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Editing time for wedding videos

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Nigel Sheppard
Editing time for wedding videos
on Aug 5, 2014 at 9:25:57 am

Hi all, apologies if I'm duplicating another thread here. I'm interested in gaining advice from those more experienced than me in the editing of wedding videos. I started a videography business at the start of the year and have so far filmed 6 weddings (much more than I anticipated in my first year). I'm finding that editing them is taking me weeks, and in some cases, months to do, which is causing the jobs to stack up and I would rather not have couples chasing me for their finished DVD's. Having looked on other forums, it seems most videographers are bashing them out in around 15-20 hours editing time. How is this possible in such short time?

This is my usual workflow, so if someone could point out where I'm going wrong, I'd be eternally grateful:

Transfer clips (from 3/4 DSLR's) and audio files (from Tascam DR40 w/ shotgun mic & Tascam DR05 w/ lav mic) from SD cards to PC;
Synchronise audio and video in PP;
Cut together new sequences for bride preparations, ceremony, reception, disco etc in PP;
Stabilise and colour grade each clip in AE;
Export each AE comp into a lossless AVI file using Media Encoder, and replace unstabilised & ungraded clips in PP sequnce with new AVI clip.
Put all completed sequences into one final sequence and export using ME into a final AVI;
Convert to DVD using VSO ConvertXtoDVD & burn.

Am I doing things in an unnecessarily long way? I'd love to take on more work but I just can't keep up with what I'm doing now. If I can edit one wedding per week I'd be a very happy man. Advice would be appreciated.


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Mark Suszko
Re: Editing time for wedding videos
on Aug 5, 2014 at 2:40:47 pm

Don't do any audio sweetening, color grading, stabilization, or other effects work until you have edited the rough cut. You start with cuts and dissolves only. You can probably save time not making submasters first. Working to a standardized template can help. Skim more, use the JKL keys to more quickly find cut points. Working in a more linear narrative is simpler than going all Tarantino on the timeline.

The rest boils down to being ruthless and reductionist.

There are two modes of editing: additive, where you build up the story by adding pieces, like lumps of clay to a statue. And there's subtractive; where you have a block of stone and chip away everything that is not the statue. I make my first pass additive, which takes a lot of time; then everything after that stage is subtractive, cutting away the imperfect, the redundant, the irrelevant. Be brutal, kill off lovely shots unless they move the story along.


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Mark Suszko
Re: Editing time for wedding videos
on Aug 5, 2014 at 4:10:36 pm

And yeah, a week or less should be pretty standard. It's not "Apocalypse Now, Redux", after all. Many wedding shooters can put together a short featurette on a same day or next morning basis, then do the main edit over the next several days.


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