Book Image

Final Cut Pro Efficient Editing - Second Edition

By : Iain Anderson
5 (1)
Book Image

Final Cut Pro Efficient Editing - Second Edition

5 (1)
By: Iain Anderson

Overview of this book

Elevate your video editing skills with Final Cut Pro 10.7.1, the ultimate tool for efficient and professional editing, offering powerful new features to enhance your workflow and give your videos a stunning look. The second edition of this comprehensive guide covers exciting new features in FCP, teaching you how to streamline your workflow with customizable workspaces, shortcuts, and advanced trimming tools. Explore best-in-class titles and a comprehensive suite of visual effects in Final Cut Pro for dynamic videos, create a great-sounding mix with Final Cut Pro's audio tools, and utilize the magnetic timeline, multicam editing, and advanced color correction for every project. Whether you're creating content for social media, YouTube, or Hollywood, Final Cut Pro Efficient Editing, Second Edition is your ultimate guide to professional video editing. Get your copy today and take your video editing skills to the next level.
Table of Contents (23 chapters)
PART 1: Importing and Organizing
PART 2: Rough Cut to Fine Cut
PART 3: Finishing and Exporting


This book is structured the same way as most editing jobs, and you can use your own footage alongside it if you wish. Not every edit will go in exactly this order, but many will be pretty close, and this is a great way to explore the program if you’re not sure how to get going. Use this outline as a starting point, and change it as needed. We’ll start the process (and the book) with:

Part 1: Importing and Organizing

Chapter 1, Quick Start: An Introduction to FCP

You’re reading this now!

Chapter 2, Before the Edit: Production Tips

You need to make sure you shoot in the right formats, with the right cameras, and shoot the right things to make an edit work. This is the only chapter in the book that’s not strictly about FCP, but it’s still important.

Chapter 3, Bring It In: Importing your Footage

No matter how many Events you decide to use, you’ll want to import your footage. This should be easy but there are a few different ways to work, and you’ll hear strong opinions about which way is best.

Next, you’ll sync up clips shot with multiple devices that recorded the same scene at the same time, such as two or three cameras, or an audio recorder and video camera. If you used good practices on set (according to Chapter 2, Before the Edit: Production Tips), then this will be straightforward.

Chapter 4, Sort It Out: Reviewing and Keywording

First, you’ll watch what you’ve shot, or have been given, and there are a number of good ways to do that. After or during that process, you’ll organize your footage using Keywords, putting them in “virtual buckets” for easier retrieval later on.

Chapter 5, Choose Your Favorites: Selecting, Rating, and Searching

After Keywords come Favorites, which mark the best parts, and possibly Rejecting, to mark the parts you won’t use. Marking up your clips here is a far more useful method than the traditional technique of making timeline-based collections of clips you like because your choices are permanently recorded and searchable and you can instantly refer back to them way down the track. This is a trick that only FCP can really offer, and it’s a fantastic way of working.

The next part of the process (and, again, the book) is editing.

Part 2: Rough Cut to Fine Cut

Chapter 6, Build the Spine of the Story: Quick Assembly

With all the clips organized, you finally make a Project, matching the technical requirements (frame rate and resolution) of what you want to deliver. Those may be the same settings you shot with, though if they’re different, it’s not the end of the world.

With a view of the organized footage, you’ll build up a rough cut, getting the best parts of the best clips in order on a timeline, until it all looks good. Maybe you’ll drag and drop; maybe you’ll use keyboard shortcuts; but you’ll definitely use a few basic edits to trim, cut, rearrange, and delete your clips.

Chapter 7, Cover It Up: Connections, Cutaways, and Storylines

Now, you’ll get a little fancier, disguising edits, adding clips above or below other clips, using the B-roll you shot to make your edit feel more complete, moving clips around, and fleshing it all out. You might use Storylines to group connected clips together, and you might use three-point editing if you want to be precise.

Chapter 8, Neaten the Edges: Trimming Techniques

Further finesse your edit to make sure every frame is needed and is in exactly the right place. Slip, slide, and roll your edits, and use the precision editor if you wish. Soften any audio edits that need it, expand and collapse audio, and use plenty of shortcuts.

Chapter 9, Consider Your Options: Multicam, Replacing, and Auditions

This chapter discusses how to deal with multicam media in the most efficient way. With or without Multicam, you’ll learn how to revisit your earlier choices, switch clips out for other clips, swap one music track for another, and generally try to make an edit even better.

Chapter 10, Explore a Little: Compound Clips and Timeline Tricks

If you want to try something fancier, such as treating a group of clips as a single clip, or you’re becoming frustrated with the magnetic timeline for some reason, this is where you discover how the Timeline Index works, how to lift and merge, and how to use the Position tool. With luck and good planning, you won’t need to relink media, but this chapter has some tips on that too.

With the edit locked (or nearly locked?), it’s time for:

Part 3: Finishing and Exporting

Chapter 11, Play with Light: Color Correction and Grading

First, you’ll fix basic color issues such as white balance and exposure, and then perform shot-to-shot matching. Next, you’ll add curves if you want to change contrast, and use color or shape masks to selectively brighten, darken, or change the color of part of the frame. You might also use adjustment layers to quickly change many clips at once.

Chapter 12, Refine and Smooth: Video Properties and Effects

If some of your clips need a further tweak, you’ll adjust their properties to move, scale, crop, and apply effects now, and maybe even animate those properties. If a shot is too shaky, you can stabilize; if it’s too soft, you can sharpen; and if there’s something else you’d like to fix, there’s an effect for that too.

Chapter 13, Blend and Warp: Video Transitions and Retiming

Transitions help to soften the transition between two clips, and here, you’ll learn all about how to apply and adjust them. Simplicity is often a good idea with transitions, but maybe subtlety isn’t your thing and you’d like to go crazy — it’s all good. Perhaps you’re also experimenting with high-speed footage and you want to add some speed ramping, or even just pause it? Now’s the time.

Chapter 14, Boost the Signal: Audio Sweetening

Video sorted? Don’t forget audio. Adjust the volume for each clip to get things roughly in the right spot, apply automatic enhancements if you need to, and then add whatever audio effects are going to improve the overall sound. Viewers don’t forgive bad sound, so don’t skip this step.

Chapter 15, A Few Words: Titles and Generators

Adding titles can give your work a cohesive overall look that helps it to stand out. They can introduce an entire video, name your speakers, and fill in gaps that your subjects didn’t. The complementary Generators are a good idea if you need custom backgrounds. With the edit nearly complete, this is also the time to add captions, to make your videos more accessible and searchable.

Chapter 16, You’re Done: Exporting Your Edit and Finishing Up

Export your video in a few different ways, then send it to your client or directly to a video-sharing service. Or, maybe you might need to send an editable Project to someone else — that’s fine too. When you’re really, finally done with this job, archive its Library to some other storage medium like a hard drive or even archival magnetic tape.

That really is just about it. Anything this book doesn’t cover in detail can be found in Apple’s official user guide (, and many other links will be provided along the way.