As the demand for video builds, you’re going to be approaches to shoot video. However, like photography, there are rules. The twist is that these rules can be similar or completely different from photography. Setting up a video setup checklist is very important to not miss anything and to have everything going as planned.

Set Your Picture Style

Pick a picture style for your camera. This custom picture style should give you the “flattest” style/look possible. Flattest means that your saturation, contrast, and sharpness are turned down. This will give you more control over color correcting in post-production.

*Note that many DSLRs and mirrorless cameras come with picture styles. Check out the manual to see the different options. You can even check out online forums, videos, o groups to see how videographers have their cameras set up.

Set a Custom White Balance

Setting your white balance is one of the most important aspects of video besides setting ISO. It can be intimidating for anyone just starting out, but once you get the hang of it, it’ll be a breeze. So your two options would be: using a grey/white card (shooting a still and adjusting) or use Kelvin temperature. For adjusting Kelvin, you have to open your white balance settings and adjusting accordingly.

Set Your Frame Rate

Always make sure you’re shooting in the right frame rate. Sure you can do it in post, but doing this will save your a good amount of time! If you are shooting an interview, make sure you’re either at 24fps or 30fps.

Manual Focus Only!

I’m not going against autofocus in any way, but when it comes to video, you will save a lot of time and frustrations. There is nothing worse than your autofocus hunting for your subject while they’re moving. Not only does this hunting cause a lot of blur, but also affects the mic (it will pick up the sound).

Set Your Focus Beforehand

Before your start shooting, set up your camera at the angle and position you’re going to shoot. Set the focus. You can zoom in on faces or details to make sure it’s in focus by enlarging the shot in the viewfinder. Often on a Canon DSLR, it will be the magnifying glass.

Of course this list only covers a few tips. Also keep note that these tips should be used once you have everything setup (ie lights, scenes, setting).

What other tips do you videographers have for those looking into video?

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