I have been a videographer for over 16 years now, and I am constantly learning. In fact, today I learned how to use the barn doors to add a slash of light on a boring white background for interview purposes. Today I want to suggest some ideas for young aspiring videographers to enhance their craft of filmmaking. As a bonus, I asked my son who is an aspiring videographer the same question. We will get back to his answers in a bit.
You need to study. Study films, commercials, sitcoms, anything that has to do with video or film. Watch how the camera moves in each shot. Is the camera moving for a reason, and if so what is the reason? Sometimes you will see the camera move from a medium shot to a close-up, which may indicate that the story is becoming more personable. There could be many meanings behind the shot, it all depends on which story is being told. Look at the lighting of the film. Is the lighting very bright or is it low key? Low key lighting usually is used in dramas. The more you watch the more you can pick up on certain things. Read books that help illustrate the art of filmmaking.
Grab your video camera and practice. Test certain shots out, practice your lighting setup for an interview, or practice mic placement. I cannot stress practice enough. Pick a certain topic and create a short film about that topic. Use your passion to drive your storytelling. Believe it or not, muscle memory is a big part of getting the shot or not. What do I mean? Knowing each button on your camera like the back of your hand will help you to get quick shots that you need in stressed times. Your muscles get used to certain movements and the way you handle your camera. If your struggling to find the iris to iris down on a bright shot and the subject is no longer in your shot you just missed an opportunity. Get used to all the buttons and dials of all your devices, this will help you tremendously.
Top areas where your video can improve drastically
My son’s suggestions to young aspiring videographers is to make sure your shot is steady, and to concentrate on your story.
Go out there and start creating!
I have been working in television/media for over 16 years. My experience includes news photojournalist, editor, and storyteller. It is my belief that you have a chance to better your skills each time you pick up the camera. I strive to be better than I was yesterday.