So we all love editing, that’s why we chose this major, but sometimes we are in a hurry and need to export a video asa fast as we can. Although hanging in Axinn basement until 4AM may just be your “thing”, I want to make sure that you can get out of there quicker if it isn’t. So with that in mind here are some helpful Premiere Pro keyboard shortcuts. I’ll link a list of all possible shortcuts here, but I don’t want to overwhelm you all, so for now here are the ones I use most frequently.
Most of you have probably used this one already or have figured out that it is the same as Microsoft Word and many other programs, but I want to be safe. This may be the single most used command for me. It is an all purpose undo command that will revert all actions you have taken for up to roughly 50 actions. So if you thought you were deleting one clip and accidentally deleted multiple, do not panic. Ctrl + Z will get you out of many sticky situations.
Up/Down on the Arrow Keys
Up will take your playhead to the next cut and down will take your playhead to the previous cut. Sounds super simple, but most people don’t discover this until using Premiere Pro for a few months. It’s a great way to move through your timeline and check your work. Also just great for helping you start playing from a specific moment like the start of a scene.
If you press on its own, it moves the playhead to the start of the timeline. It’s a very simple and intuitive shortcut that is often overlooked in tutorials. Dragging your playhead through all the way back through a laggy timeline can waste a lot of time over the course of a project.
If you don’t know this yet, it’s a game changer. This does what’s called a “ripple delete”. Essentially if you delete a clip that is sandwiched in-between two other clips, this command will bridge that gap and bring close the black space that you would create had you simply deleted the clip. The time I spent editing projects decreased dramatically after finding out about this command and its cousin, Ripple Trim (Ctrl+drag), which does the same thing when you shorten existing clips.
Alt + Arrow Keys
Use this when selecting a clip to move it one frame at a time. This is super handy when you want to get your audio just right in relation your footage. It also saves you from having to zoom in and painstakingly move your mouse to just the right spot.
Hitting “G” allows you to adjust the gain (volume) of an audio clip. It even preselects the box, so you can simply enter how many decibels you want the clip to increase/reduce by. All in all very hand for quicker editing.
CTRL + R
Allows you to adjust a clip’s speed to create an over-cranking/under-cranking effect. This saves you a good bit of time scrolling through a drop down menu or the effects tab.
There are many more shortcuts out there that I encourage you to explore, but if you are new to using Premiere Pro, this is a good start. I kid you not when I say that if you implement these commands as a beginner, you can cut down your editing time by a third. If you intend to edit for a client, a big selling point can often be the speed with which you can turn around a high quality video. I know it’s a lot to remember when all your attention is on editing, but try and time yourself when editing projects. Note the time, try to implement more shortcuts or a better workflow on the next project and see what can help you save time without compromising on quality.