Workshop at the epic Creative Co-Op - Video Editing Secrets of the Pros
June 14, 2012 - On the evening of June 13, close to 40 professional Videographers came together at the epic Creative Co-Op to learn the secrets of professional video editors. Robert Harrington and Chris Shepherd of Bella Vista Productions demonstrated their production pipeline for wedding videos. This is the same process used by the pros in Hollywood for cutting a feature film, and the techniques they shared apply equally as well for editing any large production.
The talk began with some basic housekeeping tips - keep your work area clean, focus on one project at a time, avoid distractions (phone, social media, email, etc.). While it sounds basic, these small things can have a major impact on the amount of work you get done in a day. Next, they talked about their methodology for file transfer and backup. This information was just a warm up to the real meat of the presentation - their editing process.
Their editor of choice is Final Cut Pro, and all of the raw footage from the shoot is dumped into a project folder. The secret is their use of a "wedding template" which is a series of folders and subfolders all logically named. On the timeline, they create several layers to hold individual clips of a specific nature. There are layers for people, the venue, close up details, and a layer for key clips that will absolutely be used in the final production. As they watch the raw video, they drag clips into their respective folders. The footage from each camera is color coded. This allows them to minimize the amount of time they will need finding a clip later, since they have taken the time to organize everything at the start of the project.
Since everyone in their shop uses this same production process for every job, it makes it easy to switch editors in the middle of a job and not lose a beat. In their presentation, Robert and Chris worked in a tag-team approach which included several very engaging demos. Their attention to detail during the shoot and in the edit suite are obvious in their final productions. They believe each wedding is unique and demands its own style and design.
Robert also provided the group with some business related tips on how they sell their services, and there is a very helpful FAQ page on their website for couples considering a video for their wedding. Even if wedding videos are not your cup of tea, you have to marvel at the cinemagraphic nature of their work. Check out their Film Gallery and you can see why Bella Vista Productions is one of the leading wedding videographers in the Houston area. If you are looking to improve your video production techniques I would highly recommend attending a future workshop.
We also want to thank Microsearch & Ikan who sponsored the event and were on-site with all kinds of goodies for video professionals.