590: Our Video Workflows

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*Both working on

Sigh, that typo was mine.

I mean…the “typo” isn’t wrong either though. Work it!!!

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great episode so far….

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I was curious how cancelling Epidemic Sound works. Seems reasonable! Enjoyed the episode.

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That was interesting!

What was the youtuber guy’s name who Stephen and David recommended learning from?

I can’t find it in the show notes.

Tyler Stallman.

This video of his is linked in the show notes:

Thanks! Very helpful.

Two foundational sources would help @MacSparky, @ismh and all Mac power users expand their skills in Final Cut Pro:

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One service I’ve found invaluable is Descript. I shoot mostly talking head videos and it greatly speeds up my workflow. It generates a transcription. Then, when you edit the transcript, it edits the video. Works for podcasts too.

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Thanks for the episode; I enjoyed it. I had to make an account here, though, just to say how much I dislike the Sony ZV-1. Sounds like it works well for what Stephen uses it for, but it’s not for me, and I just wanted to add my data points here for anyone else considering that camera. I’m a full-time travel and adventure YouTuber (my channel), and the focus pulsing on the ZV-1 (and it seems like on most Sony cameras) looks bad and drives me nuts. I also very strongly dislike how there is no auto audio leveling on the camera (unless I’ve somehow missed it??). You have to set the volume level yourself, but I’ve found any particular setting to be either too quiet or too loud for a given situation, meaning more work for me in the post-production process. Likely not an issue for in-studio recording but not ideal for, say, Disneyland vlogs. I also dislike how limited the touch screen is on the ZV-1. You can’t use it to navigate the menu, to “press play” to play back a recorded clip, or to scrub through a video clip, for example.

Oh, and the angle of the lens is too tight. I hope they give the next version a wider angle lens.

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Listening now…

In terms of Final Cut Library management: it is possible to slim down all the cached and generated files before archiving the project.

  • Select the Library in the left panel. (If you select the Info view on the right panel, you can see the full library size)
  • File > Delete Generated Files
  • Select (as much as you like)
  • Render files are the least permanent, just show you a higher quality picture while playing back.
  • Proxy - if you made them, they are lower resolution files that are easier for the computer to play back
  • Optimised - full resolution versions of original footage, but in a format that is easiest for Final Cut to play back while editing.

All these can be remade from the original footage. It is a file archive size vs time spent regenerating file later calculation. But, it’s almost never worth keeping any of the generated files once you’ve finished a project.

Once these files are cleared, all that is archived is the raw data (original footage and project files) needed to re-render a video.

To prevent the library getting super-sized in the first place, you should also go into preferences and switch OFF automatic rendering after x seconds.

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Thanks for sharing your POV. What camera would recommend instead?

What would David gain using the Sony ZV-1 over just using his iPhone 12, perhaps with an external mic and gimbal?

Hi Tristan, like your blog. What photography gear do you recommend?

I thought I’d share my general workflow for my Lesson Videos.
There’s a few things I do that take silly amounts of time, but the results look good.

  • I plan the visuals first as a set of Google slides. Often, these are just backgrounds with a title and key points, with lots of space for me to draw and write etc. These are exported as a PDF and sent to Explain Everything
  • I then write a script. This helps me plan out what I will say and get the key points I want to make in a sensible order. This is written as notes on the slides so they are together. I then copy these to a text file, which I open in Parrot Teleprompter on an iPad
  • Now I’m ready to record, I set up my nice camera, an Olympus OMD M10 to get a head shot
  • My microphone is set up about out of shot. I speak the intro straight to camera, recording the video on camera (with audio for later) and the good audio in Quicktime Player. This often takes many attempts to get it right.
  • Most of the video does not have me on screen, so I keep going with the video and audio but turn to my iPad and read the script. With a properly written script, this allows me to read with energy and passion AND accuracy. By ‘properly written script,’ I mean one that is written in natural language, so I include things like ‘er,’ ‘hang on, let me try that again,’ etc in the script. When I get to a point I’m going to reappear as a floating head, I turn back to the camera and do it from memory. Often with multiple attempts.
  • I use Izotope’s RX7 to tidy up the audio, especially the Vocal Noise Removal
  • Import everything into Final Cut Pro and use the sync tool to align the audio from the camera and Quicktime. This often needs adjustment due to audio lag on the camera, but maybe I can fix that.
  • Edit the audio down, removing my fluffs
  • Open the slides in Explain Everything. Play the audio (at half speed for A Level, at 3/4 speed for GCSE; watching someone write at normal speed can be excruciating) and write notes on the iPad. The slow speed helps me write neatly. This also records audio.
  • Import the notes into FCP, using the audio sync tool to align it.
  • Add my custom intro and outro
  • Export to YouTube.

Note: If I am simply explaining how to answer a question, I simply do it in one run in Explain Everything. This means a 5 minute video takes 5 minutes, not over an hour.

This was a great episode, thank you for sharing!

I just wanted to draw your attention to a tool my friend Dave Ceddia developed called Recut – it’s a native Swift app that automatically edits out silence and exports to Screenflow, Premiere and other editors. Check it out!