November 9, 2011

5 Tips For The Perfect Video On A Budget! – Part 2

This is a continuation from our Part 1 post:

Tip #6 If your cousin is a video buff we can assume he knows how to compose a shot but if not here’s a guide. First he needs to look for the shot. Good shot composition uses the ‘Rule of Thirds.’ Think of the screen divided into a tic-tac-toe pattern. When framing a person the eyes should be on the top line and the center of their head on the left or the right line not dead center. A properly balanced shot will look professional.

Tip #7 He needs to tell your story. Be sure he understands the schedule of events and plan with him what you would like to have shot. Have him shoot in chronological order. For instance have him shoot an establishment shot of the church before the ceremony, then the interior and perhaps closeups of the flowers before he sets up for the ceremony.

Tip #8 Lighting is key. A small camera light for the reception is a good idea. There are inexpensive battery-powered LED lights. Hopefully he owns one. If not the video rental house is your friend. Anytime your outdoors is a good time to get some great shots using the sun as a light kit. If possible shooting in the morning or late afternoon when the sun is lower is best. When the sun is directly overhead, it casts unflattering shadows on peoples faces and everyone will look harsh, but if it’s a cloudy day you may be in luck! Indoors he should remember not to shoot anyone with a window behind behind them. The persons face will be lost in the mud. If possible he should ask them to move away from it.

Tip #9 If he is going to interview people be sure he asks permission before he starts shooting. He should stand as close as possible and ask the person to look at the camera not him even if he is asking the question. He should try to make the interview conversational. Since lavaliere microphones are cumbersome to clip on and off, it might be a good idea to use a wired hand-held microphone. No one minds if they are in the shot and they usually pick up better, both the one person and anyone nearby who chimes in, which can add to the fun of an interview.

Tip #10 Be sure he shoots plenty of b-roll. These shots can cover a multitude of sins when the tape is being edited. Suggestions for wedding b-roll include the cake, the invitation, a close-up of the bride and grooms hands with their wedding rings. He should follow the photographer’s lead on this and shoot what the photographer is shooting. It’s a big job. Be grateful to your cousin.

Bonus Idea
One idea if you have the budget is to buy flip cameras for every table. A card should be placed on the tables with simple operating instructions. Also on the card explain that closeup shots are best with this type of camera. This really expands the opportunities for embarrassing moments but also increases the chance to have some unique footage from your guests point of view. After the evening have the best man if he’s still sober collect the flash drives, then gift the flip cams to your wedding party. See it wasn’t that expensive after all when you factor in the cameras as their gifts. Be sure to save two for you. You’ll want them on the honeymoon.

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