Editing Videos v. Designing Presentations

Okay, taking a break from my summer thing for a sec. I’ve been cutting together a video of Monday’s bbq picnic. Quad core G4. Gazillion-inch display. Very fast. Very fun.

In these situations, a lot of novice editors start by fastidiously cutting to the beat. They’ll line up a few clips haphazardly and then painstakingly trim lengths so that the clips change right as the bass guitar kicks in or the cymbal crashes or whatever.

That’s what this Final Cut Pro application does to you. Simply because you can manipulate audio and video, you tend to.

Thing is: my best work here could stand without music. My first priority is to cut a story together. I distort reality by taking two different angles on two different dives (for example) and cutting them together so it looks like I had two cameras watching one. I hold some shots longer than their surroundings to build anticipation. I can slow action down by cutting late; speed it up by cutting quickly.

The point is: only once the story is any good do I start adding these little musical flourishes.  But to novice editors, those little flourishes are the prize. You’ll see them tapping the “m” key, sweating raindrops beneath pro-level headphones, marking the beats perfectly, en route to a perfectly lifeless video.

Here’s hoping the connection between video editing and presentation design is linear enough that I can skip it. Gotta crank out four more videos before tomorrow night.

I'm Dan and this is my blog. I'm a former high school math teacher and current head of teaching at Desmos. He / him. More here.