Video & Photography Tips
What's the best location?
The best location is usually not what people think. The darker the better and away from windows and foot traffic works best. When you are near windows, the light outside may change during your shoot, and the light color may be different from the color tempature of the lights being used.
Additionally, more space is better, and it's best to have carpeting or other "soft" surfaces around if you are doing video. Soft surfaces like carpeting helps to reduce echoes and your audio will sound better. So the trade off is usually between space and light, but if you have to make a choice, go with the quieter location.
You've selected the location, but can you hear that?
Ambient noise, this is for video only. Once you have one or two locations selected for your shoot, walk into the room at the time of day you plan to do your shoot. Most of the time you are not aware of how much noise the air conditioning makes, or how loud the outside traffic is, or how far peoples voices carry throught the office. Depending on what you find, it may change your mind about where to have your video shoot. What will help with ambient noise that can't be eliminated, is to ask the on-camera person to speak louder. This will make make all other noise appear to be much softer.
Timing is everything?
Remember, if you plan to do a shoot at 10am, and you check the location at 6pm, there may be ambient light and noise that will be present in the morning that are not there during the evening. Just something to consider as you pick your location.
What about HD video?
With all of the different cameras out there, types of footage, type of formats, can't I just request for "HD Video" for my project or event? No, HD video cameras come in many shapes and sizes and you may not be getting the best video just by saying HD. For example, HDV cameras are technically "HD" but no where near as good as the HD cameras we use. To read more about HD Video, clicl here.
For photography and video, solids always look better, and you want to stay away from prints (flower type designs), logos, words/phrases, and even pin stripes. You also want to know what will be behind you, so if you know it is going to be bright, perhaps you should consider a darker jacket, and vice versa.
Tele-prompters & Voice-overs, when do I use them?
When you have on screen speakers, other than testimonials, you should always use a teleprompter because your project will feel more "polished". Often, you will have to do several takes of the same speaking parts, and the editing will be much easier if you are repeating the exact same lines, versus varying what the speaker says.
How many cameras should I request?
Normally a single camera works just great, and it keeps the budget from expanding too much. However, the larger the event, the more important it is to have a second camera. If you are looking for a more creative and interesting look to your project, having a second camera can give you additional camera angles so your project doesn't look so stagnant.
What should I expect if kids are involved?
This is easy one, problems. Whenever kids are involved in any project - WORK AROUND THE KIDS. What time of day are they are their best, that is when you should aim to have your shoot. Once a child gets tired, frustrated, hungry, or bored, there is almost nothing you can do to get them to turn around. A lot of parents spend a lot of energy trying to get them to behave like an adult, with little success. That is why when you have kids as part of a photo or video shoot, plan ahead so you are getting them at their very best.
What if our budget is tight?
You are in luck, this is what we do best. We will work with you ahead of time to find the best balance between cost and production quality. We can tell you when to spend a little extra, for example, a professional voice-over will always make your project feel more polished. We can also tell you where we can cut some corners, for example, use one camera person and have them on location a little longer, versus, have additional production personnel. For smaller projects you don't necessarily need an audio and lighting crew, you just need someone who works well under pressure and knows what they are doing - in other words, you need Digital Take.