5 essential camera movement tips for shooting video alone

Shots can be a lot more cinematic with movement, but adding movement can be hard when you are a one man crew. However we have a few tips that can help.

These tips come from Cinecom.net. Host Jordy Vandeput finds himself all alone and must make this tips video all by himself. He succeeds with flying colors and gives us a few helpful tips for filming alone, even when you are acting by yourself. Check out the video below:

Here are Cinecom.net’s five top tips when filming alone:

Tip 1: Make your camera move automatically

The way the Vandeput is able to do this in the video is with a sliders. You don’t have to use the use the expensive Vandeput has. Any slider can work fine. All you have to do is to slant your slider so you camera will move automatically over the slider when it’s unlocked. You can also do this with a tripod. You can set the tripod friction in such a way that will pan automatically when you untie the lock.

Now, there is an obvious time constraint to this tip. Your clip had to fit within the window of time your camera is sliding down the slider. But with that in mind, you can get many movement shots with this technique.

Tip 2: Use editing to make movement

There are ways to add movement in post. Programs like Premiere Pro can scale shots to add movement like pans and zooms. You will have to shoot long shots so you can animate the camera across the frame.

Tip 3: B-roll

B-roll is a great way to add narrative moment. B-roll can be anything. A lot of b-roll can be shot of the environment the subject’s in or the objects that is involved in the narrative. If you want further guidance for shooting b-roll, here’s how to shoot compelling B-roll.

Tip 4: Record the same shot at multiple angles

It’s regular for a cameraman to shoot multiple shots of a certain action. When you’re alone, you should still do this. Shoot the same actions from different angles. This will give a more material to work with in post.

Frame 5: Framing and focusing

One of the biggest setbacks when filming alone is that it’s hard to check your camera’s framing and focus while shooting. THere are a few tools that you can use to make it easier.

While auto focus can be useful, it’s not perfect. Auto focus can mess up at times. Vandeput says it’s best to keep your camera in manual focus and mark where you should be standing to stay in focus. This way you ensure you are in focus when you can’t check.

When framing, Vandeput recommends framing in post-production. This means you should be shooting wide shots and then later go in and frame the shots. This gives you complete control of your framing.

These are just a few ways that you can shoot a project by yourself. If you have your own tips for shooting movement when alone, be sure to tell us below!

Sean Berry
Sean Berry
Sean Berry is Videomaker's Managing Editor.

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