Post Production Workflow
Post production workflow, it’s a love/hate relationship. It can start off really smooth and exciting when you first begin editing your project. However, it does not always stay that way. Post production can become one of the biggest pains in this industry. Opening a project that you have been working on and finding that your video clips have been unlinked from it’s source. Then you cannot go back and locate that video clip because it is not where you had it before. You cannot seem to find your audio files that you usually use for music or sound effects. In my experience, I have found that organization is key for a smooth post production workflow experience. It doesn’t take a scholar to realize this. However, as simple as this principle is to realize, it is just as simple to ignore it. Therefore, I want to show you my post production workflow that I have found to keep my projects running smoothly.
Upon wrapping up a shoot, I am one of those filmmakers that just cannot wait to see the footage of what I shot, and even more to see it already graded. That sometimes causes problems for me simply because I often end up importing the clips directly from my media cards and leave things as they are. My process has changed. I have learned to be a tad patient and make sure that I first create all my labeled folders to keep all my media organized in them. I need to create new folders for every single element that I know I’m going to use in my project and maintain the appropriate media in them. For example, I will have a separate folder for the Premiere Pro project files, footage, audio, visual effects, images, etc. Within each of those folders I will need to create sub folders. My “footage” folder needs subfolders to be separated by the different cameras that were used and I often label those folders by the name of the camera. Within the audio folder ill have a separate subfolder for basically anything that has to do with the audio of my project like music, voiceovers, sound effects, etc. I’ll continue to create new folders and subfolders as I need to. I don’t always have the same folders in every project. Sometimes I don’t use still images or music in my project, so I won’t have those folders. Once all of my media files have been sorted out and organized like this, I'll go ahead and make one large import into my project. Just like my files are in separate folders and subfolders, they get imported into premiere pro in folders and subfolders as well. This just makes life much easier.
ADOBE PREMIERE PRO CC
As you may already know by now, Adobe Premiere Pro CC is my editing software of choice. Why? It makes my post production workflow run extremely smooth. It has all of the essential tools that I need for any job, but what I like most about it is that it offers dynamic-linking into other editing softwares, like After Effects, Audition and SpeedGrade, when I need to go more in-depth in visual effects, audio, or color correcting/grading. Like I mentioned before, when bringing all my footage into Premiere Pro, I maintain them in the same folders in which I sorted them out in my drive. This allows me to locate all of my media files effortlessly when I need to. As you can also see in the pictured screenshot, I also go ahead and color-code all of my clips when needed. This allows me to distinguish each clip without actually having to play them back to see what that particular clip contains. One of the many features I love about Adobe Premiere Pro CC.
It is no secret that when projects are kept organized, it makes life just so much easier. This is apparent in the filmmaking industry. If you begin a new project unorganized, you’re going to find yourself frustrated quite often. One rule of thumb that I like to maintain is to never have anything on my desktop. That’s right, there should be a folder for every single media file that I bring into my computer. Whether it’s for a video project, or simply a personal picture, you should always find a designated place for it. I am also extra careful when labeling all of my files as well. Maintaining this consistent workflow allows me to not only have a productive post production workflow experience, but more importantly, it allows me to delivery my finished products on time. I have found that sticking to this format of organization has helped me be much more efficient in all my jobs.