When it comes to video editing, the approach can greatly vary depending on the medium.

For instance, an editor on a music video has a lot more freedom to experiment and think outside the box with new styles and transitions because in the end, the visual aspect is used to enhance the music, not the other way around. With film editing, you only have a short time to convey the message, so each scene should contribute to the overall purpose of the film.

That purpose can tell the audience what emotions they should be feeling or even provide a twist ending in some cases. This can be done through flashbacks or from certain points of view.

When discussing the topic of approaching different mediums, editing specialist Konstantin Kochubei says, “Working on editing a feature film is fundamentally different from editing a music video. You have to understand the director, his idea, the final vision of the film as a final product and sometimes even help him to realize the timeline his wishes, to finish what he imagines in his head and sometimes to make even better or even to make several versions of the same scene according to his vision and offer. The editing of each scene must be very carefully considered, as it must convey the director’s vision. This is achieved by different tools, such as the dynamics of editing, rhythm, frame size, musical accompaniment, the length of the scene itself, the sequence of frames and so on.”

Konstantin goes into this and a lot more in the below conversation.

Konstantin Kochubei on set Konstantin Kochubei

No Film School: How did you first become involved with the production world? More specifically, editing?

Konstantin Kochubei: It all started with a simple hobby. I liked to take photos and shoot video as a schoolboy, and then spend hours processing them, trying to get the best possible spectacular result. It all started with a camera that I got in 8th grade, I quickly realized that I am not satisfied with just taking photos, I want to process them later, adding effects and changing the color. So I bought a book on learning Photoshop and studied it for 2 weeks. Then this passion moved to processing short videos that my first Konica Minolta digital camera could shoot.

When I was in university and after, I filmed my travels, carefully edited and posted them on my YouTube channel. Then friends started asking me to edit videos of their important events in their lives, traveling, their vlogs, and more. Gradually, it started to fascinate me more and more. I started to be recommended from hand to hand — that's how I got my first clients and paid orders.

Then, my clients started recommending me for other projects, and I started shooting and editing commercial videos for IT companies, banking, and other business sectors.

And one day, I was approached by the company "Khudyakov Production" — they offered me to edit some teasers for upcoming music videos, documentary work, we worked well together with the team, and I was invited to the set to shoot a music video of the artist of the first magnitude in Russia — Philip Kirkorov.

The reason for this was the presence of a large number of effects, complex transitions between frames, as well as tight timing of each of the frames according to the director's idea. For this, it was necessary to control the result right during the process on the set. Since then, I have been working in the Khudyakov Production team for eight years and have been involved in on-set editing of advertising projects, music videos, and movies, among other things.

Konstantin Kochubei for Mercedesroar-assets-auto.rbl.ms

NFS: What are the main differences between editing a movie versus editing a music video?

Kochubei: Working on editing a music video is very different from editing a commercial, let alone working on editing a feature film, which I participated in for the first time in early 2023.

I find working on a music video to be very interesting and exciting. Although, it can be technically challenging.

The advantage of this genre is that it doesn't limit us too much in terms of time, and musicians and singers are more willing to try new things. Therefore, a music video editor can think outside the box and create a true work of modern art. There are practically no rules, you can come up with new styles, transitions, rhythms, the main thing is that it combines with the music and the track that the artist performs.

In advertising, however, everything is much tighter, there the main focus is on adhering to timings and formal things, such as the location of the footer, the subsequent placement of the logo in the frame, adherence to TV formats, etc.

Working on editing a feature film is fundamentally different from editing a music video. You have to understand the director, his idea, the final vision of the film as a final product, and sometimes even help him to realize the timeline of his wishes, to finish what he imagines in his head and sometimes to make even better or even to make several versions of the same scene according to his vision and offer. The editing of each scene must be very carefully considered, as it must convey the intended director, and this is achieved by different tools, such as the dynamics of editing, rhythm, frame size, musical accompaniment, the length of the scene itself, the sequence of frames and so on. It is never possible to say that a scene in a movie is montage-complete, you can always improve it and finalize it to make it acquire deeper meanings or to add new meanings to it. We returned to some of the scenes 2-3 months after the main stage of film editing was completed.

In addition to technical skills, care, and thoroughness are also very important. There are a lot of processes going on on set at the same time that affect the final product. And the psychological component is also important, as you are working with international stars.

NFS: Can you talk about what editing software/programs you use? Which ones do you recommend?

Kochubei: The most famous and professional program that is used at the highest level in Hollywood when making movies is definitely AVID, it can be called the pioneer of the digital age of editing. However, I prefer Adobe Premier because I started out with short video clips and mostly specialized in editing clips and commercials. For me, it has a friendlier interface and is faster to change according to new realities.

In general, the program should be chosen based on the tasks and its functionality, some are more sharpened to a narrower use, but at the same time more stable. They are well suited for creating long projects such as full-length films, others are a compilation of all that is now necessary for quick creation of the final video product, such as reels or a small clip or ads.

Now the game has turned, and you can edit directly on your phone in seconds using all sorts of built-in filters and presses, in a program such as Cut Cut, no longer need editing tables and huge rooms.

I am now in full swing mastering DaVinci Resolve, because often I have to color my videos, and this is the best program for such tasks.

In general, all these programs perform the same function — to cut frames and arrange them in the way you like, the main thing is to have an understanding of what you want to do in the end.

Konstantin Kochubei for Polinaroar-assets-auto.rbl.ms

NFS: You have garnered the title director of editing. Can you talk about what specifically you do?

Kochubei: In addition to direct editing in the process of filming in accordance with the director's script and operational instructions of the director, the director of editing should timely review the source materials and select the most successful takes, including identifying defects in individual takes, to edit all sound materials (music, replicas, noises), to ensure the artistic and technical quality of editing, to organize the entire process of video editing, as well as promptly solve technical and creative problems associated with editing.

NFS: As an editing specialist, have you seen the world of editing evolve and change over the last few years? If so, how?

Kochubei: As a specialist in the field of video editing, I necessarily follow the development and changes associated with the application of various methods and techniques of modern editing.

How does it happen? Real life! Almost daily watching of good movies, commercials, clips. But it is also important to watch unsuccessful and, frankly bad clips. This is also important in order to understand what exactly is bad, what went wrong, how you can do better. Constant analysis of the material viewed.

NFS: According to IMDB, you are the editor of an upcoming Abbie Cornish film, I’m Beginning to See the Light. Can you talk about this film all?

Kochubei: At the beginning of 2023, I received an invitation from world-famous film director Konstantin Khudyakov to participate in his movie based on the drama script "I Begin to See the Light" as a video editor on the set. It was the first time I participated in a project of this scale. The film stars well-known actors: Abbie Cornish, Jamie Chung, Lucy Punch, Jack Huston, Mark Boone Junior, David Lee Smith, Rome Stephens Singh, and others.

Also, a huge team of world-class professionals worked on the project, including the famous American film and television editor Skip McDonald.

Of course, participation in this project and working with such professionals gave a great experience of working on the editing of feature video material.

Special thanks to director Konstantin Khudyakov for not being afraid to take me on board, for supporting and mentoring me in the process. The work of the director and editor did not end with the words "stop motor.” Sometimes, far past midnight, when the whole team was already resting, we continued to review the footage, determining what was shot perfectly, and what scenes needed to be re-shot. This approach helped to significantly reduce the time needed to edit the movie.

After filming was complete, I continued to work on editing the movie with film and television editor Skip MacDonald. In the process of working together, I improved my skill level in the field of video editing, became faster and better at editing action scenes, worked more carefully and delicately with scenes showing the feelings and emotions of the characters, accurately conveying the mood in the frame, competently combine visual elements, audio components and narrative methods, which leads to the creation of exciting and impressive video footage. captivating video footage.

NFS: You have worked on a lot of Russian productions as well as U.S. productions. Does your approach differ depending on where the production is geographically based?

Kochubei: I can say for sure that geography does not affect my approach and attitude to work. I always give my best, conscientious, and responsible attitude to any work, whether it is a commercial for 2 minutes, a clip for 10 minutes, or a full-meter movie.

NFS: You have said that working on music videos really lets you work outside the box. Can you elaborate on this? Is there one project in particular that you really experimented with?

Kochubei: One of the most memorable action work with shootings, falls into the water, explosions, was the music video "Rolls-Royce" by Dzhigan, Timati, and Egor Creed, in which there was a huge amount of experiments. Shooting lasted almost three days; we worked in a very intensive mode. On the editing after, the director's words "stop motor" was only twelve hours; we had to collect the entire clip on the set. The team's work in such a mode can be safely called another action scene left behind.

Creating a memorable music video requires careful preparation. Everything is important: the choice of location, script creation, excellent direction, talented performance of artists, the work of operators, and video editing. In the video "Rolls-Royce" with Egor Creed, Dzhigan and Timati used all the components — interesting locations and scenery, the plot conveyed the emotional component of the song, memorable action scenes with a shootout and falling into the water from a high tower pool, throwing a man through the shattering window of the store. All these scenes we watched right on the set with the director, put them into the montage, checked if it was suitable for the computer graphics department and decided if we had a successful take or needed another one.

NFS: You edited the video “Rolls-Royce” with Yegor Creed, Dzhigan, and Timati which has over 52 million views. Why do you think this video connected with audiences so well?

Kochubei: First of all, I think the success of this clip is in the fact that quite famous and popular artists collaborated there; the second component is the director's idea. Within a short video, there are several stories that end with an unexpected twist with the participation of one of the most famous Russian artists. It was a very intense three shooting days of 18 hours on average, a lot of locations, special equipment, complex shots, stunts, and effects. So that all the scenes were properly filmed and got into the timing of the track. Even before the shoot, I made an animatic on the frames, which we adhered to on the set.

NFS: Is there anything else you would like to add about any of the projects you have coming up?

Kochubei: I really hope to work on more big movies with Konstantin Khudyakov, there are a few potential films in the pipeline.

You can learn more about Konstantin at his website.