Workshop

Review the questions and answers in this section to try to sharpen your Premiere timeline editing skills. Also, take a few moments to tackle my short quiz and the exercises.

Q&A

Q1:

The storyboard is fine as an introduction to nonlinear editing, but I want to skip it and work directly on the timeline. How can I do this?

A1:

This is the right approach. Instead of opening a new storyboard, just drag clips from your Project window and drop them on the timeline. Drop them all on the Video 1 track. You can select a number of clips at once and drag them all to the timeline. In that case, they'll appear in the same order they appeared in the Project bin.

Q2:

I added some QuickTime multimedia files to my project. When I play them in the Source window they look fine, but when I add them to the timeline and play them in the Program window they look squashed. What's up?

A2:

The QuickTime files you added have a different "aspect ratio." For instance, the Sample.mov file that comes with QuickTime has a 2.4:3 aspect ratio instead of the NTSC standard of 4:3. Sample.mov is tall and narrow instead of short and wide. But Premiere wants to display all clips in full screen, so it stretches and squashes your QuickTime clips to fit. There's a simple fix. For any clip with an aspect ratio other than 4:3 that you want to maintain, drag the clip to the timeline, right-click it, and select Video Options, Maintain Aspect Ratio.

Quiz

1:

You set up the Project window to display thumbnails. But one thumbnail is black. Why? What can you do about it?

A1:

It's black because the first frame of that clip is black. The thumbnail defaults to the first frame. To change the thumbnail image, select the clip, play it in the little Project Monitor window and when you see an image that represents the clip, click the little box in the lower-right corner. That sets a new thumbnail image. It should show up right away in the Project Bin window.

2:

You've created a storyboard but several clips are obviously too long. How do you trim that excess baggage?

A2:

Double-click each extra-long clip to open it in the Source Monitor. Play it or drag the Set Location slider to where you want the edited clip to start. Click the left in-point bracket ({ ). Then do the same for the out-point. Notice that your clip's new time shows up in its storyboard thumbnail caption.

3:

How do you trim a clip in the timeline without creating a gray gap?

A3:

Use the Ripple Edit tool. You'll find it in the Timeline window's toolbox. It's the fat vertical line with arrows sticking out both sides. Move it to the end of the clip you want to shorten. Drag it to the new edit point and release. The clip will shrink and the rest of the project automatically will fill the gap.

Exercises

1:

Take the right-click menu for a test drive (you've already used this technique to use Ripple Delete). Right-click a clip in the timeline and check out the various options. Video Option, Motion and Frame Hold are both excellent editing tools that I'll cover later--as are Duration and Speed. Try them out on some clips.

2:

Shoot and edit a sequence. Grab your camcorder and head out looking not for a subject but rather for a sequence. For example, go to a public place such as a park and tape someone tossing a ball to his dog. Get wide and tight shots and various angles (oh, and get permission). Then transfer that video and build a sequence. This is a real test of editing skill because it involves editing techniques such as wide/tight and matching shots.

3:

Open the Navigator window. Drag the rectangle around and see how it moves the timeline back and forth. Note the color scheme and how it matches the video and audio clips. I'll explain the meaning of those different colors in Hour 9. Click the little hill icons at the bottom to adjust the scale of the Navigator window.



    Part II: Enhancing Your Video
     
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