it until it feels right. There’s a reason why good editors are highly prized. They are considered as artists. The bottom line is there’s no clear-cut formula which makes a good video. It all comes down to feel.
5. Colour Makes the Difference
It’s undeniable that it can get a bit jarring when a viewer notices clear differences in colour. As an editor, your job goes beyond mere order and pacing. It’s also crucial to get the colour right. And that means putting your good effort into colour correction, grading, and consistency to give your end product a classier look. Your colour choices can make all the difference to your final footage and can make a simple edit into something a lot more professional.
6. Keep It Simple
Having a wide range of creative editing options within your reach, it’s likely to get carried away and have too much fun. Before you go all out with your creative control, it’s important to think about your viewer and what kind of end product you’re trying to present to them. Take for example when you’re jumping between clips. There’s usually no need for transitions or dissolves. A simple cut would do the trick.
But keeping it simple doesn’t mean you should stop experimenting with the tools your editing software has to offer. Experimentation is an important part of growing your creativity as you learn to edit. You’ll want to save the effects for moments that make sense to you. A wipe might represent a change of location or a passage of time. Note that while a fade to black is ideal to end a scene, as long as you don’t overuse it. Keeping it simple also extends to adding text to your video. You’ll want to make the text clean and easy on the eye. Choose a reliable video maker online and get familiar with its features.
7. Use B-roll
Depending on what you intend to create, b-roll footage can be very important to your project. A b-roll footage adds relevant dimension and depth to your storytelling, helps cover potential errors, demonstrates otherwise unexplained action, and will keep your audience actively engaged throughout a viewing.
B-roll footage can be used in almost any way, with almost any subject, including:
- Closeups of people or still images with minimal camera motion
- Longshots establishing scenery
- Scenes with physical action
It’s hard to determine exactly how much b-roll footage you’ll need. It will largely depend on your project’s size and scope. Generally, it’s better to have more b-roll available than you think you need. Besides, any b-roll you shoot won’t be limited to a single project. Some professional video editors advise to stockpile unused b-roll since you’ll never know when you might need it.
If you have zero experience in video editing, we advise using a simple and user-friendly video maker online that allows you to edit professional-level videos with unlimited creative options.