Here are a few suggestions to help you create the best video possible without a professional production crew or equipment.
- Choose a setting where you can sit comfortably, preferably with some depth behind you (avoid placing yourself up against a wall).
- Avoid having a light source or open window behind you.
- If you shoot with your living space behind you, de-clutter the background so as to limit any distractions for the viewer. This can be the most visually interesting choice for your setting, but if it’s messy, it can have the opposite effect.
- If you choose to shoot in front of a blank wall, consider hanging a sheet or fabric to create an interesting texture. Avoid very dark colors, or you’ll look like a floating head.
- Natural light is best, so plan to shoot during daylight hours. Find a window and position yourself near it (avoid direct sunlight hitting you).
- Depending on how much natural light is available in your home, turn on additional lights as well.
- If you record yourself often, consider purchasing a halo light. There are many affordable options that will make lighting your face easy.
- Turn off A/C and fans, close any open windows and silence any alerts or alarms that may go off during your best performance.
- Most smartphones have reasonably good cameras. If you have an iPhone, in Camera settings choose 4K at 24 fps, under the “Record Video” options.
- If you have a tripod, great, but if not, stack books or boxes to position the camera ever-so-slightly above eye level.
- Always shoot in landscape orientation.
- If you are propping your phone up, it helps to wrap a wide rubber band around the outside of the phone to create a grip-able surface.
- When positioning yourself, try to have your eye-line about two-thirds of the way up the frame. Six feet from the camera is a good distance.
- Avoid patterns with fine lines as this can create a “moire effect”, where the fabric appears to “jump” around in your finished video.
- Solid colors are always a safe choice.
- Make sure you’re comfortable in whatever you choose to wear.
- Be sure to know exactly what you want to say and take some time to rehearse it several times before shooting your video. The more comfortable you are, the better your delivery will be.
- Speak clearly and project your voice naturally.
- Don’t be afraid to move! Most people tend to “talk” with their hands when they’re telling a story. This will help you deliver a relaxed, natural message.