Filming on your smartphone
Tips for filmmakers on how to get the most out of your smartphone.
Smartphones mean that everyone can be a filmmaker.
Arthur Haynes is part of the BBC Production Talent Pool and is a seasoned smartphone filmmaker. In this video, recorded on a smartphone (iPhone 5), Arthur shares his tips for filming on your smartphone.
"My advice is to go out there and have a play. You never know what you might create."– Arthur Haynes
- Set your phone to airplane mode so that you don’t have any interruptions when recording.
- Adjust your brightness. Set it to high so you can see clearly what you’re filming.
- Always film in landscape so that the format is set correctly when you playback.
Now for the actual filming…
Before you start filming, think about what your story is and then think about the shots that will best tell the story.
- Set the scene. Have an establishing shot and make sure you introduce your characters to your audience pretty early on.
- Don’t just stick to one shot. Use different types of shots to make your story more interesting. Change the angle of the camera to give different points of view.
- Zooming in when filming on your smartphone is a big no-no! It’s always best for you to physically move with the camera instead.
- Blurry footage is of no use to anyone so make sure you focus before you start filming. Hold down the square box on your screen to focus on your subject.
- Exposure - smartphones have this built in. Tap on your subject and then adjust your settings according to what you want.
- There’s nothing worse than having great footage but having the sound let you down. Make sure you know where the microphone is on your phone so as not to cover it up when filming. If you’re filming in a quiet area then the phone’s own microphone might be enough…
- …. But you can always use the phone’s headphones as an additional mic.
- You'll want to stabilise your shots and limit movement so that you don't have shaky shots. Depending on what you’re filming, holding the phone in your hand might work. If you’re going to be filming for a while, you might want to think about leaning the camera on something or even getting a tripod and a mount.