Photography and video have some similarities, yet plenty of differences. If you’re a photographer who wants to switch to video, in this video from B&H, you’ll hear six essential tips that will make this transition easier. Photographer David Flores talks about the things that every photographer should take into consideration before they start shooting video.
1. Frame rate (frames per second)
When shooting photos, one still image is one frame. With videos, you need to think of the number of frames per second. 24fps is one of the standard frame rates, mainly used for movies. 30 fps is used for TV/broadcast, and 25 fps for PAL broadcast.
You can go beyond 24 or 30 fps and get creative with frame rates. The speeds between 48 and 120 fps are used to create slow-motion footage. You can read more about frame rates and their use on this link.
2. Constant shutter
Changing the shutter speed in photography lets you make all kinds of creative decisions. However, with video, the shutter speed is directly tied to the fluidity of your subject’s movement. The general rule is to double your shutter speed based on the effective frame rate. This will create the illusion of normal, natural movement.
Of course, you can always break the rules if you do it correctly. For example, shooting at 24fps with a shutter speed of, for example, 1/125s will give the footage a choppier look. But as you know, you need to learn the rules before you break them.
3. Consider your lighting
When shooting stills, you can shoot with continuous lighting, but also with flash or strobe units. However, when you switch to video, continuous lighting becomes your only option. So, before you make the transition, be aware that you’ll need to invest in lighting if you’ve only used strobes for your photography work.
4. Video codecs
As a photographer, you’ve worked with RAW and JPEG files directly out of the camera. But with video, there’s a large variety of recording formats. If your camera has a RAW or LOG mode, think of it as the RAW format in photography, which gives you more post-processing power.
Although you generally can use still lenses for video, dedicated cine lenses have certain advantages. They’re designed for focus pulling, have a larger focus throw and less lens breathing. You can read more about the advantages of the cine lenses here.
6. Image resolution
There are various formats for shooting video. The full HD format is 1920×1080 pixels, and UHD 4K works out to 3840 x 2160 pixels David points out these resolutions are smaller than the average photo, so you should have in mind that you won’t have the same flexibility for cropping.
Overall, video rules can seem restrictive for photographers at first. But once you get more comfortable with the medium, you’ll start getting more creative and versatile in your video work.