The first thing you’re probably going to do in any video project is shoot some video. Even if you are shooting a simple school play or family gathering, you can and should plan many aspects of the shoot:
- Make a checklist of shots that you need for your project. While you’re at it, make an equipment checklist too. I’ve included a video-shoot checklist at the end of this chapter.
- Survey the shooting location. Make sure passersby won’t trip over your cables or bump the camera. (It makes you unpopular, and can ruin your footage to boot.)
- Talk to property owners or other responsible parties. Identify potential disruptions, and make sure you have permission to shoot. For example, your kids’ school probably doesn’t mind if you shoot video of Suzie’s band concert, but commercial concerts or sporting events usually have rules against recording performances.
- Plan the time of the shoot. This is especially important if you are shooting outside. What part of the sky will sunlight be coming from? Do you want to take advantage of the special light available at sunrise or sunset?
- Bring more blank tapes and charged batteries than you think you’ll need.