More and more editors are working from home, but is this a good thing for the Editor, the Producer, the Director or the film? Freelance Editor and ProductionBase member, Guy Ducker, takes a look.
As I write, I’ve just had my first day’s work outside my flat in about four months (thank you to the good people of I-Motus). It’s not that I’ve been idle during these months: I’ve just had an unusually long run of jobs where I’ve been cutting from home on my trusty iMac. I’d joined the ranks of the stay-at-home editors (emendator domesticus). This phenomenon is comparatively recent. It’s been theoretically possible for some time: we’ve been able to run Final Cut Pro from a consumer Mac for many years and Avid Media Composer (my preferred weapon) released an affordable ‘software only’ version in 2006. But what has made the real difference is the sudden dominance over the last two or three years of cameras that record straight to hard drive. No longer do editors need hefty tape decks and expensive interfaces to get the pictures in and out of their editing machines. If you have a system set up at home, you hardly need to lift yourself from your chair. The material comes to you on a drive, and the finished cut can be returned on the same drive or via an FTP site. If you like, you can even avoid meeting the producer and director – uploading cuts direct to Vimeo or similar sites, so they can watch them without leaving their homes. Filmmakers might never need to leave the house again.
But is this a good thing?