There several dozen half-written and probably twice as many fully-written but never published blog posts scattered across my computer, laptop, Google Drive and various Moleskins. They contain thoughts I’ve had on many post production-related topics that I’ve worked countless hours on. And they’re just sitting there in digital purgatory.
“It’s not good enough.”
“Someone could say that you don’t mention ______ method/shortcut/etc.”
“You aren’t really an expert. Who are you to give advice?”
I could think of endless reasons not to ship each one of them.
Today I was watching some random YouTube video from this guy another YouTube guy I routinely watch recommended. His production quality was low. He knew it. But he said something that struck a nerve with me.
As we start a new week I’m sitting here scratching my head searching for some cool, relevant post production news to write about. I could mention the Oscars and Joi McMillon being the first black female nominee for film editing. I could mention the recent Editors Retreat. I could mention any number of political issues dominating seemingly every bit of social media, news coverage or casual conversation we may have. But I’m still sitting here thinking about iMovie.
On Friday night my wife and I went out and bought her a MacBook Air. Our previously laptop-less household was in desperate need of one. $849 later we were back home signing into iCloud, iTunes and a dozen other applications that begin with ‘I’.
::Jump cut to Saturday night::
My wife, who is not an editor, edited a 6-minute movie of our trip to Vietnam. It’s complete with animated lower thirds, timewarps, blur dissolves, stock music (that I provided from my Soundstripe account) and more. It’s a legit video that most any big-time travel vlogger would be proud of. I couldn’t be more proud of her!
It’s apparent that iMovie has shortcomings, especially for us trained editors. But it can get the job done for a lot of people. Some of the biggest people on YouTube began cutting in iMovie. You may have started in iMovie. After watching her spend a few hours in iMovie it’s clear that iMovie has two jobs. First, to help amateur video creators edit their first videos. And second, to those that let it, inspire them to be creative.
My wife will never be a professional video editor. But she could very well become an inspired video creator in her free time. And iMovie seems to let her do that. The creative tools are right there and fairly easy to use. Titles automatically have (darn good-looking) transitions. Timewarps have automatic presets. Color corrections apply like filters on Instagram. Anything a new editor could want is right there.
I’m going to try my best not to rag on iMovie anymore. It’s a piece of software that we should encourage people to use as a stepping stone to more advanced NLEs if their videos require it.
I’d love to hear any thoughts you have on iMovie. Share them below in the comments section or send them to me privately here.
BTW, the other day I created an Archive Page that contains every article I’ve written and tutorial I’ve created. Please check it out if you’re new around here.
Hey, one last thing. I publish a weekly(ish) newsletter about post production news and happenings around this site. If you’d like to receive it and notifications about new blog posts go here to sign up.
I want to do a little exercise. I haven’t been shy in saying what I want out of EVF. And with what I want out of EVF I need to figure out what the heck I’m doing. What I’m doing is pretty much boiled down into this sentence that I need to complete:
I make _____________ for _____________ because _____________.
I need help completing this sentence.
What do I make?
I make many things. I write blog posts, I create YouTube videos, I build educational courses, I co-host a podcast, I build the post production community, I create products that help editors and more.
If I were to boil it down into one thing I would say I make knowledge about video editing (as a career and it’s software) easier to consume and understand.
Let’s take this and go a step deeper. There’s so much I want to make and create but if for this very moment I’m picking one thing, let’s say the thing I’m best at, is that I make learning about video editing software (mainly Avid Media Composer and Adobe After Effects) better and simpler.
So here’s where we’re at:
I make learning about video editing software better and simpler for _____________ because _____________.
Who do I make it for?
This one is easy right?! I make it for video editors!
Yes. And no. I need to go deeper. I need to define who that person is.
Who is that person? Who are you reading this?
You are an editor. You are in the industry or trying desperately to become part of it. Regardless you want to become better at what you do. You want to become more knowledgeable at your craft and quicker at it. You want to make cool videos. You want to learn so much but don’t have the time.
Okay, let’s go one step deeper. Who do I make it for?
I make it for busy video editors who want to improve their skills.
Okay. Here’s where we’re at:
I make learning about video editing software better and simpler for busy video editors who want to improve their skills because _____________.
Why do I make what I make?
Video editing is difficult. iMovie and YouTube make it sound so easy. Drag and drop. Add heart wipe. Export straight to YouTube. Boom. Done.
Oh. It’s not quite like that? Really? You have to label media properly, import, label clips, more labeling of files, create a PSD with an alpha, realize it’s the wrong blue, go back to Photoshop, re-export, re-import, yada yada yada yada and you’re only 1/10,000th of the way done.
Video editing is difficult. The software doesn’t always make sense if you don’t know what it is thinking. I want you to understand what Media Composer is doing when it is creating an MXF file. If you don’t get that then you don’t understand media management and if you don’t understand media management you won’t have a job for long.
Being skilled at your NLE makes you happier. It makes you better at what you do. And what you can do with your video editing abilities can change the world. What you can do is create beautiful art.
Okay, Josh. Go deeper. Why do I make what I make?
I make what I make because being skilled in your editing software enables you to create beautiful art.
Do I like that? Yeah? Yeah.
Putting It All Together
Let’s put it all together and see where we are at.
What do I make? I make learning about video editing software better and simpler.
Who do I make it for? I make it for busy video editors who want to improve their skills.
Why do I make what I make? I make what I make because being skilled in your editing software enables you to create beautiful art.
When I put it all together what do we get?
I make learning about video editing software better and simpler for busy video editors who want to improve their skills because being skilled in your editing software enables you to create beautiful art.
There we go. Was that that difficult?
Do you fall under this umbrella? Are you a busy video editor that wants to improve your skills so you can create beautiful art? And you want me to help you?
If so, let me know. And let me know what you’re struggling with and looking for!
I’ll see you soon with a new tutorial (because you’re a busy video editor who wants to improve your skills so you can create beautiful art)!