Video Production For Free

As times have changed technology has made creating a quality video much more attainable for the beginner videographer aspiring to create his/her great film. We will cover a broad overview and establish a great starting point to your career or hobby. All video productions home or professional should follow the same three-part process. Pre-production, production and post-production is the process that must be followed to successfully create your video. We will simplify each phase, but please keep in mind every part of video production can require a level of understanding that can become overwhelming for an individual. We will provide basic understanding that will enable anyone to produce a good film, for a modest or free budget. Lets get started, so that you may begin your professional or home video. Time to create.

Pre-production

Preproduction is the planning stage of your project similar to a game or business plan. Here is where you set your goals and cover how you will accomplish them. This is the most important phase and will determine the success of your project. If done diligently it will allow a production to run smoothly, achieve its goals and reach its potential. First lets determine your goals and what you hope to achieve with your video. Naturally we must ask and answer some questions at this point. What kind of project will it be? (Informative, Horror) What is the purpose of this video? (Marketing, entertainment) Who is your audience? (Clients, general public) What is your audience knowledge level? (Adults, children) What format is needed for your video? (Interview, story based) What style is needed? (Formal, informal) Make sure to match your style and format appropriately. Define available resources, outline your budget if one exist, schedule talent and locations. Depending on your budget a professional camera would be the first option, but several retail camcorders can produce a decent quality picture for your video output. If purchasing a camera is not in your budget try borrowing, but do remember the responsibility that comes with using some else’s valuable equipment. Answer all of these questions plus any others that you feel may apply to your project and create a good plan. Let your creativity loose at this point then begin your research and gather all relevant information. Think about elements that will improve your production (e.g. a fan clapping and screaming, for reaction if filming a live performance).

Tip: If you need to write a script, keep your sentences short and simple.

Production

Production is the recording, and everything associated with capturing the video/audio feeds (input). As you can imagine this is the meat of your production. Your audience viewing experience will be determined here; this will require patience and practice in order to master. Enjoy experimenting at this point, but if your shots require other people time and talent please be considerate and avoid losing valuable resources. First get acquainted with your camera, remember the manual is your friend and will most likely be user friendly. Now lets avoid some beginner mistakes and shorten your learning curve with some:

Filming tips

1. Avoid zooming in and out too much if, or when you do it make sure it is done slowly.
2. Keep shots steady use a tripod if possible or at least brace against something. (E.g. your knee)
3. Where are you? Keep your background in mind a landmark will tell your viewers where you are and can bring depth to your shot.
4. Keep your video clips short an audience can get bored quickly.
5. Lighting is the most important factor of creating a quality shot while numerous techniques exist, for multiple scenarios. Three point lighting will be versatile enough to fit most scenarios. If a lighting kit is not in your budget then keep a light source behind you and make use of natural light. (Properly lighting a scene can become very complicated and require its individual article, coming soon)
6. Always film from multiple angles; be sure to experiment with this it will improve your production.
7. Learn from the professionals look at your favorite movies & videos from the Director of Photography point of view.
8. Always check your audio keep video production atlanta your subject within three feet of your microphone.

Tip: Lighting is measured by temperature, if recording outside film early morning or late afternoon.

Post-production

Post-production mainly consist of compiling all your raw recorded footage and manipulating it with some non-linear editing software. You will need a computer with editing software, a storage device and a video capture device (you can use your camera with the right accessory). With the advances in technology this is another tool that can be attained at a reasonable rate or absolutely free. Final Cut in my opinion is the most powerful retail software, but again if you have a PC, Windows Moviemaker should already be installed and iMovie for Macs either software will suffice. Decide on a main or master clip for each shot and use “cutaways”(E.g. different angles of the same shot) to enhance your video. When editing, make sure your audio is synced with your main video and consider your audience attention span. Experiment with effects, but find a favorite or two and don’t over use. Your audience will grow tired of effects very quickly and most don’t survive the test of time. Attention to detail will avoid many editing mistakes remember to keep your clips organized and create a system. Once again keep your software manual close.

Tip: Use a static shot as your main clip and keep it interesting by including other clips. The average person attention span is approximately 30 minutes.

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