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Wish: light desk for working with clip parts

User avatar TheDiveO
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This is an idea that I would like to discuss with others for its feasibility, and maybe improvement of Kdenlive. I hope that my idea makes sense after all.

As some may have already noticed, I'm mainly working on hobby video projects about diving and recently also aerial filming. My raw footage usually consists of a lot of short raw clips (ranging from 30 seconds up to a few minutes) as well as some clips in the range of around 8 to 10 minutes (that's the aerial stuff).

clip sifting: ranking and tagging

So after adding the raw clips to my project I next need to sift through them. In my case, sifting means to decide on whether a particular clip contains interesting footage or not. When looking at photo organizing apps we can typically find sort of a tagging and ranking system (5 stars). I would like to see something getting introduced to Kdenlive as it would make my life easier. What do others think?

In addition to the ranking, tagging would be helpful. Kdenlive already has the ability to annotate a clip with a short text and to search for it. However, tagging is different in that it inherently treats text as tags and thus doesn't simply do a straight text search for identify of the whole string. Instead, tagging searches for the individual tags.

clip light desk

Kdenlive allows only for organizing clips into folders and then sorted by name. At least that is how I understood it. There is one additional level of hierarchy though: parts of a clip, such as a scene out of multiple scenes.

And this is where I constantly hit a bug as well as I would really see an improved user interface to make working with clip parts (scenes) more comfortable.

First, the bug that I'm still seeing in the latest svn bleeding edge Ubuntu ppa: I can only add four to five clip parts until Kdenlive refuses to remember any more clip part. Sometimes it's less than four, sometimes I can't even add a single clip part below a clip.

Second, the strict hierarchy shown in Kdenlive's project view doesn't make sense to me: the clip parts are never shot in the order they will be mounted in the project. Worse, often parts (scenes) of a single clip will end up at opposite ends of the final video, as they fit into an overall story.

For sifting photos, many apps offer some kind of light desk, where you can place your photos for sifting and arrange them as you need to. For instance, Digikam has this.

Of course, we have the timeline ... and I'm currently resorting to it in many cases. However, the timeline is strictly one dimensional. In contrast, a light desk is two dimensional and thus offers much better view on the scenes you want to arrange next on the time line. It also serves as kind of a clip board for useful scenes that you cannot work on at this moment but which you don't want to forget.

So my suggestion is: let us lift this idea for a particular workflow and apply it to Kdenlive for the benefit of those users that have a similar workflow to mine, as described above. Of course, if I'm totally off the norm here, I may better change my workflow ... so what do you think?

summary

To sum up my rather long post:
  • clip ranking system, such as 0 to 5 stars.
  • tagging system for clips.
  • ability to sort and filter clips according to meta data, such as ranking and tags
  • light desk for sifting through clip parts/scenes, instead of misusing the timeline for this.


TheDiveO on YouTube: diving videos and aerial (quadcopter) videos, all made with Kdenlive.
TheDiveO Blog: know-how about Protune-grading in Kdenlive, GoPro HD Hero 3, DJI Phantom Quadcopter, full face mask diving, and some more...
User avatar sammuirhead
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The logging, filtering and sorting workflow of Kdenlive could definitely use some improvement - my timelines are always a mess with original synch sequences, bunches of selected b-roll, and rough cuts all duplicated, grouped and shoved down the end of the timeline in case I need to grab anything from them later. Sometimes it creates 2-hour timelines for 3-minute videos...

In the Project Tree, I use the 'description' field to add notes, and group my clips into folders according to subject matter so I can find them more easily later. It would be great to be able to just text search instead! As far as ranking goes, I currently use my own system of starting the clip 'description' with a 0 (useless, delete), 1 (not particularly good), 2 (okay) or 3 (great). But as you point out, I can't filter out the 0s or 1s in the Project Tree.

Any suggestions for better workflows within Kdenlive's current possibilities would be great!

On a somewhat related note, having multiple timelines within a project (http://www.kdenlive.org/mantis/view.php?id=718) would not give a you the full 'light desk' functionality you're looking for, but at least would allow for having separate workspaces for separate tasks, which can help keep on top of things a little better.


User avatar TheDiveO
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Thanks for your feedback! While not to this extreme, still, what you describe is very similar to how my timeline looks during its early stages of any new project. I will probably adopt your idea with the leading digit, so far, I've used ++, +, - but that isn't as convenient as your digits. I'm also heavily relying on folders ... but rather for sorting aerial footage from underwater footage, and for organizing footage then into places or days.

I thought about subfolders ... but they wouldn't help, as folders can offer only a single hierarchy. Tags are much better. Hierarchical tags are heaven ... I've worked with them in TiddlyWiki and the tiddly tagging extension, which is simply great.

I don't thnik that multiple timelines will be of much help, but maybe they are like a dirty gem that will only shine after cleaning it and working with it. The timeline is still purely sequential as it is a time *line*. We're currently devoting the track dimension for sorting ... that doesn't really work out.


TheDiveO on YouTube: diving videos and aerial (quadcopter) videos, all made with Kdenlive.
TheDiveO Blog: know-how about Protune-grading in Kdenlive, GoPro HD Hero 3, DJI Phantom Quadcopter, full face mask diving, and some more...
normcross
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@TheDiveO

You mentioned in your first post that cutting clip parts stops working, so as I have the same version as you I tried it out. If you mean selecting sections of the clip using the 'I' and 'O' keys, you're right, it does stop working after a few cuts. Although using the square brackets it still works.

To prevent too much clutter on the timeline I use sub-clips. I work my way through a clip from the beginning and select a section I might use and drag it to the Project Tree not the timeline. They get stacked neatly under the main clip one after the other.

It's nowhere as good as your suggestions but it does help.
User avatar TheDiveO
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Yes, I'm selecting sections using the I and O shortcuts, then use Ctrl-I to add the snippet to the project tree. The Ctrl-I usually works for only a few snippets. The problem with the square brackets is that on a German keyboard you cannot easily produce them, you need two hands or need to stretch your fingers quite a bit.

What I don't understand: why does snippet selection using I and O work, but Ctrl-I stops working. And why does it work for the square brackets keyboard shortcuts? Really strange...


TheDiveO on YouTube: diving videos and aerial (quadcopter) videos, all made with Kdenlive.
TheDiveO Blog: know-how about Protune-grading in Kdenlive, GoPro HD Hero 3, DJI Phantom Quadcopter, full face mask diving, and some more...
User avatar GlennJerome
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I wholeheartedly support this wish! I am not going back to MS Windows or Vegas Pro. KDEnlive and FFMPEG are my video processing tools of choice now.

Clip logging and organization is burdensome. I don't think any NLE program I've used tackles these jobs with any sort of efficiency. I don't think KDEnlive is alone. After weeks searching and procrastinating I've decided to use a spreadsheet for all of my clip logging and organization. That said KDEnlive is the best raw footage reviewing, transport and marking engine I've discovered to date.

I add all my clips to a single KDEnlive Project. I use the Clip Monitor to quickly mark takes I'm interested with the *. I've designated E and A as shortcut keys for editing and adding markers. I use the ALT LEFT & RIGHT ARROW keys to quickly move between takes. I use the J, K, L keys to shuttle between takes to fine tune IN and OUT markers. In the edit marker dialog I use A to denote an IN marker and B for an OUT marker. A short tag for describing the clip. I set a category to color code the in the clip's timeline.

I used Tape Logging in Excel as a guide for setting up my Google Drive spreadsheet. I'm in the process of transferring my clip makers time points into a spreadsheet I've designed. My column headings are

Code: Select all
Filename    |<   >|   Axis   Q   C   G   Master Comment   Log Note   Tags


They're kind of self-explanatory those that aren't Axis, Q, C, G. Axis is a 2D code I used to log where I was a given space. Q is for quality of the take, q0-9. C is for content where rate my interest in in clip c0-9. G for the cateGory I marked the clip in KDEnlive g0-4. M. My workflow goal is once I've created my master project I'll just save it as new for sub projects.

I'm now going through my project, copying and pasting IN and OUT time point into this new master clip log. I can already see the benefits for type documentary style live event filmmaking that I do. There are literally hundreds of great moments in the footage that can be excerpted into clips and can be combined into multiple stories. I'm also moved to dual stream audio capture to my technique. Which adds clip matching to the mix.

I've shared all of this because I think this is a great topic. And I wanted to help other KDEnlive content makers with this burdensome task. Hopefully KDEnlive developers will review our suggestions and then into new releases. The more we talk about our individual clip logging and organization systems and processes the more like we are to see them feature in future releases.

 
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