Help for complete newbie


New member
Hi I was hopeing some of you great people could help me out. I have never done any form of video editing etc before, but as part of a collage course have been asked to produce a short film of people escaping a natural disaster. (the one I was given was a Tsunami) So what I am hopeing is that someone could tell me how to go about this.

Tape ordinary clip of people running etc then add the tsunami if so how do I do this, or would a green screen? be the best way.

Any help and advice on software etc would be appreciated.

Thanks in advance


New member
you can do it either one of two ways. I'm use final cut, but you can do this with other software too.
1. shoot the scene with blank space on a pretty blank background. Then import the clip. Take the clip of the tsunami and put a mask, the more points the better, on it. Then move the masked tsunami to the blank space on the background feather the edges so it looks more smooth.

2. get a green, or what ever color as long as no one's wearing it, screen, or tablecloth or paper, get a bright light, but make sure there are no shadows on the screen and shoot the scene. Then apply the chroma key filter on the greenscreen video on the layer above the tsunami video and key out the color of the screen.

hope this helps


New member
Also...I try not to always look at things in the standard way. Sure...People escaping from a Tsunami...I guess I need to show people and a Tsunami.

But...what if the story is about the people just seconds BEFORE the tsunami hits. Like they hear it coming, or maybe see it in the distance and have to start running and trying to figure out how to survive...before it even hits. Then, you wouldn't really even need to show your actors and the tsunami in the same shot. If you are creative enough, it could be pretty intense. I would use a bunch of shakey camera work, show lots of people noticing what is coming and screaming and running. Sound effects and music can do wonders for creating a much BIGGER scene than the audience actually sees.

Good luck. :)