Get a glimpse of the daily life of a video editor and learn about the various specializations within this exciting career field. From using high-end software like Adobe After Effects and Premiere Pro to editing everything from social media content to movie footage, discover the ins and outs of this dynamic profession.

Key Insights

  • Video Editors combine artistic and organizational skills to convert raw video and audio content into unique and compelling narratives. They utilize professional-grade applications like Adobe After Effects and Premiere Pro.
  • Specializations within the field include Motion Graphics Designers, who create animated graphics for videos, 3D Animators, who develop realistic visuals for video games and feature films, and Graphic Designers, who specialize in creating visuals for videos.
  • The daily routine of a Video Editor often begins with a thorough review of the project, including the client's expectations, project notes, and potential research into industry trends and style guides.
  • Video Editors work on a wide range of projects, including promotional videos, social media content, podcasts, corporate training videos, and news or documentary footage. Hence, their day-to-day activities can vary greatly depending on the type of project they are working on.
  • Many Video Editors dedicate their time after work to professional development activities to enhance their technical and creative skills. This could involve learning new editing software, studying the works of accomplished editors, or attending industry webinars and workshops.
  • Noble Desktop offers numerous resources and training opportunities for individuals looking to start or further their career in video editing. These include live online and in-person courses, learning resource archives, and certificate programs.

Daily Life of a Video Editor

From advertising to instructional videos to creating a social media presence, almost every industry requires the expertise and skills of a Video Editor. Video Editors in any field share common tasks and responsibilities. Learning more about the day-to-day lives and workflow of Video Editors can help determine if this is your career path. Use the following article to imagine your life as a video editor and how you can make this exciting career your reality. 

What is a Video Editor?

If you’re looking for a career that combines your artistic and organizational skills into a cohesive, creative experience, consider pursuing training as a Video Editor. Video Editors are responsible for compiling, editing, and producing different types of audio and visual content into a coherent and unique form of media. They frequently work with advertisers, filmmakers, directors, social media companies, and other visual media fields to create seamless and compelling narratives. 

Video Editors use professional-grade applications such as Adobe After Effects and Premiere Pro to transform raw footage shot onsite or at a soundstage into the modern movie masterpieces we see on our screens today. Editing includes smoothing the transitions between camera angles, removing background noises, and adding sound and visual effects. Video editors also transform ordinary greenscreens and tennis balls into fantastical landscapes and mythical figures. 

Read more about the responsibilities of a video editor.

Video Editor Specializations

Within the field of video editing, there are several job titles that a Video Editor might specialize in, each requiring its own unique set of skills. A professional with video editing skills can turn raw footage into a cohesive, visually engaging project. A Video Editor is responsible for assembling the different elements of a video, such as effects, music, sound, and dialogue, into a finished product. They need to have strong technical skills to manipulate video and audio files with precision. Video Editors must also be able to collaborate with other production team members to create a cohesive project.

Motion Graphics Designers specialize in creating animated graphics for videos. They must be highly skilled in using specialized software and have an eye for detail when creating visuals that capture the viewer's attention. Motion Graphics Designers must also understand how color, light, and sound can be used together to create the desired effect. These professionals bring a creative flair to the production process and are essential for creating videos that captivate viewers. 3D Animators focus on creating realistic visuals common in video games or feature films. These professionals need to have advanced drawing and animation skills and an understanding of the principles of animation and storytelling. 3D Animators must be able to work independently to develop high-quality visuals that meet deadlines and client expectations. 

There are also Graphic Designers who specialize in creating visuals for videos. These professionals must be highly skilled in typography, layout design, and color theory to create visually engaging graphics that meet the client's specifications. They use industry-standard software to create visuals that capture the viewer's attention, ensuring that the video project remains consistent from start to finish. No matter what job title Video Editors choose, their skills and creativity are essential for creating visually engaging videos that meet client expectations.

Read more about other job titles related to Video Editor

Starting Your Day 

Think about your ideal work environment. Are you at home or in an office? Are you working independently or with colleagues? Do you prefer to begin the day by listening to podcasts while commuting to the office or enjoying your first cup of coffee in your home office? One of the significant benefits of working in the video editing field is workspace flexibility. Today, many video editing jobs are fully remote or hybrid, while others occur in a film studio or collective workspace. As a Video Editor, you can pursue jobs that will allow you to work in an environment where you can flourish. 

9 AM:

While each person's workflow may differ, most Video Editors begin their day with an in-depth project review. This includes a review of the client's expectations for the finished product and any project notes provided by supervisors or colleagues. Depending on the project, this may include extensive research into industry trends, style guides, and software updates to ensure they use the most up-to-date programs and techniques when producing content. Organizing and planning for the day is the best way for a Video Editor to stay on track and focus when working.

11 AM:

The rest of a Video Editor's morning is spent gathering the different elements of the video, such as b-roll, sound effects, and music. This task involves combing through existing libraries for materials that fit the desired style or finding clips online to purchase. Depending on the project, a Video Editor may need to contact outside professionals for additional resources. After gathering all the required material, they create a timeline on their computer and import the elements into a timeline-based editing program.

2 PM:

In addition to editing film or video footage, Video Editors could also be working on a variety of other projects. These include promotional videos, social media content, podcasts, corporate training videos, and even news or documentary footage. The type of project a Video Editor works on can greatly affect their day-to-day activities. For instance, while working on a documentary, editors might spend a good deal of time in the research phase, while editing a promotional video might require close collaboration with marketing teams.

5 PM:

As the workday draws to a close, the Video Editor will likely spend their final hours carefully reviewing the day's work. This may involve checking the alignment of visuals and sound, ensuring a seamless transition between scenes, and fine-tuning any graphics or special effects. At this stage, they also share their progress with clients or team members for feedback.

To ensure a smooth start the next morning, Video Editors should document their progress, note any issues that emerged during the day, and outline the tasks for the next day. This includes any pending edits, renders that need to be processed, or feedback that needs to be addressed. A clear plan for the next day helps Video Editors hit the ground running, maximizing productivity and ensuring the project stays on track.

After Work:

After work hours, many Video Editors dedicate their time to professional development to enhance their technical and creative skills. They might engage in activities such as learning new editing software, studying the works of accomplished editors, or attending webinars and workshops on the latest industry trends and technologies. Some might even participate in online communities or forums to share ideas and learn from their peers.

Circumstances that might lead a Video Editor to put in overtime vary. Tight deadlines, especially when working on large or multiple projects simultaneously, often necessitate extra hours. Furthermore, last-minute revisions or client requests might prompt Video Editors to work beyond their regular schedule. In the movie industry, it's common for Video Editors to work long hours, including weekends, especially in the final stages of post-production. Despite demanding times, the satisfaction of seeing the final product makes these additional hours worthwhile for many professionals in this field.

Learn the Skills to Become a Video Editor at Noble Desktop

Are you excited to begin your Video Editor career but unsure where to start? Don’t stress! Noble Desktop is here to help! Noble Desktop offers many resources relevant to video editors at each leg of their professional journey. Professionals looking for a road map to entering or building their careers can explore training opportunities and career paths through Noble Desktop’s Learn Video Editing Page. Editors looking for a comprehensive overview of educational and practical training opportunities offered live online and in-person should check out Noble Desktop’s Video Editing Topic Page. This guide provides a comprehensive overview of the video editing profession and relevant editing applications that professionals regularly use. 

Video Editors use various professional-grade applications to design and create their projects. But how do you determine which programs to add to your tool kit? Noble Desktop provides a comprehensive archive of learning resources that detail the functionality, level of learning difficulty, and cost of learning different applications. Foundationally, most professionals are well-versed in video editing software such as Premiere Pro and Final Cut Pro. If you are already established in the field and looking to gain a competitive edge in the job market, consider learning more about motion graphics software like After Effects or 3D animation and modeling through Cinema 4D

As you explore these sophisticated visual graphics programs, you will likely recognize that learning these intricate programs on your own can be a lonely and complicated process. Luckily, Noble Desktop offers live online and in-person courses for video editors at all stages of their careers. For example, professionals ready to dive into the video editing field may want to enroll in a Premiere Pro Bootcamp or After Effects in a Day course. These fast-paced classes are an excellent way to rapidly build your video editing skills with the guidance of an experienced instructor. Video Editors looking to diversify their portfolios and demonstrate their skills to potential employers can pursue a Video Editing Certificate or a Video Editing and Motion Graphics Certificate. Students gain robust hands-on experience through small class sizes and project-based learning opportunities. Noble Desktop even offers a free retake option so students can refresh their skills and maximize their retention within a year of their class.