At some point in your life, you must choose what you want as your career. For some, that point comes a bit earlier, for some a bit later, and yet for some, it might come multiple times.
If you’ve chosen video editing as your career, don’t worry, it’s a great choice! The good news is that there’s no structure or set of rules you absolutely have to follow to become an editor. Creative learning can take any path, and video editing is no different.
What you need other than the skill set is an understanding of the steps you need to take to excel professionally, whether you choose to be a video editor or a motion graphics expert. It’s essential to get a clear picture of the industry, job requirements, and the best tool/software to land a good opportunity.
What An Editor Does
An editor’s job is to create a story by cutting and arranging the video content that he has been given to them. A lot of editors incorporate texts and graphics to make sure the end product is complete. Most editors handle stuff that comes in post-production, but sometimes they can come up with storyboards or even scripts to make sure the content feels whole. This might seem like it’s not part of the job description, but it really is. An editor should be able to see the story in the content that’s provided to them, so naturally, they are also able to build a narrative beforehand that would ultimately help in making things cohesive. At the end of the day, an editor’s goal is to take raw footage and turn it into a video that’s complete in its story and reflects the brand’s image.
What an editor does daily can vary from editor to editor. Some opt for a full-time opportunity, while some like to go the freelancing route. While both paths have their pros and cons, in the end, it really depends on what you want out of your career and how much time you want to put in.
How To Start the Journey
Obviously, you need a way in when you’re looking to start your professional career. There are some more or less easy steps that you should follow and hopefully before you know it, you’ll already be deep in the game. Just read on and you’ll be good to go.
Master Editing Softwares
Unlike the machine you’re going to choose, whichever software you select for editing videos is going to be the one that you’re going to use for a very long time. As you grow as an editor, you are going to keep updating your machine, but you will have your editing software as your constant. Which is a good thing because that means you’ll not only get better but faster as well.
While you will primarily be working on one main software like Adobe Premiere or Final Cut Pro, you should also check out the following, because they’ll certainly come in handy if you learn them as well.
- Adobe After Effects
- Adobe Audition
- Adobe Photoshop
Learn the Terminology
If you’re even in a position where you need to communicate what you’re doing while working on a project, you should be aware of the proper terms so everyone understands you and is on the same page as you. So while you’re making efforts to learn to edit, learn the terminology to follow along more easily and for the sake of future-proofing as well.
Some of the most common video editing terms are:
- Cut Aways
- Split Ends
- Bit Rate
- Aspect Ratio
- Frame Rate
Put Yourself Out There
What this means is that you should make a website as your portfolio and display your best work there. Make sure you post a variety of content on there that showcases your different skills as a video editor. For example, if you can do some 3D modeling, post a video that has 3D models in it and mention in its description that all 3D models in that video were done by you.
You can play a lot with this one. For the best results though, you should check out other editors’ websites and take some inspiration.
While you go ahead and start taking in projects, you should know that your clients will be expecting projects at a certain time. Delays always give a bad impression. When you’re just starting out, you should be even more cautious about everything. So a bad impression here is a big NO, and for what? Just because you couldn’t do it in time? Download a task management app and never disappoint a client.
There’s definitely a lot more that you can do, and probably while taking different approaches. As I mentioned in the beginning, there’s no one path to becoming a video editor, you just have to find your own way. Hope this helps.