A content manager in an IT company. Interested in video and photo editing. Like corgis, books and music.
Every musician dreams of being seen and heard by an appreciative audience. The internet provides outstanding opportunities to get noticed. One of the most popular ways is to upload your music video to social networks like Instagram, TikTok, and YouTube. The advantage of Instagram is that people can share your clip instantly. Although it’s easy to acquire subscribers, it’s also easy to lose your audience. One of the key ingredients to success is to make a step-by-step plan for creating and shooting engaging music videos. In this article, I will tell you how music videos are made and how to make a music video yourself. Let’s go!
How to Shoot a Music Video
1. Start with your goal
Determining your goal will keep you focused on what you want to achieve and what you need to create your own video. With that goal in mind, you will have some idea of where to start and be able to plan your strategy. It will also be easier for you to come up with a concept for your music video, so you can look for inspiration. Perhaps you’ll be inspired by the famous musician’s video, well-known music bloggers, or even friends and relatives.
One of the main decisions you need to make is a platform for your videos and what you are going to show the viewers. Will there be music segments? Or short music lessons? Or maybe you’re a fan of cover videos? It’s also a good idea to create a YouTube channel, especially if you’re part of a band. It’s truly inspiring to see all the positive comments from strangers, and the view counter is going up!
2. Make a plan
You need to consider the video production process when you’re thinking about how to shoot a music video. Here are the main steps you need to consider: plot, location, and equipment. Check out my instructions below.
If you’re making a professional music video, you need to build a detailed plan and come up with a storyline. Find locations for shooting; think about camera angles and lighting. Consider whether you might want to add special effects during the montage. Taking a look at some books or videos about how to direct a music video will also be helpful. A good script is your ticket to success.
One way to make work on the script easier is to create a series of storyboards. A storyboard includes all the shots you want for your clip and further montage. You don’t need a computer – you can draw detailed pictures of every shot on sheets of paper and bring them to the set. Make sure you have all the necessary equipment before you start making your video. It’s great if you have all you need at home but if you lack something, think about borrowing it from friends.
3. Choose a filming location
You need to not only think about how to film but also where to film. The location is important because the atmosphere in your video will be influenced by where you shoot it.
Whether you shoot at home, at the shore, or on a rooftop, you will be creating two different clips. But keep in mind that your videos should follow a similar style. For example, if you’re planning to record covers at home, it won’t work if you transition to a music clip from the woods after a few clips from home. Another hidden pitfall can occur if you shoot in a public place. If you’re shooting at a cafe, make sure the owners don’t mind. The same goes for filming on the street: you shouldn’t get in peoples’ way. Remember about privacy, too: some people may not welcome being filmed. And here’s another thing: there have been instances when strangers have gotten involved in fights or chases on a set, thinking these scenes were real life. If you film scenes like this, make sure someone from your team can explain to strangers that they should not to worry about it.
4. Here Comes the Recording
And action! Once you’ve written your plan, gathered your team, found the equipment and a place to shoot, you can start recording. Here are some tips about how to record your video.
Now you should follow your storyboard to make sure you don’t forget a single scene. Do not hesitate to keep reshooting a scene until you get the perfect shot. It’s always better to have several takes to choose from, even if you only need a 10-second take, than to return to a filming location again and again, just to reshoot those 10 seconds. Remember that the best shots can be captured accidentally. Your storyboard is just a plan, but do not ignore any crazy idea that comes to your head – you can always toss it out later if it doesn’t work. I’ll say it one more time: the more material you shoot, the better.
5. Time to Edit
If you’ve reached this stage – congratulations! The hard work is almost over, and your music video is nearly ready. Time to get creative. All you need now is your footage, a script, and a good video editing program. Don’t forget to check your storyboard during the montage process to be sure you keep to the plan.
Here is a list of video editing software even beginner can use:
You’ll find short instructions about how to edit videos on the websites listed. You can use the basic editing tools, add your music, and insert cool effects and filters. Use the preview capability to watch your video before saving it. Now’s the time to play with colors and fonts, and experiment with color correction controls. It takes time to montage the perfect video, but the result is always worth it.
Here are some ideas about the types of videos you can make:
- A cover video
- An educational clip
- A duet with your friend or a band performance
- A music clip for YouTube
- A TikTok video
- An Instagram video
My main advice to you is not to hesitate, and to start with a plan. Even if you don’t have a video team and an army of fans, you can make a music video. Grab a camera and a microphone – and just do it! In any case, shooting a music video is a great way to learn something new, like filming and montaging. Try experimenting with formats and editing, camera angles, and even backgrounds. You are at the beginning of an exciting creative process, and your enthusiasm could easily become the very thing that drives your success.