The art of video making
“Television won't last because people will soon get tired of staring at a plywood box every night.”
-Darryl Zanuck, executive at 20th Century Fox, 1946.
I’ve always found this quote amusing. Even though it’s over 70 years old, it’s a reminder that despite all the technological advances, our love of box staring still burns brightly today.
When I first started getting interested in video it was difficult to make your own. PCs weren’t household items, and my only exposure to camcorders was in the Argos catalogue. To share videos you had to connect two VCRs together, make the copy, and then lend the tape to your friends.
But gone are the days when you needed expensive equipment and a TV network to broadcast your ideas and stories. In 2017 85% of UK adults owned or had use of a smartphone and 90% of households in Great Britain had internet access. An internet connected smartphone is all you need to get started on creating and broadcasting video content.
Video has become an increasingly popular way to digest content. According to YouTube, 1 billion hours of video is viewed every day on its platform. If you were to sit and watch a billion hours of video, it would take you over 100,000 years.
Personally, Vimeo and YouTube have been great tools for me. I’d like to say I’m self-taught in videography, but the good people of the Internet are my real teachers. Video websites as well as blogs have been an invaluable resource for me. Here are some blogs and channels that I’ve found particularly helpful:
I often get asked for advice on starting out in videography. There are a lot of things that come to mind. But having thought extensively about it, my best and most productive advice (and this applies to a lot of aspects in life) is to simply go out and do it. Remember that there will always be an excuse not to do it.
You can make videos about anything, and it doesn’t have to be the most interesting subject matter - I recently made a video about pancakes being tossed.
Start by going through your phone’s photo folder and looking at what photos you’re already taking. Maybe they’re landscapes, cats, friends, holidays etc. The next time you go to take a photo, stop and stick your phone into video mode instead. Sure, you’re unlikely to create anything Oscar-winning, but it’s to get your feet wet and most importantly to have fun.
I’ve been running video workshops within Digital and the wider business at DLG to give people a better understanding of the video making process. The hope is to empower people to go out and make their own videos. I go through basic video principles, planning, composition, equipment and editing.
When coming up with the idea of running the workshop, I initially thought it would be a good idea to make a video about how to make a video. People would be able to reference the video when they needed to. However, I didn’t want people to just passively take in the information. I’m a firm believer that the best way of learning is by doing, so in the workshop I get people to make a video about how to make a video.
Here’s a short mashup video of what people on my workshop have come up with.
So, if you fancy making a video or are just interested in the process, get in touch and I’ll sort something out.