5 Tips For Shooting Video On Your Phone

27 September 2018 4:33:09 PM AEST

The best thing about the digital age is the ability to create wherever you are, using the equipment that you already have on you. ie. Your smartphone.

While your phone is capable of producing incredible image quality, far above and beyond what was once expected of a mere phone-call-making device; there are still some obstacles that you will need to overcome if you want your video to stand out from the average blurry, grainy Vlog.

Here are our 5 tips for shooting video on your phone.

5 Tips For Shooting Video On Your Phone

1. Steer Clear Of Digital Zoom

We get it. You want to compose your scene to rival the Oscar nominated cinematographers that you have been studying since you first set foot in a cinema, which sometimes requires a tighter crop. But you must resist the urge to use the digital zoom of your phone.

Digital zoom requires your phone to do some form of in-house editing, which while bringing you closer to the action, drastically degrades the quality of your footage with each millimeter gained.

With most phones lacking an optical zoom of any form, it is generally better practice to zoom with your feet, getting as close as possible to the action before you press record.

 

5 Tips For Shooting Video On Your Phone
5 Tips For Shooting Video On Your Phone

2. Use A Tripod (or gimbal)

Even the sturdiest of hands come across shaky when playing back a handheld video.

On a limited budget you can improve your videos tenfold, with the purchase of a cost-effective and lightweight portable tripod. There are many options available, but if your budget allows you could consider purchasing one with a remote, which makes things simpler if you also happen to have a starring role in proceedings!

A newer alternative is one of the many gimbals that are popping up on the market. Gimbals used to be expensive and exclusively used by professionals, but now this technology has been improved and shrunk by companies like Zhiyun, to suit smartphones and compact cameras.

 

3. Control Your Lighting

If there is one area where all phones start to show their weakness, it is in poorly lit conditions. If your shoot doesn’t require filming indoors, then opt for shooting outside, where you can make use of the world’s most advanced light source, the Sun.

If you have no choice but to stay holed up for your shoot, try to shoot near a light source, such as a window. Position your subject so this light source is at their front, which will help to bring out every possible detail and avoid your videos succumbing to a grainy mess.

You can also try utilising a reflector to direct the light accordingly - these are very cheap and easy to make. Remember, if a strong light source is behind your subject, this will lead to silhouetting which may not be the ideal effect for your video.

 

5 Tips For Shooting Video On Your Phone
5 Tips For Shooting Video On Your Phone

4. Update Your Camera App

While the stock camera app on your phone is good enough for the majority of patrons, once you start to develop a keen interest in photography or video, it can start to be quite limited.

As well as various filters, which can breathe life into your shots in a matter of moments, the seemingly limitless camera apps available on the market offer various levels of advanced controls. This can make all the difference when you are aiming to stand out from your peers.

We recommend taking your time to explore some of the free options available to you and see if any take your fancy, familiarising yourself with the functionalities of your chosen app before you start any serious filming.

 

5. Experiment With Accessories

If you have the spare funds, there are many accessories available that can help you achieve things that your camera will never be able to on its own.

Whether it is a wide-angle lens that can fully uncover the vastness of the beautiful landscape before you, or a directional mic that can bring clarity to voices and cut through distracting background noises - you can bet you will find something to reach the heights of the cinema greats - or at least bring you closer to those heights than ever before!

Ted's stocks a huge range of accessories, from the budget to the professional HERE.

 

5 Tips For Shooting Video On Your Phone

Cut!

And that’s a wrap. We hope this short list will come in handy when developing that Cannes-destined film that you have always dreamed of!

 

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