Editing can completely change a project and it is important to understand the many aspects that go into editing. There are two stages of editing a media program. The first is the preliminary stage. This is when the work is still in the rough cut working stages of editing and is often in low-resolution. The second stage is called the final stage. This is when the work has been digitally edited and is in high resolution.
With the advancement of technology, editing now requires fewer tools, is much more cost effective, and is easily accessible. It has become easier to work on many different parts of a project simultaneously and efficiency has been increased. This is called workflow in the media industry. Other steps of the editing process involve planning carefully crafted changes that are to made, as well as acquisition. Acquisition is when data is accumulated that will be contributed to the work as long as legally allowed. Ingest, meaning the clip has been processed and stored on a card or computer-readable form, is the also a preliminary editing step that must be taken after acquisition is complete. Once these steps have each been carefully looked over, the editing process can begin.
Between logic organization, rough cut, fine cut, and special effects, there are many tedious tasks at hand to successfully edit material. To keep this all organized, a director or production continuity clerk will keep an editing log. The editing log denotes the location of takes, shot descriptions, and director notations that are influential to the editing process. Also assisting with organization, a timecode is a series of digits that gives an exact reference for each and frame. This process has been standardized as the Society or Motion Pictures and Television Engineers (SMPTE) timecode. Compression of the media takes place in order to save valuable bandwidth space that is needed.
When editing, a timeline or construction window will display several video, audio, and effects tracks that indicate the length and order of the project being edited. The viewing window allows the editor to view and select the start/end times for the video. The trimming window allows the editor to make cuts to the work. All of these factors add flexibility to the editing process and make it much more cost effective. Clips are able to be trimmed quickly and with precision and the time taken to edit a project is decreased significantly.
Finishing the video means determining the color balance after the fine cut is complete. This is also know as color correction and can add to the stylistic aspects of the work. After color correction, the final stage of the workflow is sending the signal to it’s intended destination.
Overall, the editing process requires even more than I have already covered. This is what makes it a unique and tactful process that must be done with thoughtfulness.