Some of you may have stumbled upon this article, you are not in the industry, but you are really keen, and you wish you have the know-how to be in the video production industry. One way to accomplish that mission is to get into a Film & Broadcast School. That’s a sure way for you to acquire the knowledge and know-how of the industry. However, if you are not that keen in enrolling yourself into a class or a school, here is a path that you may consider.
Start making calls to local production agencies around your area or better still, show up at their office and tell them that you wish to learn and is willing to work for either little money or no money (at this point, you must stress that you must be fed). If that fails, get to know freelance videographers in your area and ask them if you can shadow them, help them out with the gears and promise them you will not be of any inconvenience but be prepared to do it all for free as they probably will not have any budget for someone with no experience.
If you manage to accomplish either one of the above, when on set…watch and learn. Be observant of what they do and terms used during filming. Try to figure out what they are saying and doing and if you still have questions, WAIT till filming is over before you ask them anything. Please do NOT ask them on set. This will be a good video to watch to get to know the basics and terms used in the industry.
After a couple of outings with the pros, you probably have a very general idea of the industry. You will have some familiarity with the terms used during the shoot. Now it’s time for you to acquire more knowledge via tutorials that is available online. Search “Basic Videography”, and you will see an endless list of tutorials and tips at your fingertips. Takedown notes if you can, as people tend to remember better after writing it down, and it will be a great way to refresh your memory if need to.
Here are a couple of links:
3) Putting the knowledge to practise
You should be able to handle a camera by now. Do you need a $15k broadcast camera? Nope! A small digital camera will do as long as it allows you to adjust aperture, frame rates, etc. If you don’t have a camera, borrow from a friend. If you don’t have friends, it’s really time to make some. One way to practise framing is to shoot using your smartphone. Start shooting and download the footage into your computer and see how it looks. Please post it on social media and ask for comments. Be prepared; there are those on social media, which can be pretty nasty.
Now that you have your maiden collection of footage. It’s time to stitch them up together. There are many free editing software out there, and if you are on a Mac, iMovie is a good tool to get you started. How do you use iMovie? Again, tons of tutorials are available online.
However, it’s not just about simply putting everything together. Editing is all about telling a story, a good one. Search for “Video Production Portfolio” online and see what’s being put up by the professionals. Too deep for you? Then try to do a search for “my first edit” on YouTube and your screen will be flooded with ideas. Personally, we recommend Apple’s Final Cut X and Motion for all your editing and motion graphics needs. For the best tutorials and tips for these 2 applications, we suggest you check out MacBreak Studio by RippleTraining.
Now there might be a few of you who would think of just being a videographer and not edit or vice-versa. We’d really recommend that you acquire the basic skills of both before you decide to specialise. Even if you wish to only film, best you know basic editing skills as you must always have the editor’s work in mind when you shoot. Shoot like an editor, edit like the DP.
Start by being assistants. There is no limit to learning. The more people you work with, the more you will learn. Always bear that in mind. The more you practise your craft, the easier it will be. Always remember, prioritise knowledge…the money will come. If you like, you can view some of our work on our portfolio page. Hope you have benefitted from this and is all geared up to dive into the video production industry.