Final Cut Pro: 4 Tips for Arranging Clips in the Timeline

When you want to sequence a series of clips, then Final Cut Pro timeline is the best way of doing this without making too many mistakes. The clips can be arranged in this area so that you can create a storyline, rather than have to be slotted together unevenly. In order to place the clips in the timeline, you have to know how each part works, and how you can get the clips together so that they look fantastic. Understanding how the timeline manages arrangement of clips will help you to use this tool to the best of your ability.

1. Take the Clip to the Canvas

The clip that you want to use will need to go into the canvas window. The canvas window creates a number of buttons as you pull the clip over it, and each of these buttons allows you to edit the clip. As you move the mouse button over the canvas, you will be offered a number of edits, such as Insert or Overwrite. Move the mouse to the button you wish, and release the clip.

2. Insert the Clip into the Timeline

When you are taking a clip over to the timeline, you are creating an edit function which will alter the position of other clips in the window. In order to get the best start, put in your first clip, take a clip that needs to go into the middle, and insert it by dragging and dropping. The insert edit will allow you to move over the frames of the clip so that the new addition pushes them aside, rather than being placed on top of them. When you first take your clip over to the timeline, your software will assume that you wish to insert it into the clip, so you will have to move the pointer up and down until it becomes a downward pointing arrow, which indicates that you will be overwriting the clip.

3. Move the Playhead to Edit

This is the most important part of editing in the timeline function. Move the playhead over the timeline until it gets to the point where you want to insert the new clip. Pick up your clip from the viewer or browser window, and place it into the timeline just above the gray line. This is the Insert/Overwrite line, and it is important to get the clip on the right side of the line if you want to get the right look for your film.

4. Use with Reduced View

One of the settings in your timeline places the clips on a reduced view edit. With this, you will no be able to edit the clip by dragging it directly to the timeline, as the line will not be visible. Instead, you will only get an overwrite edit by dragging the clip there. You can make this function into an insert by pressing down the option button as you drag the clip through the timeline. This will create an insert feature.

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