Plan your shoot
1. Start with a script.
You should have thought through the creative process to determine what is possible. Now, we need to get to work. Write down what you want to say. This is NOT the time to “wing it.” You don’t want to have blank areas, stutter or anything else that takes away from the video. This will become your “audio”.
2. Types of video.
If you have no idea what kind of video to make, start with an “about me” video. This tells your audience why you’re making videos. In addition, grab your brainstorm list from “Video Creativity” or start a list now. Your videos need to have relevant content, provide a reason why someone should follow you, explain what you’re giving away (or selling) or even about your product or service.
3. Plan your shots.
From “Video Creativity”, jot down the shots you want to include? Perhaps a few photos? Sketches you’ve done? Put these items in your script so you know when you’re “doing” something.
4. Scout locations.
If you want to shoot your video on location or even just want to add some standard footage, find places that you can shoot. You’ll need to research the location. Some places require permission to record certain items and / or locations.
You may want to include people in your video. To protect yourself, ask that they sign a form stating you can use their image. If your actors are under 18, you’ll need a signature of their parent or guardian.
It is hard to record and appear in a video. You may want to find someone you can trade time or skills in exchange for their help. This could include lunch at a really nice restaurant or a gift card to the local movie theater. In addition, you may find someone locally who is a whiz at editing who can save you hours of frustration. Ask around to find someone who can help you.
Sketch out what you want to do throughout the video. You’ll include all the work from the above four steps. You should have a “storyboard” for each frame of a scene or when the camera changes.
You may find a location looks better in the early morning or your best friend can’t help on Friday because of a conflict. Create a schedule to make sure everything comes together.
9. Batch record.
It takes time to set up and get ready to record. Planning to shoot two, three or more videos at the same time can save you a lot of set-up and tear-down time. Try to group your video recording sessions.
10. Host sites.
So, are you planning on uploading your video? If so, you’ll need to make sure you take into consideration the requirements of the site from the formats it will accept to the length of video allowed on sites such as Vine. Compare video host sites for your video.
Recording Video: Time for Tech
11. Digital cameras, webcams, smart phones and more.
You need to record your video. Yes, I hear the “duh” in the background.
Most digital cameras come with features to do video. Webcams are better if you’re planning to sit in one spot. Of course, you can also record your video on your phone, camcorder or other device as long as you can get it onto your computer. Practice with your “camera” to determine its strengths and weaknesses. Check out to see what others say about it and solutions to its shortcomings.
You’ll need a way to keep your shot steady. Don’t think holding onto the camera will do it. Not only will the shot by shaky, it will also be poorly framed. If you move, you may be out of the shot.
There are ways to have your camera automatically follow you if you don’t have a helper. For example, there are video apps that are motion activated as well as hardware that will allow your camera to follow you as you move. Explore what you can do to automate your video process.
Do not use the on-board microphone on your camera /phone. You need an external microphone. Wired mics will restrict your movement but are a lot cheaper than wireless ones. Examine the possibilities and choose a good one.
Good lighting improves the quality of your video. You want your audience to see your face and connect with you . . . they can’t do that if they can’t see your face clearly. Look at videos online to see the difference between a well-lit and badly lit video.
15. Editing software.
You have video, audio and it looks good. You still need to edit it. You need to add in opening screens, closing screens, audio intros and more. This step will take the most time. Explore various editing software packages. Ask others what they recommend.
16. More accessories.
There are many more accessories you can add to your arsenal. Steps 11-15 are the basics you’ll need to create your own videos. Start with those. Then, add the accessories you feel you must have.
Sites to Explore
- jameswedmore.com – or – www.youtube.com/user/jameswedmore