Understand Final Cut Pro on your Macintosh

Final Cut Pro for Macintosh

Lisa Brenneis (2000, Peachpit Press, www.peachpit.com, 508 pages, $25)

This comprehensive guide to Final Cut Pro is loaded with screen shots and quick tips that are sure to enhance your editing skills. Designed for intermediate and advanced users, it not only takes you through the process step-by-step, it is also a useful reference manual as your skills advance. The well-organized chapters cover everything from capturing digital video to designing a credit scroll. Some of the more useful and helpful items are the check-marked tips located generously throughout the text and the quick reference keyboard shortcut table in the appendix. Also of note are numerous sidebars with tips on advanced topics such as time-code shortcuts and video-rendering techniques. The depth of information about working with audio is also impressive. If you are a user of Final Cut Pro for Macintosh, you will find the information presented in this book well worth the cost. — rating 4

Digital Filmmaking 101, An Essential Guide to Producing Low-Budget Movies

Dale Newton and John Gaspard (2000, Michael Wiese Productions, www.mwp.com, 281 pages, $25)

Digital Filmmaking 101 covers all aspects of the film making process and manages to do it in a way that is entertaining as well as informative. The book thoroughly covers lighting, sound and special effects as well as issues like funding and budgeting. Taking the reader from "the dream" all the way through to "distribution," Dale Newton and John Gaspard manage to teach the nuts and bolts of making a film while sharing humorous anecdotes that serve to teach from wisdom and experience. There is important business information about copyright, insurance and taxes. Normally this could scare you away from making a film, but the book presents the information in a reassuring way. The target audience is an advanced videographer, but the information covered is important to every level of experience. This is definitely required reading for people setting out to produce their first movie. — rating 5

Cyber Film School Movie School Encyclopedia

Cyber Film School (2000, Internet Film Group Inc., www.cyberfilmschool.com, CD-ROM, $49)

Movie School Encyclopedia is a CD-ROM filled with useful information about all aspects of film production. Utilizing a clear-cut approach, the title uses text, video clips, charts, diagrams and interviews with some of the most respected names in the business. No matter what your skill level, you will find an abundance of easy-to-understand information about everything from film history to lighting design. Using a Web browser as a platform, the CD-ROM includes the necessary plug-ins (QuickTime, Adobe Acrobat, Shockwave and Flash) to fully enjoy all of its features. Each section includes links to numerous additional resources. The ease of use and the professional quality of this CD-ROM are very impressive. Additionally, the disc comes with software and video clips to practice editing techniques. Demo copies of various video and audio programs complete the package. A very useful and informative CD-ROM. –rating 4

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