How do you know Final Cut Pro X is popular? When you have to move into a tent as you've grown out of the usual meeting room! The recent FCPX meeting in Buenos Aires hosted by Leonardo Hancevich (Leo Hans) was a huge success.
I’m a Final Cut Pro user since its first version back in the 90’s when it was called a joke by everyone in the broadcast market in Argentina. Since then I have used every single update released by Apple. I got my first TV Commercial job in 2005 when a production company needed a freelance editor with knowledge about FCP and there were not too many editors in the high-end market using anything but Avid back then. After that job I started cutting mostly commercials and I used to teach FCP tips and workflow to other editors and post production colleagues.
So, after the sneak peak Apple gave us at the Supermeet in 2011 and after reading lots of complaints about it, all my previous experience about Final Cut Pro not being professional suddenly came back to me and I thought, Sure? Again?
As an editor living in a small corner of the world I always wanted to be able to have something like the FCPUG, but it was very unlikely. So I started a blog for Spanish speaking people about Final Cut Pro. My very first post on May 23, 2011 was “Is Final Cut Pro X an iMovie on steroids?” trying to answer that question that was all around the web.
By 2014 I had enough experience using Final Cut Pro X in real world projects to be confident to start trying to motivate some colleagues to learn it. We didn’t have learning centers here since Apple is not present in Argentina, but we do have resellers. So I started to teach FCP X to some friends of mine until one of the members of the board of EDA (Argentinian Association of Audiovisual Editors) offered help trying to find a location to hold that meeting I'd been thinking about for a long time.
With their help, we got permission to use one of the rooms at the Audio-Visual District of Buenos Aires, a place run by the city’s government to promote audio-visual related activities and projects. The best part was that the place was free and the only condition they asked for was that the meeting should be free for all the attendants. Since we were already thinking in doing this for free it wasn’t a problem at all.
The room had places for 80 editors and a couple of hours after a mailshot we had 160 people signed up to be there. That was really unexpected for us and a big motivating surprise. Unfortunately the only option we had was to put half of the colleagues on a waiting list since we weren’t allowed to place more people than it’s nominal capacity. So in July 2014 we had our first meeting and It was a success. Since then people were asking when we were going to hold the next meeting.
After that I was invited to join EDA’s Training Commission where we organized meetings about Adobe Workflow, Audio Workflow for editors, Documentary Films and Music for Films.
In 2015 I had the chance to be at the Focus / Light Iron event at Los Angeles and I had the pleasure to meet some amazing people there and to learn very interesting stuff about Final Cut Pro X. A few weeks later I was still in United States and I went to NAB for first time, but the thing that took all my attention was the FCPWORKS suite and all that was happening there.
I was anxious to share all the new knowledge back in Buenos Aires, but for different reasons it wasn’t until July that we could start planing the next meeting. We took the risk to ask the Audio-Visual District to use the main area, a tent for 330 people. And again, we ran out of space in a matter of hours with 450 people who signed up including those who wanted to stay in a waiting list.
After a brief welcome from Anabela Lattanzio and Mariano Saban (EDA’s Vice-President and Pro-Secretary) who gave a brief explanation about what is EDA and why we do these kind of free meetings, we started our five hours FCP X session.
The first part was almost one hour talk about why Final Cut Pro X is being used around the world by small to big production companies and movie studios to create high quality content with simplified workflows, shorter delivery times and happier editors. The subjects included the Focus movie, DirecTV and Metronome.
We watched the Honda commercial “The Other Side” and some screen recordings Thomas Grove Carter, the editor, sent over. These showed how easily he could swap clips in the timeline and how he used the R key of his keyword to enable and disable one of the stories in realtime for previewing the results. We watched a video showing how Final Cut Pro X can run 16 streams of 4k in multicam over shared storage in several Macs with more than 64 streams in total using LumaForge's Sharestation.
We spent more than three hours with an introductory lesson with the ABC about the Final Cut Pro X editing metaphor and learning how to import media, how to use keywords, editing with the magnetic timeline, how to do split edits, what is a role and why I consider roles “the evolution of tracks”, how to use audio components, and how to share. Regarding titles, effects and generators I showed briefly how they work with Motion and it’s potential.
After that we had almost one hour of Q&A because I wanted to be able to answer some of their main concerns about FCP X and I hope I did.
We had our “one more thing moment” too with an free raffle with products given by Intelligent Assistance, XMiL, Marquis Broadcast, Color Finale, CoreMelt, FxFactory Pro, and MotionVFX.
What people loved about Final Cut Pro X
- Swapping clips with magnetic timeline
- The speed (in terms of performance)
- The speed (in terms of less steps to… everything).
- Multicam + angle editor.
- Text and Replace for titles.
- Motion based Effects, transitions, titles and generators.
Some things I've learnt:
- Most editors here still doesn’t know what's FCP X.
- They still believe FCP X is an isolated app that can't "talk" to another app.
- They're still amazed about FCP X after seeing in action despite the bad press FCPX had before.
I want to deeply thank to everyone who helped me some way or another to make this happen in this little but creative corner of the world. Some of them are Steve Martin, Thomas Grove Carter, Jesús Pérez-Miranda, Denver Riddle, Roger Bolton, Philip Hodgetts, Gregory Clarke, Szymon Masiak, Niclas Bahn, Sam Mestman, Michael Matzdorff and Tom Hassall.
After five years woking with brands like Amex, Mercedes Benz, Fargo, ING, Artear, Canal 9, América TV and many others, I became a freelancer.
In 2005 I decided to focus on TV commercials. Since then, I’ve worked with important directors, production companies and agencies from Argentina and other countries.
I love storytelling and photography.