After completing the video production steps of pre-production and production, the only steps left are post-production steps. This phase of video production is simple, yet tedious. Post-production mainly deals with editing. The major bulk of all filming has been completed by this point, and now it simply needs to be joined together and tweaked for optimization.
The operations performed during post-production can make or break a video. Even though all of the major parts of video production have already been completed, it's the little things that can get you. In this case, that underlines how important post-production is to the success of a video. In this article, we will take a look at the steps involved with post-production, and how important these steps are to the success of your video.
The first step is also the most tedious, as all of the video clips must be joined together. All of the metadata for each clip also must be entered including the take number, the shot, the type of shot, and any additional information about the clip. Each clip is edited and processed, lined up in the proper spot, and then joined together using video editing software. Typically a professional picture editor is hired for this process.
The editing process may also include transcoding the file into an appropriate format, the creation of multiple drafts, and heavy color and lighting editing.
If there are issues with any of the scenes that cannot be resolved by editing, the scene will most likely have to be reshot. The editor examines every clip of the video and compiles a list of the scenes that must be reshot. The crew prepares the scenes, the actors are called back, and the reshoots are done. The number of days that must be committed to reshoots depends on the amount of scenes that be redone.
Sound editing is crucial, as no matter how high quality the video is, poor sound can completely destroy the success of a video. A professional sound editor is typically hired to complete this process. During the sound editing stage, a variety of tasks are performed including sound effect recreation, cutting and editing dialogue tracks, preparing cue sheets for mixing, and more.
If the dialogue is unclear or otherwise distorted to the point that editing will not help, then it must be replaced. This can typically be accomplished by recalling the actors, and having them lip sync dialogue in sequence with the appropriate section of the video. A large hollow room may be utilized for this part of the process in order to enhance the clarity of the audio. This room can also be used to add other effects that are not clearly heard, such as footsteps, light switches, door knocks, and other audio effects.
Music is a critical aspect of the post-production process, as the wrong music during certain types of scenes can certainly throw off the video. Any music that you do use, you must have secured the rights to use that music. Popular music may be expensive, but going for lower-quality music may make the film seem lower-quality overall. Hiring a decent musician/band/composer to create custom music for your video can also be a useful choice as you can control the type of music, the lyrics, and can customize it precisely to fit the scene in which it will be used.
Additional post-production tasks may include adding titles, creating a dialogue script for subtitles, creating a trailer, creating a movie poster image, etc.
Basically, it depends on what type of video you are creating. If you are creating a short movie, you may not have to utilize all aspects of the steps outlined above, and some of the steps may be able to be eliminated completely. If you are creating a full-length movie, you will most likely need all of the steps above, and possibly many others. If you are creating a marketing video, the steps may vary as well, since this type of video is typically short and is directed at sales.
No matter what type of video you are creating, the basic steps will remain the same. Video quality must be high, the sound quality must be clear, and video and audio must be synced correctly. Special effects (both video and audio) added with proper timing will enhance the video's chance for success, as well as mood music for scenes. Post-production may sound like it's just a simple task of putting the final touches on your masterpiece, but in reality, it is the stage that can make or break your masterpiece.