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What are Flash Frames?

written by: Shane Burley•edited by: Rhonda Callow•updated: 11/20/2009

Learn about what Flash Frames are and how to fix them during Linear Editing.

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    Linear Editing Errors

    There are common mistakes that occur when performing film editing in the linear editing format. Since linear editing gives you over all less control than non-linear editing you are going to have to keep your eyes out for specific problems. Flash Frames are one of these common problems that occur when using film and are seen as special problems when performing linear editing with film.

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    Flash Frames in Film Stock

    A Flash Frame is something that can happen in the very beginning or very end of a specific shot in film. At the beginning or end of each shot you have the opportunity to have an overexposed single frame. This overexposure tends to happen because the film camera will finish while the shutter is still open. This Flash Frame can also occur because of a change in camera speed at the beginning or end of the shot. These Flash Frames will render those specific frames useless as they will have significant exposure errors.

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    Cut Out Flash Frames

    Flash Frames have to be cut out completely. Splice those Flash Frames out of the beginning or end of the shots. This is not going to cause much of a problem even though you will have to splice through an acceptable frame. Since it is going to be at the very beginning or very end of your shot this is not going to be obvious to the audience or break continuity. If it does you may still have to address that in the final edit.

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    Finding Flash Frames

    To find Flash Frames you should use a light box to go through them. A light box is used in linear editing to see strings of film individually so you can see what is on each frame. This is perfect for looking through your sequences to find any kind of linear editing errors. Look through the beginnings and ends of shots so that you can find where Flash Frames may have occurred. If you are linear editing on the fly and do not have a light box you can try putting them up against a normal light or bright white wall.

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    Surrounding Flash Frames

    If you find a very serious Flash Frames you may want to look around it. If a single frame is heavily over exposed it will likely show you other moderately overexposed ones near by. Try to cut them out as they are a cancer to your visual continuity.