Three Live Video Hacks You Can Do Anywhere

I just made this video with three live video hacks showing how you can easily make beautiful looking video – using minimal equipment and available light.

I’m on a mission to help you learn things like:
  • How easy Live Video is to produce.
  • How to be more confident on camera.
  • How to get viewers to do what you want.

…you can learn more by joining my FREE Videomaking Mastermind Group on Facebook here >>

Here’s a couple of my favorite live video hacks to make it as simple as possible for you to make awesome videos – and use Facebook Live. I’m not going to get into fancy equipment or fancy set-ups. I’d like you to be feeling very empowered and that you can do this easily, anywhere and any time.

1. Use Natural Light
The first thing to notice (in the video above) is that I am using available (natural) light. There’s no artificial light in the room. I have three great big windows off to one side – two windows slightly in front of me and one slightly behind me offering some backlighting. In addition, I have a neutral colored, plain wall as my background – so it’s non-distracting.

You’ll see that I have beautiful light coming down on one side which provides great contrast across my face. And I’m about five or six feet away from the wall so no matter what I do or no matter how I move, there’s no shadow cast on the wall.

What I’m going to suggest is that you look for locations that are like this – that have a neutral, non distracting background and have a lot of natural light. Note that the sunlight shouldn’t be direct – you’re going to want reflected light coming in through your window – and it’s really beautiful and really natural.

2. Use a small tripod and phone mount
A really simple camera setup for you phone uses a small flexible tripod and a mount that clips onto your phone. The cool thing about these is that you can mount it just about anywhere. (note: make sure you mount your phone horizontally)

3. Use an office chair
In the video above I’m showing how to mount your tripod on the back of an office chair. The nice thing about using an office chair is that by swiveling the chair, you can do cool little pan shots – or by rolling the chair across the floor, you can get a really nice, smooth, dolly shot.

I carry my little, bendy tripod and phone mount with me all the time – wherever I go. I always have it. So, any time I want to take a video, I can. And in my world, I know where some of the coolest, natural light rooms happen to be – and those are the places that I shoot a lot of video.

I hope these live video hacks are helpful and I’d love to see how you put these into practice.

And you can get started right away – by joining my (FREE) Videomaking Mastermind Group on Facebook where you’ll learn things like how easy Facebook live video is to produce and how to make video that gets people to do what you want. You can share your own videos, get positive feedback and get inspiration from others.



How to use jump cuts to make your videos awesome

When are jump cuts good and when are they bad?

The video above, made with my daughter, fully embraces jump cuts (yes, we’re jumping!) The camera angle is fixed and the goal was to shorten the sequence of us moving up the stairs. I wanted to use this video on Instagram – only 15 seconds – which meant the original footage of the two of us jumping up the entire flight of stairs was far too long.

But, jump cuts can be abrupt. They can be jarring. They can be obnoxious.

Wondering just exactly what a jump cut is?

As the video below demonstrates, shot by the Vimeo Video School, they are not always a good thing.

“A jump cut is a cut in film editing in which two sequential shots of the same subject are taken from camera positions that vary only slightly.” (Thank you Wikipedia!)

You create jump cuts when you cut between two sections of footage shot from the same exact camera angle – for example in a live interview with a talking head. And when they come across as too abrupt and jarring they call attention to your video making process and draw your viewer away from the story you’re telling which is very, (very) bad.

You can easily avoid a (bad) jump cut. The easiest method is to cut between close-ups, medium, and wide shots. Or cut back and forth between your interview subject and B-roll footage – or shoot your subject from two angles and cut back and forth between the two viewpoints.

But what if you love jump cuts?

I may be dating myself, but who can forget that jump cut from the start of 2001 A Space Oddyssey when the ape throws a bone in the air and the scene jumps to a shot of a (bone shaped) space station orbiting the earth? Or the rivetting jump cuts from Run Lola Run? (OK, I’ll admit it, I really liked watching actress Franka Potente run down the streets of Berlin.)

When should you use jump cuts?

Jump cuts are great for showing the passing of time, or to speed up a sequence or to add comedy.

A great example is this ‘Coasting’ video, below, produced for Brahma by videographer Allen Martinez, which uses jump cuts to great effect. (also shot on stairs)

Note the rider’s-eye view sequence (that starts 10 seconds in) once the subject on the scooter descends a long flight of stairs in one of Rio’s favelas.

I hope you enjoyed this post as much as I enjoyed creating it for you.

If you’re online and you’re reading this, then you must be serious about using video for your business, so you’re probably going to want to take a look my FREE guide: the Top 10 Secrets to Attracting Clients with Video

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