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How to Shoot Video That Doesn't Suck

Miraculous Video Cure! Man’s Video Stops Sucking!

This is only the second video I’ve ever produced, and the first video after reading your book.

The video was shot entirely on a GoPro Hero. I think its apparent, especially to a trained eye, that I’m not using expensive equipment. But I was really influenced by your mantra that a great video can be shot on a cell phone. A compelling story beats technology any day!

I must confess, I bent a few rules making this video. Some by choice (generic graphic, I couldn’t resist), others by impulse (I had to pan to keep the sharks in frame); though, quite honestly, I’ve learned that keeping the camera still while the shark swims in and out of the frame can be even more powerful than endlessly following it.

What do you think?

Dan

You write a book and hope somebody gets something out of it, and then along comes Dan to knock it out of the park.

My contention was, and is, that anybody can get better at video by following a few key principles.  Well, Dan– obviously one of us is a genius.  For only your second video, this is pretty awesome!

To show just how awesome, here is Dan’s FIRST video– before the book.  Watch about 20 seconds and you’ll see a lot of common video errors– Dan’s too far from the action, the shots go on forever, the camera moves too much, there’s no real story.  If you watch the whole thing, you’ll realize it’s also way too long.

Fast forward to Dan’s post-book video, and he’s experienced a miraculous video cure!  He’s close to all the action, keeps his shots short, focuses on a hero in every shot (mostly sharks!) and he’s cut out all the bad shots— leaving a much more professional-looking video with lots of hot shark-on-cage action.  Nice work, Dan!

The only thing I have to add to this living testimonial to our mutual genius, Dan, is to remind you that there are no rules!  When you’re learning any new activity, it helps to drill the basics.  I talk about them a lot because they’re news to most people.  But once you’ve got the basics down, your video is yours to shoot.  You’re the artist.  If there’s a reason to “break the rules,” break them!  All I ask is that you look at your work afterward and figure out whether or not what you did worked well for you.

In this case, Dan– it did.

Read 12 Tips to make your video great.

One thought on “Miraculous Video Cure! Man’s Video Stops Sucking!

  1. wow great video! Now I really want to go shark diving on Isla Guadalupe. Visible improvement over first one. Inspiring to see a beginner with accessible equipment make a great video!

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