I’ve pretty much finished all the filming and now have something like 10 hours of footage to edit down to about 20 minutes! Its on many kinds of formats from my professional video camera, through to high end stills cameras (which shoot video nowadays), to my iphone. And some is in NTSC – the US video format because I use that little stills camera when filming music as it doesn’t cut out after 30 minutes like similar ones in the EEC do - something to do with tax on video cameras. Yes I know - baffling. I was worried it might not be easy to edit the different formats together and I would get stuck in all sorts of technical problems. But I’ve just done a test and it works fine and has a wonderful collage-like feel to it of different visual qualities. (My other fear was that it might look like a tourist board video – it doesn’t; its way too odd.)
Having overcome a technical problem caused by upgrading my new Macbook Pro (thank-you Arts Council) to the new Lion operating system which doesn’t work with tape based cameras! (No thank you Apple) - I spent a week re-installing the old system and lost many emails in the process but it was rather liberating. I recommend it when you are overwhelmed with office work and can’t can back to the creative stuff. Just loose everything!
I’m pretty much self taught on the editing – though I did a few short workshops. So I am delighted its working OK. But I have just started an advanced video editing course at the Film and Video Workshop in Islington and I discover that I already know quite a lot of the first day’s stuff, but its great to have people to compare notes with. They are all working in commercial video production. But I used to be a TV director of arts programmes – though not for the last 20 years – but that experience is still in there when I work. I know instinctively where to cut and I have a great sense of rhythm and timing which I don’t believe you can be taught. But I’ve now also been a painter more recently. And now - beginning to edit - I am working in exactly the same way I do when I paint. Applying, erasing, wiping, leaving traces, layers. The movement has its own rhythm and texture and I use that as the guide. I am also subtly altering speed and tempo, colour, and sometimes inverting shots which is interesting (an idea I have stolen from the artist Guy Sherwin who is a friend and I love his film landscape work).