Darlington Video Makers Club

Darlington Video Makers Club
Video Capture & Editing Course
Darlington Video Makers
Welcome to our
Video Making Introductory Course
Darlington Video Makers Club
Video Capture & Editing Course
This course is designed to explain the first principles of video capture and
editing to those wishing to take their first steps in the technology. Equipment
and software involved in the process have changed rapidly in recent years
and video capture using mobile phones, tablet computers and indeed DSLR
cameras has become the norm rather than the exception.
Video editing can now be achieved to High Definition standards using any of
these capture devices along with commonly owned computers and
inexpensive software.
The course is of six weeks duration and is described in detail within this
Each evening will be in two parts, the first will present a comprehensive
introduction to the methods and equipment involved and the second will be a
hands-on session of practical work using the techniques presented earlier.
The course will be held on consecutive evenings between 7-00pm and
10-00pm starting in September at the following address:The Methodist Chapel
Haughton Green Darlington
Course cost will be £25.
Students will be enrolled as full members of the Darlington
Video Makers Club, at no extra charge, for the full club
year in which the course takes place.
This means that they may, if they choose, participate in all
club activities, including technical workshops,
competitions, film productions, entertainment and event
For more information or to apply for a place on the course
please use the ‘Contact Us’ facility on the club website.
(Address on the title page)
Darlington Video Makers Club
Video Capture & Editing Course
Week 1
Exercise 1
Selecting equipment and software
An introduction to video editing
Getting started
Week 2
Exercise 2
Shooting video - Do's and don'ts
Shooting techniques
‘Hands on’ – Video of a demonstration
Week 3
Exercise 3
Planning before shooting
Sound recording techniques
Planning & sound recording
Week 4
Exercise 4
Editing audio
Mixing audio on the video timeline
Editing audio
Week 5
Exercise 5
Lighting: natural & artificial, white balance
Filming an interview
Set up and film a short interview
Week 6
Exercise 6
Manual control of your video camera
More advanced editing
An introduction to 'Green screen' techniques
Darlington Video Makers Club
Video Capture & Editing Course
Module 1(a) Selecting equipment and software for video
capture & editing
Choosing your video capture device
For many years, the preferred device for video capture was the camcorder and
many amateur video enthusiasts still prefer to use one. In recent years
however more and more amateur and semi-professional videographers use
digital SLRs, which now have video capture modes built in.
In addition, many amateurs now use smartphones and tablets for capturing
video footage. The device used for video capture is purely a matter of personal
preference and what is important is not what was used to capture the footage
but how the video film was planned, shot and subsequently edited.
This module we will deal with the advantages and disadvantages of each type
of video capture device with particular reference to:
Image quality
Sensor size
Low light sensitivity
Zoom facility
Image stabilisation
Sound quality
The technical specification for editing computers
Most recently purchased computers should be satisfactory for editing video,
but the higher the specification the better it will work.
AVCHD is becoming more and more popular and more and more newly
purchased video recording devices record at this high level. This means at least
8Gb (preferably 16Gb) of RAM is needed and a fast processor, such as i5 or i7,
although not essential, is desirable.
Darlington Video Makers Club
Video Capture & Editing Course
Editing software
The principles of non-linear editing will be explained and the most common
editing software identified and discussed with regard to cost and performance.
Free software
 Windows Movie Maker (Windows)
 Serif's Movie Plus Starter Edition (Windows)
 Lightworks (Windows, Linux or Mac)
 Imovie (Mac)
Free software is fine for beginners, but it has limitations.
Purchased software
 Premiere Elements (sold in conjunction with Adobe Premiere Photoshop
Elements) with different versions for Mac and Windows
 Serif's Movie Plus (Windows)
 Lightworks Pro (Windows Linux or Mac) (monthly/yearly subscription or
outright purchase)
 Magix Movie Edit Pro (Windows)
 Adobe Premiere Pro CS series (now replaced by Adobe Premiere
Creative Cloud )(Mac and Windows)
 Edius (Windows)
 Avid (Mac and Windows)
 Final Cut Pro (Mac)
The approximate price range of the above, including Adobe's monthly
subscription for Creative Cloud, will be explained
The benefits of purchased software over free software will be discussed.
Darlington Video Makers Club
Video Capture & Editing Course
Module 1(b) An introduction to video editing
There are a number of entry level video editing programmes but Adobe
Premiere Elements is one of the best and perhaps the most popular. The
Adobe ‘Elements’ programme will be used throughout the course.
Using stock footage the sequential process of video editing will be
demonstrated, taking the video clips through the procedure of capture to the
computer and preparation for assembly on the time line. This demonstration
will also include discussion of project settings prior to capture.
The difference between the ‘Capture’ command and the ‘Import’ command will
be explained.
The captured clips will be collected into ‘bins’.
The clips will then be dragged to the ‘Source Window’ and trimmed before
dragging to the timeline.
The basic editing tasks, the addition of ‘transitions’, titling, commentary and
background music will be demonstrated. Simple mixing of the audio from the
stock footage, the commentary and the background music will be briefly
demonstrated but will be dealt with more fully in the module 4 session.
Module 2(a) Shooting video - Do’s and Don’ts
A self-explanatory session cataloguing the basic ground rules of good practice
in the process of capturing and editing video. Many of the points raised will be
dealt with in more detail in subsequent modules.
Module 2(b) Shooting techniques
Composing shots
Giving the subject room to move or see
Rule of Thirds
Types of shot – from extreme close up to establishing shots
Correct use of Zoom
Pan – Horizontal & Vertical
Dutch tilt
Darlington Video Makers Club
Video Capture & Editing Course
Holding the camera
Hand held
Tripods – type/cost
Bean Bags
Improvised supports:
Other supports
Dollies and Sliders
Common Shooting Errors
Crossing the line
Excessive zooming
Follow the 30 degree rule
Module 3(a) Planning before shooting
The viewers who will share your video will be impressed or otherwise in direct
proportion to the amount of planning you have invested before you pick up a
camera. In this module we will discuss what makes a good film, for example
the development of a story, or in the case of a documentary the development
of information that makes the viewer want to know more.
The storyboard and its purpose.
Planning to shoot action, rather than inaction.
What comes first - film or narrative? How to match the two together.
Optimum durations of individual clips.
Avoiding having commentary with no relevant clips.
The need to shoot more footage than necessary.
Darlington Video Makers Club
Video Capture & Editing Course
Planning cutaway shots.
Planning to shoot the same subject from different angles and heights.
Understanding what is meant by ‘crossing the line’.
The purpose and use of ‘establishing shots’, close-ups, etc.
Module 3 (b) – Sound recording techniques
In this module we will be stressing the importance of sound in a movie (which
is estimated to account for 50% of sensory input). This is often not given
sufficient attention by the filmmaker.
Types of microphone
We will explore the various types of microphone and identify the most suitable
for various types of location/shots.
 Cardioid characteristic
Built-in to camera:
 Advantages/Disadvantages
Boom (Needs extra operator – keep out of shot)
Radio (Use of multiple channels) Licencing implications. Free channel.
Sound mixing
Use of separate recorders
 How to synchronise (Clapper boards/ clapping hands at start of shot)
Darlington Video Makers Club
Video Capture & Editing Course
Recording a commentary
 Mic/devices that may be used, e.g
 camcorder
 separate voice recorder
 computer with built-in or separate mic
 Location (using room with little echo)
Adding ambience at the editing stage.
Recording entire commentary in one session so as to maintain voice/ambience
between sessions.
Choosing mono, or stereo, or surround.
 Supporting microphone on boom – (keeping it out of shot).
 Radio mics. Regulations and free bands.
We will discuss what is meant by the term ‘Signal/noise ratio’
Recording the sound of a wedding, concert or play
 Licencing limitations/costs
 Type and location of mic(s)
Using an output from the theatre/room sound system –
We will also discuss:Methods of mixing sound:
 During recording using audio mixing device
 Post production using software
Awareness of ambient noise – machinery, crowds, vehicles, weather
Darlington Video Makers Club
Video Capture & Editing Course
(Foley) sounds and sound effect libraries (some coming with editing software)
Use of software to eliminate/reduce unwanted sounds.
Module 4(a) – Editing audio
There are three sources of Audio:
1. Audio captured by the video capture device, (eg the camcorder).
2. Background Music.
 The subject of copyright and copyright free music and what
happens in the real world will be briefly discussed.
 How to Identify suitable tracks using ‘Spotify’ and then purchase
single tracks on-line.
 Copying music from existing CDs.
3. Commentary.
Audio Editing tools:
The function of dedicated audio editing software: eg Audacity,
Goldwave, etc and their cost will be discussed as will the audio capability
within video editing programmes. (Note that we will deal with mixing
the three source elements in Module 4(b)).
Editing, the three audio elements:
Audio from the camcorder is normally laid on the video editing timeline
with its accompanying video. ‘J’ and ‘L’ cuts will be briefly described.
Background music is an essential part of the story telling and can take as
long to select as the video takes to edit. It is occasionally necessary to
shorten or lengthen the material. Procedures for short changes and
cutting and splicing methods for longer change will be described.
There are various options of Microphone for commentary recording,
including the option to use the camcorder and these will be described.
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Darlington Video Makers Club
Video Capture & Editing Course
Methods involving the creation of individual commentary files, captured
to the computer, and how to place them on the video editing
programme timeline. The importance of recording at one sitting and of
just ploughing through until at least one acceptable version of each
piece of commentary is produced will be emphasised. Means of tidying
up errors in the audio recording will be described. In the final edit the
correct balance between commentary and video will be discussed
emphasising that space must be left for the video to contribute to the
Common to all three elements:
 Maximising volume in the audio editing programme to avoid
distortion when manipulating on the timeline.
 Ensuring, via audio adapters, that the source reaches the
computer as stereo even if it originates as mono.
 The importance of the ‘save selection as’ feature will be
 The ‘noise reduction’ feature will be described.
Module 4(b) – Mixing audio on the video timeline
The method of creating multiple audio time lines in the video editing
programme will be demonstrated, as will the process of transferring audio files
into the video editing programme. One such method will be demonstrated in
One option in video creation is to place the commentary on the timeline and to
build the video around it. Another is to create the video first and to build a
commentary around it. Advantages and disadvantages will be discussed.
The advantages and alternative options of ‘rubber banding’ of audio on the
timeline will be discussed.
We will present some practical advice on creating a better balanced audio
mix. For example:-
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Darlington Video Makers Club
Video Capture & Editing Course
 The use of ‘bins’ to store the commentary and the background music
clips and the advantage of numbering the commentary clips
sequentially to link to the story line.
 The importance of using ambient background sound to cover any
‘silent’ video elements (eg maps and still pictures) by ‘borrowing’
audio from the video footage.
 The value of periods without either music or commentary.
 The accurate control of audio volume using ‘Effects’ and the use of
‘Keyframes’ to achieve this.
 The importance of checking the sound level of each clip in a project
to ensure consistency.
 Ensuring that any mono sound is delivered to both speakers after
 The technique of feeding music into the start of a project (eg black
screen, music fade-in, followed by title screen).
 The reverse routine to be used at the end of a project.
 The merits and drawbacks of using headphones when editing audio.
Module 5(a) – Lighting: natural & artificial, white
We will be introducing and defining the terms:
 Colour temperature
 Auto white balance
 Manual white balance
and demonstrating how to set manual white balance using a suitable
camera/camcorder/grey card.
We will deal with the advantages of natural light and discuss the properties of
Softness and Hardness and direct sunlight/shade
The desirability of completing a shoot in one go in order to avoid the continuity
problems associated with variable shadow and light properties. This leading to
an appreciation of the ‘Golden Hours’.
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Darlington Video Makers Club
Video Capture & Editing Course
Artificial light has its own advantages and disadvantages and these will be
Sources of artificial light.
 Incandescent – colour corrected
 LED – some with a colour adjustment
Using reflectors
Types and sizes of reflectors available
Colour of reflectors – white, gold, silver (even black!)
When to use each colour?
Using walls as reflectors
Other lighting variables
Effect of surroundings on colour balance.
 Lens filters.
 Neutral Density filters and when should they be used?
 Soft focus filter – application. Improvising one with gauze.
A short introduction to post production effects including colour grading and
how to do it.
Module 5(b) – Filming an interview
Interviews are an exploration, not an examination! They can be stressful to the
interviewer, and particularly to the interviewee.
Importance of thorough preparation by the Interviewer.
The target audience for the completed interview must be carefully specified.
This will determine the questions to be asked, and the level of detail of
answers sought.
The person to be interviewed must be fully researched and his/her areas of
specialist knowledge identified. The importance of warm-up questions such as
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Darlington Video Makers Club
Video Capture & Editing Course
a brief introduction to explain who he/she is, where born, education, family,
etc. This then leads to the main topic of the interview, the specialist area of
knowledge or interest of the interviewee.
A prepared list of questions to be asked is essential.
The questions will cover everything the interviewer/audience wants to know.
The interviewee should be aware of the questions in advance of the interview
so that his/her thoughts can be marshalled, and that there are no surprises "no go" areas should be identified.
We will discuss the number of cameras required: at least two for single
interview, more if possible, particularly where more than one person is being
interviewed. Camera position is crucial and will be fully discussed.
Typical camera positions might be: one concentrating on subject's head and shoulders
 one concentrating on interviewer's head and shoulders
 If additional cameras available, then shots of both interviewer and
interviewee from different angles and at different ranges
The strengths and weaknesses of various types of audio recording; in-camera
mic, external camera mic, radio mic, etc.
Research before the interview is essential: who is the interviewee?
 why is he/she being interviewed?
 what are his/her areas of specialist knowledge/ interest?
Module 6(a) Manual control of your video camera
Most camcorders and SLRs allow filming in three modes of operation
1. Fully automatic
2. Semi-automatic (sometimes called ‘Scene Modes’)
3. Full manual control
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Darlington Video Makers Club
Video Capture & Editing Course
Fully auto and semi auto operation
For most purposes, and certainly for beginners, it is best to use 1 or 2 above. It
is, however, better to know how to take full control of your video camera and
when this should be done.
The use of semi-automatic presets will be explained e.g. – ‘Sports’, Portrait,
Soft skin, Spotlight, Snow, Beach, Sunset, Scenery, Fireworks, Night scenery,
Low light, Night portrait.
Manual mode
The circumstances when manual mode should be used will be discussed.
The following terms will be explained:
1. Aperture (definition of ‘f’ number). The relationship between
aperture and depth of field will be explained
2. Shutter speed
3. Gain/Sensor sensitivity (c.f. ISO in still cameras)
4. White balance
5. Focus
6. Audio gain
The meaning of ‘exposure’ will be explained in more detail with examples of
under and over-exposure.
The exposure triangle (Shutter speed/aperture/gain) will be described and the
inter-dependency of these settings explained.
The term ‘correctly exposed’ will be explained and the circumstances when an
auto system can give incorrect exposure will be described.
The facilities offered in most video cameras to assess correct exposure (e.g.
histograms, zebra stripes, spotmeter reading) will be explained
The term ‘exposure/backlight compensation’ will be described.
Setting ‘white balance’ manually will be demonstrated, including the use of
white or grey card.
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Darlington Video Makers Club
Video Capture & Editing Course
Circumstances occasionally arise where automatic focus should not be used.
The term ‘focus hunting’ will be investigated.
Typical problems such as off-centre main subject, foreground items in field of
view etc will be discussed.
We will explain how to ‘pull focus’ and when the technique should be used,
also the value of ‘face recognition’ and when it might be useful.
The ‘focus assist’ features of a camcorder and SLR video camera will be
The concept of ‘video gain’ and the relationship between shutter speed and
smoothness of the perceived moving image will be analysed.
The use of neutral density filters will be explained, particularly their use in
controlling exposure and depth of field.
Auto and manual control of audio gain will be explained, including their
Module 6(b) – More advanced editing
Arranging clips on the timeline
Assembling captured files in bins then assembling a rough cut on the timeline.
Trimming individual clips on the timeline using rolling edit tools etc.
Keeping clips short to add interest and pace to the movie.
Adding a title and credits using templates and changing the title’s text format
so that it can be amended and used as a user-defined template.
Creating static and rolling and scrolling titles.
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Darlington Video Makers Club
Video Capture & Editing Course
Adding ‘Effects’
 To a sample clip
 To an entire sequence.
The following ‘Effects’ will be demonstrated.
 Colour balance
 Black & white conversion
 Image stabilisation
 Contrast & brightness
 'Old Film' effect
 Colour balance
The use of ‘key frames’ when varying an effect during a single clip will be
Cropping, scaling and zooming a clip at the editing stage will be demonstrated.
The term ‘Colour Grading’ will be explained with examples of graded
We will briefly address sound effects (foley) and show how to mix background
music, ambient sound and commentary.
Methods of uncoupling video and sound on the timeline to enable a J-cut and
L-cuts to be created will be explained.
Editing programmes offer many novelty transitions but these should be
avoided and fade-to/from-black, cross fades and simple cuts are all that are
usually needed.
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Darlington Video Makers Club
Video Capture & Editing Course
Exporting Movie
The final stage of the editing process involves exporting a movie to create a
DVD or other media format. The most common procedures will be outlined
including how to upload a movie to Vimeo or YouTube.
The complex world of video file formats will be addressed to the point where
all the common media formats may be produced.
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