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We've already taken a brief tour of our interviews. But now it's time to actually digest and annotate the interview content for the purpose of editing. But how are we going to do that? Let's pause to consider, because some strategic thinking at this point will go a long way to a smooth process. There are a lot of ways to go about logging, but for me the goal is always the same. As the editor, you need to become very familiar with the footage, and you need to be able to fine shots and bites quickly when it's time to edit. So there's a lots of ways to do this, but the goal is really always the same.
There's different ways to do this, because there's different types of editors, and because there's different types of projects. Even though you may like one method, a different method might be better for a different project. I find that longer projects require me to do more off-line work outside the interface more notes, more transcribing. Where shorter projects, I often get by right in the interface with things like markers. Traditionally, all of the content for a documentary was fully transcribed, meaning, all of the interview question and answers were written out and descriptions were written for all the observational material.
Many editors insist that this is the best and only way to keep track of your material. Interestingly, I was recently at a panel on an editing master class, and I was surprised that many of these master editors no longer like working with transcripts. They feel that it's not as useful to see the words and they really need to see the footage. So there's definitely pro and con on both sides of the transcribing argument, and now Adobe Premiere Pro can do automated transcripts as well. That's not going to be the same as a human transcript, and it's not going to work on largely observational footage, but it does give you one more option.
So transcripts are something to consider, but not a must have. At the end of the day, it's going to be important to do what's right for your project. As I said this largely depends on how long your project is how much footage and things like that. I find when there is more that I can sort of hold in my mind, I write down less, but in a larger project, more writing is necessary. At the end of the day this time is really important. I find in my own project that as much as the notes I make are important just the time spent with the footage is important.
As often as I go back to my notes, there's just something that I remember, but I remember it from the careful logging at this stage. So I've said it before, and I'll say it again, there is many ways to do this part of the process. The important thing is to pause for a moment, consider your project and pick a methodology that's really going to work, that will pay off later.
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