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How do I shoot good video?


Before you start editing video, it is important to capture quality footage. Follow the suggestions in this topic, or schedule a consultation with one of the Library's technical experts, to make the most out of shooting video.

Step by Step: 
    1. Keep the camera horizontal and steady.
      • Unlike with a still camera, you should not turn a video camera on its side to capture a tall subject. Instead, capture the subject by zooming out or walking backwards.
    2. Shoot people from the waist up.
      • Close-up shots should only be used for intensity, to convey emotion, or to show important information on a subject's face (such as small movements, eye color, etc.)
    3. Plan your shots so that you don't have to move around.
      • It is always better to keep your camcorder on a tripod and to maintain the same shot until the subject moves to a new location.
    4. Shoot individuals in a conversation.
      • If you are shooting a conversation between two people, consider using two cameras and shooting each person over the shoulder.
    5. People always look better in incandescent light.


    1. Shots with contrast (areas of light and shadow, dark and bright, etc.) are more interesting.


  1. Use the rule of thirds.
    • Do not put your subject's head in the middle of the frame. Instead, position him or her to the left or to the right, in the imaginary "third" of the space.
  2. Plan shots for continuous motion.
    • If you are doing an exterior shot of your subject entering a building from the right, plan to use the same right-to-left motion when you continue shooting in the interior.

For more information or to request a consultation, contact the Service Desk at (434) 924-5444.