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  • Writer's pictureKyle clark

DaVinci Resolve: Keypoints Explained and How to Use Them for Professional Video Editing

Updated: Jun 18, 2023



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Introduction

Welcome to the world of DaVinci Resolve, the industry-standard software for professional video editing. Whether you're a seasoned editor or just starting out, understanding the powerful features within DaVinci Resolve is essential to elevate your editing skills. In this article, we will delve into one such feature called "Key-points." We'll explore what they are, why they are crucial in video editing, and provide a step-by-step guide on how to effectively use Key-points in DaVinci Resolve to enhance your editing workflow.


What are Key-points in DaVinci Resolve?

Key-points in DaVinci Resolve refer to specific points in a video clip or timeline where you can manipulate parameters such as position, colour, or size. These points act as anchors that enable you to create precise changes or animations over time. By setting and adjusting Key-points, you can achieve seamless transitions, dynamic effects, and accurate control over various elements in your video.


Why are Key-points Important in Video Editing?

Key-points play a vital role in video editing as they provide you with the ability to bring life to your footage. With Key-points, you can create smooth transitions, apply colour grading effects, and control object movements with precision. They allow you to add a professional touch to your edits, enhancing the overall visual appeal of your videos.


Understanding the Different Types of Key-points

In DaVinci Resolve, you'll come across three primary types of Key-points: Position Key-points, Colour Key-points, and Size Key-points.


Position Key-points

Position Key-points allow you to manipulate the position or movement of an object within the frame. You can set and adjust Position Key-points to animate elements like text, graphics, or video clips across the timeline. With this feature, you can create eye-catching motion effects or control the movement of objects within a scene.


Colour Key-points

Colour Key-points enable you to make precise adjustments to the colour and tone of your footage. By setting Colour Key-points, you can selectively modify the brightness, contrast, saturation, and other colour parameters at specific points in time. This technique is particularly useful for achieving consistent colour grading or emphasising important visual elements within your videos.


Size Key-points

Size Key-points allow you to control the size and scale of an object over time. By adding Size Key-points to your timeline, you can gradually increase or decrease the size of an element, create dynamic zoom effects, or adjust the aspect ratio for specific scenes. Size Key-points provide flexibility and creative control over how your visuals are presented.


How to Use Key-points in DaVinci Resolve

Now that we have an understanding of the different types of Key-points, let's explore how to use them effectively in DaVinci Resolve.


Adding Key-points to Your Timeline

To add Key-points to your timeline, follow these simple steps:

  1. Open DaVinci Resolve and import your video clip or select an existing one from the media pool.

  2. Drag the video clip onto the timeline.

  3. Select the clip on the timeline and navigate to the Inspector panel.

  4. Locate the Key-points section within the Inspector panel and choose the type of Key-point you wish to add.

  5. Click on the desired point in the timeline to add the Key-point. Repeat the process to add additional Key-points at different points in time.

Adjusting Key-points for Precise Editing

Once you've added Key-points, it's important to know how to adjust them to achieve the desired effects:

  1. Select the Key-point you want to modify on the timeline.

  2. Use the intuitive controls provided in the Inspector panel to make adjustments to the position, colour, or size as needed.

  3. Move to different points in the timeline and adjust the Key-points accordingly to create smooth transitions or dynamic changes over time.

Applying Keyframe Interpolation for Smooth Transitions

To ensure seamless transitions between Key-points, it's essential to apply keyframe interpolation:

  1. Select the clip containing Key-points on the timeline.

  2. Right-click on the clip and choose "Show Animation Curve Editor."

  3. In the Animation Curve Editor, adjust the interpolation curves for smoother transitions between Key-points. Be mindful of the desired motion or visual effect you want to achieve.

Advanced Techniques with Key-points


Creating Dynamic Motion Effects

One of the exciting applications of Key-points is the creation of dynamic motion effects. By carefully setting Position Key-points and adjusting their timing, you can simulate camera movements, track objects within a scene, or add captivating visual elements to your videos.


Colour Grading with Key-points

Colour Key-points offer a powerful tool for enhancing your footage through precise colour grading. Experiment with setting Colour Key-points at different points in time to create captivating visual transformations, emphasise specific scenes, or achieve consistent colour tones throughout your video.


Controlling Object Size and Position Changes

Size Key-points are particularly useful for controlling the size and position changes of objects over time. Use Size Key-points to gradually zoom in or out of specific elements, adjust the aspect ratio for different scenes, or create dynamic visual effects that capture the viewer's attention.


Tips for Mastering Key-points in DaVinci Resolve

  • Start with simple projects and gradually experiment with more complex techniques as you become comfortable with Key-points.

  • Utilise the timeline zoom and navigation controls to focus on specific sections while setting or adjusting Key-points.

  • Take advantage of the various keyboard shortcuts available in DaVinci Resolve to speed up your editing workflow with Key-points.

  • Watch tutorials and learn from professional editors to discover unique ways to leverage Key-points in your editing process.


8 key things to know if you're using or choosing DaVinci Resolve

  1. Powerful Editing Capabilities: DaVinci Resolve is a feature-rich editing software that provides advanced editing tools, timeline customisation options, multi-camera editing, and real-time collaboration features. It offers a comprehensive suite of editing functions to cater to the needs of both beginners and professionals.

  2. Colour Grading Expertise: DaVinci Resolve is renowned for its industry-leading colour grading capabilities. It offers a robust set of colour correction tools, including colour wheels, curves, and powerful grading panels. With DaVinci Resolve, you can achieve precise colour adjustments, create unique looks, and maintain consistency across your projects.

  3. Professional Audio Post-Production: In addition to its video editing and colour grading features, DaVinci Resolve provides comprehensive audio post-production tools. You can import, edit, and mix audio tracks, apply effects and filters, and ensure high-quality sound in your videos. The software offers a seamless integration of audio and video editing capabilities.

  4. Efficient Workflow: DaVinci Resolve is designed to enhance your editing workflow. Its intuitive interface, customisable layouts, and powerful keyboard shortcuts allow for a smooth and efficient editing experience. The software also supports a wide range of file formats and offers optimised performance for faster rendering and playback.

  5. Collaboration and Integration: DaVinci Resolve enables seamless collaboration among team members. Its collaborative workflow tools allow multiple users to work on the same project simultaneously, making it ideal for projects involving editors, colourists, and sound designers. Moreover, DaVinci Resolve integrates well with other software and hardware, facilitating a streamlined post-production workflow.

  6. Support for Different Project Resolutions: Whether you're working on standard-definition projects or high-resolution formats like 4K or even 8K, DaVinci Resolve can handle it all. The software is highly optimised for various resolutions and supports the efficient editing and grading of high-quality footage.

  7. Extensive Effects and Transitions Library: DaVinci Resolve offers a vast collection of built-in effects and transitions to enhance your videos. From basic effects like blurs and transitions to advanced visual effects, you'll find a wide range of creative options to add flair to your projects. Additionally, DaVinci Resolve supports third-party plugins, further expanding your creative possibilities.

  8. Continuous Updates and Community Support: Blackmagic Design, the company behind DaVinci Resolve, consistently updates the software, adding new features and improvements. This commitment ensures that users have access to the latest industry-standard tools. Additionally, the DaVinci Resolve user community is active and supportive, providing resources, tutorials, and forums to help you learn and master the software.

By understanding these key aspects of DaVinci Resolve, you can make informed decisions when using or choosing the software, and fully leverage its capabilities to create professional-quality videos.


FAQs

How do I add a keyframe in DaVinci Resolve?

To add a keyframe in DaVinci Resolve, select the parameter you want to modify, such as position, colour, or size, and navigate to the Inspector panel. Click on the desired point in the timeline and adjust the parameter values. A keyframe will be automatically added at that point.


What is a keyframe in DaVinci Resolve 18?

In DaVinci Resolve 18, a keyframe represents a specific point in time where you set and adjust the parameters of an effect or animation. It allows you to create changes or transitions over time by manipulating the values of the selected parameters.


How do you see keyframes in DaVinci Resolve?

To see keyframes in DaVinci Resolve, right-click on the clip containing the keyframes and select "Show Animation Curve Editor." The Animation Curve Editor will display the keyframes and allow you to make adjustments to their values and timing.


How to do keyframes in DaVinci Resolve?

To create keyframes in DaVinci Resolve, select the parameter you want to animate, navigate to the Inspector panel, and click on the keyframe icon next to the parameter. Then, move to a different point in the timeline and adjust the parameter value. DaVinci Resolve will automatically create keyframes at the selected points.


How do you add a keyframe to a clip in DaVinci Resolve?

To add a keyframe to a clip in DaVinci Resolve, select the clip on the timeline, navigate to the Inspector panel, and choose the parameter you want to modify. Click on the desired point in the timeline and adjust the parameter value. DaVinci Resolve will add a keyframe at that point.


Which key is used to insert a keyframe in DaVinci Resolve?

In DaVinci Resolve, the key used to insert a keyframe depends on the specific action or parameter you're modifying. Generally, you can use the mouse or trackpad to click on the keyframe icon in the Inspector panel or use the associated keyboard shortcut specified in the software's documentation.


How do I choose a keyframe in DaVinci Resolve?

To choose a keyframe in DaVinci Resolve, select the clip or element on the timeline containing the keyframes. Then, navigate to the Inspector panel, locate the specific parameter with the keyframes, and click on the desired keyframe to select it. You can then make adjustments to the selected keyframe as needed.


How do keyframes work in DaVinci Resolve?

Keyframes in DaVinci Resolve allow you to set and adjust parameters at specific points in time. By creating keyframes and modifying their values, you can create animations, transitions, and effects that change over time. Keyframes serve as anchors for controlling various aspects of your video, such as position, colour, or size, and enable you to create dynamic and visually appealing edits.


Conclusion

Key-points in DaVinci Resolve provide a powerful set of tools that allow you to manipulate and enhance your videos with precision and creativity. By understanding the different types of Key-points and following the step-by-step guide provided, you can unlock endless possibilities for creating professional-looking edits. Embrace the flexibility and control offered by Key-points, and take your video editing skills to new heights with DaVinci Resolve.


 

Take Your Video Editing Skills to the Next Level


Congratulations on making it this far! You've taken a deep dive into mastering DaVinci Resolve. But remember, this is just the tip of the iceberg. Video editing is a vast and exciting field with endless possibilities for creativity.


If you found this tutorial helpful and you're eager to continue your learning journey, we're here to guide you every step of the way. We offer in-depth, personalised training sessions tailored to your unique interests and goals. We can help you explore the full potential of DaVinci Resolve and empower you to bring your creative visions to life.


Why not reach out to us for a demo session? Or, if you're not quite ready for that, Subscribe to our mailing list to receive a regular dose of video editing tips, blogs, and inspiration. We look forward to welcoming you into our community of passionate video creators!


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