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The perfect workflow ...

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Simon Ubsdell
The perfect workflow ...
on Feb 11, 2017 at 2:41:48 pm

... is the perfect workflow for the job that you are doing at any one time, and when it's just right, it's very hard to beat.

Over the last couple of days I have been working on a fashion merchandising promo for "a major studio", which involved not just making it look super sexy, but also a lot of magazine-level retouching, by which I mean fine detail VFX work.

The initial edit was done in Premiere but I took it into Resolve and worked on it from there. Using Fusion Connect to send clips to Fusion for the retouching while at the same time having the power of Resolve grading, and the functionality of the Resolve editing timeline with its very powerful media relinking, was quite simply the best of all possible worlds. At least for me.

Bouncing seamlessly back and forth between the Fusion comp and the Resolve grade was an extremely satisfying, productive and efficient workflow. The power, simplicity and versatility of Fusion Connect is very considerable and combined with Resolve's world-class grading is a very hard act to beat.

Of course, I could have worked in Premiere and used After Effects for the retouching, but Fusion's node-based workflow is simply miles ahead in terms of efficiency for this kind of thing. And although Lumetri is an increasingly capable option for grading, I doubt that anyone thinks it's any sort of competition for Resolve.

I could also have worked in the FCP X ecosystem and indeed I demo-ed a couple of the shots using Motion, but though I yield to no-one in my support for Motion, I can't really pretend that it's the best option for complex work like this. (Although in many respects it has advantages over After Effects ...) However, this would still have required a round-trip to Resolve - I doubt that anyone will claim that FCP X has the capability to perform top-end grading either natively or with plug-ins.

I know some people attempt this kind of thing in Media Composer - as far as I'm concerned, life is too short to waste time with that kind of workflow.

Obviously there are other comparable solutions like Smoke, Mistika, Nuke Studio and more. In the past, I used to use AVID DS quite successfully for this kind of work too. I wonder if any of them can compete with my workflow above when you factor in the overwhelming advantage of the Resolve grading suite.

Suffice it to say, that on this particular job, everything just "felt right" and I couldn't imagine it working better in any other environment.

All of which is to say that when a workflow solution comes together with the right project, it is indeed the perfect workflow.

By the same token, the same workflow with the wrong project is a disaster.

One of the motifs that keeps this fascinating forum alive is the question of what's the best workflow/toolset, with the implicit assumption that one workflow/toolset is capable of delivering perfection for every kind of job.

I would be interested to hear more about how a particular workflow is suited to a particular task rather than generalised claims (which are great fun, of course) about the overall superiority of one option over another.

Simon Ubsdell
tokyo productions
hawaiki


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Bill Davis
Re: The perfect workflow ...
on Feb 11, 2017 at 8:39:42 pm
Last Edited By Bill Davis on Feb 11, 2017 at 8:52:13 pm

Interesting, but I kinda wonder what this has to do with FCP X Debates? (Not that THAT has ever stoped a post here! ; )

Nobody I know uses X as the primary tool for " a lot of magazine-level retouching, by which I mean fine detail VFX work."

It's an NLE. As is Premiere Pro.

You indicate that both those tools would conceivably have done just fine cutting the initial work - and we know that both can feed Resolve perfectly well.

So what's the topic here, and is it relevant to "FCP X the Debates?"

You don't seem to be advocating that X is a poor first stop on such a workflow. Nor that Premiere Pro adds some magic before you get to Resolve - or is that it, Simon? Is there step you had trouble with that caused you to originate on Premiere Pro beyond happenstance, preference, or client request? Is there a flaw we should know about?

If not, wouldn't this be a better discussion for a different forum? Or are you just seeing this as the "central hub" of NLE debate on the Cow?Which is fine. But I'm not sure I'm understanding why this is particularly story is particularly relevant to this particular Forum?

Can you help me out in understanding the reasoning? Thanks.

Addendum: I just checked that there are specific forums here for BlackMagic General, BlackMagic Fusion, Adobe Premiere Pro, Adobe After Effects (Expressions AND Techniques) and Apple Motion.
Yet this one, the one that is arguably LEAST commented relevant to your post - is the one where you posted it.
Seems a bit strange. Is it just for the eyeballs? If so, fine. But it just seems a bit odd to post it to the forum MOST concerned with the software you discuss the least.

FWIW.

Creator of XinTwo - http://www.xintwo.com
The shortest path to FCP X mastery.


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Simon Ubsdell
Re: The perfect workflow ...
on Feb 11, 2017 at 8:52:57 pm

[Bill Davis] "Can you help me out in understanding the reasoning?"

My thought was simply, as I stated right at the outset, that "the perfect workflow" is the perfect workflow for the job that you are doing at any one particular time. Which may not be the perfect workflow at other times.

As such, I thought this fed into many of the themes that have been discussed here over the years.

For once, it was not meant as a polemic of any kind. Nor as any form of brand promotion.

Simon Ubsdell
tokyo productions
hawaiki


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Oliver Peters
Re: The perfect workflow ...
on Feb 11, 2017 at 10:31:31 pm

We've discussed plenty of workflow strategies here in the past that haven't always been FCPX-centric.

- Oliver

Oliver Peters Post Production Services, LLC
Orlando, FL
http://www.oliverpeters.com


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Michael Gissing
Re: The perfect workflow ...
on Feb 11, 2017 at 10:53:54 pm

Thanks Simon. I really must wrap my head around Fusion and the connect function. As my workflow is to take edits from all NLEs into Resolve to finish this is totally relevant.

Totally appropriate to this forum Bill. File it under "Or Not" if you remember the original title for this forum. Would you prefer this forum to just morph into the FCPX ONLY Debates? How boring.


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Shane Ross
Re: The perfect workflow ...
on Feb 11, 2017 at 11:18:03 pm

I think that it fits here FINE. Goes along with the "there isn't one NLE that's best for everything," motto. Because yes, there are those who will state, unequivocally, that FCX is the end all and be all of NLE's...and that the rest are horribly antiquated and anyone who uses them is a dinosaur. This forum is the place to discuss...debate...why FCX is the best, or not the best, for each given post workflow. And this post was perfectly in line with "Well, FCX and Motion might have been fine, but really, the workflow between Resolve and Fusion was perfect for what I needed to do.

I think we all agree that different post workflows require different editing apps...Simon was pointing out "This is why I used this, and not X."

Shane
Little Frog Post
Read my blog, Little Frog in High Def


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Bill Davis
Re: The perfect workflow ...
on Feb 11, 2017 at 11:58:17 pm

No problem.

Clearly the readers in the other forums I listed must not care about seeing the posts that involve their tools.

Just the folks here.

So carry on.

; )

Creator of XinTwo - http://www.xintwo.com
The shortest path to FCP X mastery.


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Michael Gissing
Re: The perfect workflow ...
on Feb 12, 2017 at 1:06:52 am

[Bill Davis] "Clearly the readers in the other forums I listed must not care about seeing the posts that involve their tools. Just the folks here."

As Tim has pointed out numerous times this is one of the most popular and influential forums at the Cow. To emasculate it into a boring X love fest without debate is a small minded tedious idea. Don't forget that debate requires questions and alternatives.


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Shane Ross
Re: The perfect workflow ...
on Feb 12, 2017 at 3:58:47 am

Well, this is THE DEBATE forum. The other ones are all tech help, even the FCX TECHNIQUES one. Those are the help ones, this is the DEBATE one.

Shane
Little Frog Post
Read my blog, Little Frog in High Def


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Scott Witthaus
Re: The perfect workflow ...
on Feb 14, 2017 at 7:26:50 pm

[Shane Ross] "Well, this is THE DEBATE forum."

So, can we have a "Premiere CC 2017 - The Debate" forum too?

Scott Witthaus
Senior Editor/Post Production Supervisor
1708 Inc./Editorial
Professor, VCU Brandcenter


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Andrew Kimery
Re: The perfect workflow ...
on Feb 14, 2017 at 7:32:11 pm

[Scott Witthaus] "So, can we have a "Premiere CC 2017 - The Debate" forum too?"

Only if we get a debate forum to debate about if the debates in the debate forums are being properly debated... or not.


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Scott Witthaus
Re: The perfect workflow ...
on Feb 14, 2017 at 7:33:47 pm

[Andrew Kimery] "Only if we get a debate forum to debate about if the debates in the debate forums are being properly debated... or not"

Could not have said it any better. But we can debate that too.

Scott Witthaus
Senior Editor/Post Production Supervisor
1708 Inc./Editorial
Professor, VCU Brandcenter


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Andrew Kimery
Re: The perfect workflow ...
on Feb 14, 2017 at 7:44:49 pm

[Scott Witthaus] "Could not have said it any better. But we can debate that too."

Of course... but only in it's own forum. ;)


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Bill Davis
Re: The perfect workflow ...
on Feb 15, 2017 at 12:28:02 am

[Scott Witthaus] "So, can we have a "Premiere CC 2017 - The Debate" forum too?"

NO.

Everybody KNOWS that the fundamental problem across the entire editing industry was that FCP X wasn't FCP 8.

Premiere is FCP 8. Period. End of discussion. But better. And super cheap. (For a while, anyway) That's the DEFAULT mode of all editing. Has been for 30 years. So shut up.

Nobody wanted to move on. NOBODY, I tell you. Moving on is HARD so only stupid kids and the mentally deranged would EVER want to do that.

(Screaming: TEACKS WERE GOOD ENOUGH FOR TRAINS AND THEY'RE DAMN WELL GOOD ENOUGH FOR NLE EDITORS, DAMMIT! - NOW GO AWAY!!!)

(I feel better now)

; )

Creator of XinTwo - http://www.xintwo.com
The shortest path to FCP X mastery.


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Oliver Peters
Re: The perfect workflow ...
on Feb 15, 2017 at 12:30:11 am

[Bill Davis] "Nobody wanted to move on. NOBODY, I tell you. Moving on is HARD so only stupid kids and the mentally deranged would EVER want to do that."

Are channeling your inner Bob Zelin?

- Oliver

Oliver Peters Post Production Services, LLC
Orlando, FL
http://www.oliverpeters.com


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Bill Davis
Re: The perfect workflow ...
on Feb 15, 2017 at 12:31:56 am

[Oliver Peters] "Are channeling your inner Bob Zelin?"

Yes.

But without the great hair.

😀

Creator of XinTwo - http://www.xintwo.com
The shortest path to FCP X mastery.


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Scott Witthaus
Re: The perfect workflow ...
on Feb 11, 2017 at 11:59:52 pm

Time to change the forum name again....

Scott Witthaus
Senior Editor/Post Production Supervisor
1708 Inc./Editorial
Professor, VCU Brandcenter


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Tim Wilson
Re: The perfect workflow ...
on Feb 16, 2017 at 5:01:26 am

[Scott Witthaus] "Time to change the forum name again...."

Back to the name I said we'd keep because, while clumsy, was actually accurate but people kept insisting was inappropriate -- THAT name?😂


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Scott Witthaus
Re: The perfect workflow ...
on Feb 16, 2017 at 11:38:49 am

[Tim Wilson] "THAT name?😂"

Well, maybe not exactly. On it's Community Forums, Avid has a section called "General Discussion and Off Topic". Perhaps the Cow could change the name of this forum to "General Debates and Random Thoughts"?

Scott Witthaus
Senior Editor/Post Production Supervisor
1708 Inc./Editorial
Professor, VCU Brandcenter


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Brett Sherman
Re: The perfect workflow ...
on Feb 14, 2017 at 1:54:45 pm

[Shane Ross] "Because yes, there are those who will state, unequivocally, that FCX is the end all and be all of NLE's...and that the rest are horribly antiquated and anyone who uses them is a dinosaur."

I don't know that this has ever actually happened - certainly not for years. And on the flip side, the "FCP X is the worst thing ever, and professionals don't use it" posts have also largely disappeared. Thank God.

The only reference to the dinosaur trope I've seen is people not using FCP X complaining about being labeled "dinosaurs." Bill's slightly aggressive boosterism of FCP X aside, I think pretty much all the FCP X users on this forum are very reasonable and cognizant of the pros and cons of FCP X related to different workflows.

Can we just stop using this canard?

--------------------------
Brett Sherman
One Man Band (If it's video related I'll do it!)
I work for an institution that probably does not want to be associated with my babblings here.


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Simon Ubsdell
Re: The perfect workflow ...
on Feb 12, 2017 at 8:52:15 pm

[Michael Gissing] "I really must wrap my head around Fusion and the connect function. As my workflow is to take edits from all NLEs into Resolve to finish this is totally relevant. "

As I don't need to tell you, Resolve is a really powerful compositing tool in its own right, so it's often that one tries to build solutions there, if that's where one feels most comfortable.

But Fusion Connect really does open up a vastly wider world of possibilities, and solutions that are a bit of a fudge in Resolve can often be implemented a lot more precisely and faster in Fusion.

But really it's the interplay of the two that is so appealing to me for jobs like this - two world-class toolsets that talk to each other seamlessly and efficiently. What's not to like?

Simon Ubsdell
tokyo productions
hawaiki


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Oliver Peters
Re: The perfect workflow ...
on Feb 12, 2017 at 9:15:49 pm

[Simon Ubsdell] "But Fusion Connect really does open up a vastly wider world of possibilities, and solutions that are a bit of a fudge in Resolve can often be implemented a lot more precisely and faster in Fusion."

Ironically Apple had an inkling of this with Color, which included a node-based module, albeit for color effects and not compositing. Still... I guess the Aussie programmers are just a bit smarter ☺

- Oliver

Oliver Peters Post Production Services, LLC
Orlando, FL
http://www.oliverpeters.com


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Simon Ubsdell
Re: The perfect workflow ...
on Feb 12, 2017 at 9:27:42 pm

[Oliver Peters] "Ironically Apple had an inkling of this with Color"

And let's not forget that Legacy FCP had a very useful "Send to Shake" option which took us into very similar territory to Fusion Connect ...

Ah, the things that might have been.

Simon Ubsdell
tokyo productions
hawaiki


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andy patterson
Re: The perfect workflow ...
on Feb 12, 2017 at 5:17:49 am

I think the original post fits in OK. Some people may not be aware of all the options.


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Charlie Austin
Re: The perfect workflow ...
on Feb 12, 2017 at 8:35:45 am

[Simon Ubsdell] "Using Fusion Connect to send clips to Fusion for the retouching while at the same time having the power of Resolve grading, and the functionality of the Resolve editing timeline with its very powerful media relinking, was quite simply the best of all possible worlds."

Fusion sounds very nice. Great... now I have to learn another app. 😉

-------------------------------------------------------------

~ My FCPX Babbling blog ~
~"It is a poor craftsman who blames his tools."~
~I still need to play Track Tetris sometimes. An old game that you can never win~
~"The function you just attempted is not yet implemented"~


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Ronny Courtens
Re: The perfect workflow ...
on Feb 12, 2017 at 10:18:54 am

Excellent write-up, Simon. And I agree that, for this particular job, you seem to have found the perfect workflow. I don't think that FCP X and Motion were ever intended to cater for niche grading or restoration workflows, but for a much larger market instead. Good to hear that Fusion and Resolve can finally fill that gap. The Apple ProApps and BM software seem indeed to be growing into perfectly complementary solutions.

- Ronny


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Steve Connor
Re: The perfect workflow ...
on Feb 12, 2017 at 1:32:02 pm

Very suitable and interesting post for this forum Simon, despite Bill's misgivings.


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Bill Davis
Re: The perfect workflow ...
on Feb 12, 2017 at 10:02:47 pm

For the record, I've posted my share of arguably "off topic" stuff here as well.

Something OT was not my concern. That's par for the course.

Something primarily about a topic or topics where there are specific cow forums that seem to be built precisely FOR people interested in those topics - posted ONLY here was what seemed odd.

It's like posting notices about an upcoming Mass exclusively in a neighborhood Synagogue.

Now if the Synagogue has TONS of attendees and the Church has generally poor attendance, maybe it makes more sense?

; )

FWIW.

Creator of XinTwo - http://www.xintwo.com
The shortest path to FCP X mastery.


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Oliver Peters
Re: The perfect workflow ...
on Feb 12, 2017 at 10:31:59 pm

[Bill Davis] "Something primarily about a topic or topics where there are specific cow forums that seem to be built precisely FOR people interested in those topics - posted ONLY here was what seemed odd. "

I think this tends to fall under the umbrella of offline-online. For many, FCPX (and Media Composer and Premiere Pro) are nothing more than creative cutting tools (offline editing) - not finishing tools (online editing). That's where Resolve comes into the picture. Coupling that with VFX in Fusion makes a pretty complete picture. It's what Smoke on the Mac wanted to be, though at its price and steep learning curve didn't really achieve. And so Resolve/Fusion seem to fit quite nicely into a broader FCPX ecosystem.

- Oliver

Oliver Peters Post Production Services, LLC
Orlando, FL
http://www.oliverpeters.com


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Oliver Peters
Re: The perfect workflow ...
on Feb 12, 2017 at 10:34:39 pm

PS - and FWIW Simon has also posted a number of helpful tips and tutorials over in the BMD Fusion forum.

- Oliver

Oliver Peters Post Production Services, LLC
Orlando, FL
http://www.oliverpeters.com


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Tony West
Re: The perfect workflow ...
on Feb 13, 2017 at 5:08:51 am

[Bill Davis] "there are specific cow forums that seem to be built precisely FOR people interested in those topics"

There's hardly anybody in the fusion forum though Bill. Have you seen it? It's like a ghost town.

Replies 0 0 0 1 0 0 2 0

If you want people to see it, the X forum is where it's popp'n : )


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Simon Ubsdell
Re: The perfect workflow ...
on Feb 13, 2017 at 8:46:06 pm

[Tony West] "There's hardly anybody in the fusion forum though"

Apart from me and I think two or three others. I do try to reply to most questions whenever I have the time.

Simon Ubsdell
tokyo productions
hawaiki


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Simon Ubsdell
Re: The perfect workflow ...
on Feb 12, 2017 at 8:32:17 pm

Thanks, Ronny (and others), for your comments.

One of the things I was highlighting was that increasingly a typical workflow extends beyond the NLE - quite a long way beyond the NLE.

I think, for a lot of us, simply being an editor sitting in front of a closed-system NLE is less and less of an option as the audio-visual world we have to service gets more and more complex and diverse.

And that's why, for many, it's the overall ecosystem (and its associated interchange issues/solutions) that becomes the most important part of the equation.

But again, different ecosystems will suit different projects at different times.

For me, Resolve/Fusion represents an ecosystem that works really well, if that's what you need. BM have managed to mesh together two entirely separate products in a way that delivers great flexibility and lots of power. And they've done so with a minimum of fuss and in a remarkably short space of time. It also helps that Resolve talks very nicely to just about every other platform going, in a way that few other products can match. It's greatly to FCP X's advantage that Resolve can serve as an interchange "translator", for instance.

But of course, there are other ecosystems that favour different types of projects ...

Simon Ubsdell
tokyo productions
hawaiki


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Andrew Kimery
Re: The perfect workflow ...
on Feb 13, 2017 at 5:18:51 pm

[Simon Ubsdell] "The initial edit was done in Premiere but I took it into Resolve and worked on it from there. "

Do you mean the edit was locked in Premiere and then moved onto finishing in Resolve/Fusion or that initially Premiere was used for the edit but subsequently dropped in favor of using Resolve for all the editing?


[Simon Ubsdell] "I know some people attempt this kind of thing in Media Composer - as far as I'm concerned, life is too short to waste time with that kind of workflow."


Would you mind going into this a bit more? I haven't used Fusion, but on paper it looks like MC Symphony and Fusion could be comparable to Resolve and Fusion. Is the MC/Fusion connection not as robust/useful as the Resolve/Fusion connection?


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Simon Ubsdell
Re: The perfect workflow ...
on Feb 13, 2017 at 5:37:49 pm

[Andrew Kimery] "Do you mean the edit was locked in Premiere and then moved onto finishing in Resolve/Fusion or that initially Premiere was used for the edit but subsequently dropped in favor of using Resolve for all the editing?"

We moved the edit over to Resolve half-way through the process because we needed to be working on the look in conjunction with finalising the edit itself, something I should have made clear. As I'm sure you know, clients these days expect to see "finished" work from the very beginning - very different from the old days when you could fob them off with "it's just an offline, we'll fix all that later". So this from point of view, being able to edit in an environment that is also the finishing environment becomes pretty important, hence the attraction of Resolve for this particular job.

[Andrew Kimery] "I haven't used Fusion, but on paper it looks like MC Symphony and Fusion could be comparable to Resolve and Fusion. Is the MC/Fusion connection not as robust/useful as the Resolve/Fusion connection?"

I haven't used Fusion with Media Composer/Symphony either but my understanding is that there is no difference in terms of the functionality, so yes, from that point of view Symphony could have been a route. Having said that, although I know a lot of users think Symphony's color correction is great, I'm not one of them, and I don't think anyone could claim it's really in the same league as Resolve ... or perhaps they would? So again for my money it would be the overall Resolve/Fusion ecosystem that would still win out here.

Simon Ubsdell
tokyo productions
hawaiki


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Walter Soyka
Re: The perfect workflow ...
on Feb 14, 2017 at 11:27:19 pm

[Simon Ubsdell] "As I'm sure you know, clients these days expect to see "finished" work from the very beginning - very different from the old days when you could fob them off with "it's just an offline, we'll fix all that later". So this from point of view, being able to edit in an environment that is also the finishing environment becomes pretty important, hence the attraction of Resolve for this particular job."

I'd be very curious to hear how others approach this challenge.

This is a constant issue for us with design. It's very difficult to have meaningful conversations about works-in-progress. We use a few techniques. Sometimes we have to burn ("invest") time polishing a WIP we expect we'll have to throw out, just to talk learn what will work and what won't. Sometimes we can keep WIP elements painfully, obviously rough, if we've already demonstrated some polish earlier. Sometimes, we distill our questions about the work into A and B options and present them back to back, like an optometrist testing your eyesight. Sometimes we even present in person. (Old-fashioned, I know. Is a tongue-in-cheek dinosaur reference appropriate here?)

How do you show polish before you finish?

Walter Soyka
Designer & Mad Scientist at Keen Live [link]
Motion Graphics, Widescreen Events, Presentation Design, and Consulting
@keenlive [twitter]   |   RenderBreak [blog]   |   Profile [LinkedIn]


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