Guest post written by Ellen from Ellen Jackson Videography.

I don’t need to tell you how beautiful Ferry Meadows is. We are truly blessed to have such a lovely place on our doorstep. The lovely walks, the wildlife, the water sports and, of course, the yummy food and drinks at Lakeside.

It really is a very photogenic area – especially if the sun is shining! But how many of you have taken videos whilst you’ve been there, and been disappointed when you got them home? Well fear no more, as here are my tops tips on getting good video footage in and around Ferry Meadows.

Composition

Composition is one of the biggest factors when it comes to getting good results. There are so many things to think about when setting up your shot.

First off, if you’re filming on a phone you will want to make sure it is horizontal, especially if you will be playing it on an iPad, TV or computer, as otherwise you’ll get black bars at the edge of the footage.

If you’re filming a subject, like your dog or your child, or even a swan, where do you want the subject to be in the shot? Good footage makes use of different angles. Generally, as a rule, you want the eyes of the subject to be in the top third of the image, so you don’t have a lot of wasted space.

Another good tip when setting up your shot is not to do it from standing. Get down to the eye level of your subject. So, for example, if you’re filming the water, crouch right down and film at the water’s level – be careful not to drop your phone though, I can’t be responsible for that.

Get down to eye level with your subject.

Steadiness

Obviously a big part of video is keeping the camera still. In my professional filming world I would never go anywhere without a tripod, but if you’re going for a nice leisurely stroll around Ferry Meadows the last thing you want is to be lugging around a great tripod.

Fear not, there are many ways around this:

Why not have a look online for phone tripods? They are quite often small enough to fit into your pocket or handbag, or another option is trying a selfie stick. You’d be surprised how much shake a selfie stick can take away…

This was filmed on a phone using just a selfie stick.

To Zoom or Not to Zoom!

You will lose significant video quality if you zoom using your phone, as all it does is stretch the image.

If you feel like you want to be a bit closer, then the best option if you’re using your phone is to walk closer to the subject. Obviously you should only do this if it is safe to do so, (remember never get too close to wildlife).

If you do have a camera for filming on, always make sure you’re using the optical zoom and not digital zoom, as digital zoom will again just stretch your image, like a phone.

Location

Ferry Meadows can be quite busy in the popular areas during summer, so why not try something different? There are many paths that take you out to the edge of Ferry Meadows, or into woodland areas.

Why not try a different route to take you away from the crowds? This will make for much more interesting footage as you won’t have lots of people getting in the way of your shots.

What about even trying a pedalo and getting some shots from the lake, or from the train? But again – I can’t take responsibility for any dropped phones or cameras, so please be careful!

Take shots from different places.

 Experiment/Practise

The most important thing to do when filming is to play about and practise. Try different things.

Why not film through a tree, or some wild flowers, move your subject to the left of the shot, rather than in the centre or even try out a slow motion feature?

Don’t forget to share your photos and videos with the Lakeside Kitchen & Bar Facebook page. I’m sure they love to see what you’re getting up to. And you never know they may even share the odd one or two.

Once you’ve got your footage, why not then edit it all together to some music?

If you’d like some more information on any of the services Ellen offers, including corporate videos, video training and wedding videos then get in touch and see how she can help.

You can email her at ellen@ellenjackson.co.uk or visit her website http://ellenjackson.co.uk to look at examples of previous work.

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