Video Editing is Like Reading a Book

By: Jon Caldwell

After you burn your DVD and after a few hours of waiting for it, you are left with a copy or mirror of the project on your hard disk. This can amount to a lot of wasted files if you do not need them and deleting them would result in a seemingly miraculous amount of space. But if you do want to burn projects again and again, say after the preview is accepted and approved you have to burn a couple more of the final cut, you might want to have them in a safe place so you don't have to convert and wait another couple of hours for a single copy. The mirror file has all the required information for your projects and it is used by the software to derive data fro the burning process. Without it, you can copy the master you've just made but lose it and you start over again.

A well edited film can have a narrator (with a nice voice of course) discussing th shot or the events that are understanding. But not all narrations have to be dead serious for they can liven up a rather lengthy piece of film turning it into a highlight. Narrations are placed over the audio tracks of shots which don't have the perfect combinations of shot and voice (say you were a couple of hundred feet away from the shot and you're zoom was already maxed out not to say your audio). The narration can carry on and voiceover is easily done with editing software. A nifty trick to get the same audio levels as with your shots is to use the video camera to record the narration so you get the same sound levels and the same quality as with the original ones.

To make your video more appealing and professional-like write a script so you get to have a guide to use and follow as you go along. If you intend to do this as a business, you can even have storyboards done to attain that smooth flow of video your work is to follow allowing you to come up with professional work. Stick to it and avoid skipping scenes too fast to maintain the proper storyline. It makes for good video as long as you get that smooth flow of ideas.

Transferring analog tapes to digital form can take some creative thinking but the best way we've seen to give the best output is by using the old digital camcorder. Have the lens cap on so you prevent accidental recording of footage you don't need. If your camera won't allow it set it in a quiet room where no one is present to mess up the process. You can also use nifty techniques like the one I used to do for capturing taped sounds, by using a couple of pillows on the bed I set up the recorder and player within cancelling most of the background noise and vibrations from the floors from getting into the recorded audio.

If you wish to have some archival footage included with your digital video, then you might have to do some copying from the old VHS player to your choice of either using a video capture card or your digital camcorder as conversion and recorder. The process has you setting up your VHS player to send out the composite signal sending it to the video and audio into the input jacks on your PC or camcorder. The nice thing about using a camcorder is that you end up with digital video and audio after you record the input from the tape masters with no more conversions for the PC sending it through the Firewire port ready for editing.

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