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A-Roll Tutorials

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David Busse
A-Roll Tutorials
on Aug 1, 2017 at 4:17:37 pm
Last Edited By David Busse on Aug 1, 2017 at 4:17:50 pm

So far I've mostly done montage edits in FCP X which I've enjoyed doing, but now I'm trying out an A-Roll/B-Roll story edit and am having a hard time adjusting to the new environment. Specifically with Premiere I would start with raw interviews, duplicate the sequence, cut interviews in half, throw some footage to the side, and repeat until I had an edit of an appropriate length. So by the end I'd have 3-5 sequences leading from the current edit back to all the footage I started with in multiple steps which made it easy to retrace my steps and to find relevant footage that I may have cut somewhere along the way. I would also always have a "graveyard" of clips in the sequence after the end of my edit consisting of clips that I might want to use. This sort of reductive process has helped me produce many edits that clients love throughout my career.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but it seems FCP X doesn't really lend itself to this style of editing. With metadata I can tag the hell out of footage and select favorites, but once I'm there its hard to further boil down that footage without untagging/unfavoriting things. The magnetic timeline also doesn't lend itself to the creation of a "graveyard" at the end of a sequence/project. Is there a different way that one is "supposed" to approach boiling down A-Roll or am I missing something?

tldr: Are there any good tutorials on editing A-Roll? Not tutorials on the uses of the Q, W, E keys, tagging clips, or other technical things but more focused on how people go from 2 hours of interview down to 5 minutes using a reductive editing process. Or any tips on alternate approaches would be appreciated as well.


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