Make Your Shots More Cinematic With These Video Editing Tricks

So you’ve shot some stills for your indie movie, but they don’t quite look like what you see on the big screen. These simple video editing techniques can help make your footage look more like what the professionals are filming.

To spice up your footage, director and youtuber Kellan Reck provides five tipsin the video above that you should consider when it’s time to edit what you have. Keep in mind that all of these gimmicks require professional video editing software like Adobe Premiere Pro, which is the current industry standard.

  1. Add movement to stable tripod shots : you can animate position and scale. For example, you can zoom in from the start frame to about 105% in the last frame, with the zoom up slightly as you zoom in. You don’t need too much! Reck recommends not scaling more than 5% for longer clips and no more than 2-3% for shorter clips.
  2. Use Warp Stabilizer for shaky handheld shots: Reduces harsh handheld shots to more relaxed and smoother shots . You can set it to reduce all movement, or better yet, set it to your own preferred movement, as if you were taking a standard stable shot.
  3. Color fixes your shots : add a little vignette, increase contrast, change temperature, adjust hue, highlight highlights towards orange, pull shadows towards turquoise, increase whites and decrease blacks.
  4. Adjust the sharpness and fading of the film : sharpen a little to make the image look clearer, then increase the fade of the film to give it the classic film look.
  5. Add a letterbox : letterboxes (black bars at the top and bottom of the screen) make your digital photo wider than it actually is, giving it a look very much like a real film.

Remember, only make these settings so that they work best for your shot and the overall feel of your movie. You will be surprised that a few simple changes will make even the most basic shots.


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