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Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study

COW Blogs : Final Cut Pro X Babbling : Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
In a special NAB 2016 presentation at the FCP Exchange Workshop sponsored by FCPWORKS, Creative COW leader Charlie Austin compares FCP X to other NLEs from an editor's perspective. In addition to describing the “intangible” time saving benefits of working in FCP X vs. others, he also presents some unique benefits of FCP X that are impossible or impractical in other NLEs. Even if you prefer editing in other NLEs, Charlie describes some very compelling reasons to add FCP X to your workflow.


Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study from FCPWORKS on Vimeo.



Posted by: Charlie Austin on May 10, 2016 at 2:05:41 pmComments (79) Apple Final Cut Pro X, FCPX

Comments

Re: Blog: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Bill Davis
First off, I'm hugely annoyed that I'm under the gun right now with deadlines and can't really participate much. I'm TRYING to find the time to keep up with this because I think Charlie, driven even farther by Simon's fascinating thinking - is really onto sometime potentially very powerful here.

My only quick question has to do with how they system functions for the editors who need to sequester content across clients. If it's truly "one database to rule them all" (which would be AWESOME for a huge swath of editors in the real world) what happens to an editor who has content pools that cannot cross client lines?

I know you can filter the "display" of materials by client, but can you sequester "access" in this scenario?

That would be something I'd be interested in discussing.

My friend Tony presumably has his sports stuff for his network sports clients - and his documentary stuff for his own personal work. Without distinct separated libraries to keep the content from one from never crossing the border, how does he insure he doesn't dip into the wrong pool when looking for a shot to use?

New signature under construction and coming soon. Please stand by...
Re: Blog: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Simon Ubsdell
[Bill Davis] "My only quick question has to do with how they system functions for the editors who need to sequester content across clients. If it's truly "one database to rule them all" (which would be AWESOME for a huge swath of editors in the real world) what happens to an editor who has content pools that cannot cross client lines? "

You'd just work in a different Library if that was the case, wouldn't you? Or if you didn't want to do that, you could make your Master Access Smart Collection Event-wide rather than Library-wide. Lots of options, I think.

Simon Ubsdell
tokyo productions
hawaiki
Re: Blog: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Charlie Austin
[Bill Davis] "what happens to an editor who has content pools that cannot cross client lines?

I know you can filter the "display" of materials by client, but can you sequester "access" in this scenario? "


You keep them in separate Libraries, just as you always have. :-)

-------------------------------------------------------------

~ My FCPX Babbling blog ~
~"It is a poor craftsman who blames his tools."~
~"The function you just attempted is not yet implemented"~
@Charlie Austin
by Bill Davis
Got it. I got stuck on the "one smart collection to rule them all" idea, and didn't think it through. It's not really changing your top level of organization, but basically working around it when and if that presents benefits. This is a really cool discussion.

Now you know why I was so frustrated that Charlie's presentation was in the last batch.

I thought it was seriously the MOST interesting (among lots of interesting stuff!) I saw in the FCPExchange suite.

New signature under construction and coming soon. Please stand by...
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Robbert-Jan van der Does
Hi Simon,

Great thinking! I am definitely going to experiment with it.
I already started to make a Library Smart Collection and set the filter option to "Any" and added criteria for every "Media Type" and set the pop-up down menu for each to the 4 different Media Types. This will give me for instance all video and stills with just two checkboxes checked.
The same goes for every criterium you want to add: you can add as many of the same as you like and set the pop-up for each differently. Never thought of that.
I think there are a lot of possibilities.

Robbert-Jan van der Does

Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Simon Ubsdell
[Robbert-Jan van der Does] "you can add as many of the same as you like and set the pop-up for each differentl"

Yes, indeed. I meant to add that - it gives you so much added power.

But don't forget that you don't have to keep the menu choices fixed - you can simply add or remove any at any time as the need arises. You don't care what's in the collection in the long term because it's not a storage area (and that's the really important point) - you just want to optimise your filters as you go for whatever it is you are wanting to access next.

I think it's really important to think of this as a completely fluid process. After all, the main point of the exercise is to try to break from from the rigidity of having specific "containers".

Simon Ubsdell
tokyo productions
hawaiki
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Simon Ubsdell
I just wanted to add that only about three people will ever see your comment given that it's hidden away on this blog - I've started a thread over on the main FCP X or Not : The Debate forum which you might want to post in.

And thanks for your feedback - I really appreciate it.

Simon Ubsdell
tokyo productions
hawaiki
Re: Blog: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Aindreas Gallagher
presentation needed more cowbell.







If this compartment of the cow is the original FCPX trolling discussion SNL where the directors of Focus would turn up, and where the presenter above calls home, then the cow maybe deserves a general shout out in these scenarios? Not least because this forum is possibly to blame for PIOPS?

That aside, murderously effective presentation Charlie, particularly around mastering and versioning. That bit started to terrify me.
I pray no one of any weight ever saw it. Kudos. Don't do it again.

http://ogallchoir.prosite.com/
producer/editor.grading/motion graphics
Re: Blog: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Charlie Austin
[Aindreas Gallagher] "presentation needed more cowbell."

Aindreas! Nice to see ya. :-)

[Aindreas Gallagher] "That aside, murderously effective presentation Charlie, particularly around mastering and versioning. That bit started to terrify me. "

Don't be scared, use it! I've been using Premiere a lot lately, and having X open at the same time makes it much more pleasant. ;-)

[Aindreas Gallagher] "I pray no one of any weight ever saw it. Kudos. Don't do it again."

lol.. Well, I got a nice compliment from Mr Monahan, so look for Adobe to remove tracks and implement Roles (called "Duties" to avoid infringement) in Pr soon. Better get used to it. :-D Seriously though, all the NLE's should just get along.... :harp music plays here:

-------------------------------------------------------------

~ My FCPX Babbling blog ~
~"It is a poor craftsman who blames his tools."~
~"The function you just attempted is not yet implemented"~
Re: Blog: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Aindreas Gallagher
indeed sure. Although - edit post - I've always wanted to be someone who could GTD, and view the edit as getting things done.

I've always found that frame where you let an organisational metadata bomb off initially and everything is hermetically clean because another hyper organised self allowed you to be free and clean and wildly imaginative because you were initially data maniacal - that is open to credibility as an editor workflow.

I don't think that's one person.

Re: Blog: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Robin S. Kurz
[Charlie Austin] "look for Adobe to remove tracks and implement Roles (called "Duties" to avoid infringement) "

LOL

____________________________________________________
Deutsch? Hier gibt es ein umfassendes FCP X Training für dich!
Re: Blog: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by David Mathis
I was watching some Ripple Training videos and noticed Steve setting up a smart collection that can be easily copied into any event. I will use that approach and to keep my library from getting cluttered I will simply double click on a smart collection then check boxes as needed to find source material faster. Sure it is a couple of extra mouse clicks but I personally find it better then going overboard with too many smart collections. The more I learn about Final Cut Pro X otner editing software is just a square.
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by David Mathis
I am like Charlie, tracks drive me crazy. I don't mind playing Tetris unless tracks are involved.
Re: Blog: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Simon Ubsdell
Another great presentation, thanks Charlie. Really useful for people like me who work in the same world as you do.

Roles make a huge difference when it comes to finishing, and it's great to see how you've refined the art of using them. Plenty of tips I'm going to shamelessly steal!

Simon Ubsdell
tokyo productions
hawaiki
Re: Blog: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Charlie Austin
Thanks Simon, and steal away!

Honestly, anyone who needs to spit out versions of anything should be using X, no matter what the source NLE. Roles and Share Presets make this normally mind bending task a breeze. The prep -slates, various GFX and audio - needs to be done in any NLE, but in X, once that's done you're done. It's just pressing buttons after that, very little concentration required. Whereas when using tracks and multiple audio configs in different sequences, well... you know how much fun that is. :-/

And the X browser is on a different planet then everything else for organization/discovery etc. I just spent the last hour cleaning up a project in, uh, another NLE. I guess some people have the luxury of being able to carefully target the tabs or twirl open the bins into which they drag/import stuff while working, but I don't. So after a week I've got all sorts of random items in the wrong places requiring cleanup. But in X, with everything accessible in one exposed hierarchy, that's never an issue. Seems like a little thing, but it's pretty huge.

I obviously prefer cutting in X, but the bottom line is that no matter what NLE you cut in, you should include FCP X in your workflow. Unless you like working harder than you need to. ;-)

-------------------------------------------------------------

~ My FCPX Babbling blog ~
~"It is a poor craftsman who blames his tools."~
~"The function you just attempted is not yet implemented"~
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by David Mathis
Charlie,

Thanks for this excellent presentation. It has opened my eyes. I now understand the difference between keywords and smart collections. That is the only way to organize source material! Oh, roles are super duper awesome, almost overlooked them.

For some reason my mind started thinking of analogies when it comes to describing libraries, events, keywords, collections and projects to anyone that has yet to work with Final Cut Pro in its modern form.

I tend to think of a library in the traditional sense. A library is a building with a collection of books, newspapers, magazines and everything related. That is a reliable and easy to understand concept. After all, most of us have some type of sound library such as music or effects. We might even have a stock footage library.

Events would be like different "sections" of the library. Your local library would have fiction, non fiction and a childrens area, to name a few. Events would be like a location, general or specific; description of what is going on or anything else based on the context of the program. Keywords would be more specific. The computer section the library would be divided up into art, repairing or building a computer and everyting else related to computers. Collections would make things easier to find, just like searching for a book on a computer, pretty much metadata driven.

Projects is a little more difficult but can stll be explained. Think of building a boat or a model airplane. You will need certain tools such as glue and source material such as paper, metal or plastic. The tools and souece material combined is what creates your project masterpiece. So source material in Final Cut would be footage, sound bites, graphics, titles, photos, music and sound effects. Tools woud be trim, range, selection and otner various tools to assemble the whole enchilada. All of this makes Final Cut so much fun to work with.
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Joe Marler
[David Mathis] "Events would be like different "sections" of the library. Your local library would have fiction, non fiction and a childrens area, to name a few. Events would be like a location, general or specific; description of what is going on or anything else based on the context of the program. Keywords would be more specific. The computer section the library would be divided up into art, repairing or building a computer and everyting else related to computers."

Viewing events that way might help grasp one possible use. A book library needs sections because it's a physical entity -- the books can only be in one place. Without sections it would be hard to find items in a book library.

However FCPX is more like a relational database than a library. Since you typically review all content you shoot, and since FCPX makes rating and keywording so fast, it is easy to rate/keyword all content on the initial review (after import). This also implies a workflow where you import everything and the initial review is inside FCPX. This is very different from the old approach of reviewing content outside the editor, making initial selects, then importing only those. FCPX is so fast and the organizational tools so good that it may be more effective to not waste time on a separate review pass outside the editor.

Once content is thus tagged within FCPX it can be searched many different ways -- including by broad "section" if you keyworded that. So keywords need not be viewed as narrower than events.

From this standpoint events can be redundant to the rating/keywording you would be doing anyway. This doesn't mean there's no place for events, only that FCPX's database capabilities are so powerful, flexible and easy to use that events need not occupy a rigid folder-like tier in an organizational hierarchy.

OTOH FCPX now supports library-wide searching, library-wide keyword collections and library-wide smart collections, so this allows putting material in different events but still being able to search it in one step. To create a library-wide keyword collection, create a Library Smart Collection using one or more keywords as the search criteria.

MacBreak Studio "Warp Speed Keywording":





Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Simon Ubsdell
[Joe Marler] "From this standpoint events can be redundant to the rating/keywording you would be doing anyway. This doesn't mean there's no place for events, only that FCPX's database capabilities are so powerful, flexible and easy to use that events need not occupy a rigid folder-like tier in an organizational hierarchy."

I think this is a good observation, but I'd be interested to hear where you think Events now fit into the overall picture. What special function do they serve that makes them uniquely useful, would you say?

Simon Ubsdell
tokyo productions
hawaiki
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Charlie Austin
[Joe Marler] "This doesn't mean there's no place for events, only that FCPX's database capabilities are so powerful, flexible and easy to use that events need not occupy a rigid folder-like tier in an organizational hierarchy.
"


I guess it depends on what you're cutting, sources etc. Doing trailers, i not only have source footage (features) but GFX (titles etc) VO, MX, SFX, WIPS, Approved CUTS etc. Using events for each type of source, and then sorting using collections/folders in the events is awesome. Also, compared to using Bins (folders) in other NLE's, it leaves all the "categories" (for lack of a better term) exposed in one place. This makes putting additional media in the proper place, and finding it, incredibly easy.

I know we're talking about X, but here's the difference. Same "categories" all opened up. Browser vs Bins. :-)

This is all accessible without scrolling, twirling open, creating tabs or other voodoo:



This, which is the same organization and amount of material (but 3 screens of scrolling to see it all), not so much ;-)



-------------------------------------------------------------

~ My FCPX Babbling blog ~
~"It is a poor craftsman who blames his tools."~
~"The function you just attempted is not yet implemented"~
+1
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Simon Ubsdell
I'm going to be really dense here and ask why you are using Events rather than going directly to folders, which you are also using inside your Events.

I'm sure it makes sense, I just can't quite see it.

Disclaimer: I'm a terrible editor who doesn't expend anything like the effort you do on organisation, so I need all the help I can get!

Simon Ubsdell
tokyo productions
hawaiki
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Charlie Austin
[Simon Ubsdell] "I'm going to be really dense here and ask why you are using Events rather than going directly to folders, which you are also using inside your Events"

Not dense at all lol... I used to use folders, but I can't drag media from the finder to a folder, only to a KW collection inside a folder. Which is fine, you can just hover over a folder until it reveals the collections within.

But... i'm lazy, and since you can drag directly onto an Event, and they're always available with no hovering or twirling open, I remade my template using Events as the "root" containers.

If the Event isn't twirled open I do need to add to the proper collection, but it's still quicker. I use folders inside Events to group collections if I have a lot, but drawing files to Events seems to require less clicking, which is a good thing. :-)

-------------------------------------------------------------

~ My FCPX Babbling blog ~
~"It is a poor craftsman who blames his tools."~
~"The function you just attempted is not yet implemented"~
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Simon Ubsdell
[Charlie Austin] "I can't drag media from the finder to a folder, only to a KW collection inside a folder. Which is fine, you can just hover over a folder until it reveals the collections within. "

I'm probably holding it wrong but I always drag directly into keyword collections and I don't actually bother with folders either, but then as I say I'm way less organised than you!!! (Now there's an understatement!)

If you could drag directly to Folders of course, then Events would probably be redundant ... at least for your workflow, or have it got that wrong?

I've always thought Events were the Ugly Duckling in the FCP X workflow and when Libraries came along, they seemed to me to lose a lot of their reasons for being there in the first place, so I'm always intrigued to discover what uses people still find for them.

Simon Ubsdell
tokyo productions
hawaiki
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Charlie Austin
[Simon Ubsdell] "I'm probably holding it wrong but I always drag directly into keyword collections and I don't actually bother with folders either, but then as I say I'm way less organised than you!!! (Now there's an understatement!)"

Oh, for sure... I just end up with so many collections that need to be sorted in folders, and if the folders weren't open it was one more step to "reveal" the collection when dragging to it. Using Events solves that "problem". Like i said I'm lazy.

[Simon Ubsdell] "I've always thought Events were the Ugly Duckling in the FCP X workflow and when Libraries came along, they seemed to me to lose a lot of their reasons for being there in the first place, so I'm always intrigued to discover what uses people still find for them."

My guess, and it really is just a guess, is that Events are a potential FCP X analog to Avid Bins. Not to the renamed folders called "bins" in Pr and FCP 7 etc. FCP X Library Structure at the Finder Level (in the pkg file) is remarkably similar to an Avid Project in the Finder. Again... wild ass speculation...

-------------------------------------------------------------

~ My FCPX Babbling blog ~
~"It is a poor craftsman who blames his tools."~
~"The function you just attempted is not yet implemented"~
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Simon Ubsdell
[Charlie Austin] "My guess, and it really is just a guess, is that Events are a potential FCP X analog to Avid Bins."

That's an interesting thought - could you expand on that?

Or is that something you "think" we might see more of in the future, rather than how they currently work? (I quite understand if you can't say any more at this point!)

Simon Ubsdell
tokyo productions
hawaiki
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Charlie Austin
[Simon Ubsdell] "That's an interesting thought - could you expand on that?

Or is that something you "think" we might see more of in the future, rather than how they currently work? (I quite understand if you can't say any more at this point!)"


Well, if I knew anything I could't say anything. :-) But I don't know anything, so I'm free to speculate...

FCP 7 and PR project files are just flat files, in Pr it's XML, in FCP 7 it's... gibberish. :-) But in Avid and X, what you see in the app UI is accessible in the Finder. And as you know, in Avid you can open bins from other projects (that may be in use by another system) into your project with bin locking. So... Event Locking? It's an interesting possibility right? I have no clue if it'll happen, but it's not a huge stretch to think it could?

EDIT: more speculation... In X it's seems even more flexible that Avid, since each Event Folder in the finder, contains separate folders for every Project (sequence). Speculate away!!



-------------------------------------------------------------

~ My FCPX Babbling blog ~
~"It is a poor craftsman who blames his tools."~
~"The function you just attempted is not yet implemented"~
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Simon Ubsdell
[Charlie Austin] "Event Locking? It's an interesting possibility right? I have no clue if it'll happen, but it's not a huge stretch to think it could?"

Very interesting idea and, yes, that does make sense. Quality speculation!

Simon Ubsdell
tokyo productions
hawaiki
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Scott Witthaus
[Simon Ubsdell] "If you could drag directly to Folders of course, then Events would probably be redundant"

Can you group events into folders? I have not found a way but it sure would be helpful!

Scott Witthaus
Senior Editor/Post Production Supervisor
1708 Inc./Editorial
Professor, VCU Brandcenter
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Jeremy Garchow
[Scott Witthaus] "Can you group events into folders? I have not found a way but it sure would be helpful!"

No, but you can Merge Events to make two (or more) Events, one Event.
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Scott Witthaus
[Jeremy Garchow] "No, but you can Merge Events to make two (or more) Events, one Even"

Damn. I am doing a series of spots for a bunch of markets around the country. Each location has it's own event. And then I have events for stock shot low resolution and then approved stock shot hi res. Events for audio, logos, etc. (Charlie, can you do a Lynda.com class on FCPX organization skills? I would take it!). Now I am done and have one event with the generic and location specific masters. It would just be easier on the eyes if I could put all the location, stock, audio, logos, etc. events in a folder and only see the generic and location specific event when I open up the project. Oh well, off the the suggestion box!

Scott Witthaus
Senior Editor/Post Production Supervisor
1708 Inc./Editorial
Professor, VCU Brandcenter
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Simon Ubsdell
The weird thing about FCP X organisation when you contrast with AVID, is that in Media Composer you have folders that contain bins (Events?), whereas in FCP X you have folders inside Events.

The AVID organisation seems a lot more logical, quite frankly.

I don't believe that if Apple had been designing FCP X from scratch they would have ended up where they have ended up, but I could be wrong of course.

Obviously it goes without saying that Events derive from iPhoto and iMovie. Clearly they wanted to make the transition from iMovie to FCP X as obvious as possible for iMovie users which is why Events were the original top level organisational container.

Quite how Events fit in after the introduction of Libraries is not something I have ever seen adequately explained. They're not entirely redundant but they're a pretty awkward "extra" level that doesn't quite pull its weight.

Simon Ubsdell
tokyo productions
hawaiki
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Charlie Austin
[Simon Ubsdell] "The weird thing about FCP X organisation when you contrast with AVID, is that in Media Composer you have folders that contain bins (Events?), whereas in FCP X you have folders inside Events.

The AVID organisation seems a lot more logical, quite frankly."


I kind of agree, but say I had a bunch of cuts in an Avid Bin, but i only wanted to share one of them. I could make a new Bin, copy it in and share it, but the .avb file is the end of the line, you can't get to individual items in a bin without opening the whole thing right? Whereas in X, you can drill down to individual items in the Event, projects, single media files, whatever -- if there was something in the app that let you do that... I dunno... wild ass speculation right?

-------------------------------------------------------------

~ My FCPX Babbling blog ~
~"It is a poor craftsman who blames his tools."~
~"The function you just attempted is not yet implemented"~
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Simon Ubsdell
I guess I can only really comment on the way that FCP X is currently configured, and it's been that way for a pretty long time now.

I'm happy to think that Apple have thought ahead to an exciting new implementation for Events where all this will be possible, but, just like the Roles-based-mixer, this one is going to have to stay on my list of interesting potential ideas for which I as yet have no evidence that they will ever actually materialise ;-)

Now, if only I hadn't been too busy to make it to Vegas this year!!!!

Simon Ubsdell
tokyo productions
hawaiki
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Charlie Austin
[Simon Ubsdell] "but, just like the Roles-based-mixer, this one is going to have to stay on my list of interesting potential ideas for which I as yet have no evidence that they will ever actually materialise ;-) "

I'm with ya. :-) There is evidence that they definitely are working on... something. No clue at all if anything we're talking about is part of it though.

[Simon Ubsdell] "Now, if only I hadn't been too busy to make it to Vegas this year!!!!"

It was fun, kinda wish I had stayed longer but I just popped in for a day and a half.

-------------------------------------------------------------

~ My FCPX Babbling blog ~
~"It is a poor craftsman who blames his tools."~
~"The function you just attempted is not yet implemented"~
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Jeremy Garchow
[Scott Witthaus] "Now I am done and have one event with the generic and location specific masters. It would just be easier on the eyes if I could put all the location, stock, audio, logos, etc. events in a folder and only see the generic and location specific event when I open up the project. Oh well, off the the suggestion box!"

You could easily do this with keywords instead of Events. If you use keywords as you would a bin, then you have one master bin, and a bunch of other bins inside that bin. Each keyword would be audio/logo/location, whatever, inside that one Event (I prefer to not do it that way, but you could do it that way).

Another way to do what you're doing is to use the Library level smart collections. You could add a keyword to evey piece of footage or whatever you need by location, and then have the Smart Collection key in to that location keyword (or whatever you need, you could even add a text modifier, or leave out certain things like Projects).

I don't know exactly what you need to do, but if you showed me a few pictures, or describe in more detail what you need separated, I bet we could help you out.
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Scott Witthaus
[Jeremy Garchow] "I don't know exactly what you need to do, but if you showed me a few pictures, or describe in more detail what you need separated, I bet we could help you out.
"


Thanks Jeremy. I am back on that gig tomorrow and will try to grab a few shots. Is there a fundamental reason that we could not, at some point, have folders where we can move events into? Is this a programing thing?

Scott Witthaus
Senior Editor/Post Production Supervisor
1708 Inc./Editorial
Professor, VCU Brandcenter
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Jeremy Garchow
Charlie points out how X is currently structured. In the Finder, Events are folders.

The library level smart collections are in a folder at the top of the library. Folders in FCPX , as Charlie also points out, can't hold media on their own, folders can only hold media 'containers', like any type of collection (smart/keyword). I can not make a folder in an event and drag a piece of media in to it, so Apple "choosing" to not have folders at the root level of the library might be purposeful, so that people won't get confused as to why they can't drag media to a folder.

But I think you can do what you want to do with keywords, smart collections, and folders within the Event (that hold keywords and smart collections), in combination with Library level smart collections.
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Charlie Austin
[Jeremy Garchow] "But I think you can do what you want to do with keywords, smart collections, and folders within the Event (that hold keywords and smart collections), in combination with Library level smart collections."

You absolutely can, you can even use mutliple Libraries to segregate stuff if you want, though there are some minor downsides to that (duplicate or possibly unwanted keywords move with files, not a big deal reallly). I have dedicated SFX libraries that I use like that. Butin just one Library and/or just one Event it's very easy to achieve what you want. As Jeremy says, Folder containing Collections will do it. :-)

-------------------------------------------------------------

~ My FCPX Babbling blog ~
~"It is a poor craftsman who blames his tools."~
~"The function you just attempted is not yet implemented"~
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Scott Witthaus
[Jeremy Garchow] "You could easily do this with keywords instead of Events. If you use keywords as you would a bin, then you have one master bin, and a bunch of other bins inside that bin. Each keyword would be audio/logo/location, whatever, inside that one Event (I prefer to not do it that way, but you could do it that way)."

I had to start cutting a new spot with new footage for the New Orleans market yesterday and incorporated this workflow (not nearly as deep, however). I created one New Orleans Event and then used kw collections (Camera 1 interview, camera 2 interview, Broll, etc) in that event for organizational tools. I really like it. Small steps but I like it.

I am serious about a focused Lynda class or video just on organization. It would be very valuable.

Scott Witthaus
Senior Editor/Post Production Supervisor
1708 Inc./Editorial
Professor, VCU Brandcenter
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Brian Seegmiller
Events act as a folder and keywords is where you separate your location, stock, audio, logos, etc. And then smart collections take it further. I Think it works great.
+1
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Tony West
I think it works great also.

It ends up looking like this for me. I tend to organize in the finder first because I also want to be able to find things quick outside of X. When I would have new documents for her I would just drag that folder into her Event and they are automatically tagged.

If I leave her Event open it becomes just "one" click to get to anything about her.

Could not be any quicker. The whole point is to get to it as quick as possible and you couldn't do it any faster than this. Organize it quickly and find it quickly.

Remember, X already creates smart collections for you on it's own, it's just a matter of how detailed you want to make them or create your own.

X was designed to give you choices in organization. So if you use it's choices you are using it the way it was designed.

Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Simon Ubsdell
[Tony West] "X was designed to give you choices in organization. So if you use it's choices you are using it the way it was designed."

Couldn't agree more. And one of the really powerful., but massively underused, methods of organisation is the Smart Collection - as I have tried to outline elsewhere on this thread.

It's one of those things that "just works". Bravo Apple, for giving us this great tool. Shame so few users actually bother to make use of it and instead try to recreate the organisational methods that are more appropriate to other, more old-fashioned NLEs.

If you're not using Smart Collections properly, you're just not using FCP X properly - you're just basically missing out on all the good stuff, which would be a shame.

Simon Ubsdell
tokyo productions
hawaiki
+1
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Tony West
[Simon Ubsdell] "If you're not using Smart Collections properly, you're just not using FCP X properly - you're just basically missing out on all the good stuff, which would be a shame."

Using them properly mean using them in the right situation.

Not using them just to say "hey I'm different and using them"

There are a lot of things that make X different than other NLE's not just SMs

As I pointed out, SMs are already made automatically for you. Anytime you want in any project you could reach up there and select them.

You failed to explain to me how SM would be faster in the example I showed. Making the entire documentary one big SC doesn't make any sense to me but feel free to do that on your next doc.
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Simon Ubsdell
I'm sorry you've got upset about this. I was just genuinely trying to help.

As I said, if you don't want to try this suggestion, I'm the last person who would try and force you to do something that didn't make sense to you.

Simon Ubsdell
tokyo productions
hawaiki
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Tony West
[Simon Ubsdell] "I'm sorry you've got upset about this. "

Sorry Simon, I'm not upset. Sometimes in print things look harsher. My apologies, I enjoy reading your post.
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Tony West
[Simon Ubsdell] "I've always thought Events were the Ugly Duckling in the FCP X workflow and when Libraries came along, they seemed to me to lose a lot of their reasons for being there in the first place, so I'm always intrigued to discover what uses people still find for them."

I find them very useful. It gives me another layer of organization.

With my doc I had to keep track of thousands of elements and find them fast.

Here is how I used them.

I interviewed almost 40 people for the film and I wanted to keep everyone's stuff with them. So each person got their own event.

So in the "Denise" Event would be 1. her sit down interview 2. b-roll of her (broken down into which event she was at) 3. her family photos 4. her government documents 5. her claim forms 6. interviews she had done with other folks.

This is a lot of info to keep track of and that's just one person. I had almost 40 people with much the same.

If you are doing something fast and smaller, the X instant smart collections is fine, but when I have thousands of stills I don't want to just select stills in that smart collection and go through the entire documentary's stills. Those stills need to be organized for faster access.

I click the Denise Event and then her stills collection within her event.

I find it faster then typing anything into the search, it's just click the name, click the tag and boom into her stills and not bob's stills.

What I find awesome about the X organization is there are two options.

1. Drag everything in there and let it organize everything from music to video to stills (down and dirty fast cutting spot)
or
2. Your own detailed organization.
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Simon Ubsdell
I hear what you're saying and your workflow certainly makes sense.

But in some ways I wonder whether you aren't actually trying to use FCP X like just any other NLE and you're not taking advantage of the full benefits of Smart Collections.

You could have a Smart Collection for Denise which includes an option for each of her categories (interview, stills, and then you could simply enable or disable whichever one(s) you wanted at any one time. To see Denise's stills, enable "Media is Stills", and so on. For my money this is not only more elegant, it's a lot quicker too - and it's more in tune with the way FCP X is meant to work.

No other NLE has a container structure that's this cumbersome which is why I am questioning whether Events are not a bit out of place.

AVID has Project/Folders (optional)/Bins.

FCP X has Library/Event/Folder/Keyword/Smart Collections. It just looks messy to me from a design point of view.

In software design, the ideal is maximum simplicity, but here Apple have very uncharacteristically got caught up in in greater complexity than anyone else.

I'm not saying that you can't find a use for Events, it's just that I think the implementation is a bit clunky, reflecting a not entirely smooth evolutionary path.

Simon Ubsdell
tokyo productions
hawaiki
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Simon Ubsdell
Actually the really interesting thing about FCP X is that it's theoretically possible to organise an entire editing project with just one single Smart Collection and nothing else.

I don't think I've really seen anyone use Smart Collections properly and to the fullest extent of what they are capable.

Even from some of the most dedicated FCP X aficionados I still see project organisation that simply more or less mimics the way it's done in other NLEs and is consequently pretty wasteful, time-consuming and inelegant. OK, it's often a lot more elegant than other NLEs are capable of, but it's still a lot less elegant than could be achieved by really embracing the power of FCP X.

Simon Ubsdell
tokyo productions
hawaiki
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Jeremy Garchow
[Simon Ubsdell] "Actually the really interesting thing about FCP X is that it's theoretically possible to organise an entire editing project with just one single Smart Collection and nothing else.
"


?
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Simon Ubsdell
OK, so I've obviously gone out on quite a limb here, so I've just had a look at organising not just one of my editing projects, but all of my current editing projects this way.

One Library. One Event. One Smart Collection.

It's all about how you set up the Smart Collection but it's entirely doable ... I think. All the finding gets done using the one SC Filter window.

I just raised this notion to get a discussion going, but actually I think I will persevere with this system and see what the pitfalls if any might be. It feels like a really fun way to work - with absolutely minimal clutter. Very Zen ;-)

(Obviously I'm not saying it's not handy to use Keyword Collections too, but I'm going to go super slimmed down for a while and see where that takes me.)

Simon Ubsdell
tokyo productions
hawaiki
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Charlie Austin
[Simon Ubsdell] "just raised this notion to get a discussion going, but actually I think I will persevere with this system and see what the pitfalls if any might be. It feels like a really fun way to work - with absolutely minimal clutter. Very Zen ;-)
"


I like it... For me, just having one Smart Collection containing every possible parameter would be way too cumbersome. I like using Events for each "category" (cuts, pix source, MX, VO, GFX, SFX). I could (I used to) use Collections/Smart Collections instead of Events, but it really was harder to track stuff. Difficult to succinctly explain why, but it was, thus my switch to "root" events. So this is a typical Library. All "target I can drag to, and if there's no Collection that fits the source I'm dragging in, then just drag to the correct Root Event (note the Misc Source collection) and sort it later, or not, it's in the right "place".



I feel like the Zen mode, of just a single smart collection would be way more trouble than it's worth in my particular case. If I have 200 vfx shots, delivered in batches on different days but without that date info in the file, how do I find just shots delivered in a specific batch? Dragging the folders into X and getting Collections created from them solves that. Yes, it's like an "old" NLE that creates bins, but bins I have to open, collections I just click on and there it all is. :-)

Smart Collections *are* amazing... as I said, I'm trying to work out a fully automatic sorting system for all the iterations of things I cut. It's very cool. And I suppose if you meticulously named everything with the correct info before importing, you likely could use a single Smart Collection for all your sources, since you'd know what to search for. Sadly I have no assistant, or time to do that. :-(

Keep us posted though, really interested to see how the Ubsdell Zen-O-Matic Sorting System works! :-)

-------------------------------------------------------------

~ My FCPX Babbling blog ~
~"It is a poor craftsman who blames his tools."~
~"The function you just attempted is not yet implemented"~
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Simon Ubsdell
Cool. I was hoping you'd bite.

OK, I admit it would require quite a lot of discipline, mostly in terms of file naming conventions, in order to work this way exclusively.

However, if you add Keyword Collections into the mix - which can of course be invoked from the Smart Collection Filter, then I think it's ways more workable, and you're still not having to mess with all that old-fashioned container stuff like Folders and Events.

Can you not use Keyword Collections for what you need to organise rather than Events? I'm not sure I understand why that wouldn't work in your case.

Simon Ubsdell
tokyo productions
hawaiki
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Charlie Austin
[Simon Ubsdell] "Can you not use Keyword Collections for what you need to organise rather than Events? I'm not sure I understand why that wouldn't work in your case."

I can, in fact until last year, I did... what I ended up with was an Event littered with collections, that I sorted into folders which, if closed you can't drag stuff onto without hovering wasting precious second during which I can be posting on the Cow, :-) . It definitely works, but it's just easier to use Events as the root containers.

The cool thing is, there are a zillion ways to sort/find things in X. Like I said, I want total automation! And I feel like it's possible with Smart Collections... if you had everything prepped/tagged before you imported it. Drag it in and then just let the Collections do their thing.

The other thing -to veer a bit OT- is that in X with Libraries, Events, Folders, Collections etc, you just need to select them and instantly you see what's inside. Select a group of them and see (and work with) just what's in those. In any other NLE, what happens when you single click or otherwise select a bin? Nothing, that's what. If I want to see everything in a Bin containing other sub-bins all at once, how can I do that without jumping through hoops? I can't. It's impossible. Here's a pretty picture, same organizational structure, selecting/opening the root Collection/Bin in thumbnail (filmstrip) view.. One of these views is utterly useless to me, can You guess which one? :-)




The FCP X browser smokes anything else available in this regard.

-------------------------------------------------------------

~ My FCPX Babbling blog ~
~"It is a poor craftsman who blames his tools."~
~"The function you just attempted is not yet implemented"~
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Simon Ubsdell
[Charlie Austin] "I can, in fact until last year, I did... what I ended up with was an Event littered with collections"

I don't understand why you'd have so many KW collections that it would get messy like this. We both do the same kind of stuff and for my part I would only ever use a small handful of KW collections which would never become an issue of organisation.

For example, take your VFX, which you have turned into an Event. Why not simply have VFX as a KW collection? Any further sorting within that can so easily be done with a Smart Collection - and waaaaaay more efficiently.

At least to my way of thinking.

Simon Ubsdell
tokyo productions
hawaiki
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Charlie Austin
[Simon Ubsdell] "For example, take your VFX, which you have turned into an Event. Why not simply have VFX as a KW collection? Any further sorting within that can so easily be done with a Smart Collection - and waaaaaay more efficiently."

I agree... IF the vfx that were delivered an a certain day had that date in some sort of searchable metadata, but they don't. They have dates in the filename, but they don't correspond to the date we received them. Without that info finding just those shots from that delivery is impossible. Unless they were tagged/renamed before import. Who has time for that? drag in the folder and the collection is made. :-) Same deal with the music in my the browser pic i posted earlier...



If cues haven't been tagged with what they are *before* import, I have no way to search for these parameters without prep before import. And I have exactly zero time to do that. ;-)

So I just toss it into the browser and it does it for me. As any good program should...

-------------------------------------------------------------

~ My FCPX Babbling blog ~
~"It is a poor craftsman who blames his tools."~
~"The function you just attempted is not yet implemented"~
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Simon Ubsdell
[Charlie Austin] "Without that info finding just those shots from that delivery is impossible."

No at all.

Simply make your master Smart Collection finder thingy search for "KW collection/VFX" and "Text Includes/filename".

Super simple.

No need for Events.

Simon Ubsdell
tokyo productions
hawaiki
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Jeremy Garchow
[Charlie Austin] "Smart Collections *are* amazing... as I said, I'm trying to work out a fully automatic sorting system for all the iterations of things I cut. It's very cool. And I suppose if you meticulously named everything with the correct info before importing, you likely could use a single Smart Collection for all your sources, since you'd know what to search for. Sadly I have no assistant, or time to do that. :-( "

It's funny, Charlie, I watch your presentation and I sort my Projects/Snapshots/Versioning just like you do.

My main Project that I am working on always stays open and front and center, SmartCollections take care of the rest after I dupe as snapshot.

I couldn't imagine having one smart collection because I bounce back and forth between them all the time, (and sometimes select more than one to view the contents of all the selected).

I also place all preysnced media in it's own Event, and synced media in a new Event with all the rest of the footage, that way, I never cross the streams when I simply click on the top layer of the Event to get a skimmable look at every piece of footage in the Library (very handy).

Simon, I will be very curious on how to do this in one Smart Collection. One Event, sure, but one Smart Collection? Bold statement, my friend!
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Charlie Austin
[Jeremy Garchow] "My main Project that I am working on always stays open and front and center, SmartCollections take care of the rest after I dupe as snapshot.
"


I think it's sort of becoming the "establishment" way of doing it, I've talked to a bunch of people who either have been doing that, or are now. I've actually started working like that in Premiere as well... you can kind of make it work with search bins, but it's pretty clunky and you can't be very fine grained... Plus you have to click on way too many things. click click click click clickety click! Old fashioned folders and tabs are the work of the Devil. He likely created them after making tracks, :-)

-------------------------------------------------------------

~ My FCPX Babbling blog ~
~"It is a poor craftsman who blames his tools."~
~"The function you just attempted is not yet implemented"~
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Simon Ubsdell
[Charlie Austin] "I think it's sort of becoming the "establishment" way of doing it, I've talked to a bunch of people who either have been doing that, or are now."

Which means it's time to question whether the establishment way it the right way ;-)

I really do think in all seriousness that to arrive at an optimum workflow, you need to take a big step back and see just how simple you can make it, and more importantly which sacred cows you can safely sacrifice.

Simon Ubsdell
tokyo productions
hawaiki
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Charlie Austin
[Simon Ubsdell] "I really do think in all seriousness that to arrive at an optimum workflow, you need to take a big step back and see just how simple you can make it, and more importantly which sacred cows you can safely sacrifice"

I'm with ya there. :-) but to your earlier point "Simply make your master Smart Collection finder thingy search for "KW collection/VFX" and "Text Includes/filename"." The first part is fine... but I don't know the filename. Also I'm typing into a collection to find a collection? Also, Apparently I still have keyword collections littering my Library. Do I put them in Folders or... Events? :-)

-------------------------------------------------------------

~ My FCPX Babbling blog ~
~"It is a poor craftsman who blames his tools."~
~"The function you just attempted is not yet implemented"~
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Simon Ubsdell
[Charlie Austin] "The first part is fine... but I don't know the filename"

You said the date was in the filename which is why I suggested this method.

[Charlie Austin] "Also, Apparently I still have keyword collections littering my Library."

Why have you got so many keyword collections? I'd respectfully suggest it's cos you're not using Smart Collections the right way. If you were doing so, you wouldn't have any litter and the few keyword collections that you did have you can tuck away wherever you felt happiest doing so.

I know it sounds like I'm kidding, but I'm really not.

Edit: It seems to me that if you are using KW collections merely as "bins", you're not really leveraging the power of smart collections at all.

Simon Ubsdell
tokyo productions
hawaiki
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Charlie Austin
[Simon Ubsdell] "[Charlie Austin] "The first part is fine... but I don't know the filename"

You said the date was in the filename which is why I suggested this method."


Sorry, maybe not clear... the date the FX shot was created is in the filename, not the date on which the batch of vfx (all of which have different creation dates) was delivered to us.

[Simon Ubsdell] "Why have you got so many keyword collections? I'd respectfully suggest it's cos you're not using Smart Collections the right way. If you were doing so, you wouldn't have any litter and the few keyword collections that you did have you can tuck away wherever you felt happiest doing so. "

Again, maybe I'm being obtuse... in the music Event example above... I have Finder Level folders containing, in this case, all the cleared music and SFX for 3 or 4 different trailers. I need to know what cue goes with what trailer, but the cues are just regular library stuff, they say what they are but not what they belong to for my purposes. (TRLR 1, TRLR 2 etc, and some cues are in more than 1 trailer) So without either adding that info to each filename or creating a Collection from the finder folder or tags, how would I search for a particular group of cues?

[Simon Ubsdell] "I know it sounds like I'm kidding, but I'm really not."

Oh, I don't think you're kidding, and I think new ways of using the stuff built into X will emerge from this. :-) I just can't see how I could eliminate having KW Collections.

-------------------------------------------------------------

~ My FCPX Babbling blog ~
~"It is a poor craftsman who blames his tools."~
~"The function you just attempted is not yet implemented"~
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Simon Ubsdell
[Charlie Austin] " the date the FX shot was created is in the filename, not the date on which the batch of vfx (all of which have different creation dates) was delivered to us. "

OK, I see what you're saying. And it raises what I think is an important conceptual point.

You are using Folders and Events as virtual metadata, i.e. you are finding a way to describe the files by physically putting them in one of these containers - which is the old-fashioned way of doing it. What I would suggest is that if the metadata is important (in your case, the date when the file landed on your desktop), it should travel with the file, which is the modern way of doing it. In other words, I would consider it best practice to add the metadata to the file itself, which of course can be done in any number of fast and efficient ways which I don't need to tell you about.

The point is that once the metadata is there, you can start to use the FCP X Smart Collection option to the fullest extent, and to my mind that's way faster and more flexible than the method most people seem to adopt which is simply to organise pretty much exactly the way you organise in other NLEs.

I've gone into detail about what I mean by this in my reply to Tony, so I won't bore you with repeating it here - I'm going to call it the Dummy Smart Collection method, which has a certain ring to it, I think ;-)

I certainly don't mean to suggest that you need to do away with KW Collections - I was simply floating the theoretical possibility of organising an editing project by using just One Library, One Event and One Smart Collection, which is something that is perfectly achievable and surprisingly effective. But as I say, that was just a theoretical suggestion, not a wholly practical one - but I think a consideration of that possibility helps lead to a clearer insight into a different way of working that isn't tied to the "container system" of the past.

Obviously, if you keep Keyword Collections, then the Dummy Smart Collection method becomes a really amazing way of working. And to come back round to my original point, it means that Events become essentially redundant, other than the fact that you are obliged to have one of them due to the eccentricity of the existing architecture.

The more I think about it, the more additional advantages I can see to using the Dummy Smart Collection method, and I hope to be able expand on them at a later point.

Simon Ubsdell
tokyo productions
hawaiki
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Charlie Austin
[Simon Ubsdell] " What I would suggest is that if the metadata is important (in your case, the date when the file landed on your desktop), it should travel with the file, which is the modern way of doing it. In other words, I would consider it best practice to add the metadata to the file itself, which of course can be done in any number of fast and efficient ways which I don't need to tell you about. (VFX_ABCDEF_038.mov becomes VFX_ABCDEF_038_051416.mov, etc.)"

I'm in total agreement there, the problem, for me anyway, is the lack of time or help to do that in the sloppy "I need it right now!!!" world in which I toil. I really like this idea though, I'm gonna try the hybrid version next time I start a job.. Easy enough to go back...

Do keep us posted, as I think this is a really cool jumping off point. If all my media was tagged properly, I'd dive in immediately. :-)

-------------------------------------------------------------

~ My FCPX Babbling blog ~
~"It is a poor craftsman who blames his tools."~
~"The function you just attempted is not yet implemented"~
One Smart Collection To Rule Them All
by Simon Ubsdell
I've posted about this elsewhere here, but only piecemeal, so I thought it would be helpful to bring it all together in one place so you can see more clearly what I am suggesting. Elsewhere I've called it the Dummy Smart Collection method and that sounds kind of fun so I'll stick with that.

Step One: Open up your Library, which I am assuming has the media you want to work with, organised any which way you choose, or not organised at all.

Step Two: Create a new Smart Collection at the Library level (not the Event level) and call it something like "Master Access" and double click it to bring up the Filter window. This is what I'm calling the Dummy Smart Collection.

Step Three: Hide your Library pane. Yes, I mean that!

Step Four: Add all of the Filter options to the Filter pane - leave out any that look like you'd never want them but most of them are pretty useful.

This Filter window is now going to be the Always On, Instant Access control centre for your media. It's not a place where you are going to store anything. Creating places to store things is really old school and we want to try and break that habit! This is just a place from which you will be accessing all of the media in your Library all of the time, which means its "contents" will constantly be changing.

So for example, we can enable Roles/Include Any/Music in order to access all the music in our library. Or we could do something really useful and enable Used Media in order to see what music we have used in the current Project. That's cool and super useful.

If we know any of the characters in the filename we are looking for we can simply type in the Text field and enable that. So for example, we could enable Roles/Effects and type "zap" into the Text field to bring up all our Zap sound effects. Or we could use "Media is Stills" to bring up all our stills. Or if we had a Keyword collection called Stock we could bring up all our stock footage by enabling the Stock keyword (very useful if we wanted to isolate all the stock footage used in our current Project, which we could do by enabling Used Media again). But really there are so many options and different ways of accessing your media this way that it's absurd to try and even begin to list them.

Because the important thing to remember is that we can not only search with one category type, we can have multiple active categories, which means we can really pinpoint what we need in a way that simply isn't possible using any other means. If we use the old-fashioned method of hunting through Events, Folders and Keyword Collections manually, we can only ever see the contents of one container at a time. Whereas with the Dummy Smart Collection method, we can instantly view media from across multiple containers and that's a big deal, I think.

And the point is we are doing this with the Library closed! We are not hunting for any Folder, any Event, any Keyword Collection - we're simply using the Master Access "panel", as I'm calling the Filter pane. And one of the great things about this Master Access panel is that it's a floating HUD - I really like that. All my Browser real estate is being used for showing me my media and none is wasted with all that Library clutter.

So now if we think about our Library organisation, we can start to appreciate that we need a lot less of it than we used to think. We don't need a Music folder, or a SFX folder, or a Stills folder, because we can use our Dummy Smart Collection to bring them up instantly - and very efficiently because of the complex sort options we have at our fingertips.

Quite how you use Keyword collections within this scheme is really up to you, but you'll probably find that you need far fewer than you thought you needed. (Events are almost entirely redundant and don't help with the Dummy Smart Collection because they are not selectable as a Filter option.)

I've been very pleasantly surprised at how effective this method is in practice. One of the things you need to bear in mind though is that your media needs either the right filenames, or the right tags, or the right Roles or the right embedded metadata for this method to deliver the best results.

My recommendation would be to think about ways of embedding metadata probably more systematically than you might have done otherwise. Use the Finder (or one of the many utilities available) to tag and/or rename files. If you have files that you want to tag with a date that is different from the Creation Date, then simply modify the filename(s) to add in the date information (easily done as a batch in a single step, so it really isn't a big deal). Make sure your Roles are properly set up (which you should be doing anyway!). Rename items in the Browser to that they become more useful to you - for example, if you want to organise your sent Projects, you don't need to put them in a Sent Keyword collection - instead you can simply add "Sent" to the Project name and the Dummy Smart Collection will find them without fuss.

That's probably enough for now - I haven't spent that long developing this method but its simplicity and robustness strike me as offering real efficiency savings. The more I work with it, the more benefits I seem to discover, so I hope to be able to add some more useful tips in due course.

EDIT: Here's a visual aid showing my sift for my zap SFX - note that hidden away there are many other editing projects that you are not seeing but which I can easily access.




Simon Ubsdell
tokyo productions
hawaiki
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Simon Ubsdell
[Jeremy Garchow] "Simon, I will be very curious on how to do this in one Smart Collection. One Event, sure, but one Smart Collection? Bold statement, my friend!"

At the risk of sounding all Bill Davis here, I think one needs to think laterally to get the best out of FCP X - and I don't believe I've yet seen a workflow that makes the best use of what Apple have given us.

I think everyone just uses Events cos they've always been there, rather than because they make hat much sense.

I know I started this as a bit of a lark, but I do think that my suggested method is going to work really well for me - and I don't see myself ever going back to multiple Events for any reason at all.

I won't say watch this space, cos when I crash and burn, I'll simply not mention it ;-)

Simon Ubsdell
tokyo productions
hawaiki
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by David Mathis
After reading several posts in this thread I have considered the follow scenario:

Library: I would base the name of the spot or episode. For a series, I would include a season and episode number.

Events: This would be the date filming took place. This way one could see what material was shot on a particular date.

Smart Collections: Will set up and place into its own event prior to importing footage. Collections will have text, keywords, roles and ratings attached to prevent clutter. Interviews, graphics, sound effects and outtakes would be some examples.

Keywords: This will be done after setting up the smart collections, making for faster and more efficient organizing. Same will go for roles.

Roles: Additional roles and subroles will be added to the video category. Roles are not just for exporting, they greatly aid in locating source material.

It is possible to copy smart collections to all events but may not be a practical approach. I wonder how well I organize and set up libraries. No one approach works for every situation but we have to worksmart otherwise we wind up with an inefficient workflow.
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Simon Ubsdell
[David Mathis] "Events: This would be the date filming took place. This way one could see what material was shot on a particular date. "

Smart Collection/Filter/Date/Enter specific date, or range, or before, or after, etc.

No need for an Event just to tell you when something was shot.

Smart Collections, honestly. They really are the way to go. They're probably a lot more powerful than Apple ever envisaged.

Simon Ubsdell
tokyo productions
hawaiki
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Robin S. Kurz
[Simon Ubsdell] "No need for an Event just to tell you when something was shot."

True. Especially since you can simply set the event display options to sort by "Date Created" and bingo... you have "folders" of everything by date.

- RK

____________________________________________________
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Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Brian Seegmiller
Simon, in one breath you say,

"For my money this is not only more elegant, it's a lot quicker too - and it's more in tune with the way FCP X is meant to work."

and in another breath you say,

"No other NLE has a container structure that's this cumbersome which is why I am questioning whether Events are not a bit out of place."

Are you comparing Smart Collections to Events?
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Simon Ubsdell
Sorry, I meant that Smart Collections are by far the best way to organise in FCP X and should be used much more widely than I have seen them used. Events not so much so.

So for my money, Smart Collections = Super Elegant; Events = Kinda Clunky.

Simon Ubsdell
tokyo productions
hawaiki
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Tony West
[Simon Ubsdell] " For my money this is not only more elegant, it's a lot quicker too - and it's more in tune with the way FCP X is meant to work."

I don't think that is any quicker Simon. My way is two clicks. For you to be faster you would need to get to her stills in one click. I don't think you can do it.

My way is very neat. All I see is everyone's name in alphabetical order. Click the triangle then click what I want. That's two clicks.

I only use smart collections when I'm in a hurry and want to drag everything in and let X separate it.
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Simon Ubsdell
Hi Tony

I'm really not trying to persuade you to work in a way that you don't find comfortable as I know how incredibly irritating it can be when someone does that!

But please consider having a go with this trick which it sounds as though you may not have tried.

Make a Dummy Smart Collection - call it anything you want, maybe something like "Tony's Stuff". Make sure to make it a Library-wide Smart Collection not just Event-wide.

Add all the search parameters that you might need in the Smart Collection Filter pane - I find most of them are pretty useful. Remember you can add or delete them at any time so you're not committing to anything.

Now all you need to do to is to work with the Smart Collection Filter pane of this one Smart Collection and you should be able to find anything in your project instantly without having to look for whatever container you might have put it in.

Here's an example from an actual Library of mine where I have dispensed with Events entirely (other than the single Event that you have to have whether you like it or not).



It's showing me all the Used Media for the current project that is not Audio Only and that includes the Keyword Hawaiki Dissolve, but the range of different options for calling up specific media with a single click is really powerful and pretty mind-boggling. In fact, I could theoretically not have bothered even making that Keyword Collection and I'd still be able to find this media or any of the other media in the Library with incredible precision.

So in your example, if you had made a Keyword Collection for Denise, it would be very easy to summon Denise's stills, by using the Filter and simply enabling the Denise Keyword Collection and "Media Is Stills".

However, because in your case you have used Events to sort your media, you can't actually leverage the amazing power of this method, because Events are not a Filter option, which is very annoying.

For this reason I'd suggest that Events are not only not useful, they actively get in the way of the way I prefer to access my media.

But really, do have a go with this method and even if you don't use it the way I'm suggesting, you might find it a useful addition to your workflow. It has completely revolutionised the way I access media in FCP X and made it much faster and more flexible for me. Gone are the days of scanning long lists of Folders and Events which for my ageing eyesight has become an increasing pain. But there are countless other advantages to this method that I won't bore you with here but which I'll try to explain at some point.

But as I say, my workflow may well not suit you - and that's all good.

Simon Ubsdell
tokyo productions
hawaiki
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Tony West
[Simon Ubsdell] "But really, do have a go with this method and even if you don't use it the way I'm suggesting, you might find it a useful addition to your workflow."

OK Simon,

but let me ask you this, do you spend a lot of time organizing at the finder level?

The reason I ask is because I like to have things organized at the finder level as well as inside X

So my question is, if I "filter" everything in the finder and then "filter" again in X, isn't that redundant?

Since X can automatically tag entire folders coming in seems like I would be doing double duty after I have already filtered them in the finder.

If a person's workflow was really sloppy in the finder and they wanted to only organize in X this would be good for them.

I had 5 thousand items to keep up with on this project.

Denise by herself had 650 items and she was only one of 30 people. Other folks had their own documents that needed to be kept separate from Denise's.
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Robin S. Kurz
[Tony West] "So my question is, if I "filter" everything in the finder and then "filter" again in X, isn't that redundant?"

I'm thinking you're not entirely getting how what he describes and suggests actually works in practice. I know it took ME a couple of reads and actually trying it before I got it. Whether it makes sense to you or not is an entirely different matter. But I certainly find the basic idea intriguing and will have to test it more on an actual project to see what I think.

- RK

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Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Tony West
[Robin S. Kurz] "I'm thinking you're not entirely getting how what he describes and suggests actually works in practice."

Very possible, can you walk me through what I'm missing since you got it?
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Simon Ubsdell
Hi Tony

I'm hoping Robin will be able to explain this better than I have done. I just wanted to clarify what I'm saying.

I’m not suggesting that you use this to replace your existing organisation from Day One. Just try using it on top of your existing organisation for now, whatever that may be. Even if you decide you don’t like it, it will be a great diagnostic tool for telling you what types of organisation you actually need, and what you can really do without.

I really hate people who tell other people how they should be editing, but I do think that the goal of organisation should be to aim for simplicity over complication, so it’s a really good idea to keep asking yourself: “Do I really need the complexity that I’ve built into my workflow, or can I find things to usefully strip out?” I think this method should really help with answering that question.

Simon Ubsdell
tokyo productions
hawaiki
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Tony West
[Simon Ubsdell] "“Do I really need the complexity that I’ve built into my workflow, or can I find things to usefully strip out?"

I hear you, there is no one who likes fewer key strokes and less typing than I do : )

I don't mind tips from people on how to edit, that's the whole reason I come on here. To learn and to get better and more efficient.

It's all about finding the item fast, and I don't see how you are finding the item faster than me, that's all.

If you have to type something into the filter window, that is more steps than I have with my method.
I don't type anything. I just drag it in.

It seems like you are working more on the front end than my method, without any more benefits on the
back end than I have now.

The last 30 sec spot I cut had 3 days of footage but maybe like 9 stills. I used the preset SCs for the stills because there just weren't that many. I find them useful in so applications and not in others.
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Simon Ubsdell
Sure, no problem. If it doesn't appeal to you, I'm certainly not going to argue the point. And it's certainly not about who can get there with fewer clicks - which quickly becomes a really daft argument, as I'm sure you've noticed!

Simon Ubsdell
tokyo productions
hawaiki
Re: Making the Switch to X - A Comparative Study
by Tony West
[Simon Ubsdell] "And it's certainly not about who can get there with fewer clicks - which quickly becomes a really daft argument, as I'm sure you've noticed!"

It's certainly not that for YOU, but it most certainly is for me. How fast you get to something is a measurement of efficiency, and efficiency is what I am after in the organizing process.

Organizing files is not fun or creative to me. It's something that I have to do to get to the part I love which is telling the story and being creative.

There's nothing "daft" about a conversation about efficiency.

It just took this many post to figure out that are goals are different not just our methods. Which is fine.
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