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This course shows how to build a polished documentary using Avid Media Composer and a few essential editing techniques. Author Ashley Kennedy demonstrates documentary editing in a real-world project, breaking down the process into a series of manageable steps and milestones. Discover how to define a project approach based on a client's creative brief, and then effectively review and organize the footage. Then find out how to use script-based editing methods and a wide variety of scene creation techniques to assemble a rough cut. The course also shows how to use effects to repair and enhance your footage, process client feedback, and add the film's finishing elements.
This course is part of a series that looks at Documentary Editing from the point of view of 3 different editors in 3 different editing applications. For more insight on editing documentary projects, take a look at Documentary Editing with Premiere Pro and Documentary Editing with Final Cut Pro X.
With the spontaneity of documentary shooting comes a fresh, exciting approach. However, it also comes with inevitable shaky footage. Hitting that perfect shot to fit into scene may require that you spend some time stabilizing your footage. So take a look at how to do that. All right, so I have here the main farming sequence, and I have a shot of BD driving to the farmers market. I'm just going to play it for you so you can see that it just pretty shaky. (video playing) Okay, so let's try to smooth that out.
I'm going to go to the Effect palette and in the Image category, I'm going to just choose the Stabilize effect and apply it right on top. Now this is an automatic effect, the tracking window opens, and you can see lots of little green points, and basically they're just attaching to places within the field of view and locking those down. And by default, I have something called Auto-Zoom on because what it's going to do is actually zoom in as it reverses the direction that each of those points is taking during the entire shot.
So it's saying this data, you can see this little white squiggle here, that's the tracking data that is basically all of the places that the shot has moved during the duration, and it's going to say basically reverse all of that so that you can lock the shot down and allow it to be as smooth as possible. So I'm going to turn off Scaling, which is basically going to disable that Auto Zoom or just not show it. And I'm going to show you kind of what's happening on the outside and then I'm going to enable scaling so you can see you know how that helps.
All right, so you can see that the truck is now fixed in the middle of the frame but you definitely have all of that compensation happening along the outside, but when I come in and enable Scaling and let that Auto Zoom function, you can see that we're zoomed in a little bit but the truck is not bouncing all over the place. It is in the center of the frame. All right, so I should mention that by default, the Stabilize effect uses an engine called the FluidStabilizer.
There are some other stabilizing engines, the FluidTracker, the Correlation Tracker. We will take a look at the Correlation Tracker in the next movie doing something slightly different, but I do want to mention that if it doesn't come out quite as you had planned you may want to change the tracking engine that it's using, you also may want to Disable Steady Glide and Enable Smoothing. Basically what Steady Glide does is it maintains any inherent camera movements so if there's some pens and tilts, it will keep that while still stabilizing the shot.
So occasionally, you'll want to uncheck Steady Glide and check Smoothing. It's not going to maintain that camera movement, but it's going to apply smoothing nonetheless. So those are some parameters that you might want to adjust if it doesn't come out the way you like it, but in general it is as simple as just applying the Stabilize effect, letting it analyze the image, and then it stabilizes usually pretty well.
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