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Archive for August, 2012

HD Wedditing

Back in June, I attended a wedding of some friends and was asked to film it and then edit the final footage, which I was delighted to do. I’m always eager to get involved with video projects, and this would be my first time working with HD video, and my first time editing something that isn’t scripted, so I was up for some new challenges! Plus, of course, I was happy to do them a favour on their special day!

The original footage clocked in at nearly two hours. Creating these edited highlights was just a matter of picking out the “best bits”. I tried not to cut from one shot to the same one, but since it was a single-camera setup, that’s often unavoidable – but you can see here I try whenever possible to cut to a new shot, or one that’s looking away and then returns. During the ceremony, I did move around a lot, to try to give the impression of a multiple camera setup! When you’re just showing highlights without the audio track, it’s quite effective.

Working in HD posed a couple of problems. The first was that the footage from the camera wasn’t compatible with my version of Adobe Premiere, so I had to do some time-consuming video conversion before I could even begin. Secondly, HD video formats are more processor-intensive to work with. I’m used to being able to use instant playback, so having to pre-render my footage (or have it stuttering like mad) was very limiting. I don’t think my computer is underpowered for this task – I guess it’s just the nature of some HD formats.

The footage ended up also being downgraded to standard definition for DVD playback. I actually made some pretty comprehensve menus and included the 2-hour raw footage with chapter markers and scene selection, with the option to play from a particular point or play just one section. This was achieved using chapter playlists, a very handy feature that lets you reuse the same timeline to make customised sequences within the DVD framework.

Wedding DVD screenshot 1

The unedited footage contained so many chapter markers that I couldn’t fit them into one menu, so I had to split it across three!

Wedding DVD screenshot 2

I made a unique menu for every chapter point of the unedited video.

Wedding DVD screenshot 3

Using chapter playlists, I created four shortened arrangements, each containing a specialised selection of chapters for quicker viewing.

DVD spec is quite picky and restrictive with how many buttons you can have, so I had to spread it across multiple menus, but it was a worthwhile excersise. I made sure all the button routing and default highlights were setup intuitively. I’ve done some DVD authoring before, so I more or less knew what I was doing, but it was useful to refresh my memory. I had a little issue with some replaced footage not importing into the project, but I managed to fix it. (Note: never replace video files that you’ve already imported into Adobe Encore outside of Adobe Encore! It doesn’t like you doing that!)

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