Five Effective Tips to Improve Your Fast-Cut Video Edits

Quick-cut video editing could be an incredibly powerful storytelling asset when you want to express a certain creative vision or evoke particular emotions from your audience through a  simple visual concept that combines different images fitting perfectly together in the final edit. Applying this technique the right way, however, is a whole different story. You can come across many inconsistencies while jumping from shot to shot hence making your story too confusing or hard to interpret. To help you sort things out, the talented filmmaker Brandon Li shares his five killer tips for making your fast-cut video edits more exciting and consistent every time you need to utilize this compelling video editing technique.

Simplifying your shots in the first place is paramount on those occasions. You can do so by placing your subject in the center of the frame and then zooming in on it to eliminate the distraction factors in the background of your image. Using silhouettes is another way to achieve the same effect. You can also punch in or punch out of your subject to keep your viewer oriented in the space. For instance, you can start wide on a subject and then immediately punch in, or apply the same trick the other way around.

Another excellent tip for consistent quick-paced video edits is keeping the same screen direction from shot to shot. Whatever direction you choose for your fast-cut montage, try to keep it consistent if you want those edits to be associated with each other. This method will also create a better feeling of flow for the audience between the shots.

If for some reason you subject goes in the wrong screen direction in a certain shot, you can easily fix that by flipping it right away. In case you have more static shots to deal with, you can simply add a slight digital zoom that will instantly create a false dominant motion to improve the transition.

Following a dominant shape, color or luminance between shots will also help you tremendously in your quick-cut video editing endeavor. This technique will not only evoke a sense of intentionality but will also create an unexpected connection between seemingly unrelated images.

You can achieve the same effect by establishing effects and connections between shots. A typical example in that regard would be an action that starts in one shot and completes in another. All in all, by implementing these tips and tricks altogether, you’ll be able to create a feeling of a story and get a lot more consistent results when speeding up your edits, especially when you use this powerful technique to enhance your visual storytelling and engage with the viewer even further.

[source: Brandon Li]

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