Using Your DSLR for Video

One of the newest features on DSLR cameras would be their ability to shoot video. Not all cameras yet have video modes, but more and more of them are allowing for video and many of the cameras are even allowing users to shoot video in full HD.

Filming video certainly has come a long way, and this is definitely one of the newest technologies in the world of digital photography. You will definitely want to learn more about how to use your digital photography skills and your camera to shoot video.

A Few Things to Know about Video

Shooting video with your DSLR camera is different from shooting digital photography and there are a few things that you need to know even before you begin shooting video. These little pieces of information are going to be extremely helpful and will be important when you begin working with video from your camera. Here are a few details that you should know.

You will need to use live view in order to shoot video. This means that your camera battery will be used up more quickly. You will need to always be aware of the battery and if you plan on shooting much video, then you may want to consider purchasing a backup battery pack for your camera.

Your camera will record audio in monaural sound. If you want stereo sound, then you will need to consider using a microphone. Most cameras that allow video recording will have a connection for microphones.

You will have a choice of resolutions depending on your camera and its capabilities. Remember that higher resolutions will take up more space on a memory card. The resolution options that you are most likely going to be able to choose from include the following:

1920×1080 pixel – full HD
1080×720 pixel – standard HD
640×480 pixel – non HD standard

You can still continue with your digital photography even when recording film. All you will need to do is press down the shutter release. The camera will take a still image and store it separately from the video that it is continuing to record.

Be aware of the image stabilizer. When you use image stabilization while shooting video, you will certainly be able to get a more stable image. However, keep in mind that the stabilizer is constantly in use during video. That will use much more power and much more battery life.

Make sure you have the right memory card and the right battery. When you are shooting video, you will be taking up much more space on your memory card. You will need to choose a memory card that is at least 4 GB and preferably more than that. In addition, you will want to choose a fast memory card or the card will not be able to keep up with the camera. You need to make sure you have a fully charged battery. Video is different from digital photography, and you will be able to record about an hour of video on one battery.

Shooting the Best Video

When you begin shooting video, there are several things that you need to consider. Composing and framing a video is not the same as digital photography, so you will need to think about things differently to create the best video. Here are some helpful tips to get you started with shooting video that you will be happy with.

Create a Shooting Script or a Storyboard
When you begin shooting video, it can be easy to get caught up in the videography and forget what you wanted to do and when. The best way to avoid this problem will be to create a shooting script or a storyboard. A shooting script is basically a step by step detail of what you want to shoot and when. Remember that unlike digital photography, video is a constant stream of action and you need a plan. A storyboard is basically the same as a shooting script, only it is drawn out in easy to follow illustrations.

Make Use of Storytelling
Storytelling is not just for digital photography. If you begin shooting video with the idea that you are telling a story, you will find that you are able to create one cohesive image. Otherwise, you could end up with a video that is disjointed with harsh or frustrating transitions.

Understand How to Create Composition
You cannot compose a video like you would a still image. This is just another way that video is different from digital photography. There are actually six different basics composition shots that you can use in video.

Establishing – this will be the shot that sets the scene and will most likely include everything that will be included in the scene or video.

Medium – A great way to establish a character, a medium shot includes above the waist up. It is also a good way to transition to a close up.

Close Up – Generally composed from mid chest up, the close up is a good way to focus on one person as the speaker.

Extreme Close Up – When you want to create drama and really establish the character of the speaker, you can do so by zooming in on just the face.

Two – A two shot is just exactly what it sounds like. It will include two people in the video frame.

Over the Shoulder – This method of shooting is much like viewing a character from the perspective of the other character by shooting from behind and over the shoulder. This is often used in interviews.

There are many ways that you can create amazing video with your DSLR camera. So many advances have been made in digital photography that you will be able to use your camera in more versatile manners than you ever imagined possible. If you follow the information above, you will find it much easier to create amazing video with your DSLR camera.

Top feature image A dslr camera with zoom lens via Shutterstock

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