Since 2001 when the first camera phone was introduced to the world, the amount of pictures and videos being taken on a day to day basis has skyrocketed. And with the introduction of apps like Instagram, Facebook, and Snapchat, the sharing of those photos and videos has become crucial to how you and your brand are perceived by your customer. As I have written on the subject of improved photography for social media, I thought it was time that I give a few pointers on how to get the most out of your smartphone videos.
1. Lighting is EVERYTHING
I preach this platitude to my co-workers, as well as everyone I meet, on a daily basis. As you can see in the gif below, the direction of the light alone can affect how a person looks entirely, and that’s only one factor of lighting. The color of the light, as well as the amount of light, also have huge effects on the mood and tone of a video. Lighting is especially important to consider when using a smartphone as they don’t typically fare very well in dim lighting. Consider all of these when deciding on the location and feel of the video you will be shooting.
2. A Steady Hand
The average smartphone does not have optical image stabilization built into the camera, it is important that you adjust accordingly when filming with your phone. A steady hand can take your smartphone videos from amateur to professional, as seen in the gif below. Placing your phone on a stable surface such a table or a railing will help to make your videos more steady. If you are still having trouble churning out stabilized videos, consider upgrading to an iPhone 6s or a Samsung Galaxy Note 4, as they have built in optical image stablization, or running your video through an app such as Emulsio.
3. Take Advantage of the App Store
The app stores on both Android and Apple boast an unbelievable amount of applications to take your smartphone videos to the next level. The Top Camera app improves the overall functionality of your built in camera by adding a slow shutter mode and excellent High Dynamic Range (HDR) shooting, while apps like Youtube Capture and Vidify allow you to add music to your videos to give them a creative boost. There’s an app for almost everything you could want to do to your video, and they’re often cheaper than an application would be on your computer, if not free.
4. BE PREPARED
I can’t tell you the number of times I’ve been on/witnessed a shoot where the people involved have shown up without the props, scripts, or even a general idea of what they want to be shooting. They show up, then think to themselves, “Now what?”
I myself have been to blame a few times when first starting to shoot videos professionally, because it really does take a lot of consideration when planning to shoot a video. Simple things like making sure you have enough storage on your phone and that your phone is charged are fairly simple to remember and should be no-brainers. Other things to consider are the type of shots you want: what kind of story are you trying to tell? Do you want a wider framed shot to get more of the background into the video, to help set the scene? Or do you want a tighter shot on your subject to draw your viewer in? Planning out your shots will also help to streamline the process once you arrive at the shoot, as well having a script ready if you have speaking parts in your video.
Because smartphones are so readily available, using them to capture moments around you is easy, quick, and can elevate your brand to a new level that sometimes pictures and words alone can’t reach. To find out more about the type of videography services we provide, shoot us an e-mail at [email protected]!