Saturday, February 27, 2010

I Heart Editing

Been on an editing frenzy, working on a few different videos at the same time. Was [and still am] juggling a 12-ep mini sitcom for service training, interview-based recruitment video, 4 versions of a TVC for an upcoming musical, 7-min interview-based internal sales video & a short turnaround 2.5-min launch video.

I'm lovin' it!
[Despite clocking an average of 12 hours per day this week... but the fatigue only sets in when I step out of my suite; am revvin' & ready to go once I'm back in my chair]

I always like to think through my edits - because every edit is different and needs to be approached differently, whether slightly or significantly.

There are differences in organization [had to think through how I was going to manage the 12-ep mini sitcom because the eps and scenes are being shot out of sequence, with staggered delivery], differences in grading [setting the 'look'], differences in cutting [the TVC was mainly cuts/dissolves/gradient wipes - which I like; the launch video was an exercise in patience & attention to detail - tons of keyframing] etc...

That is why I find myself actually thinking of my edits during the commute to and from work - because it means once I get my butt into my chair, I've already visualized what I'm going to try and do.

As a preditor, I almost always meet the clients and jot down notes on my edits personally. It also gives me the chance to clarify what they REALLY want, because often, comments can be vague and if passed from one person to another, the 'broken telephone effect' takes place.

I don't reckon getting editors so involved is a common phenomenon... at least we're not talking about projects of epic proportions, like editors who are committed to a big-budget feature film during pre-production itself.

But, I got to admit, sometimes the lack of distance between the 'client' and the 'editor' side of things creates much tension and struggle. There's definitely value in having a separate 'producer' to mediate and negotiate. But we're talking about a competent & experienced producer, not any random warm body you pick up and stick in front of the clients. Indeed, producing is an art, too.

Anyhow, as someone who likes variety [like dim sum & buffets - yum!], I'm enjoying tackling the different projects which are, in essence, communication tools. That's something we work a lot on: how to deliver an effective message through video. Oftentimes, we get approached by clients who want to 'make a video' and it's up to us to really dig deep to find out what they want the video to do for them. Some clients are more savvy with their communication objectives while others need more advising or digging. There's always this through-line we need to keep to, from the types of words we use in the script down to the kinds of shots selected [the shot sizes, the emotions, the colors, the music, the rhythm of cuts...]

You can have the fanciest graphics [which I will admit: we don't] or snazziest gimmicks - but without a sound communication concept, you're basically gonna end up with a glorified high-tech picture flipbook.

Guess I'm putting my Communications degree to work here :P Not all "corporate videos" are made equal!