Media Production

Media Educators – Take Note of the Need For Post Production Editors / Designers

If you’re a church or ministry media director, then chances are, you know the incredible need for video editors who know the most used programs like After Effects. That’s why I’m putting out a call to all TV/Film Departments at universities, video training centers, and even high schools with media departments. There are many positions around the country right now for experienced video editors who are also good graphic designers.

Understanding graphic design is a must. The current rage in the industry is for “Predators” – producers/editors. People who can take a story from start to finish, and today, that includes graphic design. Lots of places are looking for video editors who can design animated title graphics, lower thirds, and more, but there’s few people who can fill that need.

Educators – teach your video editors good design. There are fewer and fewer editing jobs that only need someone to cut video. Today, there are more and more “boutique” houses than ever, and whether they do commercials, corporate, or religious and family programming, they use editors who can create their own graphics – still as well as moving animation.

So make sure they’re familiar with the most in-demand apps today.

The bottom line is that they need to know what the most popular software in post-production is today. When you train an editor on fringe editing and graphics software, you’re really hurting his or her chances of success. Yes, you could say that the “principles” are the most important, and they can adapt to other software when necessary. But who’s going to give them that chance? I have projects piling up, and I can’t afford to turn my editing suites over to a student who needs time to learn. I need someone who can step into the suite and know his or her way around.

Most colleges and training centers have limited budgets, but whatever you can do to graduate students with serious experience in these programs, will dramatically help their careers. Perhaps you can work out relationships with local production houses. Get student versions of the programs. Whatever. Just get them working with the software professionals are using nationwide.

The fact is, I’ve worked in the religious media world for 30 years, and the demand for editors/graphic designers is higher than it’s ever been. If they can tell a story, cut the segment, and design and produce the graphics, life will be good.

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10 Comments

  1. Phil, you make valid points.
    Here at Regent University, the editing track of our Cinema-Television department (graduate school only), has taught AVID for the past four years. Just this next fall we’re adding Final Cut Pro as an alternative platform.
    We’re doing that for two reasons – one, client (read: students’) demand, and second, industry diversification. Our thinking has been that Regent students need to be equipped with the topline equipment in all categories, thus they are better prepared to be world-changing media professionals.
    Beyond the hardware discussion, though, is your greatest point – it’s all about STORYTELLING.
    In all our various disciplines, Digital Media, Cinema-Television, Journalism, and Theatre, stories are the bedrock heart.
    A good story well told will always find a willing audience, and EDITORS need to understand how their art contributes to the ‘well-told’ part of the equation.
    Thanks for making an important point for your readers.
    Dr. Norm Mintle
    Regent University
    normmin@regent.edu

  2. Phil, just one minor correction to Norm’s post – Avid has been taught at Regent for much longer than 4 years. I taught an Avid class there for years starting in the mid-1990s specifically geared for editing for film matchback. Other professors/adjuncts taught an Avid course aimed at productions finishing on video. Also, when I left there in 2002 there were several Final Cut Pro stations in use as well. So Regent has had a long history of giving students a real world editing education.

    Now more to the point – I agree wholeheartedly with you, Phil, on this. Almost any educational institution should be able to afford to get into the low end Avid editing solutions: Xpress Pro or Media Composer – both have an academic pricing of $295! The beauty of this is that the user interface on these basic versions are almost identical to higher end, more robust and expensive solutions such as Media Composer Adrenaline. For more info, hit the following link: http://www.avid.com/solutions/education/

    Here at Palm Beach Atlantic University, we’ve had great success training students on Avid and I can’t imagine sending a film or television graduate into the workforce without a solid training in Avid-based editing. Your point, Phil, about producers needing editing training is right on the mark. It’s also well established that aspiring directors that have a solid editing training shoot images that cut together much more fluidly than otherwise. But I’d take this a step further – would-be writers need to familiarize themselves with editing. Writers who know editing write scripts much closer shooting scripts and are less likely to get rewritten. This of course dovetails well with Norm’s point about storytelling. Regards from Duane Meeks at Palm Beach Atlantic University – Duane_Meeks@pba.edu

  3. Phil, I couldn’t agree with you more! That’s exactly the direction we’re headed on the undergraduate level with our new Media Major at Cornerstone University in Grand Rapids, MI. We’re training students on Avid HD and emphasizing the importance of learning editing and design as a writer, director, producer, manager, etc. Thanks for your clarion call! Kathleen_O_Sindorf@Cornerstone.edu

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