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Thread: Shooting Family History Video Advice

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2007

    Default Shooting Family History Video Advice


    I have just ordered my first camcorder, a Canon MV8890. I have done a bit of editing before using a hotch potch of media but really want to get into family history productions, starting with my 90 years old father. My plan is to shoot interviews with him and other members of my family and edit them together with stills and other film and tape footage. The advice I need is:

    1. Will I need additional lighting for inside shots (other than natural ambient light) Q Would a table lamp with daylight bulb be of any use?

    2. I am going to invest in a mic and as it will mainly be static interviews will a lapel mic be sufficient?

    3. Does anyone have any tips for shooting the interview?

    Any advice welcomed. Thank you

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Western Europe


    The answer to the lighting question is probably yes, it depends on what the available light is like. Try and get the interviewee to sit as near windows as possible and use a white or gold reflector on the opposite side to fill in the shadows, you may need to bring someone else along with you to hold it. Switch on room lights to illuminate dark corners and if you bring additional lights with you, aim them at the ceiling (as long as it's painted white or gold - you can get away with it) instead of directly at the interviewee. The technique is called bounce lighting and comes from stills photography. If you are going to conduct an interview you will either need two lapel mic's (one for yourself and one for the interviewee) or better still just purchase one handheld mic, like what they use on TV news interviews. As far as shooting interviews is concerned there are probably many threads on this forum that have covered the subject many times before.

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