My Stock Footage Tool Chest

I am often asked about the tools I use in my Stock Footage business, so rather than answer you all separately, here it is…

Video Editing

I am currently using Adobe After Effects CS4 to do my video editing.  Expensive, but it really is the best for the job in my opinion.  Especially with all of the free video tutorials you can find all over the Internet.  Many of the animations in my collection were created in After Effects.  And I use it to remove noise and color grade my camera footage.  If you are moving into footage from stills, you may already be familiar with PhotoShop so you should be comfortable with After Effects fairly quickly.

I only have AE because I happened to win the complete Adobe CS4 Production Bundle at a user’s group meeting.  Had I not won it, I never could have afforded it and I’d still be using Corel Video Studio.  Which I highly recommend if you can’t afford After Effects.  Video Studio has a ton of great features, allows you to do a lot of effects and can fix a lot of footage problems.  It even supports AVCHD which is important since I have a Canon Vixia HF11 which records to memory and not tape.

I also bought QuickTime Pro because you can quickly and easily re-encode your clips in it without having to open up AE (which takes forver to launch) or another program.  However, you can do the same thing with the free MPEG Streamclip (which works on the PC and the Mac), although I prefer the interface in QT Pro more.

File Transfer

I’m on a PC, so I use FileZilla to upload my clips to iSyndica via FTP.  It’s free and has a very nice configurable interface.  Now… I am an old fart and I still do a LOT of stuff using a command line interface (previously known as DOS).  So I also use a program called NcFTPD which allows me to upload files from a batch file.

Animation

Most of the animation work I do is in Maxon’s Cinema 4D.  It’s very expensive, but it’s very powerful.  I was fortunate that I needed it for a project at an old job and the company bought me a personal copy to use at home.  When I left the company, they let me keep it.   I also use Daz3D, a free animation program that does character type animations.  And I have an older copy of Vue for doing beautiful landscapes.

So… what tools do you use?  If you have something cool you’d like to share, post a comment. I’m always looking for new stuff.

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