Since 2005 — or perhaps even 2000 — I’ve been schooling myself on the ins and outs of recording my own music. I’ve had help in the form of numerous classes at Austin Community College, but software for setting music down on digital bits is not too difficult to learn.
I’m at the point where my workflow is pretty solid — get the MIDI parts down, record those MIDI parts to audio, lay some vocals over those tracks, apply effects processing to all that audio, mix it down, do some quick mastering and pow — ready to hear.
It took a few years before I really got how effects, particularly equialization, work, and I had to redo a lot of stuff multiple times just to get the sound I have today.
That shot of confidence in my achievements made me think video would be just as surmountable.
What an idiot.
Video is many, many times more complex, and the dizzying array of workflow choices makes finding the one appropriate for a particular setup a veritable crap shoot. Add to this quandary the sheer processing power it takes to render a few seconds worth of digital video, and a mistake in the workflow translates to a lot of wasted time.
And boy am I never going to get any of those hours back.
Right now, I’m going through a tedious process of accommodating my lack of processing power to edit some hi-def video. It will take me a few days to reach a point where I can start editing, which will take another few days. And once the editing is done, another few hours will be spent rendering the finished product to various formats.
It takes only a few seconds, maybe a minute, to turn a WAV file into an MP3. No such luxuries await with video.
So I’m hoping to spend the next few days jotting down — mostly for myself — things I’ve learned in working with video. I’m still light years away from attaining a beginner’s fraction of knowledge, but I hope what I know prevents me from going down any more wrong-headed paths.