Just as personal computers and the Internet have sparked the writer and publisher in everyone; camera enabled devices and social media are now making videographers and producers of us all. Video has not only become a part of everyone’s social life, it’s become a necessary skill in the public relations and marketing world.
Shooting and editing video has never been more accessible. Whether you use a laptop, tablet, phone, helmet, or glasses you have a video camera at the ready. With a little luck, you can capture the fun, happy, mundane or big moments in your life with ease. Where do you start when you need to shoot video in a professional capacity? A shaky camera and bad lighting may fly in coach, but a poorly shot video will lose its charm in business class.
Here are some simple tips to consider for your next video shoot:
Use a tripod if/whenever possible.
Position your subject (or yourself) a little to the left or right of center and leave a little headroom at the top of the frame.
For online video, avoid pans (horizontal movement of the camera) and zooms (focusing in or out using the zoom feature on the camera).
Don’t shoot your subject in front of a window or with the sun behind them, the best light source comes from behind the camera. If you happen to have a lighting kit - or even a few floor lamps - check out Media College’s illustrated guide to Three Point Lighting Technique.
Use the viewfinder on the camera to watch the interview at the same time that you look over the camera and make eye contact with the subject. This puts the subject at ease, gives him/her someone to look at and also makes the interview more natural-sounding.
If your subject will be looking off camera for cues, it will work best if you sit next to the camera and have your subject focus their attention towards you, not the camera, and you provide cues. This also helps put the subject as ease and makes the interview feel more natural overall.
Don’t make any sound at all when your subject is talking. Flipping pages, coughing, moving in chair, etc. can all get picked up by the camera’s microphone and will surely sound undesirable to viewers.
If your subject stumbles in their response, instruct them to relax, gather their thoughts and respond again. Make sure they do not feel rushed.
If your subject is willing, consider shooting multiple takes. When editing footage, it is always helpful to have multiple takes to choose from. If nothing else this offers your subject the opportunity to run through the process and to feel more at ease in subsequent takes.
Circle back after the shoot for Part 2, where I’ll discuss choosing a video editor and provide some helpful editing tips.
Have some helpful tips of your own? Please leave a comment below.
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PerkettPR offers digital production to support our clients’ initiatives and provides creative services from graphic and web design to online video production to support user-engagement campaigns for all social media platforms.
PerkettPR is pleased to share some recent examples of client digital production work from the past month as part of a new series showcasing our expertise in this area:
Photo Sharing Trends Infographic for Photobucket (client)
Infographic by PerkettPR showing results from a Photobucket survey which reveals a spike in mobile video and fanatical mobile app usage during 2011 holiday season.
A custom Facebook page created by PerkettPR for Aternity Inc., the industry leader in end user experience management solutions for Global 1000 enterprises. This custom page invites Facebook visitors to like their page; after liking the custom page thanks visitors and invites them to sign up for newsletter.
Video post-production of a conversation with John Green, Chief Information Officer, Baker Donelson, the nation’s 73rd largest law firm and customer of Aternity. John talks about Baker Donelson’s focus on End User Experience Management and their use of Aternity’s FPI Platform.