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Avid Agility: Working Faster and More Intuitively with Avid Media Composer, Second Edition Paperback – April 19, 2011


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Avid Agility: Working Faster and More Intuitively with Avid Media Composer, Second Edition + Some Cutting Remarks: Seventy Years a Film Editor (The Scarecrow Filmmakers Series) + In the Blink of an Eye Revised 2nd Edition
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 250 pages
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (April 19, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1460985451
  • ISBN-13: 978-1460985458
  • Product Dimensions: 8 x 0.6 x 10 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,323,950 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"The most ambitious and comprehensive book on Avid Media Composer I've read. Much more than an operating manual or how-to -- like having a seasoned pro sitting next to you, revealing his trade secrets. Avid Agility will make you a better editor, guaranteed."
-- Jonathan Moser, Post Magazine

"The quickest path to becoming a Media Composer Jedi Master. Cohen has written a clear, comprehensively-illustrated and easy-to-understand guide -- a bible on advanced editing with Avid Media Composer. This book is essential reading!"
-- Lawrence Jordan, founder, 2-pop.com & HollywoodReinvented.com

"A definitive book about the Media Composer environment. May well be the ultimate book on customizing Avid's unique capabilities for individual creative editing."
-- Ray Zone, Editors Guild Magazine

"An easy read, logically laid out, and useful to novice and experienced editor alike. I highly recommend this book."
-- Frank Capria, Consulting Designer, Media Composer, Avid Technology

"Steve Cohen has taken his decades of experience editing on Avid and distilled them into a very readable, incredibly illustrated book. Consistently delivers magical little tricks that make you say, 'I wish I'd known that yesterday!'"
-- Steve Hullfish, Avid Master Editor, colorist, author of five books.

About the Author

Steve Cohen has been a pioneer in non-linear post-production, editing one of the first Avid TV movies (HBO's "Teamster Boss") and then going on to edit the first studio feature to use Avid's Film Composer ("Lost in Yonkers") while helping to develop the company's 24-fps software. He remained closely connected with Avid for many years and eventually cofounded the Avid Editors Advisory Committee, a group of prominent editors that advises Avid about software features. He has worked as a teacher throughout his professional life and was the first chairman of the editing department at the American Film Institute, the first school in the U.S. to offer an MFA in editing. He later helped create, and was the publisher of the Editors Guild Magazine. His book, "Avid Agility," now in its third edition, evolved out of his deep involvement with the development of the Avid system.

His credits include, "Before the Rains," "Material Girls," "The Prince and Me," "15 Minutes," "Blood and Wine," "Three Wishes," "Angie," "Rambling Rose" and "No Man's Land," as well as many pilots and TV movies, including several in the Jesse Stone series. He received an Emmy for "LBJ: The Early Years," an American Cinema Editors Eddie Award for "Don King: Only in America," and A.C.E.'s distinguished Robert Wise Award for writing about editing. He blogs at splicenow.com.

More About the Author

Steve Cohen has been a pioneer in non-linear post-production, editing one of the first Avid TV movies (HBO's "Teamster Boss") and then going on to edit the first studio feature to use Avid's Film Composer ("Lost in Yonkers") while helping to develop the company's 24-fps software. He remained closely connected with Avid for many years and eventually cofounded the Avid Editors Advisory Committee, a group of prominent editors that advises Avid about software features. He has worked as a teacher throughout his professional life and was the first chairman of the editing department at the American Film Institute, the first school in the U.S. to offer an MFA in editing. He later helped create, and was the publisher of the Editors Guild Magazine. His book, "Avid Agility," now in its third edition, evolved out of his deep involvement with the development of the Avid system.

His credits include, "Before the Rains," "Material Girls," "The Prince and Me," "15 Minutes," "Blood and Wine," "Three Wishes," "Angie," "Rambling Rose" and "No Man's Land," as well as many pilots and TV movies, including several in the Jesse Stone series. He received an Emmy for "LBJ: The Early Years," an American Cinema Editors Eddie Award for "Don King: Only in America," and A.C.E.'s distinguished Robert Wise Award for writing about editing. He blogs at splicenow.com.

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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Had to buy for class and i find it a Great book for beginners.
A. Martinez
Cohen's personal philosophy of editing is as much an ingredient of the book as these concise explorations of the editing system.
flashcutter
Even when I work with Media Composer for quite a number of years, this book opened new horizons.
Joachim Claus

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By flashcutter on April 27, 2011
Format: Paperback
I haven't met Steven Cohen, but after reading his book, Avid Agility ($36.88), I feel like I have. Cohen was a pioneer in nonlinear editing, cutting the first studio feature to use Avid (Lost in Yonkers). He's taught at the AFI, was publisher of the Editor's Guild magazine and co-founded the Avid Editor's Advisory Committee. And, now, he's published the most ambitious and comprehensive book on Avid Media Composer I've read. (Avid should include this with every Composer system sold).

This book could have had a number of other titles: "Avid Demystified," "Avid Revealed," or "Flying with Avid." I can promise you one thing... should you get this book, and I highly advise you do if you're a Media Composer editor, rookie or old pro, "Avid Agility" will make you a better editor, guaranteed.

This is much more than a operating manual or how-to -- it's like having a seasoned pro sitting next to you, revealing his trade secrets, explaining and enlightening you, all for the cost of a book.

In 236 jam-packed pages, Cohen has managed to take us on a very personalized trip through an admittedly complex and often baffling tool that has had its share of supporters and detractors. He shows us tips and tricks, shortcuts and gotchas, and reveals secrets that explain in concise and colorful prose and illustrations the versatile ways Media Composer can and should be used. He explains it in a straightforward manner that doesn't talk down or overcomplicate understanding.

Frankly, it's no secret that we editors are often stingy with our secrets and methods... admittedly, it's one of our worst traits, mea culpa.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Joseph V. Polletta on June 25, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Originally bought the book because it had Avid 5.5 updates.It had that and more. Came across a few shortcuts and tips that I'd forgotten. A quick read for someone who already has knowledge of Avid.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is an excellent guide. Mr Cohen has produced an astonishing compendium of what's what with the Avid system. I can't recommend it enough.

How much mileage you get out of it will depend of course on your own knowledge; but writing as someone who has used MC for over ten years and is diligent about exploring computer interfaces thoroughly, I can honestly say that I still found something useful on every page.

Mr Cohen's book is not a comprehensive technical guide in the way that Avid's own manuals are. There are no endless cross-referenced procedural lists; no unfathomable indexes. Instead it feels like a private one-on-one, in which a very organised and experienced editor sits down and says, "Look, did you ever try this?... or this?..." It's really a boon to other editors to have someone like this walk you through the Avid interface in such detail.

Thankfully, the layout of the book is also excellent, which makes it a pleasure to browse through. It is printed on high quality paper, and is well illustrated in full colour, with clear pictures and diagrams spaced nicely so that information is clear and easy to take in. There are no pages stuffed with boxes and variable fonts, which are often a blight on guides about computers and IT.

The content is organised into general themes (timeline/trims/media consolidation, so forth) so if you want to go straight to tips on timeline organisation, as I did, then it's all present in one chapter. Though I found some parts to be more eyeopening than others, everyone's experience and knowledge will be different. In this respect, I would ignore the reviewers on here who have nitpicked it for stating things they already knew. Mr Cohen intends his book for all Avid users, and as such it is accessible to Pros and newcomers alike.

Overall, a fantastic and much-needed book for editors, and a tremendous value.

(***This version of the book covers Avid up to version 5.***)
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I recently moved from Final Cut Pro after 6 years of daily use to Avid.

I had seen the interface for Media composer before, downloaded the trial version many times but never feel confortable enough to use as fast as I was wanted, mainly for the lack of knowledge about the tools. After struggling for a few days i decided to look for a good book that would help me learn it fast.

Amazon's search directed me to Steve's book and, after reading the lessons and using the Avid, I feel extremely confident about my skills and the amazing tools Media composer has to offer.

Highly recommended.
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