Skip to main content

Advanced Editing Techniques: Take Command Of Your Timeline

Lesson 57 from: Adobe Premiere Pro CC Video Editing: The Complete Guide

Abba Shapiro

Advanced Editing Techniques: Take Command Of Your Timeline

Lesson 57 from: Adobe Premiere Pro CC Video Editing: The Complete Guide

Abba Shapiro

buy this class


Sale Ends Soon!

starting under


Unlock this classplus 2200+ more >

Lesson Info

57. Advanced Editing Techniques: Take Command Of Your Timeline

Summary (Generated from Transcript)

The topic of this lesson is advanced editing techniques in Adobe Premiere Pro CC, focusing on keyboard shortcuts, preference hacks, sub clipping, customizing the interface, and using color mattes.


  1. What are some advanced editing techniques discussed in this lesson?

    • The instructor discusses keyboard shortcuts for quickly selecting different panels in the interface, making the timeline the active window, and toggling between full screen and active panels.
    • He also talks about preference hacks, such as changing preferences to make the application work smoother, and using sub clipping to break down large clips into smaller, more manageable pieces.
  2. How can you quickly access recent clips in the source monitor?

    By clicking on the drop-down window in the source monitor, you can see a list of all the recent clips that have been loaded. You can then scroll through this list to quickly load a clip without having to go back to the project panel.

  3. How can you customize the interface in Premiere Pro?

    You can customize the interface by adding or removing buttons on the transport control panel. By clicking on the plus sign at the far right of the panel, you can see a list of additional buttons that can be added. You can also remove buttons by dragging and dropping them off the panel.

  4. What is a color matte and how can it be useful in editing?

    A color matte is a solid-colored clip that can be used to fill in empty space in the timeline. By creating a color matte and placing it underneath other clips, you can create a more visually appealing composition and hide any empty areas. Color mattes can be customized to any color and size.

  5. How can you use the match frame function in Premiere Pro?

    The match frame function, accessed by pressing the F key, allows you to load a clip from the project bin into the source monitor with the same in and out points as the clip in the timeline. This is useful for quickly finding and accessing specific parts of a clip without affecting the clip in the timeline.


Class Trailer

Understanding Editing: Bootcamp Overview


Understanding Editing: Overview


Understanding Editing: Video Examples


Tour The Interface: Digital Video Workflow


Tour The Interface: Project Panel


Tour The Interface: Choosing Your Shot


Tour The Interface: Music And Voice Over


Tour The Interface: Video Tracks


Tour The Interface: Edit Markers


Building a Rough Cut: Cut Planning


Building a Rough Cut: Selecting Media


Building a Rough Cut: The Edit


Building a Rough Cut: Edit Points


Refining Your Edit: Preparation


Refining Your Edit: Making Cuts


Refining Your Edit: Using Markers


Refining Your Edit: J and L Cuts


Refining Your Edit: Replace Edit


Working with Audio: Overview


Working with Audio: Levels


Working with Audio: Music


Working with Audio: Mixing And Syncing


Transitions: Overview


Transitions: Effect Controls


Filters & Effects: Overview


Filters & Effects: Using Multiple Filters


Motion & Animation: Motion And Animation Overview


Motion & Animation: Movement With Still Images


Motion & Animation: Picture In Picture


Motion & Animation: Motion Effects


Titling & Graphics: Overview


Titling & Graphics: Advanced Tools


Titling & Graphics: Roll And Crawl Effects


Titling & Graphics: Working With Photoshop


Speed Changes: Overview


Speed Changes: Stills And Variable Speeds


Color Correction: Overview


Color Correction: Lumetri Scopes


Color Correction: Contrast


Color Correction: Advanced Tools


Color Correction: Adjusting To A Master Clip


Finishing: Prepping for Output


Finishing: QC Edit Points


Sharing & Exporting: Overview


Sharing & Exporting: Size And Quality


Ingesting Media:


Ingesting Media: Transferring And Importing


Media Management & Archiving


Multi-Camera Editing: Overview


Multi-Camera Editing: Creating A Sequence


Multi-Camera Editing: Switching Multiple Cameras


Multi-Camera Editing: Finalizing


Creating Timelapses: Shooting Strategies


Creating Timelapses: Editing Images


Creating Timelapses: Importing Strategies


Creating Timelapses: Animation


Advanced Editing Techniques: Take Command Of Your Timeline


Advanced Editing Techniques: Transitions


Advanced Editing Techniques: Keyboard Shortcuts


Advanced Editing Techniques: Preference Hacks


Thinking Like an Editor: Editing Choices


Thinking Like an Editor: Telling the Story


Special Tools: Warp Stabilizer


Special Tools: Morph Cut


Special Tools: Green Screen


Lesson Info

Advanced Editing Techniques: Take Command Of Your Timeline

We're gonna do some kind of fun stuff here. It's a different flavor of fun. It's not like, it is trimming. It's not like time-lapse or the multi-camera. It's all techniques that you can use. Tricks and techniques to allow you to edit faster, more efficiently. Things that you might not necessarily find out on your own when you first start working Premiere. But these are the shortcuts that I like to use to allow me to edit faster and smarter. So I can spend more time being creative and less time moving my mouse and crunching things. So this is how I kind of break it down, but it's just a lot of tips and tricks. Taking Command of Your Timeline. Being able to really control the interface, being able to modify that. Some of my favorite keyboard shortcuts I've been giving you a lot throughout the course. Some of these I'll repeat, but a lot of them are variations or enhancements to the ones I've already given you. It kind of takes it to the next step. Preference Hacks, I called it preference...

hacks. That's like a buzz word. You know Cooking Hacks, Preference Hacks, bla, bla, bla. I didn't know how to label it, so I called it a hack. I am hack maybe. These are just preference changes. A few of them I find that makes the application work a little smoother for the way I like to do it. There's lots of preferences you can change, but there are a handful I think that really kind of make a difference. Then we'll talk about sub clipping. It's one of those things that when you're working with an interview or a large piece of media and you want to break it down to work with it later. You can organize a long clip into smaller clips that are more digestible and easier to organize. So we'll look at that and have some fun. You'll ask some questions. So, let's hop in. I'm taking a partial edit that we built of the interview between Mike and myself. I just want to get started and show you some of my shortcuts and things tend to go to sleep. We talked about the fact earlier that you can click on any one of these quadrants to make it active. But there's times I want to jump to a quadrant without actually having to grab my mouse and it can be very useful. So, the shift key numerical values of 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, and 1-4 we'll use initially, allow me to quickly select the different panels. The way you can remember them is what's the first thing you do? You probably go into your project panel, pick something. You bring it into your source monitor, one two. You take it from your source monitor, you throw it into there, three. And it shows up there, four. Watch what happens when I use my shift key with the numbers 1-4 at the top of my keyboard. One, starts me at the first window. Two, activates the second, you see the blue area. Three and Four, so it brings it up there. And what's nice about this is I can jump to any window I want, I just hit Shift + 2. That's great if I just want to hit play so I don't want to have to go and click on the window and hit the spacebar. I go Shift + 2 + Spacebar, Shift + 4 + Spacebar. Can go to that window. There's a lot of benefits in being able to do this without using your mouse or your trackpad. For instance, there's times I want to make my timeline the active window. So I would, if I'm using my mouse, I click on it. And you'll discover this if you haven't used Premiere, when you start using it. Or if you are using it, you say, "I want to make this window active." You click on it and the first that happens is you move your playhead to a new location when you're activating that window. Which isn't what you wanted to do. If I can do that via a keyboard shortcut such as Shift + 3, the window is now active. I can go ahead an mark and endpoint. I don't have to worry that I moved the play back. Had to caulk it separately-- So being able to do that is a lot more efficient sometimes than clicking. The other thing that we learned is that wherever the playhead is parked, if I hit the tilda key, that becomes full screen. I can also use the shift key when I do that. If I go Shift + Tilda, look how it works differently. Instead of where my mouse is, it will actually enlarge whatever panel is the active one. So if I want to make a panel bigger without even touching my mouse. Let's say I want to go full screen there, I can go ahead and hit Shift + 4 and Shift + Tilda, and now it's full screen without me having to move my mouse. And it's little things. Yeah, I still click all over the place and do stuff. But there's times when I get used to this rhythm and I can just quickly chose my active window, bring it full screen, and start working without have to-- Again, every time you save yourself a few clicks, imagine that hundreds of clicks a day, five days a week, a full year how much you save. Shaving a little bit over a year, really does help. So, we're going to kind of expand upon that. I'll tell Dave to bring that small again. Another technique that we talked about was the speed changes. We talked about that through a lot of the lessons. And we've been right clicking to do that. We've been right clicking and selecting speed. But there is a keyboard shortcut that I like. It is Command + R on a Mac, it's Control + R on Windows. All you need to do is select the clip and if I hit the Command + R with the clip selected, it automatically brings up that speed selection dialogue box. So again, I'm working through. I see the clip that I want to modify. I don't need to go right click, figure out where it is. I can get to it. Now, here's the thing about keyboard shortcuts. I'm giving you my favorites. And hopefully these will be helpful. But if you never do speed changes, you never need the keyboard shortcut, so don't worry that you need to memorize it. Okay, these are just things that over the years I found that they've been beneficial to me in saving a lot of time. While we're in the time limit, let's go ahead and look at some of the other ones that I like. So I don't forget it, I'm referring to my notes here. 'Cause I get excited and go, "Ah, I completely forgot about my favorite one." There's another really interesting thing that I discovered, and friends of mine near me know about, is that we've been loading clips into our source monitor and making decisions with them. But what a lot of people don't realize is when you've loaded clips into this monitor, in this drop down window is a list of all the recent clips that you loaded. Where this becomes valuable is, let's say you're going back and forth between two or three of the same clips, you don't have to keep going down to your project and clicking to load them in. You can just scroll down here and say, "I need to go back to camera 3" and it loads it in. "I need to go back to camera 1" and it loads it in. Find that really useful? Yes, right? Let's make it even a little more useful. Remember that keyboard shortcut to make that window active? It's the second window, right, so it's Shift + 2. If I'm already in that window and I hit Shift + 2, it toggles me between all the clips on that list. So I don't even have to drop down the window. Shift + 2, first time, if it's not selected, will select that panel. And each subsequent time you click on it, when the panel's selected, will scroll through anything on that list of your recent clips. Which, by the way, if you chose, you can go ahead and hit close all and it will, actually, close all of these in the background and let you start building a list fresh as you load more clips in. Sometimes, again here's another cheat. So let's go ahead and hit close all. If you notice, now there's nothing in there. There's no history. But I'm going to go down here and I'm going to say, "You know what, I'm going to use all five of these cameras." I'm going to click on the first one. I'll click on this one. I'm literally dragging all of them into my source window. We only see one, there's all five. I can now toggle between them. So if I know I'm going to use a bunch of clips, I don't even have to load them one at a time. Bring them all in, Shift + 2, can toggle between them, mark my in and out points, my timeline. It always puts an new endpoint after a new edit. Sitting there going toggle, toggle, period, period, period, insert. I can very quickly slug together a sequence of shots that I can then refine once I get into my timeline. Pretty cool stuff, huh? Okay, so cheers and 'rahs are good. This is some of my favorite stuff. Feel free, by the way, to ask for enhancements on any of this stuff. So those are the recent source clips. Another area I want to point out that you can customize your interface is with these buttons. These are our transport buttons. You can actually modify what buttons you see. There's a lot more buttons available. You can also chose to have less or even turn them off if you want extra real estate. So the first thing is if you hit this little plus sign. Let me go ahead and close again so you can see that happen. I'm going to hit cancel. If you hit the plus sign at the far right, by the way their source and your program are individually controlled so you can individual controls on those. And there's some different buttons available on each side. But if I click on that, you can see there's a lot more buttons that are available that you don't see. Some of these are really useful. For instance, earlier on we did the multi-cam. Instead of going to the drop down to toggle multi-cam on and off, to see those additional frames, I can take and drag that down here and make that into a button that I can toggle on and off. And there's lots of stuff you can do. Toggling, whether you're gonna use the proxies or the original clips. We learned how to make proxies and you can tell it to say, "Okay, use the proxies now". Because it's going to put less demand on the system, I might get smoother playback. So if you're finding you're doing that and you don't want to assign a keyboard shortcut, you go ahead and you can make a button. Here's another button that's very useful. And that is the safe margins. We saw that when we did titles. So maybe what I want to do, I want the safe margin button down here. You know what, I'm marking my in and out points. I don't really need that. I should be able to go ahead and remove that. I can bring things, I can't bring things out. I kind of blanked on removing. There should be a trick to this. What you add you should be able to take away. Let me hit OK and come back to that in a second. So here are my buttons. That's my multi-cam. There's a marker button. There's my title save, let me turn off multi-cam. So I click this and I can see what is action safe and title safe. I wasn't able to remove this. I want to make sure I can remove these, if I recall correctly. The joy of live. I believe that was dragging and dropping them off. It worked that time so I guess I just wasn't patient. You can just drag and drop them off. You can see they do go away. Now I close it, now only these buttons are available. And I can hit reset if I want to go back to the default buttons. If you don't want to see any of these transport buttons, if you go under the wrench, you can control sometimes how your source and how your program monitors perform. So we saw here, with playback resolution, that you could switch that if you have very demanding video. And you'll notice in some cases that you'll see some are grayed out. Why can't I do 1/8th, why can't I do 1/16th? That is based upon the resolution of your sequence. Unless you're doing 4K or really high definition, ultra-high definition video, it's not an option because it's not necessary. It's actually probably more work to go down to fewer frames. Okay so that's why that's not available in this format. But if you go to a different sequence setting, those may be available. And the other thing, I usually do not change this, is my paused resolution. Even if I have my playback at 1/4 or 1/2 resolution, when I pause, or stop, on a frame, it will always be full. And generally I don't change that because you're not putting a demand on the system. But I point it out because if you accidentally do change it and when you're working and every time you stop you're like, "Why is my image so soft?" Now you know I probably flicked that button by accident instead of my playback resolution. So things to keep in mind. I went down here because I wanted to show you this check box which is an able transmit. Basically what that means if I turn that off, that should have turned off. My transmit controls, right there. Transmit is something else to do with exporting with third party black boxes. But transport controls, if you don't want them, you can go ahead and turn them off. You're buying yourself a little more real estate because you're using keyboard shortcuts. So these are things you can easily customize. It's never going to break the computer. You can always reset things. You can see there's a whole slew of things you can turn on and off. I'm not going to go through all of them. I want you to be aware this is something that occasionally is turned on and could be annoying if you don't know that you turned it on. As soon as you get to the end, it loops back to the beginning. It cycles through which is helpful. Sometimes you don't want that. Sometimes you just want to play from the beginning to the end and have it stop. So these are just some of the little annoying things that you can change. Go ahead as you're editing, when you see a wrench, click on it and see what the options are. See how you might be able to modify the interface to better suit the way you work. Whether your buttons or clicks or maybe you've accidentally turned something on. Just be careful if you turn something on, try to remember. I'll show you a huge benefit as well as a huge gotcha. There is actually editing using audio time units. I'm going to change that. I want you to see what happened here we're now editing hours, minutes, seconds, thousandths of a frame. We're editing audio by the sample rate. So if I go down, I can click on my audio and I'm going to zoom in to an incredibly detailed level. I'm gonna hit V here. So this is down to the sample rate if I need to really get small. That's great when you're doing really fine-tune editing. Here's the problem, you've done that. I'm zooming back out again. I'm ready to do some editing. I'm going to go ahead and hit shift plus to see this bigger. And I'm moving it, my left and right arrow keys allow me to move one frame at a time. I'm moving it and it doesn't appear to be moving because I'm moving at a thousandths of a second at a time. I'm going, "Why am I doing this." As you can see, this number is moving-- 32,627; 32, This is like the end of Beetlejuice, what number are you. If you're finding that those arrows don't seem to be working, check to see if you see lots of numbers here. And that means you've switched to work by audio units. Make sure you go ahead and uncheck audio time units. That could happen to you also in your source monitor. As a matter of fact, a lot of times people flick that on. When you make a new sequence, it's one of the preferences you can change that I told you not to touch. You can always switch it back. But that's one of those gotchas that I really like to point out to people so they don't get into trouble. We turn that off, we have our overlays. There's keyboard shortcuts for everything, but I find those very useful. Let's look at something else here in our timeline. I'm going to go ahead and make it a little bigger. Make my interface a little bit bigger. I'm gonna grab over here, and I've done this but I haven't really shown you this because the interface is kind of dark. I can scroll a lot of detail down here. And there's also how much space I have between my audio and my video clips. It's just some controls here. I generally keep my screen dark. Sometimes when I instruct, I'll go and switch over to my preferences. Under appearance you can actually control how light or dark the interface is. So if you're finding it a little difficult to see some of the interface, especially if you're getting used to it, you might want to make it brighter initially. The reason they make it dark is so you don't have eye fatigue after staring at your computer all day. Again, you can modify how bright or how dark some elements such as the controls and focus indicators is what we're looking at, what we're highlighting. So I'm going to go ahead and cancel. I don't want to change that because I think that this is more comfortable for our audience and yourselves. That's something I've been moving and I want to keep that in mind. Again, shift plus and minus and a lot of people forget there is a shift modifier on both sides of their keyboard. So I see them editing and they want to hit shift plus and they're down here with the shift and they're up here with the plus. I guess from your view it's shift and plus. There's shift down here so I don't have to do this long stretch. I can use the shift on both sides. Matter of fact, there's a shift and an option and a command on both sides of my keyboard so I can do a lot of this without having to do that really long hand stretch. Now, I have a lot of these images here that we're cutting away to and a lot of these aren't the right aspect ratio. I've already done a set to frame size to make sure they fit. I actually want them to be full screen and I don't mind that they're not the right aspect ratio. But the problem I have is I put it on top as B roll above the interview between Mike and myself. If I have empty area here, it's not really black. It looked black when we were playing with it because it was on the bottom layer. There was nothing below it. I put this on the layer above, so you really just seeing what's behind this clip and that's a little problematic. It's an easy fix. All we need to do is put a nice piece of black video or a black still underneath between the interview and this or whatever color I want, and that's what we'll see as a viewer. So what I need to do, and I'm gonna hit the backslash key so we see my entire sequence. I want to move all of these up. I don't want to do it manually. I don't want to click and drag each one up. What I want to do is I want to grab them all. I can either lasso them and do it that way, probably the easiest thing to do. Now to move it up, even if there's not a track there, instead of dragging them, I want to make sure that I don't accidentally move them left to right. If you hold the Option key or the Alt key in windows and use the up arrow, I can move whatever clip I select, or in this case all of the clips, up and down in my time line. Now I have this nice, open space. I'm gonna go ahead and under the New menu, where we learned you can make a new sequence or an adjustment layer. I can also make a new item, where's my pop up? There we go. If I just need a color, I can just make a color matte if I want a generic color. It will create a dialogue box that says what size, the default size just like the title, and the adjustment layer is exactly the size of my sequence. I hit OK. It asks me to pick some colors. I go ahead, if I want it just to be black I go there. But I could pick any color, pick any color, well something nice and blue, we'll hit OK. And now, I'm going to name that blue color matte, blue matte. And inside my browser is my blue matte. There it is, woop, don't need to double click it. Opens it up. If I want to load it into the swiss monitor, I could just drag it, but obviously that's not necessary. I'm gonna drag it down here. I want to make it nice and long. Drag it across, and now behind my picture is something more appropriate than seeing us talking and I'm not hiding my cut. So if I want to change that color, I can double click on it bring it to black. Now we're good to go. So that's really kind of nice. Let me go ahead and turn off this overlay because we're not using safe margins now. This is a nice little trick, nice little technique. We talked a little bit about the match frame. So if I'm working and I wanna click on this and load this in, I could hit the F Key. That's gonna load a version of the clip from the browser in here and actually position the playhead exactly where it was. Remember, by hitting F, it's really the clip from here. So I could use, I could bring this in from somewhere else and it doesn't affect the clip in the timeline. Double clicking the clip in the timeline loads that clip in and you're modifying the clip that your working with. F loads in the same exact clip, from the project bin, with the in and out points. But it's a new instance so I could drag it somewhere else. Or maybe I want to be able to say, "Oh yeah, I want to find the next sound byte "that he did after that." So I can go ahead. It allows me to very easily find something, especially if I'm drilling down into four or five layers of a folder.

Class Materials

Bonus Materials with Purchase

Abba Shapiro's Work File Information
Building a Rough Cut - Project Files
Refining Your Edit - Project File
Working with Audio Project File
Motion Effects - Project Files
Titling and Graphics - Project Files
Speed Changes - Project Files
Color Correction - Project Files
Finishing - Project Files
Multi-Camera Editing - Project Files (Large Download - 3.25GB)
Creating Timelapses - Project Files (Large Download - 1.25GB)
Thinking Like An Editor - Project Files
Special Tools - Project Files

Ratings and Reviews

a Creativelive Student

I've never even tried video editing before this class. I opened the program once and panicked. After only 9 lessons I was able to throw a short video together (basic of course, but still pretty cool). I wish all of my teachers growing up were just like Abba. He goes over everything without dragging anything on for too long. He repeats things just enough for me to actually remember them, and he is funny. He keeps it fun and shows that even he makes mistakes. I can't even believe how much I have learned in less than a quarter of his class. I have a long way to go and am very excited to learn more. This class is worth every penny and more! I was hesitant on buying the class because I have CS6 and he works with CC, but I have already used what I've learned in his course to create a video. The first 9 lessons were already worth what I paid for the entire course. Thank you, Abba! You are an awesome teacher! You have me absolutely obsessed with creating right now! I highly recommend! You won't find this thorough of a course for this decent price!

Patricia Downey

Just bought this yesterday and cannot stop watching!!!! What a FANTASTIC teacher-- just love the way he explains everything. For someone like me (who has a zillion questions) it is perfect. As soon as he introduces a feature, he explains several aspects in such a way that's easy to grasp and remember. So, so happy I got this. Thank you Abba and CreativeLive!

a Creativelive Student

I am only on lesson 19 and I am so glad I bought this class, so worth it and Abba packs so much information into these lessons its crazy. I will for sure have to come back and watch again when I need to remember to do stuff or need a refresher. He is funny and quirky and a great teacher. I so recommend this to anyone wanting to become a better video editor!! I am coming from being self taught and using iMovie and he makes it so simple and understandable. Can't wait to learn more :)

Student Work