This LinkedIn Learning course is a must-see for anyone shooting documentaries. It includes invaluable information about how to light, stage. and film an interview.
Welcome from Video Foundations: Interviews by Anthony Q. Artis
Although you will be capturing real events unfolding in real time, you can still be creative about how you compose your shots. See the links below for more information about the techniques of composition.
The most basic consideration for shooting video is how to frame your shot:
Extreme Long Shot: Very wide shot, often for landscapes
Long Shot: From head to toe
photo from flickr by Adam Lerner
Medium Long Shot: From the knees up
Medium Shot: From the waist up
Medium Close Up: Includes the head and shoulders
Close Up: Frames the face
photo from flickr by Ryan Li
Extreme Close Up: Tight framing shows a detail in the scene
photo from flickr by Elaine
In documentary filmmaking, A-Roll is generally your interview footage, while B-roll is the supporting footage inserted between the interview clips. Some types of documentaries (poetic, observational) do not have this structure and consist entirely of A-Roll footage.
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