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Karlstad, Sweden
Joined: 7. Oct 2006
Posts: 2704

Your Editing Process

#1 - 3. Apr 2018 16:55
How do you organize a project, and in what order do you edit footage? Did this develop over time, or did you always follow that process?
My Story

Back in the 1.6 era, I would almost always edit from point A to Z. I usually enjoyed editing intros so I began with that. In my earlier movies I didn't even plan out all of the music beforehand, and would spontaneously add more songs if the current song reached its end. A few years later I finally decided to know what music to use in the whole movie.
I would listen to the music and try to feel where it would be fitting to start the fragpart, where to transition into the next song and so on. Once point 'A' was complete I would move to 'B', and by the time I reached 'Z' the movie would get ready for release.

It's not until now, getting into CS:GO moviemaking, that I am attempting a different editing approach. I listened to the songs I had chosen and found a section to transition them, and thus already deciding the length of the movie, which will most likely be around 4:45 minutes, however there is room to add a 'quiet' outro if I wanted to. I have begun editing the fragpart, and added/edited a few clips in different parts of the songs for potential sync moments. I am also trying to be more patient, re-capturing footage if I am not satisfied with the first version(s) as well as re-doing some effects or transitions. Previously I would get more stressed the closer I would get to finishing a project, which usually meant some parts would be rushed, so this will be the first time I will challenge that mindset.

I am new to this approach however, so I am open for advice. For example, what do you do if you end up with 1-10 seconds of emptiness between clips - do you put cams there?

When it comes to the editing process / workflow in general, I reckon proper editors do rough cuts; lining up the footage with the music and then leaving room for potential cams or other footage, and maybe going back and forth between different sections of the project, fine-tuning the footage in several stages etc.

Last changed: 3. April 2018 17:00

The Desert, United States of America
Joined: 9. Aug 2006
Posts: 3307
#2 - 3. Apr 2018 19:56
this is a really fun question and I always enjoy hearing people's answers to it.

Ever since I started editing, the OST was always the first thing I would finish thoroughly before tackling the video portion.  It just never made sense to try and edit while having an important thing like a soundtrack unfinished.  I usually have a pretty good idea of the structure of the movie before I start putting together the OST, so I then try to match that vision with the songs.

As far as editing footgage, I used to cap every demo before editing and then just sift through my material and see what fits where.  Now, I listen to my soundtrack and imagine what scene would look good at specific parts and then try to find something that fits that vision.  I did that for FTA and Eo17 and since I'm super particular about where scenes should go, this worked a lot better for me.

As far as what order I edit in, well, there is no order.  Intros and outros are always last if there is one at all (FTA didnt have an intro.  it had a midtro (copyright Anthony P 2016)).  But as far as fragparts go, I skip around A LOT.  I also plow through the fragpart with a rough, completed cut before going back over and polishing everything 20-100000 times (it varies).

As for emptiness between clips... it depends.  Maybe a cool cam would go here.  Maybe I can elongate the clip and add a fun transition.  Maybe another quick frag can fit in here.  Tough to say.  it's all about how it contributes to pacing, flow, and the vision.

, Norway
Joined: 22. Nov 2015
Posts: 12
#3 - 3. Apr 2018 21:42
Personally, I'm very driven by the OST and will almost always have chosen a song before going into any editing. Granted I've probably already had an idea in my head, but the OST is likely the most essential part.

I'll go through and capture all the frags I need (Here I'll usually listen to the OST in full over and over again to familiarze myself with the song, should it be something I haven't listened to much previously) before I bring it into an editing software.
If I have multiple OSTs I'll also cut these together before anything.

I like it go through the song and mark any crucial sync points I know I wanna hit throughout, so my timeline is already a giant orange mess of markers before I've even imported any footage. Then I'll run through all my frags, find which ones fits best at certain points throughout the OST. Can a frag serve as a nice build-up, how's the movement in this clip and can I translate that into a transition using the song, how can I cut this to make the suspense last longer/shorter? Whatever really comes to mind I'll make sure I lay out so that I later on have a clear idea of what I want to transition to and if I'll cut between frags or frags->cameras. 

I almost always change around the order of the frags as well. I'll always have a more and more polished rough-cut to look back on as I go.

For the most part in the latter stages I'm a "fill in the gaps" kind of guy when it comes to cameras. They are never recorded at the beginning. I'll also never finish an intro/outro before the meat of the video is finished/filled in.

When I've filled in all the blanks I'll run through the entire piece, make velocity adjustmest, fix cuts and all that jazz, whatever fine tuning I see fit.

Last changed: 3. April 2018 21:44

, United States of America
Joined: 15. Jun 2016
Posts: 19
#4 - 11. Apr 2018 05:10
Right off the jump I always used to take forever to make my mind up on the soundtrack, and from that point on would have very specific scenes that I knew would synch the song/mood/tempo at the time perfectly for parts of the track.  My last two projects I actually adopted the OG way of just starting from 00:00 and continuing onward until the end.  To be honest I actually liked that method better. Could be because I had way less time to keep all the ideas in mind and could pick up right where I left off, but I also really liked never getting stuck with 12 seconds to fill in between clips and scrambling to find something.  Definitely enjoyed the "freestyle" aspect to it as well.

Karlstad, Sweden
Joined: 7. Oct 2006
Posts: 2704
#5 - 9. Dec 2018 09:19
Storytime about the process of SPENCTACULAR:

When I began the project I first used the CSGO Demos Manager to capture some early frag footage, but after 5-10 frags I found out that it uses startmovie and thus locks you out from any mirv_streams properties such as hiding the flash and so on. That's about the extent of the integrated HLAE+Demos Manager I used, though I still like the demo manager for keeping track of all the demos and being able to write comments for each demo. A side effect I noticed with recording with that program was that it would sometimes not hide the deathnotices from other players, presumably because it executes the config "too late"/while it skipped forward and a frag happened during that time, which is why you might see a deathnotice from another player in one or two clips of the movie.

Some time after I started the project, my old mindset kept thinking that I would finish the movie before or in the summer. That's because in the past I would usually not spend more than 2-3 months on a project, basically rushing through it, and rarely bothering to re-record things if I made some subtle mistakes. This time however, I took my time, and even slacked a lot by instead playing games every now and then, or just random web surfing. Though sometimes I would think about ideas while I did those things. For example, after I finished Max Payne (1-2) I got inspired to do those "graphical novel" / rectangle / square transitions.

This was the first time I began editing the fragparts before the intro, as well as sometimes jumping forward to add clips that felt appropriate for specific parts of the songs. For example, I added the first four frags in the first fragpart before the part where the song tones down, and I had no ideas for that part, so I jumped forward to a more exciting part, i.e. the song transition/ending with the three deagle oneshots, then I added the USP airshot in the second song, and finally the last awp ace on mirage. Then I jumped back and forth between fragparts, trying to come up with ideas etc.

Over the summer I had to take an "official" break, because it was just too hot to do anything. That will most likely be a common trend for my projects, at least while I live where I live now. After the summer was over I was starting to get ready to get back to the project. This was also the time when I realized the project would be taking a lot longer than I thought it would. In a way I wasn't prepared for that, so I really wanted to finish it before the end of the year, though at the same time I avoided rushing like in the past. Still, since this was my first time editing in several years and dealing with a new game, I made some mistakes, and I have learned a few things, both technically and mentally. For future projects I shall now be prepared that it's going to take me 6-12 months to finish a project.


2019 might be a year where I am not going to edit anything "big" though. Perhaps I will do some experiments. One reason is that I really need a new PC soon, and AMD Ryzen looks very interesting (based on rumours / leaks) with the new 7nm technology. Plus there is a possiblity I am going to get my own apartment in 2019. Another possible reason is that Avengers: Endgame and the final Game of Thrones season will probably make me too depressed to edit anything anyway!
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