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tell the story of your small business with a video business card

What is a Video Business Card?

What is a Video Business Card? The Video Business Card (VBC) is the primary offering of Personal Story Films. It is the signature statement of who you are as a business. It goes beyond that, however. In 2-3 minutes we answer these questions: What is your name and business? Why did you start your business?…
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Young People Sitting in the park and talking

Visual and Aural/Oral Storytelling

My passion is for telling stories, both visually and through sound. When I interview people, I elicit their stories, whether it is about their business or their lives. Stories are one of the ways we connect deeply to each other and the world. As human beings, we crave stories, going back to our origins as…
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Two women are smiling and taking a photo with a smart phone

Where to put the sun when shooting outdoors

A client asked me a question today about shooting outdoors and the sun. If you are shooting yourself outdoors should you have the sun behind you or in front of you? First of all, the best lighting happens in the morning and late afternoon these days. Midday sun washes things out and makes things evenly…
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A dog is running on a grass field

How to Shoot Video Like a Pro – Bonus Tip: Let the Subject Enter and Exit the Frame

Hold the Camera Still. Most amateur shooters will follow the action everywhere it goes. This causes jerky video. Also, how do you make a clean edit between a shot of the person (or dog) in the frame while the camera is in motion and another similar shot? Here’s a trick: let the subject exit the…
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A walking woman's shadow on a wall

How to Shoot Video Like a Pro – Tip #12 – Shoot to Edit B: Let it Roll!

When you are shooting things that you make happen, such as actions you can get your subject to do, plan on doing multiple takes. First of all, you want to make sure you have a good version. Second, you want a variety of shots and angles of the same thing. For example, when my client…
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How to Shoot Video Like a Pro - Tip #11 - Shoot to Edit A: Get a Variety Shots

How to Shoot Video Like a Pro – Tip #11 – Shoot to Edit A: Get a Variety Shots

As an editor, I implore everyone who shoots video to “Shoot-to-Edit.” This means you are thinking about what will work in the edit room. These are some shots you want to be sure to get, even if you might choose to leave them out when editing: Establishing Shot (ES) – the exterior of the building…
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How to Shoot Video Like a Pro - Tip #10 - Sound is 50% of Video

How to Shoot Video Like a Pro – Tip #10 – Sound is 50% of Video

Some say the audio is everything. In any case, don’t underestimate its importance! Luckily there are many great options for microphones. For my primary audio, I use a medium-length RØde microphone on top of my camera or a lavalier with a long cord that plugs into the camera. (Maybe it’s just me, but I haven’t…
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How to Shoot Video Like a Pro – Tip #9: Three Point Lighting

You may have heard of three-point lighting; a guideline to follow or ignore as you choose. I will sketch it out for you here. Light #1: Key light. This is typically at a 45-degree angle from the direction the subject is looking and is your brightest light. Light #2: Fill Light. This light shines from…
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How to Shoot Video Like a Pro – Tip#8: Shot Composition – Background, Depth

1. Background Pay attention to what is behind your subject. It should be pleasing and not distracting. It should not draw the viewer’s attention away from the main subject. Avoid clutter and mess and add something meaningful and nice, like a plant, one framed photo, or one special object. DO NOT let a plant or…
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How to Shoot Video Like a Pro – Tip #7: Shot Composition – Rule of Thirds

Most people have heard of The Rule of Thirds. Divide the screen into an imaginary grid of 2 vertical lines and 2 horizontal lines equally spaced. This gives you 3 sections in each direction, or 9 sections total. The places where these lines intersect is the best place to frame the most important part of…
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