In the design world, videos are super trendy right now. They are everywhere. They are in your Instagram feed, on your favorite brand’s website and in blog posts. We want to try to implement high-quality videos wherever we can. Why? Because they are relatable. Seeing a video creates an instant connection with your viewer/audience—and that’s important when you want them to believe your mission. So what really goes into shooting a video in-house?
Step 1: Ideas and brainstorming. The first step is figuring out your end goal. Look around and find examples—visualizing what you want makes it easier to execute.
Step 2: Storyboard it out. I’m a huge believer in mockups, sketches and storyboards. Doing this before you get started on the actual project allows for mistakes, realizations and edits.
Step 3: Test shoot. I am also a huge believer in testing out your idea before you get too deep into the project. For this particular project, we did a test shoot for an hour to try out a couple ideas. It allowed me to actually edit some things within the project, and raised a few questions I needed to bring to IT about our final video product. Without the test shoot, we might have wasted some precious shooting time.
Step 4: Schedule your shoot. This means scheduling your space and all your actors, as well as checking out your equipment. For this project, our actors were really just hand models. But we had to make sure they were both willing to participate and available when we wanted to shoot.
Step 5: Prepare. I can’t stress enough how prepared you should be going into the shoot day. For this shoot, I made a detailed outline of each scene that listed props, actors, timing, possible issues, opportunities, etc. And I stuck to the schedule hard-core. The worst feeling is getting into your shoot and realizing you have forgotten something. Make lists, and make sure the day before the shoot that everything you need is available and ready. Also—charge all the batteries you may need. There’s nothing worse than a dead camera when you need to shoot.
Step 6: Shoot, thank your actors, edit. When you shoot, remember to take some photos of what your setup looks like. There’s always the chance you may need to go back and do some more takes at a later date, and it’s good to reference that photo for the next shoot. Don’t forget to thank your actors—or in this case, their hands.
One last pro tip—do what looks good! Don’t be too afraid to improvise during your shoot. There’s no need to stick to a rigid plan. Sometimes in your head, things seem natural, but watching it on camera makes you realize you need to rethink your concept. Try something out. The worst case is you end up with some B-roll footage you might use for something else!
Keep an eye on usgbc.org to see some of our video work finalized!