Editing Video

Few, if any, video clips begin and end at the perfect moments. That’s why it’s important to know how to trim or split clips in Photoshop. Fortunately, both methods are incredibly easy (and nondestructive to boot!). In this section, you’ll also learn how to add transitions, text, other images, and audio. Read on!

Changing Clip Length

Photoshop makes it simple to trim a clip: just drag its endpoints left or right in the Timeline panel. As you shorten one clip in a video track, the others slide over to keep the track seamless, as shown in Figure 20-3.

You can also adjust the length of a clip by clicking the triangle in its top-right corner in the Timeline panel (circled in Figure 20-4, top). When you do, Photoshop opens a panel containing Video and Audio buttons (also circled). Either way, trimming clips is a nondestructive process, so if you decide to undo your trimming, just drag the clip’s endpoint left or right (happily, Photoshop won’t let you extend a clip beyond its original length).


If you’ve converted a video layer into a smart object (Creating Smart Objects), clicking the triangle in the clip’s top-right corner opens the Motion panel instead of the Video/Audio panel shown in Figure 20-4. It includes presets such as Pan, Zoom, and Rotate; you can use it to add Ken Burns–style motion to still images, as described on Adding Text, Logos, and Still Images.

Point your cursor at the start or end point of a clip and the cursor turns into a bracket with a double-sided arrow (circled). The bracket points toward the clip that will be affected (here, the bracket faces left). Click and drag the bracket left or right and Photoshop opens the preview window visible here, which shows exactly which frame you’re trimming the video down to. Handy, eh?

Figure 20-3. Point ...

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