Let's face it - video cameras are dead. Gone are the days where you take out your video camera and record hours of footage, waiting for your children to do something cute and then spend hours forcing other family members to watch said video. We now all shoot 30 second videos on our iPhone and share them immediately with friends. While I love receiving these videos, there are somethings I miss about the long form video camera days, like how it gave you some time to warm up to the camera in order to truly belt out "5 Little Monkeys" while twirling. Today, we just whip out an iPhone and stick it in a kids face as soon as they start to sing, inevitably muting the budding Bruno Mars/Adele. On the flip-side, we get to capture so many more memories, like impromptu moments and moments on the go. (Remember when the video camera had to be plugged into the television to work?!) But with new technology comes new challenges, and there is one thing almost everyone does wrong while taking videos with their phones that makes me cringe.
Almost everyone videotapes everything on their phone vertically, when they really should be recording any video they take horizontally! While this drives me nuts, it's not anyone's fault. It feels most natural to take video that way! We are so used to holding our phone that way while texting, surfing the web and taking photos. Also, when you play the video back on the phone, it looks great, so you keep doing it. Here's the thing though, if you ever wanted to watch that video again on a computer screen or television screen, it will look like a long, skinny video with empty space all around it. My sister, Lizz, told me as soon as Evie was born to take all videos horizontally, that way I could edit them together into a montage and could have a video of each of her years forever, instead of vertical short clips that I could only view on my phone. As someone who takes a ton of videos and loves home videos of our past, it was single-handedly the BEST advice I got as a new mom. Do you know how hard and frustrating it is to try and edit together vertical and horizontal videos? It's nearly impossible.
You would think with a degree in production and film from college and a career in photography, I would have known about this rule already and that it would be common sense to me, but even I was guilty of taking vertical videos. After my sister explained this rule to me though, it was head slap moment and I never took a vertical video again.
Hope this tip helps you make beautiful videos you can share on any screen, and if you've now just realized that all your videos are shot vertically and are panicking, don't worry, our kids will be watching these videos through robot eyes or something and it won't be a problem in the future!
And if this post hasn't convinced you yet, maybe this funny PSA will!
(all photos, jamie grill photography, video via saynotoverticalvideos.com)