Whether you’re one of the almost 60,000 professional videographers in the United States or your a hobby filmmaker, these 7 video editing tips will help you create the stunning footage you’ve been dreaming of.

1. Software

There are various types of software at different price points. However, there are a few free programs that work well for almost all types of videos.

For storyboarding, adding intros, and inserting text try Adobe’s Spark. Their program is intuitive, usable on ios or a computer, and free. It can be used as a  video intro maker as well as basic editing.    

2. Terminology

True videographers should familiarize themselves with the basic terminology so that they can continue to build on their knowledge without getting lost.

Here are a few basic terms to know:

  • Aspect Ratio: the width and height of your video (some common ratios are 4:3, 16:9, 1.85:1)
  • Data Rate: the amount of data used per second of video
  • B Roll: backup footage to aid in transitions and fill
  • J-Cut: audio precedes the video
  • L-Cut: video proceeds the audio
  • Rule of Thirds: a filming technique where the subject of the shot is placed in the top or bottom or the left or right third of the screen. It’s widely considered to be more visually pleasing.
  • Resolution: the number of pixels on the screen. The higher the resolution, the clearer the image. 

3. Video Editing Tips: Planning

Storyboard and plan your video ahead of time. It’s often the most neglected step of the creative process, but it’s one of the most important.

Planning a storyline can provide direction during filming and in moments of creative block. 



This is true for professional and amateur work. Even if your project is a video of your baby’s first year of life, the storyline can be organized by months put to specific songs.  

4. Color

Color editing makes the difference between regular phone footage and a stunning, share-worthy shot.

Several types of software will allow you to adjust color temperature, HSL, exposure, etc. manually. There are also programs available that will enable you to color correct an image using a pre-made filter. 

Color correcting your video is a tool used to add personality and enhance the message you’re trying to send. Warming the image can create a sense of softness and calm while cooling the image can create a bold, modern look.

5. Sound

Sound editing includes adding audio over what was recorded or enhancing the existing sound. 

Most videos are enhanced by adding music to the background or as the principle audio. 

Remember that sound is a support feature of the film, so it’s usually best to keep it simple.

6. Text, Graphics, and Effects

These additional effects are right for some videos and not for others. If you’re making explainer videos, marketing videos, or have credits, then adding text and graphics are appropriate.

For personal videos like weddings, family home, etc. text and graphics can feel cheesy and amateur. 

7. Export and Share

What’s the point of a good video if you can’t share it with people you love? It’s important to export the file in a shareable size and format so that it can be sent and posted to most major platforms. 

You can find the standard export settings for the major video platforms here

Lights, Camera, Action!

Now that you’ve got these amazing video editing tips in your tool kit, it’s time to get filming? What will you create next?

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