The Joys of Video Editing

I have been working on my video blog lately and I have been running into a few problems. Not the I-don't-like-being-in-front-of-the-camera type problems. The I-want-to-see-if-my-computer-is-aerodynamic type problems. The biggest problem being my video editing software. I don't have hundreds of dollars to spend on video editing software. I also don't want to have to learn to build a warp drive just to open it either. The first editor I tried is called Kdenlive. It is a pretty powerful editor and is completely free. It only runs on Linux and Mac. Though trying to install it on a Mac is a lot harder than just dual booting said Mac. I have been working in Kdenlive for a few months now. Two nights ago I tried to render a project and to my dismay it kept crashing. No warning message, no fatal error, just gone. Closed. I have a few more things to try in the hopes of resolving the issue, but it is not looking good.

The second editor I have been using came as a surprise to me. It also took some paper from my wallet and that has at least kept it from crashing on me. During my trip to Okinawa I ended up using my iPad mini a lot more as my main video and photo camera. I bought the iMovie app just to do some basic editing and I was surprised by its functionality. It gives quite a bit of flexibility for being a tablet app and I just recently found I can import HD video from my camcorder as well. Not bad for $5. All of my Japan videos on YouTube were edited with the iPad iMovie app.

The third editor that I will be trying, if I can't get Kdenlive to work on my computer, is called OpenShot. It too is a free video editor for Linux. It has fewer features than Kdenlive, but it still seems to be a pretty powerful program. I will be trying it out this weekend.

The last editor on my list is actually 3D animation software called Blender. The controls make the space shuttle look simple. I was searching for free video editors and was surprised to see it listed as a non-linear editor. I looked into it some more and found it has quite a few video editing features built in. Blender has a pretty high learning curve, but I think I will give it a try as well. It may not become my main video editor, but it could be a great backup since it will run on Mac, Windows, and Linux.

Overall, there are quite a few options out there if you don't mind a steep learning curve. I hope to have another vlog post up this weekend for you amid all the video editing craziness.

Do you know of any other non-linear video editing software I should try?

Video blogging

Video blogging is something I have been thinking about doing for years, but I was just scared to start. After watching hours of various well produced video blogs on YouTube, I went from thinking about it to actually doing it. I am still a newbie to the realm of online video, but I am enjoying it more and more as I make more videos. Here are the top ten things I have learned since starting to vlog

  1. I am crazy picky about video quality
  2. Video cameras are expensive
  3. Video editing software is expensive
  4. Linux still makes me happy (I knew this, but it was affirmed again with free video editing software)
  5. Tripods make everything look better
  6. Do multiple takes (You can always cut stuff out later)
  7. Shooting in public makes me self conscious
  8. Jump cuts are okay
  9. Video codecs are a pain
  10. Filming anything is really all about the lighting and angle

Okay, as I was writing this about forty more things popped into my head. I have found making a somewhat decent video is a lot more work and a lot more time consuming than I had originally expected. I definitely have a lot more respect for all the YouTubers and video makers who take the time to produce great work.

Do any of you video blog? What tips do you have to share?

Vlog - Letchworth State Park

Last weekend a few friends and I decided to go for a hike around Letchworth State Park. I brought my camera because I am working on vlogging more. I hope you enjoy. The music in the background is the song "Sun Dance" on the album "The Dancing Island" by Christina Sonnemann. Click here to go to her iTunes page.