Creating interest within a website commercial
A common challenge when shooting video is to create some interest or curiosity, or too just plain make it un-plain. Lets delve into that a bit… Say you are shooting an infomercial or commercial, imagine that; I am going to write about shooting a website commercial… Ok, on the serious side; say you want to shoot something, yet the shot calls for your subject to be stationary, or in one area of a room or set. After about 35 seconds the viewers mind will begin to wander, hence montages and voice overs. ( See my article on Voice overs here )
To overcome the monotonous one angle shot one can either shoot for about 35 seconds have the Spokesperson freeze or stop and then reposition your camera angle; if you are using only one camera at your shoot. Which most of us are, especially if you are doing it on your own to save some money on your website commercial. Although on that note, one sure can get writer’s or a creative block and for a few hundred bucks you can have Netcommercial.net knock it out for you from a viewers perspective, not your own. <---Shameless plug~
A great piece of equipment is to use a Jib, Crane or Ladder. Here is a cool Jib I found for using with your camcorder a CobraCrane Small Single Bar Jib Arm, but most of us are not wanting to spend all this extra money for one scene. So lets use a Ladder for this example.
Take your Ladder and get your shot or scene set. I like to work in the rule of thirds. The rule of thirds is basically to take your shot, divide it into thirds, horizontally and vertically. Think of a grid on your shot and stay the heck away from the center box. The center box is reserved for a magazine picture of an item being sold and that is it.
So now that you have your shot angle in the mindset of thirds. Shoot the first 25-35 seconds on your ladder, not to high of course. Then if you have a steady hand either lower your camera with your hand, remember an arms length is a lot of movement on a screen. Lower you camera to eye level and pull in a click or two to get a bit of a close-up. This will tune your viewer in a bit more and take that simple shot to a bit of a more interesting view.
Now you can either pause there, then reposition your camera off to the other side; after you burn another 25 seconds or so of a shot. Thus giving the first 50 or so seconds some interest. Then either pan back and steadily move to the other side of where you started with your ladder and finish up there, giving a total minute and half in one set. Take your time and be steady and you will be amply rewarded with a professional looking scene or shot.
Another way is to use a dolly or a skaters dolly as they call it, or a Tripod Dolly.
This will allow you to work with your shot “on the fly” and not have to stop to reposition your shot. Yes, it will cost a couple of bucks and could be done with a tripod and a skateboard; however you are going to need a piece of plywood, cardboard or the likes of to have a flat hard surface to make sure your dolly rolls smooth and does not topple or jerk around.
Try not to be worried about being perfect, I like to start camera movement on action and stop the camera movement on a rest spot in the dialogue. This way you can always pick up the jerky stuff in editing using transitions. Best if you can record the dialogue with a separate MP3 player this way you have full control of editing any scene and not losing any voice or dialogue.
As always I hope this helps when shooting your website commercial or infomercial and to be considered a real comment and not spam please use the words adding interest to a commercial when commenting.
“When they are Surfing the Net and you don’t want them to forget!”