Export to EDL/AAF/XML

Once a storyboard is done, there are several reasons to send it to a Non Linear Editing (NLE) system. It could be to complete the animatic in a real editing suite with a direct return on TV, or it could be to use it as a pre-editing map to replace the storyboard scenes with the final materials (shot in live action or rendered from a 2D or 3D software).

It is possible to export your storyboard project, and preserve the timing, motions and sounds edited with Storyboard Pro, directly to Apple Final Cut Pro using EDL or XML formats or to Adobe Premiere, Avid Xpress, or Sony Vegas using AAF format.

This section includes the following topics:

File Name Patterns When Exporting

File Name Patterns When Exporting

It is possible to define sequential file name patterns when exporting to Image Sequence, Bitmap, EDL, and AAF (movie files).

For example:%4s.%2p.%3f.%4F.tga

%4s => shot name on 4 chars (all export formats)
%2p => panel name on 2 chars (all export formats)
%3f => frame on 3 chars (Image Sequence and Bitmap)
%4F => global frame on 4 chars (Image Sequence Only)


% means it will be replaced by:

s (shot name)
p (panel number)
f (local frame number in panel)
F (global frame number in timeline)

The number in-between represents the minimum length to display it. If the text-value is shorter than this length, it will be left-padded by 0 (zero).

For example:

If the frame number is 48, and the user specifies the following in file name:

%1f = you will see "48" in file name.

%2f = you will see "48" in file name.

%3f = you will see "048" in file name.

%4f = you will see "0048" in file name.

This section will explain how to export your storyboard in EDL or AAF format, then how to import your project into a major NLE system.

To export a storyboard to EDL or AAF or XML:

  1. Select File > Export > EDL/AAF/XML.

The Export to EDL/AAF/XML dialog box opens.

  1. In the Destination Path, select a folder in which to save your storyboard project. You can type in the exact path or use the Browse button to browse to a specific folder on your system. You should create a folder for your exported project since Storyboard Pro will generate several files during the export.
  1. In the File Pattern field, you can set your own pattern which will be used to name the files created from the export. Leave this field blank to use the default pattern. The following variables can be used to define the file name pattern:
%t = Project title
%a = Act name (when acts are enabled)
%q = Sequence name (when project contains sequences)
%s = Scene name
%p = Panel name
%l = Layer name (when exporting one image per layer)

You can add a number between the % sign and the letter of the variable to define a minimum number of characters to use.

  1. In Export Type, select the format in which to store the timing information (timecode for panels and audio tracks). The format will be chosen depending on the destination application:
Application Format Notes:
Apple Final Cut Pro EDL: In EDL, if you are using audio elements more than once in the timeline, FCP will not be able to reconnect the media. AAF is supported in FCP with a plug-in from Automatic Duck. Final Cut Pro also supports XML.
Adobe Premiere Pro AAF (Windows)
EDL (Mac OS X) With EDL, media will have to be linked manually one by one. Premiere Pro on Windows cannot open AAF coming from Windows (and AAF is not supported on the Mac OS X version of Premiere Pro).
Avid Xpress AAF
NOTE: If your editing system is not in the list, check its specifications to verify which format can be imported.
  1. In the Options section:
Use the resolution drop-down menu to define the output resolution since you might not always need to export the storyboard at full resolution (you can select Full, Half or Quarter of a project’s resolution).
The One Movie Clip Per Panel option is useful if you want to export more than one QuickTime movie clip per scene (which might contain more than one panel) e.g. to obtain better granularity during editing since the storyboard will have smaller movie clips.
The storyboard scenes are exported in QuickTime format. Click Video Config. to configure the video settings (codecs, quality)—see Exporting a QuickTime Movie to learn more about the option available via the Video Config. button.
Generate Video Files: If you only need the EDL, AAF or XML files to be generated, you can deselect this option and no video files will be rendered.
Copy Audio Files: By default, during the export to EDL/AAF, the original sound elements used are copied to the same location as the QuickTime movie clip’s and the EDL or AAF file. If sound elements in the timeline are used more than once, the elements are not duplicated. The EDL/AAF refers to the same sound elements. You can deselect this option if needed.
  1. In the Export Range tab:

Decide whether you want to export the entire project (All), just a selected frame range, a selected scene, a selected panel, or tracked panels. If you decide on the latter, be sure to enter in the frame range in the fields provided. In the Scene Picker dialog box, you can select your scenes by sequence if your project contains sequences—see Tracking Changes.
  1. In the Burn-in tab:

Print Time Code: Prints the project timecode on the video as an overlay on your video.
Print Scene Names and Panel Numbers: Prints the scene names and panel numbers as an overlay on your video.
Print Panel Time Code: Prints each panel’s timecode on the video as an overlay on your video.
Print Additional Duration: Prints an additional duration on your video, defined by the Units and Repeat drop-down menu.
Units: Choose either you want the additional duration information to be displayed using Time Code or Frames units.
Repeat: Choose either you want the additional duration information to be the duration per Panel, per Scene or per Sequence.
NOTE: You can customize the font type, size, colour and location of the printed time code using the Preferences panel—see Burn-In.
  1. In the Camera Grids tab, do the following:

Project Safety: Prints the safe area on your video—see Safe Area.
4:3 Safety: Prints the 4:3 safe area on each panel of your storyboard that has a camera movement—see 4:3 Safety.
4:3 References: Prints the 4:3 area on each panel of your storyboard that has a camera movement—see 4:3 Safety.
  1. Select the Open document/folder after export option to view the file when it is ready.
NOTE: Refer to the third party software’s user guide to learn how to import and use the EDL/AAF/XML file.