Filming with a Smartphone: Basic Camera Shots

Using different perspectives in your videos
will add visual interest and help to keep the viewer’s attention. In this video, I describe a variety of camera
views and moves possible with a smartphone. [music] In an extreme wide shot, the subject is visible
but the emphasis is on showing him in relation to his environment. The subject is closer to the camera in a wide
shot, but he is still shown in perspective to his surroundings. A full shot is even closer, but the subject’s
body is still in full view. In a mid shot, only part of the subject is
visible but the view gives an impression of the whole. A medium close up shows more detail by framing
the subject’s face and upper body, for example. One portion of the subject, such as a face,
takes up the entire frame in a close-up. A high angle shot looks down on the subject
or scene, perhaps to show an activity as in these examples. A two-shot is a shot of two people in the
same frame. A group shot shows three or more people in
a frame. A cut-in shot focuses more closely on some
aspect of a scene or subject. This can be done by moving the camera, as in this example,
or by the subject moving closer to the camera, as in this second example. A cut-away shot moves the view away from the
main scene or from one subject to another, as in this example. A pan moves the camera horizontally to sweep
across a scene. It’s better to use a tripod to pan smoothly, but if you don’t have one,
you can also move the camera freehand as in these examples to gradually reveal your subject. A tilt shot moves the camera vertically. For
example, to reveal a tall object. A combination tilt and pan shot can be used
to follow an object moving through space such as this quadcopter. An aerial shot is a view from a plane, a helicopter,
or a drone. In a point of view shot, the camera shows
what the subject is looking at. This shot can be used to put the video viewer into the
subject’s shoes. The moving vehicle shot is a view of subjects
being transported through a scene in a boat, car, or other vehicle. The selfie shot is when the subject is holding
the camera and filming themselves talking or engaging in some activity. The selfie shot
is accomplished with the aid of a selfie stick and a phone mount. In an arc shot, the camera circles the subject.
The selfie arc shot is one in which the subject twirls in place while shooting a selfie. This
shot sustains the same view of the subject but reveals the subject’s surroundings in
a 360 degree turn. With the camera fixed in place, a subject
can move toward or away from the camera. Such shots can be used to open or close a video. Well, those are some of the basic camera shots
you can get with your phone. I hope these examples will inspire you to add some visual
variety to your smartphone videos. You can find more video tips and tutorials
in my eBook, The Scientist Videographer, available at the iTunes Store, Amazon, and Smashwords. [music]

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