Video Production & Videography
Do you want to create a video using a videographer or a video production company but don’t know where to start? This FAQ is for you! Here are some of the questions that beginners ask about video production and videography. We’ll answer them with easy-to-understand definitions, so that even if this is your first time creating some video content, you can succeed quickly. Let’s get started!
Video production is the process of capturing video content. It can involve directing, sound recording and/or cinematography or post-production (editing). There are many jobs in video production such as videographers, camera operators, editors and DITs to help complete a project.
Videography as opposed to video production tends to be more focused on the basic acquisition of footage and the editing of that footage for simpler final outputs in comparison to video production where there is no limit to a productions scaleability where final videos can become TV commercials, full brand campaigns and even feature films.
Simply put, videography often lends itself to lower cost and simpler projects where video production has no upper limits and will often encompass more difficult subject matter and require greater planning ahead of time.
Here’s an article giving more detail on the differences between videography and video production.
Pre-production is the process of planning a video, which includes things like scouting locations and creating storyboards. It involves thinking about what you want your video to be, and deciding what the main points of your story are.
During the pre-production process, you need to decide on a script, figure out what shots you need to get and how they will be filmed, and think about your story. The pre-production process for video can take hours or days depending on the complexity of the project. You may want to create mood boards prior to finalising any decisions in order to avoid future conflicts with production.
Pre-production is often overlooked or forgotten in the video creation process. For instance, you may forget to think about what shots your video will need before production begins and end up with an incomplete edit because of this oversight. However, pre-production can make it easier for videographers by giving them a clear picture of the project before they begin filming.
Video production as a stage of project development involves the process of capturing footage by recording video, whether that be for a documentary or commercial purposes. During this stage, video production professionals are responsible for everything from capturing the audio to choosing and applying camera angles, lighting and all other production tasks such as direction of paid actors, using drones to capture aerial footage etc.
The Production stage of content creation is the actual filming of video of the content you are in the process of creating.
During the production process, video production professionals have to ensure that the camera is angled correctly, lighting levels are appropriate and sound quality remains high and clear. This all goes into determining how video will be edited later on during the post-production phase.
Production may also include gathering additional footage for use in the video project (known as B-Roll) as well as gathering audio tracks from different sources like field recordings, live performances, or sound effects to be overlaid later in post-production.
Post-production is the process of creating the video content that is to be published.
It includes editing and adding graphics or visual effects to a video before publishing it, like removing the green from a green screen and adding unique backgrounds.
Post-production can also include colour correction, sound design, animation, motion graphics and more. Some companies may opt minimalise the post-production process, instead relying on the raw footage that was filmed.
During the post-production stage, you’ll work with the footage and raw audio to marry these elements into a completed video.
Post-production can take a long time, usually between four days and two weeks depending on how much is being done to the content. It simply takes more time to complete a video when it has a heavy post-production schedule as opposed to not including any at all.
You may notice that principal filming of a film was completed well over a year prior to its release. This is often to allow the lengthy process of post-production (including the creation of visual effects) to take place prior to marketing and the films eventual release.
The title of Producer in the world of video production and videography can cover a fair bit of ground. In brief, it is a person that can get things done! An organiser of people is the best way to consider a Producer.
They will make sure the I’s are dotted and the T’s crossed, that the scripts are ready and that the client is happy with them. A producer will co-ordinate with post-production to remain on schedule and ensure the goals of the client are met on set and into the final edits. In a creative setting a producer may have to arrange funding and engage industry bodies to assist in the completion of a work. The Producer gets things done.
A typical day for a video producer might start with a morning meeting, managing crew and equipment. The video producer may also be involved helping provide guidance or direction during the shoot or post-production phase of a project including giving the tick of approval on tasks such as camera operating, sound recording (interviews), audio editing, picture editing and colour grading.
Video editing is the process of combining two or more video and audio sources, which may include raw footage such as interviews or b-roll, together into a final video production. It aims to tell a story, either by combining the videos in chronological order or through montages.
Video editing is typically done with video-editing software like Adobe Premier Pro or Final Cut Pro X and involves cutting out unwanted parts of footage to help tell a better story to improve audience engagement. It’s also important to use transitions when transitioning from one source to another.
B-roll footage is footage that is used to fill the time in between main shots. If the main footage is an interview the often the B-roll footage will be of the person working on something at their desk or people walking around the office, footage of city streets, an exterior of a building, close-ups of hands working etc.
– this can be seen as filler footage to assist with the edit of the video and this footage can also be used to aid transitions or to emphasise the dialogue or key messages of someone being interviewed.
A voiceover is a voice speaking over video footage. The voiceover can be the narrator’s, a character in a film or TV show (think of Morgan Freeman in anything), or an actor or person being interviewed who isn’t currently seen on camera but is heard talking to directly inform viewers or other actors in the video or film.
– Voiceovers are often used at either the beginning and ending of a documentary-style piece where the narrator is telling the story, or in video essays, corporate videos or interview videos where a voiceover narration might take you through a series of step by step messages.
– Voiceovers are also used to illustrate thoughts and reactions that cannot be communicated otherwise because they happen off camera (think of someone who is angry but can’t express it with their face).
A voice over may be recorded in advance of the video shoot, or it may be recorded during the shooting.
Motion graphics are computer-generated animations that are usually designed to be combined with live video or overlaid over video as a special effect. In some cases, they can also become the main content of the film itself. Motion graphics have many applications in film, video production, videography, corporate video production and social media video productions, their everyday use has been extended into advertising and corporate communications.
Motion graphics are often used to promote a brand, product or service. The most popular way to do this is by animating the company logo or animating text to emphasise key messages. Motion graphics can be created in many ways and with different tools such as Adobe After Effects, Cinema FourD Max, Maya and Apple Motion.
Colour Grading is a technique used in video production and videography to adjust the colour and lighting of footage. It is often applied with software like Adobe Camera Raw, DaVinci Resolve or Apple Color.
Different types of grading can be employed:
– “Hue” – changes only one colour from grey scale (e.g., blue) to another (e.g., purple)
– “Saturation” – changes the degree of saturation (e.g., how brightly coloured or pastel) to be
– “Luminance” – adjusts brightness so that black and white footage gradually becomes tinted with colour
– “Hue/saturation” – combines hue, saturation, and luminance changes
– “Hue/luminance” – combines hue, saturation and luminance changes
– “Luminance/saturation” – adjusts brightness so that black and white footage gradually becomes tinted with colour by reducing its saturation.
Colour grading can drastically alter footage to emphasise a ‘mood’ of particular scenes. You may notice scenes filmed to demonstrate colder darker environments are often de-saturated and are coloured with blue tones. Scenes filmed to emphasise a hotter and drier environment are often tinted yellow.
Location scouting is the process of finding perfect locations for a shoot. Location scouting is usually done before the video or photo production starts (see pre-production), and it will often be part of the budgeting process.
*Location Scouting as part of video production budgeting process:
– When a videographer is hired, they will usually have an idea of where a video needs to be shot. Location provided by the client. The videographers ability to film certain angles, ability to film in low light or the kind of content and audio they will be able to produce may be affected by a location so this should be taken into consideration for project budgeting purposes.
– As the scale of a video production increases location scouting will be delegated to the video production company producing the video subject to approval from the client.
– If a director is involved they may have some ideas about what they want to do with their film/video so location scouts must work closely with them in order to find the best environment to match these ideas. Location scouts should be able to make suggestions or offer solutions for the director which will help them achieve what they want in their final product.
A cinematographer is the director of photography (DOP). They are responsible for the visual style and composition of a film, video or photograph.
A cinematographer is in charge of what appears on screen- from framing shots to choosing colours and lighting. The way they light things can change moods–a happy scene lit by hot lights will have warm hues whereas a dark scene lit by blue light will have a cold feeling.
The cinematographer is also responsible for the technical aspects of filming, such as camera angles and movement. Cinematographers are responsible for a video or film’s visual composition.
Cinematographers use different camera angles and shots depending on the mood they want to create, or how much of the setting they want to show in one shot. A scene that takes place outside may be filmed from an overhead angle so as not to cut off trees or buildings in frame. In certain scenes where the cinematographer wants to convey a sense of claustrophobia and doom, they may shoot from low angles.
There are a variety of different formats your final video can be to suit a range or purposes.
We generally find that a .mp4 file is the most suitable file for broad use. This is perfect for hosting on your website, Youtube, Vimeo or for uploading to other socials such as LinkedIn, Instagram and Facebook.
This will depend on the length of your final video and the platform you wish to upload it to.
In many scenarios bigger is better. Most platforms you upload your video to will compress your video further making it lose quality. You will need to factor this in prior to your final export.
Youtube has no upper upload limit so there’s no need to sacrifice quality for file size.
If you were to upload your video as a LinkedIn advertisement then your video’s file size has to be under 200MB.
Videos uploaded directly to a website are ideally quite small (the smaller the better without losing quality) to ensure quick upload times.
The Facebook upload limit for videos is 10GB which is enough for most video styles.