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- Identifying story elements
- Finding the essence of a story
- Importing folders and stills as keyword collections
- Using keywords to make clips accessible
- Prepping clips for editing
- Developing story diversity
- Sculpting the story within the timeline
- Fine-tuning edits
- Organizing separate story segments into independent storylines
- Recording a narration track
- Adding sound effects
- Applying effects to enhance story elements
- Adding freeze frames
Skill Level Intermediate
So you're almost ready to begin editing and here's what's going to happen. You're going to want to throw some clips together and listen to them. But when you throw in xylophone music or some audio that's screaming at you, you might be a little shocked and won't enjoy the fruits of your editing labor. To ensure there are no surprises waiting for you in your first project viewing, let's weed into the screening process, the extra step of prepping your clips. As you screen and organize clips in the browser, you're going to become aware of certain things.
For example, this is a clip of Ben. Let's just listen to him for a second. (Video Playing) Ben: The farmers of Peace Kawomera grow what's known in the world of coffee as a Bugisu Arabica. Diana Weynand: While this may sound fine to you, take a closer look at those audio levels. I see some yellow and I see a few red peaks in there. So it might be worthwhile to take a closer look and go ahead and get that audio at a level that you know won't be overpowering when you add it or include it with other clips. Another example might be in the music.
Let's take a listen to the music kids. (Music Playing) Well this might be a great shot to use even for the music if not for the video, but let's take a closer look at the audio. The way to do that is to click our audio meters and make sure they appear in the Timeline, now we can stretch those out to make them a little bit wider if we like, and let's listen to this clip again. (Music Playing) So obviously, this is a pretty hot clip.
The audio is pretty hot and typically for something like this, the director of photography gets what they can on this, but the audio sometimes is not always controllable in these situations. So if we want to drag the audio down on this in the Event Browser, we have to open the Inspector. When we open the Inspector, click the Audio tab, and watch this clip as I drag left on the Volume fader. So now I've gotten rid of the yellow and the red portions, the peak portions of the audio, and let's listen to it again.
(Music Playing) So what we were seeing, if you look at the audio meters down on the Timeline, (Music Playing) you see that the volume was up above -12 to -6. Well, typically, if you're listening to something at full volume, you want to aim for more like -12. And if you wanted this music to be in the background, you'd want it to drop down to about -18 or so.
So let's lower that volume even more, so that it becomes a little bit more of a background level for us. And when I've dragged the Volume fader, you see the number changed, so now it should be at about -20. So let's listen to that. (Music Playing) So what we've done is lowered the volume -20 from its original level. We were not setting the dB level, but we were lowering it by that amount. And in fact, it does sound like a nice background level.
So when we edit this clip, we know that we'll be able to just see it in context with the other clips, and it won't come out and hit us over the head, because it's so very loud. Now we can do a similar thing with narration. In reverse, is the narration loud enough to hear it, or will we have to stop and raise the volume along the way? (Audio Playing) Narrator: Yet as we hand our dollars to our vendors, we rarely think about the farmers who are our partners in supplying our caffeine libation. Diana Weynand: When you look at the audio meters, you see that they are just barely snugging up to -12.
It might be great if we could raise the volume of that particular clip a little bit. Let's raise this volume a couple dB, and let's listen to it again. (Audio Playing) Narrator: Yet as we hand our dollars to our vendors, we rarely think about the farmers who are our partners in supplying our caffeine libation. Diana Weynand: So this is the kind of thing that you'll want to do just to get your clips a little bit more friendly, to be able to play together when you put them together in a timeline. Now do you have any clips that have a need to be color corrected? Well if we go into our Stills category, remember there was an image of a boy carrying a little sibling, and it's a lovely picture, and the picture on the boy's face is quite lovely.
But notice all the green in this picture, and there's green in what appears to be the clothing. We don't know if we can get rid of that or not, but why not try to get rid of it. And we can do that very simply by clicking on the Video tab for an image and clicking in the Balance enable box. Simply by clicking that box, we've removed that green colorcast from the image. And now it makes that image even more desirable to use. So you may have thought that clip was not usable, because it had a colorcast to it.
Before you make that decision, just take it through the steps of maybe cleaning it up a little bit to make sure that it is looking and sounding as good as it can be. So trust me, once you've edited a few clips into a project, you'll want to kick back and enjoy what you've put together. But if out-of-whack audio or video levels surprise you, you'll have to spend time adjusting those levels inside the project in the Timeline, which may put a damper on getting to enjoy and respond positively to the first pass of your story.