Film and video editors use their creative and technical skills to assemble recorded raw material into a finished product suitable for broadcasting. As a film and video editor, you will manage camera footage, dialogue, graphics, sound effects, and special effects to produce a final film or video product. If video editing is your passion, follow along to demonstrate how to create the perfect resume to land this job.
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Job Duties of a Video Editor
Video editors are responsible for assembling footage into a finished project that matches the director’s vision while ensuring it is suitable for broadcasting, whether over the airwaves, online, or feature film presentations. Their role in the success of a company is crucial since, in recent times, videos have become the best way of communicating messages to consumers on online platforms. The primary duties of a video editor are:
Splicing raw film footage together from various shoots and sources, combining it with other scenes, and creating a balanced and harmonic story.
Evaluating edited footage to ensure it matches scripts and meets the narrative agenda of the director and producer of the film.
Editing footage into timelines and cutting out shots to create a more impactful story for the audience.
Ensuring that splices, editing cuts, changes, and additions appear natural and seamless while helping the story flow in the finished product.
If necessary, audio effects included in the final film create sound effects by recording specific audio clips.
Managing to work both onsite as well as off-site locations.
Collaborating with stakeholders from production to post-production of the project.
Video Editor Median Salaries
The median salary of a video editor is $48,737 per year, according to the data collected by the American compensation software and data company, Payscale. However, salaries can range from as low as $33,000 to as high as $79,000 a year. The job outlook for video editors is excellent given the demand for well-produced videos and films. For aspiring video editors, job opportunities may be available in newer media platforms, including mobile devices and streaming services and the special effects industry.
Top Skills for Video Editors
Video editors are experts in editing videos for external and internal purposes. To be a brilliant video editor, you should be capable of giving life to sound and sight creatively and professionally to tell a cohesive story. Below are the top six skills you need to become a successful video editor:
- Mastery over narration: The video and film editor brings the fragmented pieces of a video together to create a beautiful story as envisioned by the director and producer alike. An editor is consistently polishing their skills throughout their career as their narrative skills influence the result of a film project.
- Adobe Premiere expertise: To lead a successful career, a video editor must have in-depth knowledge of design elements while also refining the visual and sound of video sequences. That is why video editors must be experts in Adobe Premiere Pro, a timeline-based software application for video editing. Another good tool to pick up as a video editor is Adobe Media Encoder.
- Proficiency in sound editing: Editing sound in videos is an underrated skill. Sound in a video can evoke emotions such as anger, sadness, guilt, and fear, all of which would go unnoticed without proper sound effects. Therefore, a video editor should combine audio and video to create a memorable experience for the viewers.
- A knack for sequencing: When you receive a video for editing, it will be in its raw form. This raw video needs to be altered, trimmed, adjusted, and edited. This process is called sequencing, and it is a crucial element of the profession. Therefore, you must be aware of applicable sequencing techniques and enhance your knowledge about various sequencing tools.
- Excellent at color correction and grading: Color correction and color grading can impact the mood in a video. It takes a good amount of research and practice to control images with advanced precision. So make yourself a color expert before you set down on this path.
Educational Requirements for Video Editors
DegreeAn undergraduate fine arts degree program in Film or Broadcasting and related fields such as Video Production or Communication is the minimum qualification required to find an entry position as a video editor. Students learn about film and video production through this program, including cinematography, directing, writing, and editing. CUNY Hunter College, CUNY City College, University of North Carolina School of the Arts and Miami Dade College, are some of the most affordable institutes to do your bachelor's degree in film studies.
Even though experience and technical skills matter more than the educational qualification in this field, obtaining a master’s degree in film and video production will be advantageous for you.
Among some of the best schools to study for a master’s degree in Film and Video Production is the University of California in Los Angeles, University of Iowa, New York University and University of Florida.
CertificationAlthough certification is not necessarily required for employment as a video editor, you may still take some courses from Coursera and Udemy to further reinforce your understanding of video processing, Photoshop, motion graphics, videography, and after-effects. You can also opt to receive certifications on the programs needed to become a video editor. Here are some certificates available for aspiring video editors:
- Online education: Different institutions offer varying remote courses for people interested in learning more about video editing. For example, the Boulder Digital Arts Studio offers a certificate program on Adobe Premiere Pro. The American Graphics Institute, which provides a four-week certificate program in video editing.
Video Editor Resume-Writing Tips
Your resume is an entry pass to your desired job and is the first impression a recruiter will have of you. Follow these three simple tips for building a compelling resume that will help you to start your career as a video editor:
- Experience matters: Video editing is a field that prioritizes experience more than anything; employers expect excellent technical and professional skills from experienced video editors and broad knowledge of their industry. So if you have a good amount of experience to brag about, then don’t hesitate. The best way to highlight your expertise is to choose the proper resume format that emphasizes your work experience. If you have continuity in your work area, with no gaps to be filled in between, you can go with the chronological resume format, otherwise use the combination resume format.
- Write a compelling professional summary: Your professional summary briefly tells employers where you stand in your career. So it is imperative to make a compelling argument for yourself so that employers thoroughly read your resume. Choose your words carefully, so that it gives a clear introduction to your professional status.
An excellent professional summary for video editors might start like this:
“Creative Video Editor skilled capable of managing competing priorities to deliver exceptional video editing projects within stringent budget and time constraints illustrated over nine years of …”
This will immediately catch the attention of the recruiter and compel them to go through your entire resume.
- Highlight your technical skills: A good video editor has a vast understanding of technology and can handle it most efficiently. It is best if you highlight your familiarity with the technical aspects of video editing in your resume using keywords like “Adobe Premiere CC expertise, Adobe CS6 proficiency, color correction and grading, Premiere Pro FCP7 expertise.” But make sure the keywords you use match your skills; do not oversell yourself to impress the recruiter.
- Prepare a portfolio: As a creative professional so reliant on past projects, employers will surely ask prospective employees a sample of these, so having a portfolio handy for when that moment comes is vital. Any kind of film project could be helpful to fill out your portfolios, such as past student projects, films where you had a minor editing role, or even a recreational YouTube channel.
Do video editors have fixed working hours?
On average, a video editor works a regular 40-hour-week work schedule. However, due to the nature of some projects, irregular hours are pretty standard and sometimes can lead to more extended work periods to meet deadlines.
Will video editors always be in demand?
As we’ve highlighted before, videos are some of the most efficient ways of communication in the digital age, leaving a growing market for those interested in the field. For film and video editors, about 7,400 openings are expected each year, over the decade, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. As long as the entertainment field thrives, video editors will be in demand.