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Why might I want to edit my videos?
When you go on vacation or have a significant family event, you tend to shoot a lot of video. While it may be great to see those great moments again, there are probably a lot of shots in there you don't care about.

This is where video editing comes in. While you probably enjoy watching all those videos, there are times when it would be nice to get to the point a little faster. You do this by editing.

If you've watched any amount of TV or movies, you probably have noticed (or not noticed - which is the best way) that the program flows along without a lot of extra stuff in between the various scenes. We don't see things in real time (though shows like "24" can be the exception). Things like travel time to a location, building a complicated machine, an elevator ride or eating a full meal are generally shortened down to speed things up. We don't have to see someone pay for a cab to know it was done. When a car enters a parking ramp, we don't have to see it drive all the way up to the top level - it's assumed that it happened. Finally, we don't have to see the entire game to know what happened - highlights will give us the biggest plays.

This is what editing is all about: eliminating the extra stuff to make the show flow more smoothly. Even so-called "real time" shows like "24" are edited. For one thing, there may be multiple takes of the same scene (sometimes things don't go right the first time). Also, you may have multiple camera angles that must be combined. Finally, plots happening at other locations must be intercut with the main action to fill in those gaps when things slow down.

You can do all this yourself by editing your own videos. For example, you may have 5 minutes of video of your child trying to walk before succeeding. This may not seem long, but watch a clock for 5 minutes and note how dull it can be. Of course, you'll want to keep all that camcorder footage, but creating a shorter version that others will enjoy makes your videos more appealing.

For our above example, we might want to only take the last 30 seconds of trying to walk before success occurs. Another idea might be a short montage of shots of your child stumbling or falling before finally succeeding. Showing the short successful walk in slow motion with triumphant music playing the background might be a way to cap the whole scene off.

Finally, when you edit your footage, you can add titles, combine several events into one video or add naration or music.

You can do all of this when you edit your videos. Check out the other topics in Video Editing section to learn how you can do it.

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