Tips For Shooting On Your Phone (Or Camera)

Turn your phone SIDEWAYS.

  • If filming with your phone, film horizontally and not vertically to achieve the most natural-looking and cinematic footage. The exception is if the platform where you are premiering your footage is mainly vertical, shoot vertically (Snapchat, Instagram stories, etc.)

Keep it steady.

  • Use both hands to film with your phone.
  • Lock your elbows into your body. Your body will then act as a tripod, and you will have much more stabilization in your shot.
  • If you want the shot to have motion, with locked elbows, move your entire upper body with the camera while keeping your feet locked to the ground.

Use the Rule of Thirds.

  • Divide your image up into nine equal parts, like a grid (most phones and cameras have a grid feature you can turn on). The theory is that if you place points of interest in the intersections, or along the lines, your photo becomes more balanced and will enable a viewer of the image to interact with it more naturally, rather than a center-framed shot.

In the image above, the name and title in the lower thirds, “Cindy Carter, Professional-in-Residence, Tiger TV Adviser,” is positioned at the intersection of the upper-right quadrant of the pink, nine-part grid overlaying the image. The type is neatly right-aligned with LSU bug in the lower right-hand corner of the screen. The woman featured is positioned so that her eyes, looking directly at the camera, are at the upper-left hand quadrant intersection. The net effect is a well-balanced composition!

Work with light, not against it.

  • When outdoors, try and find a position where the sun is evenly lighting the scene you want to record. If some parts of the shot are looking too bright or too dark, change your position or angle to achieve the shot you want. 

Strive for shot variety.

  • A video made up of many shorter clips often makes a more interesting watch. You can highlight smaller details, not just the overall scene.
  • Think about what other shots you can get to complement your master shot. It can be as simple as shooting your subject both from close up and farther away, or getting someone to repeat a performance (like a cartwheel) so you can capture it from a variety of angles.

Manually set exposure and focus.

  • Press and hold an area of the screen to activate the AE/AF Lock function.
  • With a smartphone, the most important is the AE (Auto Exposure) Lock, because you don’t want the smartphone to keep changing the exposure while you’re filming.

Check your mic.

  • Move close to your subject to avoid picking up ambient noise as much as possible.
  • Most cameras and phones have on-board audio recording capabilities, so hold your camera or phone delicately so you do not cover up any mic spots on the device.
  • If using your phone to film, turn to airplane mode to avoid notification noises while recording.
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Article ID: 447
Wed 4/20/22 3:49 PM
Tue 8/2/22 12:50 PM

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