Shooting a high-quality video can often end up to be a long and tedious task. First-time filmmakers should keep in mind just a few things in order to expedite your film process to make it simple and easy. By following these four tips you will be on the right path for a successful video shoot.

  1. Head Room: One of the key things to remember when filming yourself on camera is to leave head room. Many first-time filmmakers make the mistake of misjudging their angles and spacing, which creates an awkward, three-quarter view of the face. To avoid this make sure you angle and line up each shot properly before you hit record. Always allow yourself a little more space than you think you have.
  1. Camera Quality: Not everyone has access to the best cameras in the world, but you can still film your video with excellent quality. For starters, most smartphones today have high quality cameras. Ask someone to help you film; or, purchase a cheap smartphone tri-pod, which allows you more versatility in a cheap and efficient way. Most people try to stand in front of their laptop camera and film, but that usually ends with awkward angles and poor picture quality.
  1. Expect the Unexpected: Whether you are shooting your video indoors or outdoors, be prepared for any interferences that may come your way. If you have pets, make sure they are not visible or audible within the shot. If you are outdoors, be aware that many different wild animals may try to make a guest appearance in your video.
  1. Take Your Time: The filming process may seem like a quick and easy task at first, but it should take time and patience in order to get the best results. Be prepared to take many different shots and takes for each scene and don’t rush the process. By taking your time and making sure you perfect each shot, you’ll ensure that you will have a quality video that is worth watching.


Do you create videos for your courses? What are your tips for conducting a successful video shoot? Share them in the comments.


Cengage Learning is hosting the “Instructor for a Day” competition once again for 2015. Students have a chance of winning a $1,000 scholarship by showcasing how they would make their classroom more engaging for students via video submission. For additional details, read our recent blog post on the Instructor for a Day contest.