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Premiere Pro: Basic Video Editing

Adobe Premiere Pro 2021. Be aware that different versions of Premiere will vary in appearance and functionality. The following instructions are based on the Editing workspace interface.

Once assets have been reviewed, organized, and added to a sequence, editing can begin. The first step is to put all the assets in the right order. Then, trim them down to the desired length. Many different kinds of cuts, edits, and tools that can be used to trim assets to the appropriate length.

Expand each section below to see its content.

Selection Tool

The simplest, most basic way to edit is with the Selection tool. Use the Selection tool to shorten or lengthen the end points of clips and to move them around in the Timeline. Be careful not to overwrite other clips when using the Selection tool, and be aware that the Selection tool will leave gaps between clips in the Timeline.

To trim a clip with the Selection tool, click-and-drag the start- or end-points to shorten or lengthen it. 

Razor Tool & Clip Splitting

Use the Razor tool to split a whole clip into smaller portions. Splitting clips allows for chunks of a clip to be moved and edited separately from others.

To split a clip with the Razor tool, find a desired spot on a clip in the Timeline and click it. This will split the clip and created two separate pieces. Clips can be split multiple times, so repeat as desired. The split clips can now be moved independently of each other with the Selection tool.

Ripple Edit Tool

Using the Selection tool to move clips can leave gaps or cause clips to overwrite each other. When the Ripple Edit tool is used to lengthen or shorten the end of a video clip, any clips to the right in the Timeline will be pushed along without causing any overwriting. For example, if you realize you need to edit a few seconds out from the start of your project, use the Ripple Edit tool to cut that time out; all subsequent clips will adjust automatically to cover those lost seconds. In the bottom-right of the Ripple Edit image, notice that the adjacent clip has been pushed down the Timeline.

To shorten/extend a clip with the Ripple Edit tool, click-and-drag an end point. Upon release, the clip will be shortened/extended and the subsequent clips will shift left or right in the Timeline.

Rolling Edit Tool

A Roll Edit lengthens one clip while simultaneously shortening the clip immediately adjacent to it. This will cut the adjacent clip and prevent the overall project from gaining or losing time. In the bottom image to the right, notice the adjacent clip has not shifted in the Timeline.

To shorten/extend a clip with the Roll Edit tool, click-and-drag an end point. Upon release, the clip will be shortened/lengthened and the adjacent clip will be trimmed.

Slip Tool & Clip Timing

If the length of a clip is correct, but the portion of the clip thats visible isnt quite right, use the Slip tool to change the part of the clip thats shown without changing its length.

To change the timing of a clip with the Slip tool, click-and-drag left or right on the clip. The endpoint time signature in the bottom-left corner of the Program panel will change depending on how far the clip is moved.

The following techniques arent based on a tool. 

Swap Clips
To swap the positioning of clips in the Timeline, click-and-drag a clip while holding Command and move it to the new desired location.

Insert/Overwrite Clips
To insert a clip between two others in the Timeline without overwriting, hold Command+Option (Mac) or CTRL+Alt (Windows) and then click-and-drag a clip between others in the Timeline.

To insert a clip from the Source Monitor with the Insert button:
  1. Double-click a clip from the Project panel to open it in the Source Monitor. Set in- and out-points, if only a portion of the clip is desired.
  2. Move the Timeline playhead in between the two clips.
  3. Click the area to the far left of the desired track in the Timeline to select the track for patching. Hover over this area to see Source patching for inserts and overwrites.

  4. From the Source Monitor, click the Insert button. The new clip will be placed in between the two existing clips.

To overwrite a clip, follow the steps above but click the Overwrite button instead.

Replace Clip Edit
A Replace Edit will cut a new clip to be the exact same length as the clip being replaced in the Timeline and drop it in the same location. Use a Replace Edit when well-timed edits have already been made, but a different piece of footage is desired instead.

To replace a clip in the Timeline, click-and-drag the new clip from the Project panel while holding the Alt/Option key and place it on top of the old clip in the Timeline. A green circle with a plus sign will appear when the replacement is ready.

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KeywordsAdobe, editing, video, audio, movie, clips, cutting, splitting, trimming   Doc ID100572
OwnerJanelle B.GroupPacific Lutheran Univ
Created2020-04-14 11:31:29Updated2023-08-04 16:29:48
SitesPacific Lutheran University
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