I popped my vlogging cherry in June. The Manchester Ted Talks Group asked me to record a 3-minute video based around one of my blog posts which would be shown at one of their monthly evening meetings.
I said yes, of course, because there was no reason to say no. I hadn’t done it before, but that wouldn’t matter. Here’s what I learnt.
1. It will take you much longer than you think – especially if it’s your first go. I didn’t start early (that would be too sensible) and thought I’d be able to bash the whole thing out in a day. That didn’t quite pan out….
2. What about fancy equipment? A tripod would probably be useful. I didn’t have one so rigged up my digital camera on the combination of a ladder and stack of books. It did the job, and we all have to start somewhere, don’t we?
3. Make sure you pick the right spot – somewhere nice and quiet. I say this because one of my best takes had to be discarded due to *someone* singing loudly in the shower.
4. It’s harder than you might think to say all those things in one take. You could spend time learning it like a script, but I had left it too late. Alternatively, you could keep recording take after take, until you get it right, but that requires a level of patience I lack.
5. I opted to accept my limitations (and impending deadline) and record it in chunks instead – this brings with it its own challenges.
6. If you were well versed and managed to get it in one, editing might not be required. If like me you gave up on this, then you are going to have to edit the thing.
7. You’ll need software. iMovie might be good enough (but I don’t have a Mac *shakes head in shame*) so had to download a programme and (quickly) learn how to use it.
8. On reviewing your footage you’ll quickly need to accept two things. The way you sound, and what you look like. You might like the face you do in the mirror but your face basically has a life of its own that you weren’t aware of. Move on.
9. Remember the purpose of your vlog. Is it about getting a message across, or about showcasing your brand and amazing editing skills? The latter will require much more time, effort and practise.
10. You might find watching other videos and vlogs inspiring. Someone super slick like DevanOnDeck might spur you on, or (in my case) remind you that rustic and relatable could be your niche.
Would I do it again? Well, you’ll have to watch this space.
All the faces I didn’t know I had (and a very important message).