We interviewed our video producer and director of photography, Rob Sumbler, to ask for some of his tips and tricks for good production during an interview style video.
Q: What are the most important things to take into consideration while shooting an interview?
A: The biggest thing is what's in the frame, how the person looks and what they're in front of. You don't just want a boring conference room because that doesn't say anything about who the person is or what they do. It also doesn't offer anything to accentuate the frame. If you do the interview in someone's office, you can have a picture of their family behind them which shows them in their own environment and makes it more personal. Setting is very important.
Q: What are your top few tips for a successful interview style video?
A: Asking the right questions and getting whatever message you want to get across as efficiently as possible without too many tangents. You only want to use the part of the answer that says it most concisely. Keep it short and don't put in too much extraneous information.
Q: What advice would you give to those who are just starting out in video production and who want to produce good videos but might not have the high quality equipment that a production studio would?
A: You don't need really high quality and expensive equipment to make good looking videos. You can just as easily make a really bad looking video with a really expensive camera. Work on getting your shots as good as you possibly can. Try to find a behind the scenes video from an interview you really liked to see how they set it up. It's important to pay attention to details, such as how they're using their lighting to make the shadows fall on the correct side of the persons face. Also, you want to use the light that's in room to highlight the person exactly how you want. Try to get as many high quality shots as you can to learn how and teach yourself.
Q: What do you have to say about MessageMakers' video production specifically and why we are unique?
A: We've been doing this for a really long time and it's second nature to us. I've done thousands of interviews over the course of my career, many without all of the lights and equipment that we have accessible here at MessageMakers. A lot of it was walking in with a camera and a microphone and making it happen. Our ability to make it as good as possible without any tools means we can make it even better once we have all the tools that we need. We also know how to craft a really good story because we've told hundreds of them.
Q: What have you learned over the course of your career that's been really important to you? Maybe something that's been a common theme in every interview or video that you've done.
A: Really, it's all about the connection with people. You're not going to be able to get great sound bites out of somebody if you haven't connected with them. You want the person you're interviewing to talk to you like they know you. Having that connection is most important.
For more information about our video services and see an example of one video that MessageMakers has done, head over to our video page. To see more videos and events that we've done, head to our portfolio page.