Especially when you're working diligently to tell someone else's story. At a recent Editors’ Lounge panel discussion held in Burbank, Ca, some of today's leading editors discussed how to find inspiration, breaking through editors block, and how to gain editors’ muscle. In the Channeling The Muse installment of the Editors’ Lounge, panelists bypassed the usual technical discussion to find out creative techniques industry veterans use when summoning their “inner muse.”
Moderated by Debra Kaufman, Associate Editor at Creative Cow, the panel consisted of experts in the field of editing to include; Zack Arnold (editor, "Burn Notice," "Glee"), Ryan Case (editor/director on "Modern Family," "Brooklyn Nine-Nine"), Jay Lash Cassidy (editor, Silver Linings Playbook, Into The Wild) and Dan Lebental (editor, Thor: The Dark World, Iron Man 2 & creator of TouchEdit for i-Pad).
Editors block can often pose a real problem adding unwanted stress and stifling creativity, particularly when deadlines are looming. The panelist discussed how, it’s crucial to keep going and trust in the process itself. Many times, the inspiration will strike when you least expect it. “Being in pro mode is different from being in an inspired mode. What I find is that if I just keep going, filling in the edges of the puzzle, then suddenly it will just hit me on the true nature of what it is I want to do,” said Dan Lebental. “I also call this editors muscle. When you keep powering through until the inspiration hits.”
Deciding when the edit is ready for delivery is a tough call at best, particularly in the feature film world where workflows allow for more time and collaboration with the filmmakers. It can literally become a constant intellectual battle on what gets cut, and what doesn’t. “What’s interesting is you know you’re finished when whatever clever idea you had is spit back in your face,” said Jay Lash Cassidy. “The movie has life and it gets to a point where it starts rejecting you.” In the fast pace environment of television editing however, deadlines will typically make the call and the editor has to decide on their own if good enough is actually, good enough.
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