Top Questions For Video Production Studio

Here are some of the top questions we get at the video studio about video production, editing, web optimization, and photography. If your question isn't answered here, please contact us and we will answer it!

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  • What is Video Production?

    According to Wikipedia, video production is, "The process of creating video by capturing moving images, and creating combinations of parts of this video in live production and post-production (video-editing)."

    And, while this definition is accurate, it still doesn't capture the essence of what video production is all about.

    Video Production From Concept to Completion

    Video production starts with coming up with a solid concept and creating a plan to get the concept across to the audience. With a good concept in mind, the team moves on to writing a script, scouting the shoot location, and performing the many tasks needed to ensure that the shoot will go as planned.

    When it's time for the shoot, the production team should have all the camera, lighting, and sound equipment ready. Then it's time to shoot. This is where the magic happens, but only if the production team has done their homework and are ready to take on any and all challenges the shoot may have. Of all the aspects of video production, this is arguably the most important. Without good video, there is no reason to code, optimize, edit, or promote the material, which are the final four jobs of a full-service video production team.

    Want More Information about Video Production?

    For more information about the ins and outs of video production, request our free book, Nine Nifty Tips for Effective Video Clips. It's filled with information that can help you better understand how powerful web video is and how to do it just right.

    If you'd like, you can also call 703.962.1270 to speak with a member of our DC metro video production team. We would love to show you how our production team can make your videos the unbeatable conversion tool you need to beat out your competition.

    Paisano's Tom Wilson

    Spinfire Pierre Garcon

    Jim Folliard Video Master

  • What do I need to do before shooting on-location video?

    A lot.

    Shooting an on-location video isn't as easy as busting out your iPhone and hitting record on a random street corner. Successful on-location video takes a lot of planning. From permits to batteries, you better be prepared.

    Our Top Prepping Tips

    Before you show up on location, do your homework. Our DC web video production team suggests following our prep tips to avoid common mistakes and create a successful on-location video:

    • Get Permits. In order to shoot video in DC or anywhere, you must get permission to shoot in public places or when your shoot will impact those around you or the environment. Check with city or county officials to get the permits you need, or call and ask us. We've shot video all over Virginia and D.C. and can steer you in the right direction.
    • Chat with the Owner. If you are shooting in or around a business, be sure to speak to the owner or manager. Be polite, and let them know what you will be doing and for how long. Also be sure to ask them for information about any problems you might run into, including noise, traffic, lighting, etc.
    • Shoot More Than You Need. Shooting extra video, be it scenes filmed from a different angle or alternate openings or closings, will give you options when you edit your video. Also, get a lot of "B-roll" footage. Casual shots of the location, the subject, and the product can help bulk out your video.
    • Prepare for the Worst. Be ready for equipment failure, dead batteries, a sudden storm, or unexpected foot traffic. Roll with the punches, and stay loose. After all, you never know when one of the problems you encounter can be used to your advantage.

    For more DC on-location video shoot advice, or to hire our professional video production crew, call 703.962.1270. We want to do all we can to make your videos—and your web video marketing campaign—a success.

    Jim Folliard Video Master

    On Location Video

    Mike Tyson Video Production

  • When is it best to choose an on-location video shoot over a studio shoot?

    On-location shoots are best when the setting is the key to the success of your video. For example, if you are an attorney who wants to make a set of informative videos, shooting in our green screen studio is best because the focus of the video is you and the important legal information you are giving.

    However, there are many times when it makes more sense to shoot on location. Examples include:

    • Tours. If you want to give potential clients, customers, or investors an inside look into your business, the best way is through a video tour. They will get to "meet" employees and get to know you and your company before they set foot in your door.
    • Product demonstrations. It's pretty much impossible to show off the benefits of your new line of performance swimwear without a pool. If your product would be better shown off in the great outdoors, an on-location shoot is a must.
    • Scouting Videos. If you are a high school athlete looking to pique the interest of college recruiters, a well-made scouting video should show you in action. Because of this, an on-location shoot is crucial to the success of your scouting video.

    A Word of Warning

    On-location video shoots in D.C. have many benefits. However, even the best location won't mask a bad concept, poor lighting, or terrible video and sound quality. For the best results, your video has to be well thought out and executed. Otherwise, your promotional videos will do nothing but waste your time and money.

    For the best advice on shooting video footage in D.C., call 703.962.1270. Our D.C. video production team is ready and able to help you shoot videos that get you the attention you deserve.      

    Jim Folliard Video Master

    Mike Tyson Michael and Son

    Michael and Son Cave man

  • How Much Will It Cost to Shoot a Video for My Law Firm?

    Technically, anyone with a smartphone can shoot a video and upload it to YouTube with a per-video cost of literally pennies. Practically, though, producing a bare-bones video for your law firm's website will do more harm than good. After all, potential clients want to see that you have resources at your disposal, not that you're excessively cheap. The good news is that the money you spend on professional video production equipment is a long-term investment, since you can use it to make multiple videos over the course of months or years.



    At Gearshift, we recommend that law firms invest about $5,000 in video equipment, which breaks down roughly as follows: $1,500 for a camera with high video resolution, $1,500 for professional video editing software, and a few hundred dollars apiece for lenses, lights, microphones, and tripods. With this equipment (and, of course, a compelling script), you'll be able to shoot a video that stands its own against the YouTube competition. Of course, if you don't have the time, resources, expertise, or desire to shoot your own videos, Gearshift will be glad to work with you to produce the kind of clips that attract paying clients!

  • How can I make my web videos interactive?

    One of the best ways to increase viewership among your Web video content is to make your videos interactive. Viewers respond to content when they are engaged in that content, or when they are involved in the way the content plays out.  

    Depending on your objective, you can choose to make your video content either slightly or highly interactive. Users can allow viewers to choose the ending to their video content, or simply link the video to similar content to increase views.

    Check out some examples of how Internet users are engaging viewers with interactive web video. You can even use YouTube Annotations to create interactivity within your content (see “YouTube Electric Guitar”):

    Top 10 Interactive YouTube Videos

    Using YouTube Annotations to create interactive content is easy. Simply load your content into YouTube and choose the “Edit Annotations”, then “Spotlight Annotation” (rectangle box with corners outlined) as many times as you’d like to create viewer choices within your video content.

    Users can include Annotations in many other ways as well- as a call to action (encourage viewers to subscribe to your channel, watch more of your content, etc.), as a link to various YouTube content, add information about your video and more.


  • How Do I Make Videos That People Will Actually Want To Watch?

    Today my wife had the television on and the program was one of those old classic black and white movies. What a treat to watch a master film editor work. The scenes built on the story and didn’t have a bunch of graphic pictures that you see in today’s movies.

    That got me to thinking. Today many of the “video experts” tell you that the way to make good looking video is to watch what everyone is doing today on TV.

    But that’s wrong. Just because someone has a video editing suite in their computer doesn’t make them video editors. In fact, all it does is make everyone think that it takes no brains to become an editor. Just take your raw video, cut out some scenes, add fancy transitions, paste in some credits, and you’re done.

    But watch an older movie and see how the edit builds on the story. No fancy transitions between scenes. The transitions are just fades and cuts.

    I was privileged to spend a month with an expert, my friend Leonard S. Smith, Jr., an Emmy winning member of the Directors Guild of America. We spent one full month editing thirteen hours of video into a 40-minute video. It was truly magic to see how he worked. And often we only got one or two minutes of finished video in a day!

    Today you can get hundreds of transitions because some software programmer figured out how to write the code. But having those transition doesn’t make them work.

    I know, you see them all the time on TV.

    Here's a question to ponder: about those geometric transitions you see on TV, are they there because of good editing or because the “editor” had so many that he/she just had to use them?