Basic tips for web video

1. It’s about ACTION.

2. Web video and TV are not the same.

3. Some basic shooting tips.

4. Good video is 51 percent audio.

5. Tips for video interviews

  • Avoid yes/no questions. “Describe for me.”
  • Try to evoke feeling and emotions
  • The subject should not look into the camera, unless they are talking to the viewers directly, or to another person remotely.
  • Use rule of thirds. Split the frame up into thirds (tic-tac-toe style). Main subjects/elements should be in the thirds.
  • Head and nose room.
  • Have sun or main light coming over your shoulder.
  • Get microphone close or use a lave mic.
  • Be silent while they talk.
  • Interviews are where you get the “why” of your story.

6. Tips for shooting b-roll

  • Variety of shots and angles.
  • Hold shots for 10-15 seconds. It’s easier to deal with a series of short video clips than to split up one long one.
  • The five shot rule is great guide for making sure you get the: “what” (close up on hands), “who” (close up on face), “where” (wide shot), “how” (over the shoulder shot), “what else” (other shot).
  • Steady shots. Use tripod if available.
  • Avoid pans or zooms.
  • Let action move across frame rather than moving with it.
  • Have an opening and closing shot.
  • Use clean editing and transitions.

7. Editing

Some basic editing tips

  • Log your video (soundbites and b-roll)
  • Story boarding
  • Start editing process with audio: interviews, natural sound, music (in that order)
  • Build sequences
  • Rough cut
  • Fine tune audio
  • Fine tune sequences

About Nick DiUlio

My name is Nick DiUlio, a freelance writer and editor from New Jersey. I have been passionate about the craft of writing since I was old enough to spell, and this love has led to a successful career in journalism and creative nonfiction. As a freelancer, I have covered a wide range of topics and personalities, as my published work has focused on everything from profiles of artists and important political figures to hard-news stories with both national and local appeal; from restaurant and beverage reviews to tips on fashion and finance; from health and wellness pieces to celebrity Q&A’s. My work has appeared in several local, regional and national publications—both in print and online—including Philadelphia Magazine,, Miller-McCune, New Jersey Monthly, Eating Well, and Delaware Today. Additionally, I am the South Jersey Bureau Chief for New Jersey Monthly and an adjunct journalism professor at Rowan University. To be sure, the broadness of my body of work seems only to be matched by my boundless interest in almost every subject imaginable (except Warren Zevon). Check out some of my most recently published work here.
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