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Once we put clips together and view them in a sequence, just a few frames here and there can make a dramatic difference to rhythm, pace, and meaning. Trimming allows us to make finer modifications to the precise beginning and endpoints of clips directly in the timeline. Here, I've got a sequence loaded up in my Timeline window. See I have got a valley clip here, followed by a section of black, and then a bunch of other clips making up my river valley sequence.
Let's say we wanted to extend the end of the valley clip. First off, I need to come over here to my Timeline palette and select one of my Trim tools: either Ripple Trim or Overwrite Trim. I am going to select the red one, called Overwrite Trim. Now, as I approach the transition point, you see some different icons that we haven't seen before. Ignore the red ones, and just concentrate on the white one for a moment. It has a double roller, meaning that when I click down once in the timeline and activate Trim mode, you can see now there is a roller on the outgoing side of the transition and a roller on the incoming side of the transition.
That means when I trim this edit point, I will be adding and removing frames from both sides of the trim in equal amounts. If I click down now, hold, and drag to the right, I am adding material to the out going side of the valley clip, and I am removing material from the black here in the timeline. You can see I added 20 frames to the outgoing side, and I removed 20 frames of the black. This is the Trim interface up here by the way.
Now we are in Trim mode. This viewer displays the outgoing side of my edit, and this viewer displays the incoming side of my edit. I also have these little tools here, which allow me to fine-tune my trim point backwards and forwards by a single frame, or 10 frames at a time. If I click down and drag left, now I am removing material from the valley and adding more black into my sequence. Now if I click down again and drag to the right, but just keep going, eventually I am going to run out of material.
There is just no more of the valley clip to trim into my sequence. That's what that red bracket means, in the bottom right-hand corner of the left-hand viewer. Let's look at a different example of a dual roller trim. Let's come over here to the transition point between the sky and the rushing water. This time, single-click here instead. Instead of having black on one side of my trim, I've got a clip on both sides. I've got the sky outgoing and the river incoming.
This time if I click down and hold and drag to the left, I'm removing material from the end of the sky clip and adding material to the water clip. Likewise, if I click down and hold and drag to the right, now I'm removing material from the rushing water and adding to the sky clip. If I drag and keep dragging to the left, I've hit that red bracket again. What does that mean? It simply means that there is no more material at the beginning of the rushing water clip to trim into.
Let's have a look at one final example. If I click here in the transition between the water and the sky, and I hold down and drag to the left until there is no more of the water clip left, look what happens. I get that red bracket again. It doesn't mean, in this particular case, there is no more of the sky clip; what it means is I've removed an entire event from my timeline. So Media Composer stops me so I can recognize that fact. If I want to continue to add material to the beginning of the sky clip, all I need to do is click down to re-engage and continue to drag to the left.
This time, I really have run out of material. Again, I see the red bracket, this time in the bottom-left corner of the right-hand viewer. If I want to exit Trim mode, I can either hit the Source Record Mode button here or tap my cursor in the Timeline ribbon at the bottom, and now I've exit back to Source Record mode. Trimming is simply part of the editing workflow. We start the process by adding, removing, and reordering clips in our sequence.
Then we move onto the fine-tuning stage where Overwrite Trim and Trim Ripple are essential tools.
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