How to Shoot Better Video

Watch on YouTube: How to Shoot Better Videos

If you’re new to shooting video, you may be wondering why your footage doesn’t look as good as shots that you see on TV. To put it simply, you may be wondering what you need do to shoot better video.

I know exactly how you feel. Way back in 2001, I decided to purchase what was then a state of the art camera for prosumers, the Canon XL1.


Amani’s Canon XL1

It was groundbreaking for filmmakers because it was much more affordable than high end film and video cameras, yet it produced an exceptional image at the time.

I’ll also mention that I had been working in news for about four years at the time, so I thought that I knew a thing or two about video production.

It just so happened that the city of Tampa where I lived hosted the Superbowl that year, and I was itching to shoot something, and decided to start capturing the festivities leading up to the big game.

My brother (who worked in news as an editor) and I shot hours of raw footage. We then went to work editing the video. We spent days and weeks on what turned out to be a ten-minute minute documentary called, “The Super City of Tampa.”

We thought we had a great product until we started showing the video to our work colleagues. Some of them were kind in their criticism, but I’ll never forget what one of our critics said, “It could have been shot better. I looks amateurish.”

I was taken aback from the what seemed to be a harsh critique.

In retrospect, the documentary was amateurish. We shot a lot of the video handheld, and the shots weren’t steady, or framed very well. I don’t remember using a microphone for any of the interviews. We shot on autofocus which caused the video to sometimes drift out of focus, and there definitely wasn’t a strong story line.

There is definitely a strong line that distinguishes home video from professional video, which is why I created this recipe. You’ll learn 5 techniques that will help you shoot better video. These are things that I’ve learned over the years, and if you start applying them now, your videos will start looking 100% better.

How to Shoot Better Video

To shoot better video, follow these 5-steps:
1. Plan
2. Use a tripod
3. Frame your shots (rule of thirds)
4. Use light
5. Shoot sequences

In this video I talk about the lights that I use in my home studio. You can watch this video to learn about the affordable video production lights that I use at home.

About Amani Channel

Amani Channel is a former news reporter, a vlogger, an award winning video producer, and an adjunct professor. He also helps organizations and companies create visual stories through VisualEyeMedia.

Follow Amani on Twitter and circle him on Google+


  1. […] this video, I talk about some simple video production techniques that you can use to improve the quality of your […]

  2. […] this recipe I share basic videography tips using the rule of thirds and sequenced shots. In this example I use the downtown skyline as an […]

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