Learning Resources

VILA – Tutorial – Final Cut Pro X

Below you find videos and written instructions on how to use the video editing software Final Cut Pro. This software is limited to Mac Os, and it has a one month free trial.

Complete playlist

1. User Interface

2. Buttons

3. Preferences

4. First Steps

  1. Create a new event by right clicking in the library window (see above). Click ‘New Event’. Name the new event and click ‘OK’.
  2. Create a new project in the new event by right clicking on the new event. Click ‘New Project’. Name the new project and click ‘OK’.
  3. Import media by right clicking in the project window. Click ‘Import Media’. Select the folder with the media you want to import. Select the media. Click ‘Import Selected’. Choose import options (e.g ‘copy to library’ and ‘create proxy media’). Click ‘OK’.
  4. Start editing your new video by double clicking your new project. Then drag a clip from the project window into your timeline window.

5. Cut & Trim


  1. Choose the ‘Blade’ tool from the tool menu above the timeline. (Your mouse should look like a blade)
  2. Click the part of the clip that you want to cut
  3. (if you made a mistake press ‘cmd + z’ to undo it.)


  1. Choose the ‘Trim’ tool from the tool menu.
  2. Hover the cursor over the beginning or end of a clip
  3. Click and drag the clip to make it shorter
  4. If you click and drag the clip longer, the frames you trimmed reappear again.

6. Crop & Transform

change position of clip, rotate & flip the clip, change scale of clip.

zoom in on a selection of the video, but keep same height and width (Trim = cut out selection of clip you want to see).

  1. To use either of these options right click in the preview window
  2. Select Transform or Crop
  3. Now there are dots and arrows around the preview screen.
  4. Drag the dots and arrows into the position you want.
  5. Click ‘OK’. (If you did something wrong use cmd + z to undo it).

7. Audio

Click the line across the audiowave in the clip and drag it up or down to change volume.

Right click on the clip. Click ‘Detach Audio’. You can now move and edit the audio separately from the video.

In the middle grey block on the right side you can click the music button to select audio files. You can drag and drop audio files into the timeline from there.

8. Export

Share video

  1. Click the ‘Share’ button.
  2. Select the format you want to export in.
  3. Click ‘Next’.
  4. Select a folder to save the file in.
  5. Click ‘OK’.

Share screenshot

  1. Click ‘Share’ button.
  2. Click ‘Add destination’.
  3. Double click ‘Save Current Frame’.
  4. Choose preferred image format.
  5. Close window.
  6. Select frame you want to export in the timeline.
  7. Click ‘Share’ button.
  8. Click ‘Save Current Frame’.
  9. Click ‘Next’.
  10. Select folder you want to save the screenshot in.
  11. Click ‘OK’.

9. Subtitles

  1. Click on the ‘T’ button (titles).
  2. Click lower thirds.
  3. Choose a layout.
  4. Drag and drop it into the timeline above the clip you want to have subtitles for.
  5. Select the ‘Title’.
  6. In the preview window, click on the textbox.
  7. Remove the existing text and replace it with your own.

10. Synchronisation

  1. Select the clips and audio you want to synch
  2. Right click and click ‘Synchronize clips’
  3. A new window opens, name the file and click ‘OK’
  4. A new clip appears in the project window
  5. Right click the clip and click ‘Open in timeline’
  6. The synchronized clips are now visible in your timeline

11. Multiple Angles

  1. Drag two clips in the timeline (one on top of the other)
  2. Select top clip
  3. Right click in the preview window
  4. Click ‘Transform’
  5. Drag, resize, rotate the clip in the preview window (now the other clips should be visible too)
  6. Click done

12. Anonymisation

  1. Click ‘Effect’ button
  2. Select ‘Censor’
  3. Drag and drop on the clip
  4. Move playhead to first censoring position
  5. Open the inspector to change size, pixelation etc. of the censor field
  6. Right click on clip and click ‘Show video animation’
  7. Go to ‘Censor’
  8. Choose ‘Center’
  9. Now click on ‘Modify’ at the top of the program
  10. Click ‘Add keyframe to selected effect in animation editor’
  11. Place the keyframe at the beginning of the censor bar
  12. Deselect the keyframe
  13. Find the frame where the person moves out of the censored area
  14. Add another keyframe
  15. Move the playhead to the next position
  16. Add another keyframe

Get an overview of the tutorial with the workshop handout for Final Cut Pro X.

Get in touch with VILA

Questions or comments? Do you wish to join the community? Or do you want to get started with a workshop or a meeting?

Please get in touch with Jacob Davidsen, community lead in VILA.