Competition Home


Helpful Hints


Technical Tips for Editing

Uploading your completed film to YouTube

Crafting your short film

Clearances & Copyright

1. Technical Tips For Editing


How to view and download the supplied footage


We recommend you view, select clips and write your edit script before you download and start editing. This will save you time and data usage as downloading can be a time consuming process (each clip will probably take you 20 - 30 minutes).


Downloading is as simple as a right click on the clip you have selected. But before you start downloading choose the correct format for your editing programme. You will need to consider the time it will take, available hard drive space and bandwidth. Make sure you have enough of each.


The clips are provided in two different formats so you should use the best format for your editing software.

  • MPEG-4: best for Final Cut, iMovie
  • AVI: best for Adobe Premiere, Windows Movie Maker

It is recommended that you download one clip first and put it into your software to check if it is the correct type.


If you are using another type of editing software not listed here, it is recommended that you download one clip of each format and put it into your system to check compatibility.


The clips are provided in a smaller resolution to make them easier to download for your use. They have been provided in a default size to ensure your edit software is able to easily recognize and play the clips.


The clips have a logo (watermark) in the bottom-right corner that you cannot remove.


Once you have downloaded the clips, you can import them into your new project.


Alternatively you can request a DVD with the footage in your preferred format.



Edit Settings


It’s very important to set up your editing software correctly before starting your editing timeline to prevent problems during editing and when exporting your completed film.


To maximise the workflow for your editing, make sure you set your timeline options to the following specs:


For MPEG-4 Format

Frame Size: 1024 x 576 (16:9)

Compressor: MPEG-4 Video

Frame rate: 24 fps

Data rate: 10,000 kpbs


For AVI Format

Frame Size: 1024 x 576 (16:9)

Compressor: AVI

Frame rate: 25 fps


You are able to cut, transform, colour, use any audio or video filter and transitions, record your own footage/music/sound, use text/animation, and/or modify the provided clips in any way that will help you to tell your story within the guidelines of the film competition.


Please note that these are only helpful tips. You may know how to change your edit software settings yourself; or know a better setting that is optimal for your editing process; or have a teacher or supervisor who can help you with the settings.


If you still need help with these formats, please email with the subject “HELP LAST OCEAN FILM COMPETITION”.




Before you upload your completed film to your YouTube Channel you must give your film a unique filename created by using the format: LO2011_team name_film title.


To Export your finished film for uploading to YouTube, it must be:


Format: H.264

Size: 1024 x 576 (16:9)


If you are unsure how to do this, please check out this link from YouTube’s Help Centre



2. Uploading your completed film to YouTube


Once you've finished making your film, you'll need to create an account on YouTube before you upload.


For Step-by-step Instructions see “How to upload a video to YouTube”

You can also go to How to Upload a Video to YouTube for a demonstration video.


Please note: It can take a several hours to upload a video to YouTube. Don't leave things to the last minute or you may be unable to submit the film on time.


On the registration form paste your URL into the correct box so we can find it and watch it!


Remember, you must upload your short film before midnight August 12, 2011.


3.Crafting your short film


The Last Ocean Charitable Trust wants to stimulate filmmakers and environmentalists to think about the values of the Ross Sea Antarctica and why it is worth protecting. We’re looking for compelling short film highlighting why the Ross Sea, Antarctica is special.


Do your research, write your story, then find the pictures that best tell that story. Short films often work best with a clear and simple storyline and less can be more. Most stories have a beginning, middle and end.


Once you have all your material gathered it’s useful to write an edit script - a guide to help you select shots and structure your short film - BEFORE you start editing. Graphics and other visual effects can improve understanding or increase impact.


Music and natural sound effects can add a lot to your film.


As your film nears completion it can be extremely helpful to ask someone with fresh eyes to give you a second opinion.




Research and brainstorm with others to spark ideas and creativity.


Some key ideas to explore include:

  • The Ross Sea’s unique wildlife
  • The pristine qualities of the marine ecosystem
  • Antarctic Treaty – a place for peace and science
  • State of the world’s oceans
  • Benefits of marine protection
  • New Zealand’s link with Antarctica

To find out more visit the Ross Sea and Marine Protection pages on the Last Ocean website.


Other useful websites:


Music & Sound


Music can create a sense of drama and emphasise emotion. Sound effects can help bring wildlife and landscapes to life. Placing music into your edit as you go can help guide the timing of your cuts.


There are several options available including:

  • Non-licensed music: compose and record music yourself, or commission someone to do it.
  • Copyright-free music from an online source, or create your own music using a programme containing loops and samples.
  • Published music which is anything you can buy in a record store, hear on the radio, or have in your own collection at home (but see Clearances & Copyright below).
  • Performing and recording your own version of public domain music.

We have available music for you to download  and use freely while making your short film if you so wish. The supplied music has been written and composed by Auckland based DJ/Producer Flex Webster and may not be used in any way other than in The Last Ocean Short Film Competition.


Creative Commons is a good place to look for free music and sound effects. Please read the Licenses Explained section to make sure you are accessing license free material


Other links to sites that have free sound effects:


Links to sites that have free music loops:


4. Clearances & Copyright


Before you choose music and special effects for your short film, you must ensure that it is legal for you to do so. Just because you own a CD does not mean you can use music on that CD in your video.


If you are using music other than that supplied on this website, written permission to use the music must be obtained (using our Music Clearance Form).


If you are using video footage, other than that supplied on this website, or photographs in your short film, permission to use the footage or photographs must be obtained (using our Supplied Material Permission Form).


You must have the right to record the image of any person (actor, presenter, interviewee, member of the public) used in your short film (An Appearance Release Permission Form is available on this website, and must be signed by a legal guardian if under 18).




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