OpenShot Video Editor [Basic Openshot Video Editing Skills]


Table of Contents

openshot Video Editing Software

OpenShot is a free and open source video editing application both for enthusiasts and professionals alike… uh… but don’t expect it to be better than lightworks or those adobe suit (video editing) counter-parts. Anyway, it’ll surprise you with many features and yes the integration with blender gives you the power of 3D on your hands!
If you can’t afford those eye-candy paid video editing software then you are at the right place! Adding more fun to this, I will teach you some basic skills almost performed by every videographer: 

  1. Import
  2. Layers
  3. Transition
  4. Trim
  5. Audio effects
  6. Saving your work


How To Install Openshot In Ubuntu?

As of now, OpenShot v2.2 is the latest version, but on the software repository, Ubuntu users will have to download the older version (OpenShot v1.4.3). Otherwise, one could download and test its beta version using PPA. But I don’t recommend that. On to installing OpenShot then:
sudo apt install openshot

How To Run Openshot?

Ubuntu users could browse to the application then click “OpenShot Video Editor” on Unity but here is a better solution:
Press alt+f2, then type in “openshot”
openshot video editor home screen

Basic Openshot Video Editing Skills

Firstly, I don’t have a custom video file with me so I’ll be proceeding down with static images and the trick I’ll be implementing is to create and export it using the “basic skills” mentioned above. And in turn, the exported video will play more like a presentation

1. Import

Before video files are edited for effects, they have to be imported first so your current project will utilize it. Here’s a sample:
import files in openshot in linux

2. Layers

Layers? or Tracks? Suits your need. They are very important and will either speed up your work or slow down according to how you organize them. For instance, I suggest you keep three basic parts of your video/short promo/movie…etcetera: Intro, main body, and the ending. More like letter/essay writing, eh? That’s simple logic to consume now so you don’t regret later.
layers in openshot video editor

3. Transition

Well, you don’t want your video to simply start right away. You’ll need to fancy it before you display it to your audience. And transition effect is one that does the magic. Here’s how you could add it to one of your raw video file(s).
apply transitions in openshot

Note: Your transition effect might have longer length if you have a very short clip. All you’ve to do is right click the effect you applied and reduce the time under properties option.

4. Trim

Imagine if your audience has to keep watching a singular recorded event for five minutes, eg- tryouts before the main game begins. They might leave early and miss all the great stuff you have in store for them. A general thumbs-up rule is to keep a scene under 10s max. And for that you have these two great tools, Resize tool and Razor tool.
trim in openshot

trim videos in openshot in linux

5. Audio effects

This can be a little bit daunting if you’re very poor at mixing sounds. Also true for many occasions why your works won’t be appreciated for poor audio effects. So here it is:
apply audio effects in openshot

6. Saving your work

Finally, you get to pay off your hard work by saving it. You should know the basic configurations of your video file but a general thumbs-up rule is to always go for 720p quality which is neither too crappy nor too heavy for low resource systems.

7. Extras

Someday, you’ll want more control over one clip than the entire workspace. I got that covered. All you’ve to do is right click the specific clip and select Properties and ta-da! You might have observed other options too, that’s for you to go and experiment yourself. [Try that… fade…]Those “basic skills” are close enough to make you a seasoned videographer (keep practicing). Perhaps it’s a good habit to watch movies and shows, and observe the differences between them… including various other genres like sports, news, etc.

Accumulate the good ones you like for instance, I love Nolan’s work (theatrical effects) and have tried on various occasions to incorporate his style (for PERSONAL use only). Surely, you got what I mean, right?

8. Title Animation

This is the best part and you have many great options to choose from. Press Ctrl+B to open the Animated Title Editor. Here’s a screenshot:
A fan of Star Wars? You got the intro for it. Maybe make another space thriller movie.
Note: You need Blender to enable most of the animated title on OpenShot, otherwise they’re just stupid Godzillas.


That’s all about it. Fanatic about what’s next? Get on with OpenShot and create your next video, might just be sensational this time! Share some of your skills in the comment section below.