Five Mistakes Photographers Make When They Move Into Video

More and more photographers are starting to also add video work to their services, and while there are certainly some similarities between the two, it's important to understand the differences and unique requirements of video. This great video will show you five of the most common mistakes photographers make when they first undertake video work.

Coming to you from Pierre T. Lambert, this great video detail five mistakes photographers commonly make when they first pick up video. Of course, the two are like trying to learn Portuguese when you already know Spanish: there's a ton of similarity, and you have a great head start by knowing photography, but video has its own considerations. For one, you don't get the same sort of freedom with shutter speed that you do with stills work, and the way that affects the exposure triangle changes how you work. Furthermore, unless you're shooting ultra-high-level equipment, there isn't true raw video, and you have to be much more precise when it comes to getting it right in camera. Check out the video above for the full rundown on these and more. 

And if you're ready to really dive into video, check out "Intro to Video: A Photographer's Guide to Filmmaking."

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8 Comments

Matthias Dengler's picture

Seems useful! Thanks, Alex!

David Love's picture

7 mistakes for doing a video about doing better videos

1. Don't smack the camera for a transition, IT'S OVER AND DONE.
2. Make sure video is in focus
3. Make sure the video about video is a good example of how you know video
4. Fast edits in a vlog are sea sickness and not flashy cool.
5. Audio straight out of the camera with no EQ
6. Broll should also help tell the story not just be about red shoes and weird camera angles to fill space
7. If you take more than a minute to actually get to the point you're not trying to help anyone but yourself with youtube ad revenue and it's obvious.

Pierre T. Lambert's picture

Hey David! I see you know your stuff and have a lot to point out on mine! That's great - always up from improvements! :)
re 5. what kind of EQ would you do? It never sounds better to me after rather with my mic straight into the camera.
Overall would love to watch your tutorials! :)

David Love's picture

I use a rode ntg4+ with a blimp but that's not really run and gun alone. What would've made your video better is if you just recorded voice over as you actually showed examples of your points. Just standing there talking about it doesn't really show beginners and this is for beginners. Also there are about 300 videos like this.

How to do better videos:

1. Get a good camera (unless you're an apple fan boy then try like hell to do a video with a phone and add enough post work to try and fool everyone.
2. Get a good lens (at least 2.8 for those low light situations)
3. Manual focus always unless using a Canon with dual focus because everyone that tries with a GH5 screams and everyone using a Sony just ignores the hunting focus cause they want the camera to be amazing.
4. Use a stabilizer (go cheap if you want it to break and like buying cheap stuff over and over instead of saving for a workhorse that will last years. This goes for all equipment. Then watch 5 tip videos on how to use a gimble.)
5. Only use the camera audio to sync with external audio you recorded. Audio is more important than video.
6. Shoot in log and then learn to color correct.
7. Edit videos that fit the video, not just a collection of seasick transitions and camera smack tricks to be trendy. Most of the time people add goofy fx and transitions to cover up the fact that their video is long and boring. And the reason it's long and boring is because they waste the first 2 minutes introducing what the video will be about, naming sponsors and begging for subscribers. Treat it like an elevator speech.

I learn best when I see someone doing something and I wonder how they did it. Then I research and learn, not by listening to every guy on youtube just lecture on the same points.

Yang W.'s picture

sometimes is easier to just hire a videographer to work for you. you dont have to invest in gears or train yourself a new set of skills. unless you plan to generate a good portion of your income from video, why not just focus on your niche and charge a premium for a better quality service?

frame rates and using on camera mic.....

Keith Meinhold's picture

Thank you. I made all of these mistakes already with the recent purchase of a drone, but your list is spot on and reinforces the hard lessons. Of course perfecting video technique while learning how to pilot a flying camera compounds the problem. :)