How to look good on camera | 5 things you need to know before the shoot
You’ve planned your shoot, hired your photography or video team, finagled friends & co-workers to appear on camera. Great! You’re ready to go, right? Almost. Whenever I’m working with clients I encourage them to consider these 5 things to dial up the images we create from a B to an A+. In some cases, addressing the items on this list can save your shoot from disaster. Let’s get started!
#1 What is the sound situation?
If audio is important to your video production, we need to make sure we’re in a location with as little background noise as possible.
Are we trying to shoot an interview next to a road with noisy trucks or in a room with loud air conditioning we can’t turn off?
Is there a lot of foot traffic?
Are there a lot of hard surfaces that can cause an echo? Bring a sound blanket (or a moving blanket) to reduce echo.
Even if you think you have the best microphones in the world, background noise can hurt your sound quality and distract your on-camera talent or interviewee.
#2 What’s the lighting situation?
The lights at your location may flicker. Sure, you may be able to minimize this in post, but that means more work and a question mark hanging over your head. Test out the house lights and play back on your camera, look out for flicker. Usually we turn off the house lights, and point a bright light at the ceiling, which mimics the look of overhead lights.
If you have a limited lighting kit, you may need a location with a little more ambient lighting. If you want to light from scratch, you’ll probably need more kit and you’ll have to make sure you can black out the room.
That brings us to our next consideration, windows.
Windows can add depth and light to your shots, but they also mean you’re at the mercy of a light source you can’t control: the sun.
Think about what direction the windows face. If they’re facing south that means you could have direct sunlight coming through all day.