video editing tools

To check-out Blender and VideoPad I set up a trial to produce a simple five second short abstract video with sound, and then exhibit the outcome on my Instagram account (also embedded below).

For the trial I wanted to:

  1. take a five second clip from a camera shot real-world video;
  2. break this clip down into a sequence of still frames;
  3. export the frames as a sequence;
  4. process each frame in the sequence using a custom Photoshop action;
  5. import the updated frame sequence;
  6. add a separately recorded audio track;
  7. fade in and out both the video and the audio;
  8. export the finished video as an mp4 video;
  9. exhibit a cropped to square version on my Instagram account.


After about an hour of working with Blender, I had organised a usable layout (based on the tutorial mentioned in a comment to my last post). I then became stuck and unable to synchronise the video track and an imported WAV audio track. Despite editing them to the same length and the audio track showing a waveform right to the end of the clip, the sound appeared to play faster than the video and ran out a couple of seconds before the end. After a couple more hours of head scratching, I decided to set Blender to one side and take a look at VideoPad.


An entirely different proposition. No need to set-up the user interface. VideoPad is entirely focused on video editing and the user interface is clear and focused on the job. After about a half hour I had breezed through my nine step process and had my video on exhibit at Instagram.


Trying to wrangle Blender, to do what I needed it to do, kept getting in the way. I don’t want to spend my time tracking down why something isn’t doing what I expected it to do (the audio sync problem), even if the error was mine and not Blender’s.

In contrast, VideoPad did exactly what I wanted it to do and in a way I could easily understand. I didn’t even need to consult a manual or a video tutorial (my experience with QuickTime and Adobe Premiere Elements being sufficient).

Now, this might say more about me and my experience than it does about the tools, but I am here to make the outcomes I want to make and not to become embroiled in the idiosyncrasies of any one specific product.

So, I have spent a little cash and purchased a full licence for VideoPad.

I have not given up on Blender entirely. I will experiment further. I am especially interested in its use of Python as a scripting language and I may try to produce some scripted 3D outcomes in the future.

working in winter

I think the digital studio is the place for me in the winter. So, I have begun experimenting with video again. The last time I did so (in any serious way) was in the period 2011-2013. Back then I used Adobe Premiere Elements, QuickTime Pro and Photoshop CS2 as my tools. Things have since moved on. QuickTime Pro is now deprecated, unsupported and a security risk on the Windows platform (thanks Apple) and my copy of Premiere Elements was not made for Windows 10, so I need to look for replacement video editing tools (CS2 still works for me as still image processor). I considered buying into a commercial package, but I hate the thought of monthly fees (Adobe) and I don’t have a lot of cash, so I am investigating free and (preferably) open source options. After a bit of research, I have installed Blender and VideoPad. It looks like I’ll be climbing a bit of a learning curve, but I know what I want to do with the tools, and this always simplifies the learning process. I’ll post again when I have worked out the basics and can decide on a toolset for this new enquiry.

PS. I have installed a handful of my early video outcomes on instagram.