Saturday, May 5, 2007

Re-re-re-re-re-editing video!

Hey, guys, sorry I haven't updated in so long! I've been busy with a couple of projects, and I've also been dealing with some personal issues.

I've done two more videos! Woohoo! Unfortunately, I can't (okay, I won't) link you to them. They' do I put this delicately? Blue. It was a dare, and I can't turn a dare down! Plus it was a challenge and I think I pulled it off well. They are linked to in my forum, only, and I have a strict 18+ policy for that section. But enough about stuff you can't see without jumping through hoops if you're a non-member.

I spent a good portion of yesterday doing some editing on one of my very first videos: "Let's Get It Started" by the Black-eyed Peas. The version you see on CJ Cinema and at the bottom of this entry is the latest one. But you know what? I'm going to do some more work on it. Thus the "re-re-re-re" part of the subject line (and anyone who's played the sims enough should recognize that was a play on "re-re-re-re-reticulating splines". I hope.). Edit: NEW (FINAL!?) VERSION IS UP!

It's more difficult to edit video when you no longer have the original source .avi or project files to work from, so I'm having to separate the audio and video tracks of an already compressed video, and cut directly from the video, itself. Which means working around those blasted transitions. For those who have no idea what I'm talking about, and I'm trying to keep the techie talk down, I make the videos from a series of .avi files shot with the in-game camera. These are my source files. I usually have a couple of gigabytes worth of clips that I piece together to make a 40 mb video. Each clip is rendered out through Adobe Premier Pro (one of the editing proggies I use) several different ways. I'll have speed changes, I'll do some trimming, I'll add in some effects - that kind of thing. But I still keep the old avi files on hand for a little while until I'm satisfied the urge to re-edit has passed (but it never really does), and when I do a re-edit, I can work with the original files on the timeline in Sony Vegas (the other editing program I use). The project vf file will still be intact, so the timeline will be as it was pre-render. "All" I have to do is work with the pieces already set in the timeline, add in new shots, whatever it is I wanted changed. Once I've gotten everything assembled the way I want it on the timeline and the audio track set back in, I can then rerender out a new video. You with me? This is Sims2 Video-editing for Dummies.

With "Started", I no longer have those old clips, so I had to import the actual completed video file into Vegas. Transitions (those fancy splashy things you see from scene to scene - I was fond of those in the early days) are stuck in there, so I have to carefully trim around them. I'm also at a disadvantage when it comes with material to work with. Back then I didn't shoot nearly as much footage, so I had some repetition going, which is a Bad Thing, although it works when you're doing a dance video, if you do it right.

I am going to re-edit back in the first half of the video; I feel like I changed it too much. Even though it's an early job, it was my first submission to and what got my name known on Sims99, and I like it pretty much as is. I just went a little crazy with the editor this time around. What I did change that I will keep is the ending sequence: The video originally ended with Shep "singing" what I had Jory open with. I like consistency, so that was fixed. I also added in a cool little drum riff clip with Scott just before it goes a cappella. Other fixes were removing a plumbob and a thought bubble in a couple of frames and a reassembly and centering of the individual bustamoves leading up to the group shot. Almost everything after the 3:08 minute mark to the end was totally revamped.

I'll ETA when the new one is up. You can still see the old one here.


ETA2: MAYBE NOT! If this plays choppy for you, check back in a while. I'm going to make a smaller file to upload...

ETA3: Made smaller file. Hopefully this one will play better for those with slower connections. NOW I'm calling it "done". Welcome to my world.

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