How To Edit Footage in Premiere Pro CC
How To Edit Footage in Premiere Pro CC

How To Edit Footage in Premiere Pro CC

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Welcome back to our Premiere Pro CC series. In our first instalment, we looked at how to import footage into the programme.

So, what comes next? Naturally, seeing as this is an editing programme, it’s time to do just that. How to edit footage.

Editing footage can seem daunting if you don’t know where to start. So, firstly, in this article, we’re going to guide you through the basics of how to add your footage to the timeline.

Secondly, we’ll then take a look at how to cut and edit it.

Source Monitor – Edit Footage

First and foremost, with Premiere Pro CC open, ensure you are still in the editing workspace. This is the best workspace when it comes to editing footage.

editing workspace

In this workspace, above your project module on the left, you will see what is called the source monitor.

source monitor

This is used for scrolling through your footage and reviewing it. To select a piece of footage and view it in this window, find the footage in your project bin and double click.

Depending on how your computer handles the playback, you can change the performance to a lower setting (¼, for example). This lowers the resolution and enables smoother playback.

Playback resolution edit footage

Next, with your footage playing, you can scrub through and pick out which part of the clip you want to use in your edit.

Using the letter I, you can select your ‘in point’. This is where the footage will begin playing from once in your timeline.

Using the letter O, you can then select your ‘out point’ further on. I for in, O for out. Simple.

Now, simply click the footage in the source monitor and drag over to the bottom right where it says Timeline.

And that’s it! Just like that, you’ve added it to a sequence on the timeline and now, you’re ready to edit footage.

Sequence Settings

Before you get editing footage, there are a few things you may want to change such as renaming the timeline, or editing the sequence settings.

To rename the sequence, find it in your project bin and double click the name.

To change sequence settings, go to Sequence > Sequence Settings. Here, you can change a few things such as frame rate and resolution.

Sequence settings

Programme Monitor

Moving on, you’ll have noticed that as you added that clip to the timeline, it suddenly appeared in the top right corner of the workspace. This is called the programme monitor.

Programme monitor cutting footage

At first, it can be a little disorientating to see both the source monitor and the program monitor side by side but there is a big difference.

On the left, your source monitor shows the whole piece of footage that you shot from start to finish.

On the right, the program monitor only shows the footage that you have cut and put together. It’s effectively showing you what the full edit will look like.

Adding Footage

Next, you need to add further clips by repeating the process of finding roughly what you want and then dragging it on to the timeline.

You should find that the footage snaps next to clips already on there, like it’s drawn to them.

However, if it doesn’t, ensure the magnet icon on the timeline is blue – this means it’s active and ensure the clips all snap together. This can be toggled by pressing S.

edit footage

If there’s space between your clips and you want to bring them together, instead of dragging, you can also right click and select ripple delete.

Edit Footage

Next, it’s time to really start editing your footage.

Although you’ve already scrubbed through and chosen an in and out point in the source monitor, chances are you still want to fine tune and make things tight on the timeline with some trimming.

There are a few ways to do this. For instance, you could drag the ends of each clip to shorten and trim, then move that footage around.

This technique works, but it seems a little slow.

So, if you look to the left of your timeline, you’ll see a number of tools.

Don’t be daunted by them – we’re going to run through and show you how each one will help. 😉


To begin, the first one is the razor. This does your cutting. To quickly select this tool, just press C.

Now, wherever you click on your footage, it will cut into two separate clips.

Consequently, you can now delete the bit you don’t want by pressing V, selecting it and pressing Delete.

Or, even quicker, as the playhead moves from left to right along the footage, you can press Q. It will cut there and delete everything on that clip before that point.

Similarly, if you press W, it cuts and deletes everything from that point on.

Next, there’s the track select forward tool. By pressing A to select it, you can then click on your footage.

You’ll notice that it selects everything on the timeline to the right of that select. You can now move everything from that point.

If you want to select everything to the left, hold Shift and press A.

Moving on, the rolling edit tool. Select this by pressing N. This basically allows you to drag clips over one another to extend that specific clip whilst removing from another.

Furthermore, there’s also the rate stretch tool. Select this by pressing R. This can make things slower or faster simply by clicking on the end of a clip and dragging.

Drag the clip smaller make it faster, drag tit larger makes it slower.

And how about the slip tool? Select this by pressing Y.

Effectively, this is just changing out in and out points for that clip on the timeline.

Just click and drag. You’ll see it changing in the program monitor.

Other Keyboard Shortcuts

In addition to this, there’s a few more keyboard shortcuts that we find particularly handy in this part of the edit process.

With a clip selected on the timeline, pressing F automatically displays that media in the source monitor.

This is particularly useful if you need to have a look at something again and perhaps change your in and out points.

Additionally, holding Alt (Command if using a Mac), you can use the arrows to move a clip around on the timeline. Hold shift for bigger movement.

Lastly, but by far the most important, hit CTRL + S (or Command + S if using a Mac) to save your project as regularly as you can!

This move needs to become a reflex. Second nature. You want to save your work as often as possible. 👍

Trust us, we’ve been there when things have gone wrong and realised we hadn’t had a save in about an hour. It’s not pretty.

Wrapping up – How To Edit Footage in Premiere Pro CC

So, that’s how you edit footage in Premiere Pro CC!

In summary, it’s pretty straight forward. There are a lot of tools there to help quicken the process. Use them.

Indeed, at first it may be difficult to remember where everything is and what all the keyboard shortcuts are but, over time, with practice, it will become natural.

Finally for more articles and guides like this one, keep your eyes peeled in the coming weeks as we dive deeper into the world of Premiere Pro CC. Coming up, we’ll be covering:

Josh Edwards
Josh Edwards
Filmmaker. 25. I have a real passion for travel and documentaries

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