Music often times guides our edits. Putting a series of cuts on to the beat of a song is a great way to bring the piece to life. Often times though, this can be a time-consuming process. For one minute of footage, it might take up 100 or greater cuts. This is where Premiere Pro comes in to save the day. With the simple technique I am going to describe, you can get Premiere to make the edits for you. It will grab all of your footage, and put them onto the timeline on to the beats, making all of the cuts you need. From there you can then tweak it to how you like. Let’s get started.
How to Quickly Edit Footage to a Beat in Premiere Pro CC (2018)
Where Do I Start?
- Begin with a new Sequence with the appropriate settings for your footage.
- Find an audio clip you want to edit with. Drag that on to the timeline.
- Make sure your markers are set to a keyboard shortcut that is easy to use. I have mine set to the M key.
- If yours’s is not set to this key. Go up to edit->keyboard shortcuts. Go down to the search bar, and search for “Add Marker”. Move over to the keyboard shortcut area and assign it a keyboard shortcut that works for you.
- Make sure you only have the sequence selected. So we don’t want to have any clip selected, just the timeline as a whole.
- Now playback the song. On every beat click our “Add Marker” keyboard shortcut. Use whichever beat within the song that you want to use.
- Go over to your footage. Go through each clip and create start and end points on them.
- To do this, click on the clip, then go up to the preview monitor. Find a place you would like the clip to begin, click “I” on your keyboard. Find the place you would like it to end and click the “O” key on your keyboard. This will create start and end points. (Note these are default keyboard shortcuts. If yours’s are different, use the method described above to change them, or use the buttons below the timeline scrubber)
- Now, once all clips have start and end points, select all the clips you want to bring in to the timeline. The selection process is important. Whatever order you select the clips, is the order they will be inserted to your timeline.
- Make sure the cursor on the timeline is before the markers you created. Go up to Clip->Automate to Sequence.
- In the dialogue that appears, change the ordering to “Selection Order” and the Placement to “At Unnumbered Markers”. Click OK.
- Your footage has now been added in to your timeline along the beat!
That is how you do it. It’s a pretty simple to do, and can save you hours of editing. Now that everything is set up. You can just fine tune it and tweak it to what you want. Let me know if you have any questions or time saving tips you use in the comments below!