Everyone has a workflow they like to follow, and each person does things a little differently than the next person. How do you like to organize footage when going into the editing phase of a project? This week we are looking at a question from a student about organizing footage while editing.

STUDENT QUESTION: How do you organize footage while editing?

JOHN-CLAYI organize all my footage by date and then I just drag those whole folders right into Premiere, and then I’ll make sequences or timelines, you want to name them by date; and then inside of that I’ll kind of group them together and I’ll break them out. So there’s kind of shots about this, and then I’ll put a break and then there’s shots about that. Personally, I think it’s faster to scrub through a timeline to find the footage you’re looking for than it is to go to the finder and dig through three or four folders to find the clip and then scrub through the clip. In my mind, that’s faster for me. If it’s not faster for you, do whatever works for you.

If it's not faster for you, do whatever works for you. Click To Tweet

I worked on a pretty extensive project for a outdoor TV show one time, did a couple episodes. They went and they used the renaming program and like renamed all their footage in the finder and they had one big folder. I just don’t see that it’s worth that kind of time for the way we were doing it. And it all depends, if you’ve got multiple editors and you’re on network; I mean I can understand bigger operations might want things done a certain way. And I actually went and talked to him about it in his office and I said, “So how did you do it?” 

He was onsite filming. So he knows exactly every single little clip and he can watch the first five seconds and know what on the rest of the clip. So for him you can just go tap, tap, tap, tap, tap, tap. And it is faster. He can do it faster than I can in that situation. I wasn’t on site, I have to watch everything. So that was slower for me; that doesn’t work as well.

For ALERT project that I did, I used some footage one of the other guys had shot previously and he had it this way and everything was all organized by underwater, outdoor, and boating, and hiking, and that was helpful in that sense for me because I also wasn’t the shooter. So there was just hours and hours and hours, a hundred gig of footage, that to just have by date would have been very confusing for me at that point.

And then it was helpful for me because I was trying to turn the project around really fast for them. Is there any more shots of this? And I could find the folder and I can pull the footage. And I still put it in the timeline and then I scrubbed it. That’s just my default. I just think it’s faster that way. Do it however you want. So even inside Premiere, I don’t usually even go by category more. Final Cut Pro is more this way. Final Cut Pro X, I know. And there may be some other softwares now that are starting to kind of do more of the category thing. I find it frustrating, but that’s just me and everybody’s a little different.

Bethany Meckle

Bethany Meckle

Content Curator

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