Post production refers to all the work that comes after you've captured your video material: editing, visual enhancements, post processing, video mastering, selecting the right export resolution for your video, and so on. It's on your computer that the actual movie comes to life. This is why MAGIX software is built entirely around providing the best tools and features for video post production, from classic cutting and editing to powerful post processing functions which are easy enough for total beginners to use. Every video project and every user is unique, which is why MAGIX gives you the flexibility to decide which post production stages are right for your video. We've put together six simple steps to help you understand each part of the post production process and easily transform your footage into amazing videos and movies.
Step 1: Importing your video material
When you're ready to start post production, the first thing you always need to do is import your raw footage into the software. There are a couple ways to do this: You can either save the material to your computer's hard drive and then import it, or you can import it directly from your camera or SD card using the program's import feature.
The Media Pool in Movie Studio provides a convenient overview of all the files on your storage device. With the "Import" feature, a single click is all it takes to import the files you want to use for post production. And since the Media Pool works like a normal file browser, the controls and layout are familiar to all users.
Step 2: Selecting material for editing
When you first open Movie Studio, the program is in Story mode. In this mode, you can select and combine individual video files to create a movie. There's a small preview image provided for each video file in the overview window to help you keep track of which clip is which. To change the position of a clip in the video, simply drag it.
Cutting is the most important part of the post production stage. Your footage doesn't become a movie until you've combined and arranged individual scenes into a cohesive whole.
Ideally, you want to start by removing all the sequences of footage you don't intend to use in your video. Only the most basic editing features are available in Story mode. To access more advanced tools, switch to Timeline mode.
If you're planning a large project, it's a good idea to write a screenplay beforehand to help you keep track of individual scenes during filming and post production and to start thinking about what kinds of transitions will work best for each scene.
Step 3: Video post processing
When the rough cut of the video is done, the next step in the post production process is to optimize the picture quality. This stage is especially important if the scenes in your video were filmed at different times of the day and over long periods of time. This is often the case with vacation and travel videos. If you want to the light and colors in your video to be uniform all the way through, you'll definitely want to include this step in your own post production routine. The rule of thumb here (although not for special effects) is to keep things subtle. You want your effects essentially to remain unnoticed so that the viewer's attention isn't pulled away from what's happening in the scene. This rule is especially important for picture enhancements: anything that sticks out, such as frames that are underexposed, tinted or blurry, should be touched up to create visual consistency across all your scenes.
These sections can be optimized using various features in Movie Studio. Here are some of the most important:
- White balance
- Hue and saturation
Once the picture quality in your video is uniform, you can start customizing the look with additional effects and filters. Here are some of the most popular effects in Movie Studio:
- Black and white
- 70s look
Step 4: Post production dubbing
Sound is also a big part of the post production process. Here, the same order is used as with the picture quality optimizations: We start by removing any noise from the existing audio, and then we balance the volume to account for different microphone positions in each sequence of video. This step is especially important if your video is made up of footage from different sources. Movie Studio also lets you cut your footage together to create a stop motion movie.
MAGIX Audio Cleaning Lab comes with nearly 300 optimization presets which can significantly enhance the audio in your video in just a few clicks. Once the base audio is optimized, you can start adding extra sound material such as background music. When selecting music for your video, check to make sure the music isn't protected under copyright law. MAGIX Audio Cleaning Lab also provides tools for adding separate dubbing and voice over tracks, which are especially useful if you want your visuals to be accompanied by spoken explanations or narration. Sound effects are another powerful element of the post production process and are especially popular for YouTube videos.
Step 5: Intro and outro —
adding personal touches in post production
The intro tells the viewer what your video is about, and the outro normally shows the names of the people involved in the production.
You can either use part of your existing footage to create your intro and outro if you want to give a sneak peek of what's to come, or you can create entirely new material for this purpose, as well as add text, effects and sounds. Let your creativity run wild — Movie Studio provides all the tools you need to create perfect intros an outros.
Step 6: Exporting —
saving and sharing your video after post production
Once you're finished with post production, it's time to save your video project. Movie Studio comes with an Export Wizard which makes saving and sharing your finished movie a breeze. We recommend always saving a local copy of your video on your computer, even if you only intend to share it on social media or put it on your website. The Export Wizard automatically selects the best resolution and size for your video based on where and how you plan to use it. You can also select the export format manually if you want to specify the picture quality and size of the file yourself.
The Export Wizard provides the following optimized presets for exporting videos for different purposes:
- Export as video file: saves the video to your hard drive
- Export for device: saves the video for viewing on smartphones, tables and other mobile devices
- Export as media player: generates an HTML media player containing the video; this can be embedded in your website or blog
- Upload to Internet: optimizes the video for social media and video platforms such as Vimeo and YouTube
Trivia: What does CGI stand for?
CGI, a term that gets used a lot in post production, stands for Computer Generated Imagery and basically refers to the computer generated animations in movies. In large-scale productions such as Game of Thrones, a large portion of the budget is invested in CGI to create visual effects like landscapes and dragons and to perform post processing. Without CGI, productions such as these would be nothing but green screens and actors in green costumes.
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