I was editing an interview the other day and while I was fighting with trying to get this pesky outlet out of one of my shots (which I did finally do) I thought “how did I learn this?” – I realized I didn’t. People always ask me what I do and how do I create these videos that evoke emotion. Honestly, I really didn’t know. So I thought about it and I came up with this: Instinct.
So much of what I do is based on my instinct of when to cut and what shot to take. I watch things over and over, spend hours going through footage, and I watch and cut based on my interpretation and feel of when things need to happen or not happen. The next and arguably the most important point is rhythm. There is a rhythm to every edit I do and there are no right or wrong answers – again its instinct. Things and events need time to evoke emotion, and your job is to manipulate and create this feeling to the best of your abilities. Even industrial videos have rhythm. So much of what I do can’t really be taught. Sure, you can teach the basics and the concepts, but to be a good editor you have to have instinct and rhythm. Each editor will have a different style based off these attributes. It takes tons of practice and I’m still learning after editing for 10 years. Life experiences somehow add growth to my editing in ways I can’t really explain.
Emotion is also a big player in creating my edits – I have to really understand emotion and know how to portray that visually but invisibly so that when you watch my video, you don’t notice that it was pieced to make you feel a certain way. I’m a very quiet person, especially in groups, but what most of you don’t know is I’m studying you. I’m watching facial expressions and body language because it helps me understand emotion and how to manipulate images to connect those emotions to my edit. I pick up a lot about a person that they probably don’t notice about themselves. It’s true what they say about quiet people having the loudest mind – My mind is always reeling.