Editing a short video project

on Monday, February 4, 2008

Editing video is really cool and easy to do if you have a reasonably modern computer. But why talk about editing when you can jump right into it? Here’s the drill:
  1. Open Windows Movie Maker (Windows) or Apple iMovie (Macintosh). If you don’t know how to open your video-editing program, or if you aren’t sure you have the latest version, check out Appendix C for information about iMovie, or Appendix E for the scoop on Windows Movie Maker. If you are prompted to create a new project by iMovie, create a new project and call it Chapter 1.
  2. Put the CD-ROM that accompanies this book in your CD-ROM drive.
  3. Choose File➪Import in iMovie or File➪Import into Collections in Windows Movie Maker.
  4. Browse to the Samples\Chapter 1 folder on the CD-ROM. In iMovie, hold down the Ô (Mac) key and click each clip once to select all three of them. In Windows Movie Maker, click the file Chapter1 to select it.
  5. Click Open (iMovie) or Import (Windows Movie Maker). Three clips appear in the browser window of your video-editing program. The figure shows iMovie, but Windows Movie Maker is fairly similar.
  6. Click-and-drag Clip 01 from the clip browser and then drop it on the storyboard.
  7. Click-and-drag Clip 02 and drop it on the storyboard just after Clip 01.
Congratulations! You’ve just made your first movie edit. You should now have two clips on the storyboard. If your Windows Movie Maker window doesn’t look quite like this, click the Show Timeline button (if you see it on-screen). Well, okay, what’s so nonlinear about that? After all, you placed one clip after another — that’s about as linear as an edit can get. You could easily imagine doing the same thing with a camcorder, a VCR, and some cables.

Aha, but here’s the kicker: What if you decide to insert Clip 03 in-between Clips 01 and 02? If you’re “editing” with a camcorder and VCR, this move suddenly becomes a horrendously tricky edit to make. But with a nonlinear editing program like iMovie or Windows Movie Maker, the edit is easy. Just click-and-drag Clip 03 and drop it right between Clips 01 and 02. The software automatically shifts Clip 02 over to make room for Clip 03. Almost as easy as shuffling cards, edits like these are the essence of nonlinear video editing