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A Guide to Video File Organization & Management

Thursday, October 6th, 2016 by | Filed Under: Digital Photography, File & Disk Management, Photo Editing

When it comes to video and film editing, not only is there a lot of storage space involved, there’s also dealing with everything that’s taking up that space. Creating a file organization method is paramount to the editing process. You can’t use something you can’t find. Here’s an easy way to get started.


Create a Project Folder

This one may seem like a no-brainer, but it might just be the most important step. Having all of the files and documents associated with a particular film or video in one place is not only how you find things easier, it’s how you make sure everything is still there.

When your files are all over your hard drive, not only are they hard to find, but it’s hard to tell if they are missing. Keeping your stuff organized is a great way to make sure that you don’t accidentally delete or misplace a file.

Folders Within Folders

Separating all of the different types of files you may have is not only to save you the headache of digging through them, but it’s also efficient. Here’s a simple folder structure that you can place into your project folder:

  • GFX
  • SFX
  • DOCS


Naming Your Files

A good rule of thumb to naming your files is knowing what it is before having to open it. Video files can be named by scene or date shot, maybe even both if that’s what you’re into. When you have multiple takes of the same scene, number them chronologically or by how you rate them against each other. A similar method can be used for any other file types you have.

When it comes to the finished project, it’s not always a good idea to label a file as your final version. You may have to edit it after the fact and that just won’t feel so great.

A good tip is to always name your files using hyphens instead of underscores. Not only does it subjectively look cleaner, but it is also objectively more web friendly.

Backing It All Up

Now for the most important part of the whole process. When it come to all of these valuable files, you absolutely have to back them up constantly and consistently. There is no feeling like the one you’ll have when you potentially lose everything through a freak accident.

Having an external hard drive is normally the way people do, but stuff can happen to that, too. If you like having one, then by all means, but another route can be to back up your files onto an online server.

Not only are these convenient and user-friendly, but they also offer a level of protection that your hard drive doesn’t have. Online backup servers feature military-grade encryption to protect your files from anyone and everyone but you. They also allow you to backup your files automatically. You can set when you want this to happen and never have to worry about it again.

~ Jiro

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