How To Become A Video Editor? (Best 2024 Career Guide)

How To Become A Video Editor

I bet you’ve seen tons of YouTube videos, right?

Have you seen how beautifully Hollywood movies are made?

Do you want to make videos that tell an underlying story?

How amazing would it be to have a career in creating visual stories with just a laptop and proper internet?

So, do you want to know how to become a video editor and make lots of money?

In today’s scenario with Netflix, HBO Max, Amazon Prime, etc, the demand for video editors is at an all-time high as a lot of film content is needed.

It is expected that the video editing profession will show a growth of 11 percent between 2018 to 2028, as stated by the Bureau of Labor and Statistics.

If you’re interested in learning more about video editing, ask yourself- “How can I learn to become a video editor?”

Here, we provide you with the best guide to becoming a video editor in a few simple steps.

So, follow along and keep reading to learn how to become a film or video editor.

What Does A Video Editor Do?

What Does A Video Editor Do?

Video editing is the task of combining the audio and video footage, music, sound effects, VFX, etc, to create the finalized product, which is the video itself.

Video editing is a skill that is used in many different types of video content, ranging from minor edits to big Hollywood or Netflix projects.

A video editor may have to go through tons of video footage from different cameras for hours on end just to create a 15-minute video.

Despite all the labor a video editor needs to put in, the best thing about this profession is it simply requires you a laptop and decent internet connectivity.

So, in short, the work of a video editor includes:

  • Editing video footage for movies, documentaries, sports events, TV shows, and news
  • Sorting and editing the footage through video editing software.
  • Working with a director to determine the final look of the video
  • Discussing and debating better editing techniques

What Skills Do You Need To Become A Video Editor?

Anyone can learn video editing.

“Can I become a video editor?” “Can I do it?”

It is not a difficult job to edit a 2 or 5-minute video.

But, professional video editing requires you to have some essential skills.

These skills will help you to elevate your professionalism in the field of video editing.

  • Have passion and drive for this profession, and nobody will be able to stop you from reaching great heights.
  • You should have good verbal communication skills. Verbally communicate with your team members, directors, producers, etc, to discuss your project.
  • Good computer skills are a must as you might be dealing with complicated video editing software as you progress.
  • Add some spice and creativity to your storytelling. People love to see aesthetic and creatively inspiring stories through video content.
  • Be meticulous. You should be able to pay attention to small details as video editors need to look at every frame of footage to include or cut bits of it.
  • Good optical vision. All great artists, creators, and video editors have a keen eye for the type of content worth filming and editing.
  • Experience is one of the most vital key elements to becoming a great video editor. Make your own projects, work under someone, and work in teams and groups.

How To Become A Video Editor Without A Degree?

How To Become A Video Editor Without A Degree?

Since video editing is not taught in schools or colleges, it means it’s not a conventional profession.

So, one must have this question in mind- “How do I become a video editor with no degree?”

What do you think?

Can you become a video editor without a degree?

The answer depends on whether you solely want to focus on video editing or other domains like Cinematography.

Most universities have degrees in Fine Arts, Film Production, and Cinematography.

But for simply learning video editing, you DO NOT need a degree.

There. There’s your answer.

You do not require any educational qualifications to become a video editor, even professionally.

There’s hardly any legitimate degree in video editing. Also, you do not need to go to school to learn how to become a video editor.

How To Get Into Video Editing?

You must have a lot of doubts regarding this profession such as “How can I become a video editor?”

This is an emerging and in-demand field now.

The upside is that there are a lot of resources available online- courses, boot camps, internships, team projects, etc.

The answer to “What are the ways I can be a video editor?” will be evaluated properly in this section.

1. Take A Formal Video Editing Course

Firstly, get yourself enrolled in a proper video editing beginner course.

You can simply go for an online course from platforms like Skillshare, Video Copilot, and Red Giant Tutorials.

Take an Online Video Editing Course

They are a much cheaper and less time-consuming alternative to professional degrees.

Make sure you opt for a reliable course that offers testimonials of their customers stating they’ve benefitted from the course.

Following are some of the video editing courses available online that you MUST check out:

2. Invest In A High-tech Laptop

No matter whether your laptop is Windows or Mac, there are some specifications your laptop must have.

A fast storage drive (SSD) and sufficient computer memory (RAM) of at least 8GB is a must.

Depending on your editing level, you can get the desired video card and processor for your video editing software.

You could also try setting up a dual monitor setup which is better to edit, organize, and sort out huge amounts of video footage.

3. Follow the 3-2-1 Rule

3-2-1 Rule in Video Editing
Security Boulevard

According to the 3-2-1 rule, one should maintain 3 copies of every video, in 2 different locations at least, and these locations should be spread apart from each other.

4. Portray A Story Through Videos

The purpose of creating a video film is to tell a story.

The dilemma is not “How do you become a video editor?” but rather “How do you become a storyteller?”.

Learn editing in such a way that people find it aesthetically pleasing.

Hop on to the latest trends and observe how people are editing their videos.

Your supervisor or director may ask you to make more demanding changes and edits to scene transitions, sound/audio effects, and more.

5. Efficient Work Ethic

For any job or profession, you need a dedicated work ethic and interest in the field.

Be disciplined, driven, and organized while you perform your job.

Learn to organize and sort your projects and files into folders so that they become easy to access.

Assign space for your footage, sound tapes, photos, and graphics separately to make more subgroups and folders.

On top of all this, get a gaming mouse if you can cause it has cool functions that are really helpful for video editors.

If you’re someone who is also interested in learning graphic designing and make a career in it, you must check out our career guide in how to become a graphic designer!

6. Color Correction

Color correction in video editing

Video editors get a lot of options to color edit their clips through cool features in software.

Color is a very important and indispensable part of the video editing domain.

Color can be manipulated to set different emotions and atmospheres in videos.

Make sure to use video editing software that includes amazing color correction features such as:

And many more.

7. Add Text and Graphics

Add Text and Graphics to videos

Often you might need to add text in your video clips, either on every slide or in between somewhere.

Make sure you use the desired fonts and text colors that match the overall mood of the video.

Keep it simple and neat; use a font like san-serif that looks effortless and easy.

For graphics, you can find them online or make your own using Adobe After Effects for making awesome motion graphics.

Or get the pre-made templates that Shutterstock offers.

8. Add Good Music

Music helps to set different moods and trigger emotions from the viewers.

Music has the same amount of significance for the viewer’s ears as color is to their eyes.

Make sure you include the right song, tune, or instrumentals at the perfect moments. Sometimes, you may need to add cheerful/upbeat music, and other times sad or mellow tunes.

The simplest method to getting your music is from a royalty-free music provider. Free music is also available online but it won’t be of standard quality.

Video editing headphones really help to truly understand what kind of sound is going into your videos.

9. Export Your Finished Video

Export Your Finished Video

For movies and Ultra HD screens, exporting the video at the largest resolution makes sense.

But for the type of video content that runs through social media and businesses today, we need smaller, high-quality exported versions.

The aim of exporting is to have high-quality but smaller-sized files.

Don’t fuss over the export settings of different platforms like Facebook, YouTube, Vimeo, etc all have specified settings for video exports.

How Do You Become A Freelance Video Editor With NO Experience?

The motivation to get started in any field is mostly interest and money.

The possibility of earning money for your freelance work is truly exciting.

You must be thinking, “How do I become a freelance video editor from scratch to make money?”

The answer is- to get the training, learn the software, implement editing techniques, get better, apply for internships for experience, and then maybe start your own venture.

Follow these 5 steps to becoming a successful freelance video editor.

1. Teach Yourself

As discussed earlier on how to become a video editor, firstly, you need training.

You can choose to get a degree in film production, cinema, or Fine Arts.

A degree will certainly help you to get a job straight out of University, but you can save all of that time and money by learning by yourself.

Teach yourself by learning from online courses and from friends or people who are already in this field.

Connect with professionals online, follow their work style and work ethic, get inspired, and apply that to yourself.

2. Learn The Software

Learn The Video Editing Software

Get your hands on the best video editing software you can find if you can afford it.

In case you can’t or are a beginner, simply choose a free/pirated one like:

3. Apply for Internships

Internships give you the perfect work experience for beginners. You get to enter the job domain and experience the field like a professional for a short time.

Getting paid for your work is always a plus, but even if you are getting an unpaid internship, we suggest you go for it. Because, as a beginner, experience and training are most important.

You would learn a lot about yourself, your positives and negatives, when you work with other people under a deadline.

Exposure is of utmost importance as, eventually when you develop sharp video editing skills, people WILL pay you in huge amounts.

Apply for video editing internships

Check out these platforms to apply for internships:

4. Find And Build Connections

It’s important to link and build connections with like-minded people.

Look for internships nearby geographically, as physically working in a work environment provides one with a lot of scopes.

Even if you are working online, physical meet-ups will be easier if your office is in the same city. After gaining sufficient experience under someone else, you’re good to go on your own venture.

All of the hard work, early/late nights, and headaches over deadlines will be worth it, and you’ll be proud.

5. Look for Freelance Gigs

Look for Freelance Video Editing Gigs

Hop on Freelancer and look for gigs that match your skill set and schedule.

We suggest looking for remote work that has flexible timings so you don’t feel like an office robot working constantly.

An interesting option is to find best freelancing platforms while freelancing. Although this sounds very ideal, local freelancing gigs are much better.

Search for freelance jobs offered by local platforms, either online or by physically visiting the office.

If you’re a newbie, you must learn about how to start freelancing to help you get freelance jobs.

How To Get Work Experience As A Video Editor?

Getting a job in this domain is challenging as video editing is a highly competitive field nowadays.

So many youngsters and businesspersons are learning how to become a video editor.

Here, we have laid out the ULTIMATE GUIDE to getting a job in this highly competitive profession.

1. Do An Internship

As discussed above, getting an internship will broaden your job prospects as you would have practical experience.

Look for internships in film, digital media production, broadcasting, social media marketing, etc.

As long as you’re gaining relevant experience, completing an internship will take you many steps closer to how to become a professional video editor.

Connect with working professionals and showcase your talent in video editing.

2. Attend Conferences (Online/Offline)

Attending conferences for film production, video editors, graphic artists, content creators, and marketers provides a lot of scope.

You can find many professionals and recruiters in such meetings looking to hire talented creators.

3. Create Your Own Films

When you shoot, edit, and craft your own videos, you get hands-on experience.

Upload your content to sites like YouTube, LinkedIn, and Twitter so that recruiters can find you easily.

Strengthen and strategize your portfolio as much as you can to showcase your originality.

Your video projects can impress digital creators to hire you as an editor in their businesses.

If you’re someone who’s looking to start a YouTube channel to showcase your video editing skills, you must first know how much money do YouTubers make. To understand that, you can read our blog.

4. Work As An Assistant Editor

Start small.

One of the best ways to start out is to work under and for someone.

You learn to respect deadlines and how to obey instructions.

Volunteer to work as an assistant video editor.

You may have to lower your payment demand, but the extra work will be worth it.

5. Look For Filmmaking Job Boards And Industry Forums

Do some digging and search for film or TV production job boards mentioning video editor roles.

Join any film production, cinematography, or videography groups or communities online.

You will get a lot of exposure online through these types of forums and groups.

Try to dig and look for job opportunities, seminars, and networking events through this pathway.

6. Start Your Own Venture

Starting your own business is very challenging but exciting.

But if you work at it consistently after gaining sufficient insight and knowledge into the domain, it will pay off.

You can team up with fellow videographers and sound engineers to build a team where you shoot your own film and edit and upload your content online.

This will be a challenging task as you would need to travel to different places to shoot new and exciting things.

7. Gain Expertise In Industry Software

If you want to stand out and get high-paying editor roles, the key is to become an expert in video editing software.

Mastering editing software is not an easy task; you would have to slave at it for hours for months on end.

8. Shift To A High Employment City

  • Los Angeles
  • New York City
  • Chicago
  • Atlanta
  • Austin

These are some of the best cities to live in if you want to get the most exposure and opportunities.

Film, YouTube, TikTok, Hollywood, and media- creators of all these domains dominate these cities.

There you go!

We have resolved most of your queries like- “How do I become a video editor, and what should I learn for that?” or “How to become a freelance video editor with no experience?”

Is Video Editing A Good Career?

All in all, video editing is an awesome and exciting career.

You not only get to experience and shoot beautiful video content but also get paid to deliver that work.

Video content won’t disappear anytime soon; it is an evergreen field.

Hence, you don’t need to worry about this career path disappearing in the future.

This field is only growing more popular in demand with new and evolving video editing techniques.

In this profession, there is always something to learn and master.

New and exciting techniques, software, content types, and trends keep coming up; you will never be bored in this profession.

You get to create beauty out of the ordinary things.

What can be better than that?

What Is The Typical Video Editor Salary?

The average salary of a video editor in New York City, United States, is $66,490/year.

The average salary of a video editor in the United Kingdom is £31,463/year.

The average salary of a video editor in India is ₹35,000/year.

How To Start Making Money As A Video Editor?

To make money online, you need skills and a good laptop.

I know it sounds simple, but initially, you’ll have to send out a lot of resumes, pitch yourself to companies, and apply for internships and jobs on various platforms.

If you’re someone who doesn’t have any experience in video editing but want to create a resume, check out our awesome blog on how to write a resume with no experience.

Here we have provided some ways how to become a video editor and make money.

  • Use freelance sites like Freelancer, Upwork, and Fiverr.
  • Offer to edit for local businesses/companies.
  • Volunteer to edit wedding films.
  • Shoot and edit real estate videos
  • Sell an online video editing course
  • Create a YouTube channel for popular edits.
  • Make promotional videos for sales companies
  • Edit birthday/anniversary/festival footage
  • Edit sports highlights
  • Make an Instagram account for edits and earn money by promoting brands.

How To Become A Video Editor For Netflix?

For a job at Netflix, you need to be hardworking, dedicated, and committed to your profession on top of your skills in video editing.

Check out Netflix’s official website for open positions in various teams like the Content team, Product team, and Corporate Functions team.

Go to this link and search for the kind of job you want to apply for.

How Do I Become A Video Editor For Hollywood Films?

These are some of the ways on how to become a video editor in Hollywood:

  • Apply for the annual internship program offered by The American Cinema Editor for assistant editor roles (only for college graduates).
  • Find a job as a production assistant or post-production team to make your way into the industry.
  • Become an expert in highly used editing software used in the film industry.
  • Become extroverted and build connections with industry experts, directors, producers, film editors, and other professionals.

How Do I Become A Professional Video Editor?

We have already covered all the ways on how to become a video editor.

But to become a professional video editor, you need connections, influence, and skills altogether.

To build a strong portfolio, you need to reach out to professionals in the video editing field. Follow these simple steps to get your first professional video editing gig:

  • Look for searches like a video editor or video editing on Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram.
  • Browse through the search results to see anyone you’d like to build a connection with
  • Inbox that person asking if you can assist them or if they’re looking for an assistant or video editor
  • Try linking up with as many people as you can. You might just end up with a potential job!
  • However, do not spam anyone’s DMs with tons of messages.

Learn how to build a winning freelance portfolio, with our insightful blog.

Do Video Editors Make Good Money?

After learning how to become a video editor, you will need years to hone your skills and gain substantial experience.

But with just a few years of experience, dedication, and expertise, you can become a very successful video editor for a large company or the film industry.

Scroll up to check out the typical video editor salary in the United States, United Kingdom, and India.

How Do I Start Working As A Video Editor?

  • To become a video editor, you need to first learn the skills needed
  • After that, learn and master a video editing software like Blender or DaVinci Resolve
  • Apply for internships and job experiences online or locally nearby
  • Shoot your own video and curate them according to your style
  • Try to find work as an assistant first rather than an editor role directly
  • Open up and build connections online and in-person with working professionals in the industry.
  • Keep learning and never stop

What Are Some Tricks To Faster Video Editing?

You should know about the shortcuts and important terms used by professional video editors.

We have included some terminologies for you here:

  • J Cut: Audio coming before the video
  • L Cut: Video coming before the audio
  • Jump Cuts: to cut out certain parts of the footage to make the video better and visually interesting
  • Cutting on Action: Cutting the video amidst movement in the scene to maintain more flow
  • Montage: Arrangement of video clips to demonstrate the flow of time, mainly for the purpose of character development

Also, learn various keyboard shortcuts to efficiently utilize your time while video editing.

You can also buy a good editing keyboard that already has all the required keyboard shortcuts.

Also feel free to memorize all the keyboard shortcuts for Adobe Premiere Pro, DaVinci Resolve, and other similar software.

Wrapping It Up

Wow! Finally, we reach the end of another informative blog. We have covered everything that you need on how to become a video editor.

Not just that, we have gone over how to become a professional video editor, how to become a video editor from home, how to make money as a freelance video editor, and many more.

After learning so much, you must be thinking- How hard is it to become a video editor? Or How long does it take to become a video editor?

The answer to these questions lies with you.

You are the driver of your journey, and only you decide how fast or slow your car will move.

We suggest going at a comfortable pace in the beginning, training yourself, building connections, and then branching out.

Becoming a video editor is a challenging and laborious job, but if you have the drive and passion for it, it can prove to be very lucrative.

So, get off your couch and get with it.

All the best!

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Himani is a digital marketer who has 4 years of experience in blogging and SEO. She started her journey as a freelancer at the age of 18 in 2020 and made $350,000 by working with different high profiled companies and clients. She shares her insightful knowledge and learnings to help people make money online.

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