I recently received a comment on one of my videos asking how long it takes to edit my videos? That is a hard question to answer because I don’t do it all at once. I work at it a little here and there as I have time. But the more you do it, the less time it takes. The person who asked the question stated that they didn’t have a lot of time to spend editing videos and that it seemed time-consuming. The answer is that video editing is time-consuming. But in response, I came up with six tips for faster video editing.
1. Discover your workflows.
I use Final Cut that has separate workspaces. After importing my videos, I will start in the “organize workspace.” This helps me sort through my videos to discover which ones are usable and which ones are to be discarded. Nothing has done more to speed up the video editing process than sorting my videos before I start editing. It helps to have a specific order in which you do things. Make sure you stick to that order. It is easy to get ahead of yourself by color grading an individual clip before you video is complete. But if you choose to remove that clip before you are finished, you will have wasted a good amount of time. My basic workflow is:
- Shoot video
- Import video
- Sort & review video
- Select background music
- Place clips in timeline and time to music
- Color correct
- Color grade
2. Learn your editing software.
There are all kinds of debates on which editing program to use. But don’t get too stuck on that. Make your decision and then learn how to use it. I use Final Cut because I already own it. But Adobe Premiere and Davinci Resolve would serve you well too. Once you start to dig deep, you can start to uncover more than you thought possible with any of these programs. There are many tutorials on YouTube on how to do things. All these video editing programs have keyboard shortcuts. Learn the shortcuts. Your editing will be faster when your hands are on the keyboard more than the mouse.
3. Have a plan before you start filming.
I have some of what I want to do in mind before I arrived on location. First, I will google the location to see if there are other drone videos of the location. I tend to come across a lot of Jersey Droner videos this way. It is a lot faster to get where you are going if you know where you are going.
4. If you are going to do video, do video.
If you are going to do photography, do photography. I have taken very few pictures with my drone, but I can focus more on video editing because I don’t have any pics to edit. I don’t have the time to do both videography and photography well. And I got the drone to do video. So, for now, I am choosing to work on my videography skills.
5. Be patient.
This is a hobby. I have enough deadlines with my work. I am not going to rush this. If it takes me a week to edit a video, then it takes a week. If it takes a month, it takes a month. I am doing this for my personal enjoyment. I hope that at the end of the day that others enjoy what I create. But this is for me, and I enjoy exploring the creative process and learning a new craft. I would not do it if I did not enjoy it.
I have a MacBook Pro laptop computer with which I can multitask. So I might spend some time editing while watching a ballgame or waiting for my son to finish his drum lesson. I would probably be much more efficient if I solely concentrated on the video editing, but I am not in a hurry to complete the task.
6. Learn one new thing
I try to learn one new thing with each edit. It may be learning to make something more efficient. It may be adding a new effect. For example, in this video from South Amboy, I experimented with a Lens Flare effect at about 1:25 in the video. I had never used that before. In this video from Burlington Island, I was trying out some new Luts. In each of these instances, I gained one more thing to add to the tool belt.
Share Your Tips for Faster Video Editing
There is no doubt that video editing is an involving process. It takes time to learn the basics and for many things there are no shortcuts. But the effort you put into it can be so satisfying as you see the improvement in the quality of what you produce.
What do you think of these six tips for faster video editing? Do you agree or disagree? What other tips can you share? Make sure to share in the comments below.