Video Blogging Learning Journal
1. Notes on shooting yourself
-Many video bloggers do vlog posts where they aim the camera at themselves, talk, and let the video roll. I've been struggling with this technique because I can't quite get my face in the frame correctly by holding the camera out in front of me. Any advice?
Ryanne told me to practice and that eventually I'd get a feel for what works. I didn't believe her ... but tried it anyway. Practice does help. When I saw Steve Garfield model this technique in his workshop at Boston Podcamp, I realized my problem! My arms are too short. So, I placed my camera on some books on a table and took test shots until it was framed appropriately. Don't ask how many different combinations of books were on that table!
-At that blogher video blogging workshop, I also asked what were the most common shooting mistakes that new video bloggers make and how to avoid them? Robert Scoble was in the room and he answered:
1. Don't frame your subject's eyes in the middle of the frame, use the rule of thirds
2. Don't shoot when you have backlight, your subject will be dark
3. Avoid ambient noise, find a quiet spot to shoot
4. Shoot close to your subject so the audio doesn't suck especially when using a camera with built-in mic
Later I saw him in the hall, I asked him to demonstrate using my camera. You can view that here.
3. Practice and Reflection is really useful
As I mentioned before, Ryanne and other video bloggers say "Just do it!" and you will learn. A few things I learned from this session:
-When shooting, think of what it will be like to edit it. I left some spaces in what I was saying and I paused for a bit at the beginning, end, and inbetween ideas. This can help if you want cut it down in editing - makes it less jumpy.
-I also need to be a set designer as well as an actress. I should think about the background being less distracting. I'm really more comfortable as a documentary maker and still prefer not to have the camera pointed at me.