About to hop in front of a video camera? Particularly if you’re a first-timer, standing in the limelight can be daunting—you want to come across well! Because filming is what we do here at Sky Jellyfish, we’ve seen a lot of people in front of video cameras and we have some tips for how you can look your best.
- Make eye contact with the camera
Make eye contact, but try not to stare the camera down. Remembering to look away from the camera occasionally will make your performance seem more authentic. And when you look away, look to the side or down—not up. If you look up, you’ll look like you’re rolling your eyes. If you look to the side or down, you’ll look thoughtful.
- Connect with your co-stars
If other people are in the shot, make sure to look at them as well as at the camera. This will make you seem more genuine and allows you to establish a rapport with them. It’s especially important that you look at someone if they’re speaking, because you’ll seem like you’re listening and engaging.
- Maintain good posture
An upright and open posture communicates authority, so keep your back straight and drop your shoulders back and down. Having a strong posture also makes you feel more powerful, which will come across in the video. How to Succeed by Having Good Posture.
- Use your hands to gesture
Using your hands helps you look natural and adds energy to the video.
- Keep your hands visible
Try not to put your hands behind your back or in your pockets—hiding your hands makes viewers subconsciously think of you as untrustworthy and it also makes gesturing (tip 4) difficult.
- Check your stance
If you’re standing in front of the camera, keep your knees slightly bent and your feet about hip-width apart—this will help you to stay comfortable and balanced. If you’re sitting, lean slightly forward to appear taller and thinner.
- Speak in a deep voice
Most people’s voices get higher when they’re under stress, so speaking in a deep voice will make you sound calm. Don’t put on a fake voice that’s lower than your actual voice—that will just sound silly. Instead, use the bottom of your natural vocal register.
- Take a deep breath before each sentence
People collapse their diaphragm when they’re nervous (which you may be, in front of a camera). This strains their voices and makes them lose their breath easily. Taking deep breaths expands your diaphragm and will help you to deliver your words well.
- End your sentences on a low note
I mean that literally—try not to ‘uptalk’ (uptalking is when you use a rising intonation in the final syllable) because you’ll sound insecure. This might take some practice! Read your script through a couple of times before the shoot to make sure you have this one nailed.
- Have confidence!
The most important thing to remember is to be confident (or pretend you are)—that’s at the heart of each tip above. When you get in front of the camera, pretend that you’re talking to your closest and most supportive friends. Oh, and don’t forget to smile and have fun!
Those are our top ten tips for looking good in front of the camera. Do you have any other tips you want to share? Let us know in the comments.