361MC: – Little Rag Doll editing process

The editing process is my favourite part of any production as I like to be able to craft the final product of what the audience will see and perceive. I had a clear image in my mind of what I wanted the video to look like when I made the most recently outline with the time-stamps and shot plan, as this made it very easy to visualise the sequential order of how the narrative of the video would progress. My approach to editing is a very linear practice and I have always tended to go directly to the final-cut stage when it comes to post-production as I find it easier to track my progress and monitor the pace and look of the video from beginning to end. As such, I usually always in all of my previous projects skipped the first two stages of the editing process; the assembly and rough cut stage, which are both forms of the barebones framework of the order of the shots, which are refined for the rough cut stage and further worked on to professional standard for the final-cut stage. However, as I am now producing my FMP and want it to be professional as possible, I wanted the whole process to be to a typical professional standard and so I decided to change my approach to the editing stage. After reading the section The Practice of Video Production: Post Production from the book Video Production: Putting Theory Into Practice by Steve Dawkins & Ian Wynd, I found that “they are the accepted 

industry process” as well as allowing for it to become more of a developmental process…and, as a result, well-informed decisions to be made.” Finally, it also “forces you to learn the value of the balance between work and reflection.” ( 2010:109) As such, I decided to adopt this professional practice and crafted an assembly and rough cut to begin with. In hindsight, this was definitely the best thing to do as the sheer amount of footage that was taken from the narrative, despite being renamed, was incredible difficult to navigate. By creating an assembly cut first, I was able to construct all of the narrative in sequential order which saved me hours of editing work, as opposed to my old practice of focussing on the video with the mindset of it being a final cut. Especially with a music video that continually cuts between the narrative and the band, this would have been near impossible to edit without first having the narrative laid out on the timeline in order.

Screen Shot 2014-03-02 at 18.01.59

The narrative sequences went on a lot longer than the length of the song and so I then removed all of the clips that were unnecessary, but taking into consideration that the narrative still made sense without them. I then began to trim clips to further shorten the time of the current length of video. With the video shortened as much as physically possible, I began to decide on certain parts of the video to place shots of the band. My biggest focus for the video was to successfully balance the screen time of the band and the accompanying narrative. However, this proved difficult as the narrative still exceeded the length of the song.

Screen Shot 2014-03-02 at 22.08.00With most of the band footage in place, I then chose to remove certain shots of the narrative in order to just take the cliff notes of the narrative, but ensuring that the story still made sense and served the video well. The video was a challenge to edit as the pace fluctuates from being very slow but building to a wild crescendo. This was a feeling I wanted to evoke to the audience by editing together an incredibly fast montage at the end to generate this sense of adrenaline. The song can only take the mood so far, but the video must always compliment the song and be set to the appropriate pace and mood of the song which is something I believe I achieved well.

Overall, the thing I have learnt the most from editing this particular video is the process that a professional editor must go through in order to achieve the desired result. Although at times it is acceptable to work on a project by editing it first as a final-cut, I was able to see the benefits of going through the assembly stage and the rough cut stage first, which is a practice I will use for the next two editing processes for my final two music videos for my FMP. With the first draft of the video finished, I can now wait for the eventual screening and feedback session for it incase there are any changes that need to be made.

Screen Shot 2014-03-02 at 18.02.40


Dawkins, S, Wynd, I, (2010). Video production: putting theory into practice. Hampshire: Palgrave Macmillan.



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