What is video editing? Right out of the box the first thing that comes to mind is rearranging video or picture clips in a way that better enables you to tell a story. That was easy enough, but is that the whole story? In a word, no. That is just the beginning.
Video editing is a two part story. First you have the picture editing, and second you have the sound editing. For most home videos, the sound editing is often times more important than the picture editing. In professional videos, more time is spent on the sound editing than on the picture editing and can have a dramatic effect on the emotional impact of the final cut of the video. Attention to the details of audio editing is the oft overlooked aspect of video editing that makes all the difference between an amateur and a professional.
Let’s look at one simple example that you might find on any home video. At the end of every shot there is a transition from the out going scene to the new scene which may have occurred days apart or minutes apart. The time between scenes makes no difference. You are going from one location to another which means that the ambient, or background sounds are different. If you cut from one shot to the next, the audio is jarring, which makes you feel that the cut is wrong, when in actuality it is the audio (sound) that is making the cut not look good.
All you have to do is let the sound from the first cut trail into the second cut by one or two seconds and then the change in the audio does not fall on the cut. This will create a much smoother effect. Throw a short dissolve on the audio, say 8 frames to 1 second and the transition will be even smoother still. Such little details can greatly reduce the jarring impact of a cut and increase sensation of the viewer of being drawn in to your video project.
This also works in reverse. If some one is talking in the second shot, pull one to two seconds of their dialogue up under the first shot. This will have the effect of “pulling” you into the next scene. Play around with it and soon you will be editing like a professional!