Editing your documentary is your first real chance to explore how your subject’s story is going to unfold. This can be and usually is the most tedious part of the documentary filmmaking process. Due to the sheer scope of coverage, it is very important to follow these three simple tips to make the process the best it can be.
- Organize Folders and Label Bins
You’re going to rack up lots of footage making a documentary. You’ve simply got to start and stay organized. You’ll want to set everything up as much as possible in the beginning or else things can take a turn quickly and you’ll be looking at a mess.
You can use some free programs like PostHaste from Digital Rebellion to create folder structures from customizable templates, or you can put together your own templates from scratch on your computer. JUST STAY ORGANIZED FROM THE BEGINNING!!
- Create Sequences for Individual Interviews
When doing your pre-edit, create sequences for individual interviews which have all of the footage available. This will help with transcribing, locating, and putting said sequences together on a larger timeline later.
- Backup Everything
This should be tips #3-12: BACK UP EVERYTHING. There is no reason in the world you shouldn’t take the extra time to make sure your files are safe. You literally have everything to lose in these situations, so be a professional and make sure you’re saving your files in multiple places. Cloud storage services like Dropbox are very usuful in these situations.
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