Grammar of the Edit, 5th Edition

Book description

This new edition of Grammar of the Edit will teach anyone who uses video as a communication tool how to show effective visual stories. This book presents traditional and cutting-edge methodologies that teaches principles behind when to cut and why, selecting the best shots, cutting for continuity, pacing, editing sound, and more.

Table of contents

  1. Cover Page
  2. Half-Title Page
  3. Title Page
  4. Copyright Page
  5. Contents
  6. Introduction
  7. Acknowledgments
  8. Chapter One – Video Editing: An Introduction to the Process
    1. A Very Brief History of Film Editing
      1. What Is Editing?
    2. Key Factors Affecting Editorial Choices
      1. Tools
      2. Project Type and Genre
      3. Degree of Audience Manipulation
      4. Other Factors
    3. Stages of the Editing Process
      1. Acquisition
      2. Organization
      3. Review and Selection
      4. Assembly
      5. Rough Cut
      6. Fine Cut
      7. Picture Lock
      8. Finishing
      9. Mastering and Delivery
    4. Traditional Motion Picture Transitions
    5. Chapter One – Final Thoughts: Editing Purpose and Process
    6. Chapter One – Principles in Practice
      1. PIP #1 Pay Careful Attention to Media and Project Organization
      2. PIP #2 Learn and Use Keyboard Shortcuts
      3. PIP #3 Organize Your Timeline Tracks and Maintain Consistency Across Projects
      4. PIP #4 Keep Your Rough Cut Long
      5. PIP #5 Review Each Edit or Series of Edits as You Make Them
      6. PIP #6 Seek Feedback While Editing Your Motion Picture
      7. PIP #7 Put Aside Your Edited Sequence for a While and Watch It Again With Fresh Eyes
      8. PIP #8 Duplicate Your Sequence before Making Major Changes
    7. Chapter One – Review
    8. Chapter One – Exercises
    9. Chapter One – Quiz Yourself
  9. Chapter Two – Understanding the Visual Material
    1. The Basic Shot Types
      1. Shot Descriptions
        1. The Extreme Close-Up (XCU/ECU)
        2. The Big Close-Up (BCU) (UK)/“Choker” (US)
        3. The Close-Up (CU)
        4. The Medium Close-Up (MCU)/Bust Shot
        5. The Medium Shot (MS)/Mid-Shot
        6. The Medium Long Shot (MLS)/Medium Wide Shot (MWS)
        7. The Long Shot (LS)/Wide Shot (WS)
        8. The Very Long Shot (VLS)/Very Wide Shot (VWS)
        9. The Extreme Long Shot (XLS/ELS)/Extreme Wide Shot (XWS/EWS)
        10. The Two-Shot (2-Shot/2S)
        11. The Over-the-Shoulder Shot (OTS/OSS)
    2. Shot Categories: The Increasing Complexity of Motion Imagery
      1. Simple Shots
      2. Complex Shots
      3. Developing Shots
    3. Chapter Two – Final Thoughts: Camera Shots Are Your Building Blocks
    4. Chapter Two – Principles in Practice
      1. PIP #1 In a Three-Person Dialogue, Beware of Cutting from a Two-Shot to Another Two-Shot
      2. PIP #2 Edit in a Wide Shot as Soon as Possible after a Series of Close-Up Shots in a Group Scene
      3. PIP #3 Cut to a Close Shot of a New Subject as They Enter a Scene
      4. PIP #4 Use an Establishing Shot to Set Up a New Scene's Location
      5. PIP #5 Use Close-Ups of Subjects in a Scene for the Greatest Emotional Effect
      6. PIP #6 When Cutting to a Close-Up of an Action, Select a Version of the Close-Up Where the Action Is Slower
      7. PIP #7 Understand the Visual Differences between a Dolly-In and a Zoom
      8. PIP #8 Beware of Shots That Dolly Out Without Motivation
      9. PIP #9 Select the Best Version of a Pan or Crab Dolly Shot
      10. PIP #10 Begin and End Each Pan, Tilt, or Dolly Shot on a Static Frame
      11. PIP #11 Avoid Cutting Pans and Tilts That Reverse Direction at the Cut Point
    5. Chapter Two – Review
    6. Chapter Two – Exercises
    7. Chapter Two – Quiz Yourself
  10. Chapter Three – Understanding the Audio Material
    1. Sound as an Element of Motion Media
    2. Sounds Acquired During Production
      1. Dialogue
      2. Room Tone/Natural Sounds (NATS)/Ambience
      3. Wild Sounds
      4. Soundtracks (Musical)
    3. Sounds Acquired During Post-Production
      1. Narration/Voice-Over
      2. Automated Dialogue Replacement (ADR)/Looping
      3. Ambience/Tonal Tracks
      4. Sound Effects (SFX)/Spot Effects
      5. Foley Effects
      6. Soundtracks (Music)
      7. Stings/Stingers
      8. Score
    4. Audio Terms You May Encounter
      1. Sync Sound
      2. Diegetic Sounds
      3. Non-Diegetic Sounds
      4. Sound Design
      5. Sound Motifs
    5. Chapter Three – Final Thoughts: Sound as Emotional and Physiological Manipulation
    6. Chapter Three – Principles in Practice
      1. PIP #1 Consider Using a Sound Element Before Active Picture at the Start of a Program
      2. PIP #2 Do Not Leave Holes in Your Audio Tracks
      3. PIP #3 When Editing Dialogue, Avoid Automatically Removing a Performer's Pauses
      4. PIP #4 In Documentary Programming, Edit Out “Ums” and “Ahs” in Interviewee Speech
      5. PIP #5 Use a Character's Cleanly Recorded Dialogue under Their Off-Screen or Over-the-Shoulder Line Delivery
      6. PIP #6 Do Not Allow Dialogue Delivery to Restrict Cut Point Placement
      7. PIP #7 Hold Off on Adding Music to Dialogue Scenes
      8. PIP #8 During the Audio Mix, Make Sure Music Track Levels Do Not Overpower Dialogue
      9. PIP #9 When Appropriate, Edit Video Tracks to the Beats of Music in Your Sequence
      10. PIP #10 If Appropriate for Your Story, Make a Cut at a Loud Sound on the Audio Track
      11. PIP #11 For the End of a Program, Use the End of the Music
    7. Chapter Three – Review
    8. Chapter Three – Exercises
    9. Chapter Three – Quiz Yourself
  11. Chapter Four – Assessing Footage: Selecting Shots for the Edit
    1. Criteria for Shot Assessment
      1. Focus
      2. Framing and Composition
      3. Exposure and Color Balance
      4. Screen Direction
      5. The 180-Degree Rule/Axis of Action
      6. The 30-Degree Rule
      7. Matching Angles
      8. Matching Eye-Line
      9. Continuity of Action
      10. Performance
      11. Continuity of Dialogue/Spoken Words
      12. Audio Quality
    2. Be Familiar with All of the Footage
    3. Chapter Four – Final Thoughts: Judge, Jury, and Editor
    4. Chapter Four – Principles in Practice
      1. PIP #1 Avoid Shots Where Distracting Objects Are Too Near the Subject's Head
      2. PIP #2 Avoid Shots Where the Subject Gets Awkwardly Cut Off at the Edge of the Frame
      3. PIP #3 Cut Matched Shots in a Back-and-Forth Dialogue Scene
      4. PIP #4 Ensure That Subjects Talking on the Telephone Appear to Look Across the Screen at One Another
      5. PIP #5 With a Single Subject, Try to Avoid Cutting to the Same Camera Angle
      6. PIP #6 Beware of Screen Placement Issues With an Object of Interest
      7. PIP #7 Use Shots With Matching Headroom When Cutting a Dialogue Scene
      8. PIP #8 Avoid Crossing the Action Line or the Screen Direction Will Be Reversed
      9. PIP #9 Maintain Screen Direction Across an Action Edit
    5. Chapter Four – Review
    6. Chapter Four – Exercises
    7. Chapter Four – Quiz Yourself
  12. Chapter Five – When to Cut and Why: Factors That Lead to Strong Edits
    1. Information
    2. Motivation
      1. Picture Motivations
      2. Sound Motivations
      3. Time Motivations
    3. Shot Composition
    4. Camera Angle
    5. Continuity
      1. Continuity of Content
      2. Continuity of Movement
      3. Continuity of Position
    6. Sound
    7. Chapter Five – Final Thoughts: Is There a Right or Wrong Reason for a Cut?
    8. Chapter Five – Principles in Practice
      1. PIP #1 Cut Away from Subjects Soon after Their Look Rests upon Their Object of Interest
      2. PIP #2 Cut to Reaction Shots during Spoken Phrases or Sentences Rather than at Their End
      3. PIP #3 Avoid Cutting an Action Edit from a Two-Shot to Another Two-Shot of the Same Subjects
      4. PIP #4 Cover Continuity, Time, or Information “Gaps” with an Insert Shot
      5. PIP #5 Allow a Subject to Exit the Frame Completely Prior to Showing them Entering the Next Shot
    9. Chapter Five – Review
    10. Chapter Five – Exercises
    11. Chapter Five – Quiz Yourself
  13. Chapter Six – Video Transitions and Edit Categories
    1. Heads, Tails, and Handles
    2. The Four Major Categories of Transition Types
      1. The Cut
      2. The Dissolve
      3. The Wipe
      4. The Fade
    3. The Five Major Categories of Edit Types
      1. The Action Edit
      2. The Screen Position Edit
      3. The Form Edit
      4. The Concept Edit
      5. The Combined Edit
    4. Chapter Six – Final Thoughts: Apply Reasoning, Don’t Memorize It
    5. Chapter Six – Principles in Practice
      1. PIP #1 Beware of Editing a Cut-to-Black Followed by a Cut-to-Full-Picture
      2. PIP #2 Take Advantage of the Transition Point That Natural Wipes Offer
      3. PIP #3 Take Advantage of the Transition Point That Whip Pans Offer
      4. PIP #4 Do Not Use Video Track Dissolves during a Dialogue Scene
      5. PIP #5 Use a “Soft Cut” or Mini-Dissolve to Mask a Cut in Interview Footage
      6. PIP #6 Use a Dissolve between Simile Shots
      7. PIP #7 Create Continuous Motion Action Edits by Matching Physical Movements
    6. Chapter Six – Review
    7. Chapter Six – Exercises
    8. Chapter Six – Quiz Yourself
  14. Chapter Seven – Editing Terms, Topics, and Techniques
    1. Editing Terms
      1. Timecode
      2. Montage
      3. Parallel Editing
      4. Multi-Camera Editing
      5. Composite Editing
      6. Titles and Graphics
      7. Rendering
      8. Green Screen Chromakey
      9. Video Resolution
    2. Editing Topics
      1. Sound Editing
      2. Color Correction/Color Grading
      3. Importing Still Images
      4. Digital Workflow
      5. Technology Versus Creativity
    3. Chapter Seven – Final Thoughts: Old Techniques Done With New Technologies
    4. Chapter Seven – Principles in Practice
      1. PIP #1 Make Appropriate Typeface/Font Choices for Your Titles
      2. PIP #2 Be Aware of Proper On-Screen Durations for Inter-Title and Lower-Third Graphics
      3. PIP #3 Use Imported Digital Photographs With Appropriate Size and Resolution
      4. PIP #4 Use J-Cuts and L-Cuts to Smooth Over Transitions
      5. PIP #5 If Working for a Client, Complete Rudimentary Color Correction before Showing a Rough Cut
      6. PIP #6 When Color Grading, Work through Shots, Then Scenes, Then Overall Look
    5. Chapter Seven – Review
    6. Chapter Seven – Exercises
    7. Chapter Seven – Quiz Yourself
  15. Chapter Eight – Concluding Thoughts: An Editor's Mindset
    1. The Better the Edit, the Less It Is Noticed
    2. Sound and Vision Are Partners
    3. A New Shot Should Contain New Information
    4. There Should Be a Reason for Every Edit
    5. Pacing Has a Purpose
    6. Observe the Action Line
    7. Select the Appropriate Form of Edit Transition
    8. Editing Is Manipulation
    9. The Role of an Assistant Editor
    10. Editing Is Creating
    11. Chapter Eight – Final Thoughts: Key Takeaways
    12. Chapter Eight – Review
    13. Chapter Eight – Exercises
    14. Chapter Eight – Quiz Yourself
  16. Appendix A – Helpful Resources for Video Content Creators
  17. Appendix B – Crew Positions Commonly Needed for Motion Media Production
  18. Appendix C – Practice Script, “Hey. Hey.”
  19. Glossary
  20. Index

Product information

  • Title: Grammar of the Edit, 5th Edition
  • Author(s): Christopher Bowen
  • Release date: August 2023
  • Publisher(s): Routledge
  • ISBN: 9781000914306