The important theories of editing

These two completely different ways to think about editing will help you understand how editing can be used to tell stories. They are very different from each other but can be combined in an endless amount of ways to control the flow of information to the viewer. It is important to help the viewer to be able to keep up and navigate an environment as much as is necessary, as well as to help them follow along with a story to the degree that you want them to. Continuity editing is great for supplying information in easy to digest, predictable ways, but sometimes it's good for the viewer to have to do a little bit of thinking themselves and arrive at an emotion or meaning in the story themselves or even to inject a bit of mystery in the story! You don't want the viewer to either be bored or too confused, so a careful balance has to be found between the two.

Take it Further

Have a look at a piece of media that you love and know well, and look at the combination of continuity and complexity editing used in it. Ask yourself whether it would've been better to use more of the one than they did and what the effect of this would've been. The following topic relates to the order in which information is presented to the viewer: do you establish something properly before moving closer in order to show details or do you start with the details and work wider until more context is provided? Is there a right and a wrong way to go about it? Let's discuss in the comments section below.

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