Netpath Memories: Editing a video tribute documentary

This is another quick post to announce the posting of my latest video, Netpath Memories. Netpath-Stratonet was a company that I had helped to create and manage from 1995 through about 2004. Anyway, I recently was able to digitize a bunch of old Hi-8 video and decided to pull together several of the Netpath-related videos into a montage. I wanted to use this as a learning experience for understanding the process.

Research

The most impressive part of this experience was the eye-opener that the research process is the most time-intensive portion of documentary production. It took weeks to pull together the video, find and prepare photos (scan and touch up), select appropriate music options, capture artifacts, and then to develop a schedule and script. The resulting 15-minute HD video can be seen at my Vimeo site.

While on the subject of developing a script, I used Adobe Story. It was interesting to work within a focused package although I was not really developing a narrative script. This package has a lot of power that I still have to tap!

The research stage proved to be critical. The fluidity of the video owes itself to my having spent time at this stage. I was also able to assemble the sequences out of order since I could determine which were the “low hanging fruit” and could be done first.

After Effects CS5

I did my first sequence with Adobe’s After Effects and I really love this application already. The opening sequence with the Star Wars-like disappearing text was composed in AE. I have been really impressed with the workflow in this product and have worked through several of the lessons posted on Adobe TV.

Sample Shot of Premiere Pro CS5 in Action

Workflow in Adobe Premiere Pro CS5

Anyone following this blog has to be aware the I have been on a quest for the “perfect” video editing program. I have been through a progression, from AVS, to Pinnacle, and to Adobe Premiere Elements 9 (which I have to admit, is really good). I also went through a frustrating stage that ultimately ended up being caused by my hardware (see this for more details).

I finally got to test Adobe’s professional offerings Premiere Pro CS5 and After Effects CS5. I urge anyone who wants to get serious about their editing to try these packages (there is a free month evaluation program).

The first thing that jumped out at me about Premiere Pro is the workflow. The concept of creating sequences is really appealing to a software engineer like me. It is similar to developing code in which you prepare classes with methods, then wire them in increasingly larger and more complex components. It really is a much more mature way to edit, in my humble opinion.

For a rank beginner, this suite will be certainly intimidating. It assumes that the person interacting with it knows what they are doing. It is like the difference between Windows Live Photo Editor and Adobe’s Photoshop CS5. The one hand-holds the user through a limited number of basic processes but the other has a more austere-looking interface but gives the editor complete control of every aspect of the process. Yet, when one graduates to the more powerful application, going back to the simpler applications is stifling!

Anyway, I can honestly say that I have found my editor-of-choice. I was able to take advantage of Adobe’s upgrade program for Photoshop and purchase the whole Production Premium edition of their CS5 Creative Suite. Even so, it is still a pretty hefty expenditure though.

Final words

I plan to write a targeted article on Adobe’s After Effects and Premiere Pro. Let me finish the Adobe Premiere Pro CS5 Classroom in a Book I have been working through and completed some other lessons first.

Anyway, I am still learning and have a long way to go. Feel free to comment on this article and/or critique the film.

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About claforet

I have been photographing since my college days. My current gear is a Nikon D-700 along with a plethora of lenses, and always tote an Olympus point-and-shoot digital camera attached to my hip. My first serious camera was a Canon EF back in the early 80s. A Canon A-1 soon followed. Since then, I also have had a Minolta Maxxum, Nikon FM, Nikon F4, and Nikon Point and Shoot in my film days. I have had and maintained a private full color and B&W lab on and off for much of that time. My photos can be found at http://www.ipernity.com/home/chrislaforet Photography and painting are my "sanity breaks" that save me from my day-to-day software development existence! I host a group in Facebook called "Painting as a Second Language" for anyone who is interested in painting as an outlet for the day-to-day pressures. Please look it up and join if you think it will meet your needs. Recently, I have also branched into the video world and am learning how to shoot video better and how to edit compelling video sequences. My learning experiences will be part of this blog and my videos can be seen at http://www.vimeo.com/claforet I live in, and photograph mostly around, North Carolina. I love traveling so there are many shots from states around us, out West, and other places. My daughter has been bitten by the photography bug too. She has spent time in a B&W lab and loves the excitement generated by just the smell of the chemicals. Maybe one day she will take over where I leave off....
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One Response to Netpath Memories: Editing a video tribute documentary

  1. Pingback: Editing with Adobe Premiere Pro CS5 | Chris' Creative Musings

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