Helping Western Mass businesses feel comfortable in front of the camera during their video commercial shoot

get a quote for training videos The video shoot is usually one of the most enjoyable tasks of the video production but it can also be of the most nerve–racking. We take the task of making our clients as comfortable as possible extremely seriously. Most of the business people that we work with have little or no experience being in front of the camera and they express to us that they tend to be rather nervous the day of the video shoot. We completely understand and empathize.

During the planning process prior to the video shoot, we make sure that everyone knows exactly what to expect and that everybody is adequately prepared. For example, many of our videos involve on camera interviews and the questions being asked are always submitted in advance to our clients. This gives the client ample time to prepare the answers to which they usually know the responses already anyway. However, the questions being asked will not be a surprise even if they are knowledgeable about the subject matter (talking about their products and services).
I do point out to the interviewees that the on-camera responses should not sound scripted and the answers should not be read from a sheet of paper that was prepared in advance. We would simply like the person whom we are speaking with on camera to be comfortable when answering, and again we make sure our clients have time to formulate responses in advance so that they sound and feel natural and comfortable on camera.

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I will state that we have also spoken with many folks that have plenty of experience with public speaking, and naturally they do quite well on camera, but it’s the exception rather than the norm. Nevertheless, on the day of the video shoot, it is possible that the whole process is a little bit nerve-racking for anyone.

One of the most common things that happen is that the person we are speaking with suddenly becomes tongue-tied. Sometimes they just forget what they had prepared to talk about just moments before. When that happens we simply like to take a break and talk about something completely unrelated for just a few minutes. In order to break the pattern, we ask the person we are speaking with to recall something very funny that occurred at work recently. This question typically gets everybody laughing or at least smiling. And miraculously, once we return to the interview the answers just flow.

Video Lighting: Proper lighting conditions are critical. Fortunately, most of our customers are located in Massachusetts, Vermont, and Connecticut which allows us to travel and transport all our critical video production equipment. In some cases, we have only artificial light at the business location which means few windows. In other cases, we have plenty of natural light coming in through large windows. We could also experience a mix of these two types of lighting conditions which can be a challenge. The problem is that natural light and artificial light have very different effects on video as they “burn” at very different temperatures. Without going into lighting theory, which would be the subject of another blog post, I will say that natural light tends to have a blue tint on film and artificial light tends to have a reddish tint. Proper white balance and various other adjustments are very important to make the video look good. It is worth spending the extra time on the set to get lighting conditions as good as possible.

Audio and background noise: Almost all audio issues must be handled on the set. The reason for this is that audio is challenging to fix in post-production. Unlike video where professional post-production systems offer endless tools for enhancing video to achieve specific visual effects, with audio we don’t have that luxury. It is possible to eliminate certain frequencies coming from hissing or humming noises in post-production, but clippings are almost impossible to correct in an audio file. Clippings occur when the audio was recorded at the incorrect volume level – always check your volume levels. Therefore, your camera and audio specialist on the set must make sure that the individual has proper audio equipment and masters his or her sound checklist prior to recording.

Well, this covers some common issues and challenges on the video production set but an experienced video production team will be able to manage these issues seamlessly.

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