Once you’ve finished shooting and all the brainstorming is done, video post-production can end up getting a bit of a rough rap. The most common thought towards it is that you’re just waiting around for it to happen and there isn’t much control that can be exerted throughout the process.
7 Essential Factors for Video Post-Production
Video Rough Cut
Editing is the most important part of post-production—and it's also the most time-consuming. But before you get started, take a step back and look at your timeline.
This is where you scour through all of your footage, categorize it, and start selecting which shots you want to use to assemble the video. You’ll want to research editing software like AVID, Adobe Premiere, Final Cut Pro, and more to see which is right for you. Using editing software, you’ll select your footage, cut it up, and splice it together.
Most likely, you may want to choose an agency to do the editing for or hire your own freelance or in-house video editor.
The first step in post-production is to get your assembly edit together. You should have a rough cut with the basic structure of your video and the audio recorded. But it’s not time to add music or special effects yet—you just need a rough version of what you want your final product to look like.
If you hire an agency like us to do your post-production, we’ll usually share the rough cut internally and get a round of internal notes from the team to share feedback and try to make the best-looking rough cut possible. After that, we'll share it with you!
If you’re editing your video on your own, the best thing to do is screen an early cut with your internal team before deciding your rough cut is done. This gives everyone involved an opportunity to weigh in on how well-edited things are progressing and give feedback before moving on!
If you're creating a video, you'll want to make sure it's ready for the sound and visual effects editing teams. But before you reach that point, it's important to have a rough cut of your video in order to achieve picture lock. Picture lock is the stage in the post-production process where all of the shots have been locked into the proper order, essentially “locked in place.”
In traditional movie production, this means your video is ready for the sound and visual effects editing teams. However, if you’re creating your own video, you’re likely to change things after adding music and voice-over, especially when syncing the two. Before completing a picture lock, watch your video with the music and voiceover you want over it to make sure it edits together well.
If you’re using visual effects in your video, make sure to provide a rough version of the shot that includes those effects. This will help you visualize where the effects will come in, especially if they’re going to be completely vfx. If you don’t account for it in your picture lock, it can prematurely or awkwardly overlap with other elements in the video.
Video Sound Mix
Now that you've edited your video and added music, you're ready to mix the sound. Sound mixing is the process of combining different audio tracks for the best possible end product. This is done through a video editing program or a sound-mixing program, such as Adobe Premiere Elements or Final Cut Pro X, which have built-in sound-editing tools.
There are four main types of sound elements in your video: dialogue, where featured actors or interviewees speak; sound effects, like a doorbell or dog barking; music played in the background of what’s happening on screen; and voiceover—an off-camera voiceover adds context to what’s happening in your video.
If you want to make a great video, your audio needs to be just as good as your visuals. For some audio elements, like voiceovers or sound effects, you’ll need to record separately. That’s because you need a soundproof place to get clean audio. Sometimes, you might even need to re-record audio like dialogue that you captured on your production day, unwanted sounds in the background such as cars honking and dogs barking.
As we mentioned in our production day blog, sound quality = video quality, and nothing make a video worse than bad sound. If you don’t know what you’re doing, make sure you work with someone who does! Otherwise, your video views will be dramatically reduced!
Important Tip- When working with music, make sure you’re working with music that’s been cleared to be used by you. This way, you won’t run into copyright issues once it’s online.
You’ve made it through the production, and now it’s time to add the finishing touches.
Now it’s time to add your visual effects. By now, you should’ve already mapped out where you want your visual effects to go in the pre-production phase, which you can read more about here. If done correctly, you storyboarded these shots, and planned for where the effects will go during your production day. If not, it’s still possible to add effects after the fact, but it can often be tricky and limiting when added in late.
You have several options in terms of visual effects. You can use animation, which means creating new scenes using special effects software and adding them to your footage. Or you can use CGI modelling, where you create unique 3D rendered objects or models or objects or characters using special visual effects software to add to your already filmed shots.
It’s important to remember that the more complex your animation is, the longer it will take to render (which means that it will take longer for your computer to process it).
Oftentimes, all the visual effects you need amount to something very simple, like adding a filter, or a fade in or fade out to your video. These effects are usually available inside whatever video editing software you use. Sometimes, all you need to add is some text, which is what the lower third is for.
In video post-production, a lower third is a text overlay that's added to the lower third of the screen. It's most commonly used during news broadcasts and interviews to provide contextual information about a person being interviewed or a place being visited.
This allows you to give information about each person as they speak so viewers can easily follow along with what's being said. You can also use it to show titles and credits, or add in other information like hashtags, links, and more.
In the final stage of post-production, you will use color correction to make sure that the color of each shot matches. Color correction is accomplished by adjusting brightness, contrast, and saturation values of a video clip. This process can be done manually or automatically using a computer program.
Manual color correction
Color correction can be performed manually using controls in your video editing software. These controls are often referred to as "curves." The curves allow you to adjust brightness, contrast, and saturation values of a video clip independently so that it matches another clip or scene in your project. For example, if one scene has too much red in it and another scene has too much green in it, these two shots may not match well together with just a simple cut from one shot to another. Manual color correction can fix this problem by adjusting each shot's brightness and saturation individually so that they match seamlessly when cut together during post-production.
Automatic color correction
Automatic color correction uses algorithms to automatically adjust brightness levels and contrast between two shots based on their luminance information alone. It does not require any user input other than selecting what clips should be compared against each other (if any).
Adding Title and End Cards
Now that you’ve got your video shot and edited, it’s time to add some polish! Adding a title card can help give your video a professional feel, while also reminding viewers of your brand.
Here are some tips on how to do this:
- Make sure the text is readable. You want people watching your video to be able to read what it says without having to squint or get up close.
- Don’t use too much text! You don’t want the viewer to become overwhelmed by information overload. Keep things brief and easy to read so that they can focus on your message instead of trying to figure out what all those words mean.
We're now done talking about the 7 important elements for your video post-production. After doing all these steps, you're now ready to post your video!
Even if you don't have the right skills for video production and editing, you can learn them. Otherwise, you can hire a video production agency like Video Supply.