Creating a video in this day and age can be quite easy, especially with the help of someone young and hip! Creating a good video with some production value takes a little bit of know-how. Here are just a few tips to help you produce a video like the pros!
Make sure that your subject has source lighting (like the sun, or a bright, diffused light) shining on them…not behind them, otherwise all you will see is a dark shadow. This can be uncomfortable for the subject, if he/she is looking directly into the sun…but we have a trick for that, which we will address in a later post 😉. Harsh lighting is tough. If you can shoot early in the morning or late in the afternoon (or ideally on a cloudy day) your subject will not have harsh shadows and will look much more professional. That is why we in the biz call these times of day “magic hour”. As professionals we like to use diffusion, such as silks, to accomplish this nice even lighting, however most people who are trying their hand at video making won’t have this equipment at their disposal.
Many times we will use a small back light to highlight and define the subject, adding dimension and bringing the subject to the forefront. Without good lighting, your image can look flat and lack that POW of a professionally produced piece. You can achieve this, it just takes a little thought and planning.
Perhaps one of the most important, and overlooked, aspects of a great video is…great audio!! This can also be a bigger hurdle to overcome than just positioning your subject in the right spot, as in the case of lighting.
If you can use a microphone that runs through your camera, GREAT! Remember that the closer you are to the mic, the better. However this is usually not achievable unless you have some pretty sophisticated equipment. One way to get around the audio issue is to get in a quiet place with very little competing noise and introduce yourself and your video as you are on camera. Then cut away to close-ups, stills, or whatever you may be featuring in your video (without you being on camera) and record a voice-over to tell your story, in a quiet, noise-controlled environment.
It is best to record audio in a room with lots of furniture, carpeting and/or drapes…it helps to cut down on the echo!
This one can be the toughest to accomplish! A good editor is not just finding a good editing platform. Editing really is an art form! There are so many nuances, and so many options and tools. There are some tricks and tips for using just still images and voice over or music that can still make for a very clean, nice video, even directly from your phone. Since there are so many options, I suggest you google the platform you are using (iphone, windows, galaxy, etc) and “how to create a slideshow”.
Don’t hesitate to reach out to us here at Mercury Film & Television! We are here to help!