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Mixing up shots in stage discussion events


Recently I was asked to edit a couple of highlights packages for The Atlantic magazine's website. The pieces were daily round-ups of a two day discussion event at the Newseum in Washington, DC called "The First Draft of History."

These packages, narrated by Nathan King, were to be a maximum of four minutes long featuring the top soundbites from each day's speakers.

The pictures I had to work with were from four Sony EX3 XDCAM cameras: two located in fixed positions facing the stage, another fixed position for audience cutaways, and another roaming camera to gather shots from around the event as a whole.

As you can see, the trick to editing these kinds of pieces is to make sure you try to keep the video interesting despite having a limited range of shots to work with. Cutaways of audience members, interviewers and so on are very important. Also important are the shots from the fourth roving camera which really help break up the sequence of shots from the debate hall.
These packages were edited using Final Cut Studio HD and XDCAM Transfer. Footage from this event was used on several networks including MSNBC


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