Staging video: Tougher than I thought

A lot of Berkeley’s suggestions for shooting video seem obvious after having read them. But rewatching the first footage I shot for my project, I realize I made a lot of those rookie mistakes.

I’m not a complete novice behind a video camera. Going all the way back to high school, I’ve shot video for projects ranging from high school football games to installation art. But either I never took it as seriously as I should (treating it like a pasttime that was peripheral to my overall academic goals) or each time I put the camera down, it’s so long before I pick it up again that I have to relearn everything.

Berkeley tells me not to waste tape. Reviewing the 40 minutes of footage I shot at a ukulele band’s performance, I wasted a lot of tape – I’d keep the tape rolling while I moved the tripod, thinking I might miss something great in the seconds between putting the camera back down and focusing a new shot. Berkeley tells me not to pan and zoom so much. I did – feeling like I had so much to try and capture I’d have to be constantly moving the camera otherwise.

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