All-inclusive Beginner’s Guide for Video Editing [Tips & Software]

Video editing is no more a complex process involving advanced equipment and laborious processes performed by technical experts. It is now quite simplified after the introduction of flexible and feature-rich video editing software programs.

Quick Overview

Video Editing Guide

Using these programs, even beginners can manage to create good videos and publish them online. You too can create intriguing videos on all your favorite concepts with this helpful video editing tutorial for beginners.

How does video editing work?

Today video editing has become a simplified process due to its ease of access on cameras or smartphones. Besides, many social media sites provide basic video editing tools to edit your videos before posting them.

These tools can deliver only minor tweaks. But if you need to create professional-looking videos, then it is better to learn video editing.

The great news is that there are many efficient free video editing resources available nowadays. Even though they have some limitations, it is the best way to start your video editing journey.

When you are just beginning with video editing, using free video editing templates can be beneficial. These slick templates enable you to add credits, captions, visual effects, pre-designed titles, and animations that make your videos look professional.

How to start learning?

Study the editing terms

Video editing has much technical jargon, so it is better to learn video editing terms before getting started. We have compiled a few for your reference:

  • Timeline
  • Compression
  • Compositing
  • LCut
  • JCut
  • Cutting on Action
  • Jump Cuts
  • Montage
  • Cutaways
  • Match Cut/Action

Watch some online Tutorials

Today many YouTube videos teach you how to create professional video content. These tutorials are free, so accessing them is much easier. Search for the software version that matches the program that you are currently using.

But, before we start with the tutorial, let’s get a brief idea of how to prepare for the process

Things to Remember During Video Editing

To make your video editing process more seamless, we have come up with a list of different things you need to remember while starting. It is better to get everything ready from the beginning of the process rather than struggle in the middle.

  • Know the type of video you are editing

    This is the first thing you must be aware of while starting the process. Each video has a certain requirement and knowing it essential for editing. With it, you can determine the special effects or computer graphics you need to add.

  • Select the software with the needed capabilities

    Once you’re aware of your video type, you can select the software as per your requirements. If you’re choosing software that is having more features, it will take more time to learn. However, the basic ones will be simple and easier to learn.

  • Find out where your computer can handle the process

    The process will be often carried on a computer. So, the next thing you need to pay attention to is your computer. Make sure that it has all the needed hardware and software and can handle the type of editing you need to perform.

    When you invest in a high-speed SSD, it can enable faster access of files and software that hasten up the work process. Besides, you can upgrade your RAM to 8GB and embed a video card and processor for your professional or commercial projects.

  • Using keyboard shortcuts

    Many editing programs permit you to use default keyboard shortcuts to do the editing operations. Make it a habit to note down those shortcuts, memorize, and apply them. If you have a budget to purchase an editing keyboard with in-built shortcut icons, the editing process would be more simplified than before.

Top Video Editing Software for Beginners

  • Windows Movie Maker: Windows Movie Maker is a top video editing software program introduced by Microsoft. Beginners can give a vent to video editing and use it for both creating and editing videos. The features of the software also allow you to publish the created and edited videos. If your Windows machine does not include the software, don’t worry. It is an open-source video editor, can download it for free online.
  • IMovie (Mac): IMovie is Apple’s video editing software facilitating beginners to edit and create new videos easily. Now Mac users can download the software free online and give a vent to their creative genius in video editing. It has plenty of advanced features such as easy import of video footage from hard drive. You can edit footage and include music, animation, effects or themes easily.
  • EZvid (Windows): Ezvid is an advanced feature-rich video editor for creating stunning new videos. The top features include voice recording and synthesis. You can splice video and its pace can be managed. It can also be used for fast recording and video editing.
  • Final Cut Pro X (Mac): Here is another video editor from Apple for editing videos professionally. With its top features such as 360 degree editing and multicam editing etc., beginners are sure to inculcate new interests in video editing and explore its vast horizons. The Angle viewer in the Multicam allows viewing upto 16 angles instantly.
  • AVID Media Composer (Mac or PC): Avid Media Composer is the second choice of professional video editor after Final Cut Pro. Beginners can opt for free trial and explore the features of this video editor application. They can get familiar with the professional video editing features and apply them as required.
  • Adobe Premier Pro (Mac or PC): Adobe Premier Pro is professional video editing software with similarities to AVID Media Composer and Final Cut Pro X. Beginners can opt for the trial and understand the features of the software. It is an affordable and professional software tool, and you can consider purchasing it.
  • Lightworks Free (Mac or PC): Lightworks is an award winning video creation application. It has won the Emmy Award for the year 2017. It has been used over two decades for film editing. You can create videos for social media and YouTube using this application. The feature-rich application is easy to use with a simple interface. Beginners can easily trim or manage editing using the software. It is a free editing software tool for Mac or PC users.

Step-by-Step Tutorial for Beginner Video Editing

The tutorial is broken down into a step-by-step process to make it easier for you to understand.

Step 1: Select the right video editing software

The first step is to select the best software for your needs. So, go through the tutorial of your editing software and know all about its features. It would be probably present on the software's site.

Also, ensure that the software effectively meets your purpose. With plenty of advanced editing software for Windows and MAC available at your service, every beginner venturing into video editing can find a suitable one for their needs.

Step 2: Remember before you edit the raw footage

There are some fundamentals of video editing and certain tips that you must pay attention to before you edit. Here are the most important among them:

  • Watch your footage multiple times and then choose your clips carefully. Do not be in a hurry; you may miss out on the right clips
  • While you are shooting, be keen to shoot plenty of shots. Remember to shoot important scenes many times. This will give you more shots and better footage to consider while editing. You can use the extra clips to procure better results
  • You may be keen to include plenty of video effects especially in your first video editing ventures. Bate your enthusiasm as too many effects are not desirable. Staying simple and straight is one among the golden rules of video editing
  • Take some well-deserved breaks during your editing sessions. After the initial editing session, opt for break. With a fresh look, you will notice better and find plenty of new aspects. This will help you perform even betters

Step 3: Video editing guide for beginners

How to edit videos easily using Lightworks editor You may be eager to know how to start video editing. You can start soon and edit using Lightworks. Here are some guidelines that will keep you updated on the process and details that you should take into account while editing videos.

Let’s start –off our editing process.

  1. Create your project in Lightworks

    Lightwork offers the option to create a new project. After you open it, enter the name you have decided for itand then click ‘create’. Then select a frame rate for your project as required. Select ‘Auto’ in the frame rate and it can automatically align to the FPS (Frame Rate per Second) of the footage under ‘editing’.

    Start off editing by importing your footage into Lightworks.

    To import, access the ‘Local Files’ in the top left tab and include your footage in the folder. Then a drop down list is provided for you to select the clips, and at that time click ‘import’.

  2. Organize your footage

    After importing the footage, you will have to organize your footage, especially if you are editing shots of large events such as weddings etc. You will have to create folders, name them and include all the corresponding files of each folder in them. While shooting films, put all the shots of a scene in a corresponding folder created for this purpose

    You can also create ‘Bins’ using the video editor. In the left column of the video editor, you will find ‘Bins’ icon and to create bins simply click on ‘+’ close to the ‘Bins’. Drag and drop the footages into corresponding ‘Bins’.

  3. Plan and mark your footage

    Scan your footage and choose the parts that are to be used. ‘Mark ‘the clips using ‘I’ for in and ‘O’ for out. Mark all the clips that are to be used. This will be useful as you want to utilize the clips from the start to the end.

  4. Arrange your footage

    Now, you have an array of clips that are marked, you can place them in your timeline. You can rearrange your clips and place them according to your idea. Arrange your clips carefully in order.

    In order to set this up, select ‘Normal’ from ‘Modify’. Go to Format and then Paragraph. Find the ‘Line Spacing’ option in the ‘Spacing’ menu and choose ‘Multiple’ once you find it. Now, give the spacing value in the tab for the same as 1.2.

  5. Clear your timeline

    After arranging your clips, clear your timeline. Trim each clip short or long as required for good playback using adequate tools.

  6. Edit and provide sound special effects

    Now comes your favorite and most interesting part of the video editing – adding new effects! Select the clip that you want to add effects. Then click on the ‘+’ icon on top towards the left and choose the effects that you want to add.

  7. Add colors to your clips

    Colors are powerful design elements that can set the right mood, kindle certain emotions, and highlight specific subject features. Nowadays, video editing software provides tons of editing choices for color correction and grading.

  8. Time to add good music

    Visuals are significant. But music is also helpful in triggering specific emotions in the audience. Therefore, remember to get the music from a royalty-free service provider to be on the safer side.

  9. Include graphics and text

    The choice of adding more text and graphics depends on the film-type that you are dealing with at that moment. You can use simple sans-serif font to have that neat and simple look for your film. For glitzy graphics, you can either use Adobe After Effects or RocketStock.

  10. Export the video

    You have almost reached the final stage. Now you simply have to export the video. Then, you can use the ‘share’ option and export it on YouTube or other social platforms.

Video editing is a field brimming with opportunities. Earlier only experts with ample exposure to the editing domain or deep profound knowledge with advanced editing tools could manage a career. But, now the scenario is different. Plenty of beginners well acquainted with the basic concept of editing video have started learning things in deep and are enjoying a new and rewarding career in video editing after the introduction of advanced but simple-to-use video editing applications. And this is the best way to learn the fundamentals of editing a video clip.

There are lots of expert professionals from top video editing companies offering these services and even as a beginner you have plenty of opportunities to choose from.

So, if you are planning to start a career, don’t worry about the video editing scope of work; there are countless opportunities available. All you need to do is to follow these practical video editing tips and you would be in a strong position to execute your projects successfully.