Home Movie Film School: What to Shoot

I'm Casey, your Home Movie Film School instructor. In today's segment, we'll chat about what to shoot. Good videos are either stories or moments, capturing a moment is being in the right place but, capturing a story, is getting the right parts. Think who, what, where, why, when. When shooting, it's common practice to start by filming the where. Show the where visually with an establishing a shot. Are you at school? Are you at the beach? Then, dive into the story, reveal the who, that is the subject. Who are we following? Who's the main character? Who's the protagonist? When is this happening? What's happening? Why? You can answer many of the W's by interviewing the subject. Try asking about emotions or opinions, something like "are you nervous about the play?" That way, you can up the emotional stakes. If you want to edit yourself out the video, make sure your star talks in complete sentences. Though, sometimes, a parent/child conversation adds a lot of character. If you have time, shoot the atmosphere, when you start editing, you'll have a lot o choose from and you can keep audiences interested by cutting to clips of other things that were happening or present at the same time as the main action. Those other things are called coverage. For example, you could start your video with a card that reads "Mom's Birthday." Or, instead, use footage of a happy birthday balloon, followed by a shot of the birthday cake that reveals mom's name to explain what's going on. Coverage is a part of the story, yet sometimes the main subject is so interesting that you don't need to cut away to the other stuff to maintain interest. I say capture extra footage if you have the resources and time. In summary, Mr. and Mrs. Director, your first priority is to establish your story. Second, find the drama. Third, obtain all the appropriate coverage. I hope this helps with your video adventures. For more video tips, check out the rest of Home Movie Film School.

Shooting a home movie is often about capturing a moment or story, either by being in the right place or by setting up the right shot. Host Casey Ford Alexander, an actor and filmmaker, shows you how to find the right subject for your video.

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