12 Tips to Shoot Video Like a Pro. Tip#2: Prepare for the Shoot and the Interview

Before you shoot, think of and write down the questions you want to ask your subject. Make sure the questions are open ended, not short answer.

Example short answer questions:

  •  When did you start making your own lotions? Answer: 5 years ago.

  • Do you enjoy the process of making the lotions? Answer: Yes, very much.

Example open ended questions:

  • Why did you start making your own lotions? Answer: Well, it began when…

  • What do you enjoy about making the lotions? Answer: Oh, there are so many things about it that I enjoy. First of all…

Find out as much as you can about the subject before the interview. Ask them meaningful questions that are personal and specific. Ask them for personal stories, “Can you tell me about the time…”  Then put your questions in an order that makes logical sense. Keep in mind that you will ask them follow-up questions on the fly.

Prepare the people you will be interviewing, but not too much.


Prepare yourself for shooting by finding out some key information or visit the location yourself (called “scouting”.)

These are some things you want to know:

  • Is there natural light from windows? If so, you may need one less light.

  • How big is the space? (Room for your camera, tripod, and lights, room to separate the subject form the background.)

  • Do you have modern electrical outlets?

  • Is it a noisy location (jackhammers on the street, trucks going by often, other employees chatting in the room, loud AC, etc.) If so, find a different location. There’s not much you can do about loud noises in editing.

    For more on preparing for your shoot and interview, contact Lisa at [email protected].

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