Editing Workflow Tips For FCPX 10.0.7
I’ve noticed quite a few great little FCPX tips and tricks posted online lately so I thought I’d round them all up into one big helpful post.
Free 423 FCPX Commands and Keyboard Cheat Sheet
The wizardly Alex Gollner has created a nifty pdf containing an explanation of 423 of Final Cut Pro X’s commands and the keyboard shortcut reference for them if it exists. He’s also hooked it up to the FCPX User Guide to open that part of the document simultaneously when you click on the listed command. Its an incredibly useful way to get to grips with FCPX and generous of him to give it away for free!
Media Management in FCPX - Moving media & project files correctly
The boys from Macbreak Studio have a great quick tip on how to ensure you can move your event and media files for an FCPX project onto another drive without losing anything and having everything work seamlessly next time you open it up.
Archiving FCPX Projects using Sparse Disk Images
Planet 5D has a rather rambling explanation of how to use Sparse Disk Images to store and archive your FCPX Project files, media and any other associated assets. I include it here because its a step by step video tutorial for the people who prefer that kind of thing. If you want a straight forward article on how to create Sparse disk images then check out this excellent one on KenStone.net.
FCPX in the broadcast TV world
FCP.co have a fantastic in-depth article about Magic Feather Inc’s use of FCPX in their post production pipeline to cut TV promos. Its a great way to see how FCPX is used professionally and also how to cut a promo for broadcast TV shows.
We’ve made something that shows you that you can really use FCPX in a broadcast environment that plays well with Protools, After Effects, and other broadcast tools.
The article includes a 5 part video series walking through their post workflow from set up to delivery. as well as an interview with CEO John Davidson.
Six FCP X Quick Tips
Larry Jordan’s latest blog post features 6 very useful quick tips for editing in FCPX including how to batch export projects and add a drop shadow to travelling mattes. There is also a great tip on how to use Paste Attributes (just like good ol’ FCP7) in FCPX.
Posted in Editing, FCP-X, Free download, Tutorials, Workflow
Tagged download, editing, editors tools, FCP-X, free, tutorial, workflow
Three Lessons in Color Science
If you want to get into some of the more technical aspects of color grading and develop an understanding of ‘some’ of what color science is and means then these three resources should help a little bit. For a technical as well as creative understanding of color grading I would highly recommend Alexis Van Hurkman’s Color Correction Handbook.
Working with ACES in Resolve 9.1
In this ten minute video tutorial, colorist Jesse Borkowski explains what ACES color space is, how to work in it and how to set up a DaVinci Resolve project to correctly work in that color space with CinemaDNG footage.
Understanding Colour Gamuts
Phil Rhodes has written up a very detailed introduction to understanding color gamuts over on RedSharkNews. If you’re planning on shooting with the Sony F65 in the near future its worth a read.
A colour gamut is usually depicted as a region on a chromaticity diagram according to CIE 1931, which sounds complicated but is in fact nothing more than a diagram showing all of the colours that a human eye can see, with a shaded area representing the colours your system is capable of displaying.
Arri Alexa – Legal Vs Extended
Ben Cain, whose blog Negative Spaces is well worth a rummage, has written up a very lengthy, detailed and insightful post on working with the Arri Alexa and its digital color workflow and…
…in a broader sense much of the information here can be readily applied to the difference between YCbCr 422 digital video, RGB Data, and all the things that go wrong when we monitor in video but post process RGB Data.
It is probably a bit more technical than most editors are willing to get but it is actually very well written to be approachable and has a very clear explanation of Look Up Tables (LUTS). The bulk of the article is focused on the intricacies of a LogC to video workflow when live grading on set. If you’re thinking of becoming a DIT its a must read.
Free Film Print Emulation LUTs for Resolve
If you’re looking to give your DaVinci Resolve grade a ‘film look’ then these free film print emulation LUTS from Juan Melara will add some real finesse to your project.
What is a Film Print Emulation LUT & why you should use it
A film print emulation LUT previews how your image will look like when printed onto a target film stock. It accurately emulates the density and colour response of the film to give you an accurate preview on your grading monitor prior to going to print.
Applying a print LUT is the probably the best “film look” treatment I’ve seen and the easiest way to make your digital footage look like film. What print LUTs do to the colours and highlight rolloff in your footage is about as close as I’ve seen to a one click “make awesome” button. Your images will still need work and you will still need to know how to colour correct and grade, but your work can look so much better.
You should definitely check out Juan’s site for a much more detailed explanation and step by step guide of how to apply LUTS in DaVinci Resolve.
Download them here and install them here Macintosh HD > Library > Application Support > Blackmagic Design > Davinci Resolve > LUT > CineSpace
Free Seminar on how to edit documentaries
If you’re looking to learn how to edit documentaries and want a full run down of a tried and tested documentary editorial process then Richard Speziale’s free 45 minute seminar is just what you’re looking for. Richard covers everything from how to log your footage, to why getting transcripts is so crucial to the edit. What’s great about this seminar is that Richard details a process that you really do need to respect if you want a smooth editorial process. Does it sound like a lot of work? Yes it does but its a process that has worked for a very long time and for good reason.
Another great lecture on how to edit documentaries
If you’re a more seasoned editor then this other great free lecture from editor Steve Audette is a real gem and well worth a watch. Steve has edited for FrontLine and Nova and demonstrates the importance of creativity in documentary editing. Part One is below, check out the full post for the entire lecture.
If you’re after even more of the same check out the Documentaries category.
Which harddrive should I buy for video editing?
I often get asked by producers which harddrive they should buy for the projects I work on for them. I thought I’d write up a quick blog post that explains which harddrives are best for video editing and why, and some of my preferred drives to use for different tasks.
If you just want to jump straight to some drives that are good for video editing here are some solid favourites. If you want more drives, scroll to the bottom and work up.
Firewire 800 7200rpm Lacie Rugged – Amazon.com | Amazon.co.uk
G-Tech G-Raid 2TB 7200rpm eSATA, FW800, 400 & USB2 – Amazon.com | Amazon.co.uk
Promise Pegasus Thunderbolt RAID 6TB – Amazon.com | Amazon.co.uk
Understanding harddrive speeds, connections & capacity
When you are video editing the two most important things you need from a hardrive are capacity and connection speed. That is getting enough space and making sure you can get to that space fast enough. The simplest of these to understand is connection speed. If you’re squeezing your data through a small pipe its going to take longer, if you push it through a big pipe it will get there quicker. So the connection (USB2, USB3, Firewire 400, Firewire 800 and the new Thunderbolt) is one of the first things to choose.
In these days of HD video you really want to have at least Firewire 800, USB3 or Thunderbolt. That said I have edited HD from USB 2 drives – its not fun, but you can get away with it if you must. Thunderbolt is the newest and fastest and more drives are now available that work with it. Whatever drive you buy, make sure the editors computer will connect to it. Older Macs do not have USB3 or Thunderbolt.
The other factor in choosing a drive is the speed of the internal workings on the drive itself. Most harddisks spin at 5400rpm and some spin at 7200rpm. The faster the drive spins the faster the computer can read from it and the quicker it gets to you. If you’re editing video you really want a 7200rpm drive.
Click through calculate the correct capacity and find the drive you need with a few helpful recommendations
Creative Sound Design on Star Wars
This is a great video featuring sound design ‘godfather’ Ben Burtt on the sound design needed to create the Star Wars universe.
Ben Burtt also did the sound for Pixar’s Wall-E and in this video you get to see him actually creating the sounds used in the film.
Looper – Creating The Score from Pistol Clicks
In this excellent 2 part behind the scenes video from composer Nathan Johnson, he shares how he created the ‘orchestra’ for the score for Looper by sampling field recordings and thereby turning pistol clicks into drum beats. Nathan also mentions that he was inspired to do this because of guys like Ben Burtt.
Sound Design for a Plane Crash inFlight
The Sound Works Collection is an incredible resource for any one interested in sound design for film and television. This comment from sound designer Randy Thom is a gem of an insight on how to create tension in a scene and practically how to do it in the mix. In this episode on the sound design for Flight there is a great breakdown of how sound effects were created and effected to build the final mix. Fascinating stuff!
Randy Thom – I wanted to elaborate on something I said in the interview relating to the need to have the jet engine whine constantly rising in pitch throughout the pre-crash sequence. It merits some elaboration because it’s a very useful approach to a common challenge in sound design. Almost any sound rising pitch or frequency (by which I mean shorter and shorter intervals) over time will tend to increase the level of tension or excitement in a sequence like this. In a long sequence like the one in Flight you need that rise to last about eight minutes, but you also need it to be noticeable even over a few seconds. The problem is that you quickly get through two or three octaves, and you don’t have any higher to go. The technique we used was to create about 30 seconds of pitch rise in the turbine whine, then cycle through variations on that same rise many times. The trick is to do long crossfades, in this case at least ten seconds, between the end of one cycle and the beginning of the next. In other words, you start the second iteration of the sound about two thirds of the way through the first iteration, and crossfade the two. When the crossfades are that long you tend not to notice, even if you know what to listen for, that you are hearing basically the same rise in pitch over and over again. The illusion is that the pitch seems to keep rising, uniformly, forever. A very useful illusion.
Learning Avid – A collection of useful links
I’ve recently bought Avid and so have been on the look out for all the tips, tricks and tutorials I can find. Here are a whole host of the ones I’ve spotted recently. I also posted on Premiumbeat.com with some great resources for editors looking to make the jump to Avid. I guess this post is a continuation of that one, so do check it out too.
Free Avid Media Composer 6.5 Video Tutorials
Avid’s own official community forums have a wealth of white papers, free pdfs and links to check out. Most importantly is probably the link to Kevin P McAuliffe’s extensive 42 part free video tutorial series over on Creative Cow covering almost every aspect of using Media Composer, from basic edits to audio mixing and creating titles and effects. Awesome.
Ashley Kennedy from Premiumbeat demonstrates how to customise and set up preset UI layouts to speed up your Avid editing workflow in the video tutorials below and has also written up how to use the Automatic Color Correction toolset in Avid to quickly improve the look of your footage.
Click through to check out a whole load more Avid Tips!
Posted in AVID, Colour Grading, Editor's Tools, Free download, Tutorials, Workflow
Tagged Avid, colour grading, download, editors tools, free, tutorial, workflow
The Sound Design for a Promo for Rampant Design Film Editor’s Sound Effects Packs
Alan Pfiel from Rampant Design has a good tutorial on how he created the sound design for the promo film for Rampant Design’s SoundFX for Editors Vol 1.
Here is the original 40 second promo
Using Itunes to catalogue your sound effects
On the Rampant Design site there is also a short tutorial on how to make the most of Itunes to create handy catalogues of all your favourite sound effects as finding the one you want is always what takes the most time.
Rampant Design has a huge selection of stock elements of things like light leaks, dust and film scratch effects, flash transition, stock music, sound effects packs (600+ clips each) and tonnes more besides, so if you’re in need of some stock elements, effects, particles or scores they’re likely to have what you’re looking for somewhere in their arsenal.
Posted in After Effects, Apple Motion, Colour Grading, Compositing, Editor's Tools, Sound Design, Tutorials, Visual Effects
Tagged colour grading, compositing, editors tools, sound design, tutorial, visual effects, workflow
Color Grading Tutorials for DaVinci Resolve
Mixing Light is an up and coming new color grading membership forum from Patrick Inhoffer, Robbie Carman and Dan Moran. They’re releasing a few teasers to get people interested and its worth signing up to the newsletter to get these as and when they get posted. There is an excellent interview with ICA colorist Warren Eagles, a quick tip on organising your grades in Resolve and a video tutorial on how to add camera shake to a static shot.
Creating Dailies in DaVinci Resolve – 2 Part Video Tutorial
Andy Shipsides, from the ever excellent Abel Cine, has a great two part tutorial on creating sync’d audio dailies in DaVinci Resolve. In part one Andy demonstrates how to sync the audio and in part 2 Andy adds Look Up Tables and some one light color correction. In the tutorial Andy uses Canon Raw, 10-bit uncompressed and Blackmagic Design’s Cinema Camera Raw footage.
Syncing Audio Dailies in DaVinci Resolve
Adding LUTS in DaVinci Resolve
How to get started as a Colorist
The latest episode of The Coloristos is a discussion of how the three Coloristos (Josh Petok, Juan Salvo and Jason Myres) got started as professional colorists, how they developed their skills, got their first jobs and advanced to where they are today. They share some great tips on handling clients, time management and working in the industry.
Free Technical Paper – Color From Your Monitor to the Big Screen
The Visual Effects Society has released a free 54 page white paper on the detailed technical and scientific issues at play on the color path from your monitor to the big screen. If you want to learn about color science, colorimetry and the workflow issues color management this is well worth a read. If you want more resources on this topic check out CinematicColor.com
Posted in Colour Grading, DaVinci Resolve, DIT, Editor's Tools, Free download, Tutorials, Visual Effects, Workflow
Tagged colour grading, Davinci resolve, DIT, download, editors tools, free, Interview, tutorial, visual effects, workflow
Editorial & VFX tricks to fix your Indie feature in post production
Editor/Director Ken Simpson has put together an hour long look at the raw, unvarnished truth about fixing your indie feature film in post production. Ken walks through examples of solving story problems through editorial re-writes, using compositing to fix a multitude of problems and reflecting on the mistakes he made as director. If you’re about to make your first film or in the midst of fixing your own mistakes its well worth a watch.
10 minutes of free advice on making a $50,000 indie feature
The crew of Headcase share their thoughts on how to make an indie feature for $50k.
Posted in After Effects, Compositing, Craft, Editing, Final Cut Pro, Tutorials, Visual Effects
Tagged compositing, craft, editing, free, tutorial, visual effects, workflow