Video editing is becoming increasingly popular as more people turn to video content for entertainment, advertising, marketing, blogging, or other means of communicating ideas. Videos that are shot every day for Instagram, Twitter or Tik Tok are increasingly subject to editing. And more and more people want to learn how to edit videos at a basic level. Those just starting with video editing need a lot to learn about the process and the tools available.
Today, on the Internet, you can find many video lessons, online courses and tutorials that teach the basics of video editing.
For beginners, this is a great way to gain experience in owning the program and learning the basics of editing (both theory and practice). All this knowledge can be bought or obtained for free.
But what on paid, what on free platforms does not talk about the important details that will make you not just an amateur video editor, but a real video editor who can create truly high-quality content. Even for yourself. Even if it’s just for personal use. There must be quality!
For beginners video editing due to a large number of tools and their incorrect use can become a real hell. And this discourages the desire to continue doing this. Therefore, learning the basics correctly is the key to success and encouragement for anyone who begins to edit videos.
Now let’s move on to the things that not many people discuss, which are very useful for video editing beginners. These things will help you learn how to edit videos faster, qualitatively, and with taste.
Read previous: “A Beginner’s Video Editing Guide: Proper Preparation of Materials“
A topic that few people talk about in their courses and tutorials. And it’s terrible! Because hotkeys make your work 85% more productive(!), and therefore save your time and allow you to devote more time to the creative component.
Hotkeys are used to quickly access certain tools and other features that can help speed up the video editing process. This is an important component that you need to get used to from the very beginning of your studies.
When it comes to mastering hotkeys video editing for beginners, practice makes perfect. It’s important to take your time learning how the different functions work so you can become proficient with the program you are using.
You should also practice using the hotkey combinations in different situations and scenarios until they are used automatically (become second nature). This will help you work faster and more efficiently during your video editing.
Premiere Pro has its own set of hotkeys (and their combinations) that work by default. Knowing which hotkeys to use is essential when it comes to video editing for beginners.
Here are some suggestions:
- Cut – Ctrl + X/Cmd + X
- Copy – Ctrl + C/Cmd + C
- Paste – Ctrl + V/Cmd + V
- Select All – Ctrl + A/Cmd + A
- Clear – Delete/Forward Delete
- Zoom In – “=”
- Zoom Out – “-“
- All the previous
- Create a new Sequence – Ctrl + N/Cmd + N
- Export Media – Ctrl + M/Cmd + M
- Text – Ctrl + T/Cmd + T
- Add Edit – Ctrl + K/Cmd + K
- Enable – Shift + E/Shift + Cmd + E
- All the previous
- Nest – need to configure the hotkey yourself
- Audio Gain – G
- Speed/Duration – Ctrl + R/Cmd + R
- Render and Replace – need to configure the hotkey yourself
Use captions and notes
While working, a video editor comes up with many ideas that can then be implemented. It is difficult to keep everything in mind, or they can be forgotten during work.
There are many processes to focus on during video editing, so it is important not to miss anything. To do this, advanced editors use notes and signatures both in the program itself and in others (for example, with the help of stickers, project notebook, etc.).
For example, during work, an idea may appear where certain frames are used. Now there is no way to implement this idea, but in order not to forget, you can write on top of these frames with credits what needs to be done. This will allow you to remember the idea when you return to those frames. You can also keep a project notebook (in electronic or paper form), where all the nuances and ideas that can be implemented during installation will be recorded.
For a beginner during video editing, this can be a real lifesaver and help not to get lost while working.
Video editing is an important and professional skill that requires a lot of attention to detail. Marking files in the timeline is an essential part of the process, and should not be overlooked. A video editing beginner will find it very useful to use file tagging. In this way, it will be easy to navigate both in the project window and on the timeline itself.
A good way to make sure that you mark files correctly is by labeling them according to their content. Such as all files of the main camera (that is, those tied to the audio sequence) will be marked with a certain color (for example, purple), and all auxiliary frames – with another (for example, yellow). Marking files allows for quick and easy access to specific frames or clips in a video for later use. It also makes it easier to keep track of where certain elements are located in the timeline. When done properly, marking files can save time when it comes to finding what you need quickly during the editing process.
You can customize the colors you want to make it convenient for you. Fortunately, there are enough of them to mark projects of any size.
You can also set each color to hotkeys, which will simplify and speed up the process of labeling files (for example, I have configured markings on the keys from 1 to 9, as well as the same numbers in combination with Cmd; I work on a Mac).
Many video editing software comes with pre-made templates that you can use to speed up your editing process. These templates can include titles, transitions, and other elements that you can customize to fit your video’s style and content.
You can also customize the templates yourself. This will allow you not to spend time setting up effects, transitions, and animations on each frame, but to use several at once frames, focusing more on editing the video itself.
For a beginner, templates can be useful, because they can be found and downloaded from the Internet.
Save multiple versions
For every beginner in video editing, it is important to know the moments that will save him from losing materials and already edited video. When working with various programs, the editor sooner or later encounters software errors that crash the program. This is a very unpleasant moment that can inevitably destroy all work within a few hours. For this, skillful editors configure the auto-save of the project. This will allow you to insure yourself and be protected from sudden emergency shutdowns.
Also, save multiple versions of your video as you work on it. This will allow you to go back and make changes if needed, without losing your progress. Experience shows that decisions taken now can turn out to be bad over time. This applies to both clients and video editors themselves. And this especially applies to beginners who have just started editing videos. It takes a lot of time to constantly change the video montage, so it’s important to know solutions to help with this. Keeping intermediate versions and making backup copies of already ready ones is the best solution. Just create a folder in the project where the backup sequences will be. This will allow you to quickly return to them when the need arises.
Optimize for different platforms
Understanding video encoding formats will allow you to export your projects correctly.
There are tons of tutorials that show you the various settings for exporting. But few people explain which settings are necessary for you! After all, videos for TikTok and videos for YouTube will have different settings! And there are others for Instagram! So what settings do you need?
If we are talking about work for clients, then usually the format of the finished product is discussed. It can be Full HD, 4K, 8K; 24, 25, 30 FPS, or even 60 FPS; with black bars 1.85, 2.35, 2.75, or without them at all.
And if you are a beginner video editor, and you edit videos for yourself, then you need to determine for yourself the format that will be suitable for you.
Here are the most common settings for exporting videos:
- FPS – 24 or 25 or 30 (60 does not make any sense)
- Format – H264 (MP4) or QuickTime (MOV)
- Ratio – any is possible (most often – 16:9 (1920 x 1080)
- Bitrate – from 5 to 25
For Instagram (story):
- FPS – 24 or 25
- Format – MP4, MOV
- Ratio – 9:16 (1080 x 1920)
- Bitrate – from 5 to 10
For Tik Tok:
- FPS – 24 or 25
- Format – H264 (MP4)
- Ratio – 9:16 (1080 x 1920)
- Bitrate – from 5 to 10
Keep it simple
A beginner in video editing can be tempted to use every transition, animation, text, and effect available. Overusing these elements can quickly make your video feel cluttered and overwhelming. It’s important to understand that the number of transitions and effects does not affect the quality of the video.
Instead, focus on using the techniques that best serve your story and message. The best solution would be to use one or two varieties that can emphasize your video.
A beginner needs to learn to feel what exactly needs to be used in order for his idea to be understood. To do this, you can make several video options using different effects and transitions. And with the addition of animation or text. By comparing different versions of your work, you can choose the one that conveys the idea best. This will allow you to practice different techniques.
Learning video editing for beginners should be as easy and engaging as possible. And also effective. Therefore, you should not be lazy and limit yourself only to basic knowledge. By putting in a little more effort and practice, you invest your efforts in the speed and quality of your future works.
And even if you don’t plan to become a professional video editor, with these skills, your videos will appeal to any audience. Because everything will be done competently, efficiently, and most importantly – qualitatively!