A video editing role should be considered if you enjoy editing raw footage to tell a captivating story. These professionals closely review recordings filmed by camera operators and edit together the scenes that best match the goals or vision established by the director or client. There are many areas you can work in that allow you to create engaging videos that educate or entertain viewers. In this article, we review what a career in video editing is, what they do, skills to have and career fields you can pursue.
What is a career in video editing?
A career in video editing is a job that consists of using both technical and creative skills to gather and cut recorded materials into a visually appealing and entertaining format. Most employees who work in video editing typically find quality images, clips and angles to communicate and convey a brand’s message to its audience. These careers can also involve putting together audio and visual clips that educate viewers on a variety of subjects, like industry topics, product advertisements or news updates. Some video editors also work in the entertainment industry, creating entertaining videos for short films, cinematic productions or webisodes.
What does a video editor do?
A video editor reviews and sifts through raw footage to find shots and clips that tell a valuable story on screen. They may remove unusable footage and locate clips to rearrange into a flowing and visually appealing sequence. Many of these professionals use video editing tools to assemble the footage, visual effects, dialogue and sound in a way that meets the client’s, company’s or director’s expectations and visions for the project. After editing, the video editor may present the final product to the director and apply changes according to their feedback.
Other responsibilities of a video editor include:
Reviewing raw video footage to create a shot list
Using editing software and techniques to arrange and manipulate video footage
Coordinating with the director to understand their vision for the final product
Adding dialogue, music, sound effects, transitions and graphics to improve scene value
Making sure the project follows a flowing and comprehensive sequence
Developing the final cut and presenting it to directors or clients by its deadline
Video editing skills
Many video editors have a strong knowledge of and experience using different video editing software tools. Being fluent in these programs allows you to more efficiently cut and edit footage to provide a quick final product for the client or director. These professionals also use a strong attention to detail to ensure each transition and scene is precise and smooth. Some clients or directors may provide you with large amounts of footage to sift through and edit within tight deadlines, making time-management and task prioritization important skills to have as well. Other common video editing skills can include:
Organization and time-management abilities
Problem-solving and critical thinking skills
Communication and interpersonal abilities
Creativity and artistic abilities
Career fields in video editing
Depending on the type of tasks you’d like to complete and the productions you’d like to make, there are a wide variety of areas you can work in as a video editor. Here are common career fields in video editing:
Film editors typically work on set for motion pictures, short films or independent movies. They typically collaborate closely with the director, cinematographer and sound editors to edit together scenes that meet their expectations and tell the story they’re trying to convey. Many film editors spend hours watching raw footage and deciding which clips to use in the final product. They may also take time to read the script and discuss with the director to ensure the final footage aligns well with the story being told. Some film editors visit the set during filming to understand scene’s purpose before editing it.
Television studio editor
Many television studio editors work for larger or local production companies and compile footage for a variety of TV formats, like scripted sitcoms, documentaries, training videos or music videos. They often pair this video footage with sound effects, music and other special effects to make it more entertaining for viewers to watch. Since most episodes air close together within each season, television studio editors often operate under strict deadlines and must submit error-free final products. Some TV editors help oversee the design, camera angles, lighting and sound for shows during filming to ensure they align with their edited footage.
An animator uses tools and techniques to develop moving images and stories told as cartoons. Many animation video editors might create these images for a wide variety of projects like movies, television shows, video games or commercials. They’re typically responsible for creating various elements like characters, background design or scenery. Many animators hold impressive technical skills as they often create these compelling images using motion capture data and video animation tools. Most of these professionals typically draw these images and try to capture it as an animated image using their software system.
Broadcast engineering technician
A broadcast engineering technician operates specialized tools and equipment items to strengthen and regulate the clarity of sounds and images seen on television shows and news stations. Many of them work closely with other sound engineers to use equipment items like frequency analyzers, satellite receivers and audio mixing consoles. They might work for news stations to edit audio clips, b-roll and footage in a compelling manner to inform viewers of local or national news. Some might also conduct regular tests to make sure the final products have high video and sound quality.
Marketing video editor
Most video editors who work for marketing teams typically make educational, informational and engaging promotional products for target audiences to view. If these professionals work on smaller editing teams, they may capture the footage and edit them entirely on their own. They might create a variety of video editing projects, from advertising campaigns to product demonstrations to instructional videos. Most marketing video editors study and follow a company’s brand guidelines to ensure it meets the necessary requirements, fits the brand’s image and represents the company accurately.