If you’re planning a trip this holiday season, you’ll probably take a bunch of photos and shoot a great deal of videos. These days with the quality of video technology at our fingertips, you can ensure your travel videos are great quality following a few basic principles. Here are a few tips to help you document your holiday adventure in a video that is super fun to watch.
Begin Shooting at Your Departure
Instead of beginning your video story after arriving at your destination, start at departure. For instance, if you’re at the airport, you can film plane takeoffs and landings. This will put your video in context and make it look like a travel film or a documentary.
Focus on People
Taking a great video is similar to taking great still shots with your iPhone. The people you travel with are the most interesting part of the video. Don’t just focus on the landmarks but consider the people around you – get shots of kids playing or exploring, record conversations, or capture people you’ve just met. It’s all part of the cultural experience. It’s also fun to see how everybody has changed when you watch the video many years later.
Keep your Hands Steady
Make sure to keep your hands as steady as possible when recording, no matter how crazy the action gets! If the recording is constantly shaking and moving, the final product will be hard to watch. To avoid creating a ͚’seasick’ feeling, make sure to film a single shot by panning in one direction only.͛ Don’t pan in one direction then the other way.
If after recording, you feel it would have been better to pan the other way, just take the recording again. You can decide later when editing which version you prefer.
The 3-Second Rule
Deploy these three simple steps – point, film, and stop filming – making sure there is a 3-seconds gap at the beginning and at the end of the footage. Other than that, everything else is experimental. Film your friends or family swimming, skiing, or walking.
Take video from a different perspective. Have a play – everything is digital these days so you are not going to run out of film. Just make sure you have plenty of battery power or better yet, take a powerbank or backup battery.
Sound & Voiceover
Sound is a very important and often the overlooked part of the video. If you plan to use the live sound in your final video, try to be as quiet as possible. Unintentional background sounds can be overwhelming in a video. If you prefer to use a voiceover and background music, there’s no need to worry about the noise.
Another great option is to record the noises and sounds around you. This ͚’atmosphere’ track will give your video character. If you have a tour guide, let them do some of the narration. Film them while talking and get more than you need because you’ll likely edit it back to a few short, meaningful sentences.
Voiceovers are a great way to add a documentary flair to your travel video. Don’t narrate while filming, unless you have a very clear and loud voice or an excellent microphone. Do some research about the place you’re visiting and find a quiet place to do the voiceover. If you’re not so good with words, read from the travel guide or rework something from Wikipedia.
Shoot the Location
Remember to include streets, houses, shops, and even your hotel in the video. Add some footage of local traditions and cultural activities. Things that are everyday life for the locals can be an amazing new experience for you.
Enjoy Your Trip
Finally, the most important thing about your trip is to enjoy yourself. Don’t film all the time. Set your filming aside for a moment and look around you. Taste local foods and drinks, study the people around you…in other words, be present. Find something worth filming that will capture the atmosphere of the place and make your video really stand out.
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