Once you have your AAF contents imported, it's time to break out the AAF into your custom template. Scott shows some working methods to achieve this efficiently and productively
- [Instructor] This is the imported AAF from a short film called Vincent. These are exactly how the tracks came into Pro Tools from the video editing system. Notice I already used my technique from a previous movie in this series where I made a duplicate copy of the AAF and I hid and made it inactive in case I ever need to get back to it. Now, as tempting as it is to start digging right into the audio on these tracks, I want to show you a working method that I like to use that's much more clean and efficient. We'll start by importing one of our coveted post-production templates we've been working hard on for the last few videos in this series.
I've made one specifically for short film projects like this. So with the last track selected I'm going to go up to File, Import, Session Data and I'm going to select this template I have called Short Film Template. When I open this, it's going to bring us into the Import Session Data Window. Now, here you can see I've made a bunch of tracks in this template. Some of them are output stems like dialogue, effects, music and I have tracks to accommodate my different clips like dialogue tracks, effects tracks and music tracks.
So I'm going to select all, command, a and I'm going to click OK and it's going to bring in that template into my Pro Tools session. Okay, so up top I've got my AAF, down below I've got my template. So now is the time we're going to go through and listen to every single clip from the AAF. I know this seems totally time consuming, but I assure you it's such a helpful step. Not only does listening through each clip allow us to be aware of what all the mic sources sound like, but it also might expose room tones, production sound and other useful pieces of audio or even problems that the video editor might not have been aware of.
So you're going to go in and, for example, take a listen to this first scene here and notice there's a bunch of different mic sources or bunch of different tracks for the first scenes. We're going to go through one at a time and listen to each of them. Here is a quick way to solo a track to listen to it. You don't have to go all the way over here and click the s button. You can actually just click into the track and type shift, s to solo that track. Now let's take a listen to this first clip in the first scene. (dog panting) - [Dog Carer] You're so good.
- Okay, so what we hear is a dog and we see the main character is petting his dog and talking to his dog, so that's a valid dialogue track. So I'm going to go ahead and take the grabber tool and pull this into my dialogue track. I'll just select the whole section here and holding control, I'm going to pull it down to my dialogue track. You hold control because then it locks the region from moving left to right, so you can't move it left to right, you'll maintain sync as you pull it down and I'll pull it down to my Dialogue 1 track.
Now, let's assess some of these other channels from the same scene. So I'm going to go ahead and click in here, shift, s to solo this and what's going on here? Actually sounds like nothing. This is pretty typical in some scenes because there might have been a mic channel that wasn't opened up and you might just get a blank region. Totally fine, but the method I use here as I type command, m to mute that region. That lets me know that I've seen it, I've been there and I can now move on, knowing that that's a piece of audio that I won't use in my main timeline.
So you would continue on and find different areas, for example, down here we've obviously got music. So we're going to take this and pull this down. This is a stereo music track, so I'm going to grab of them. Pull it into my music tracks. Now, when you're done going through every single clip from your AAF and breaking it out, it's going to look something like this. Notice that our dialogue tracks are now all populated with all the relevant dialogue. I've got temp effects, those are effects that were pulled in from the video editor that I've pulled into these tracks and I have all my music broken out into my music tracks.
Now, if I go and look at the original AAF, I had it hidden, but now let's take a look at it. You'll notice a bunch of muted regions in here and that's typical, again, these are ones that I've found were either too noisy or not useful and, again, I just muted them, so I knew I'd been there, I've seen it and I'm not going to use them. And, at this point, you can hide them and make them inactive and now you're ready to work on the post-production of your film with your already designated tracks from your template that include other things in your template like EQs and sends and all that kind of good stuff that you want to use as you complete the post-production of the project.
So your tracks are now ready for further editing and embellishment, ultimately mixing. Next week I'll talk about some methods on how to organize the regions on your tracks depending on the type of project you're working on.