Marketing & Promotions

A Nail Tech's Guide to Shooting, Editing Video

Learn fundamental terminology and look through a typical editing process to get one step closer to making movie magic.

Creating a strong online presence on YouTube will strengthen your credibility and help you gain potential clients. Beyond that, sharing your videos on the second largest search engine in the world can lead to new job opportunities and even brand sponsorship.

Recording tutorials for YouTube will allow you to display your masterful and creative technique to a local and global audience. You can also host weekly vlogs to share your expertise by answering other nail techs’ application questions or address client concerns. Your YouTube channel is what you make it.

Take your business to the next level by broadcasting your talent. To do that, you first need to understand basic shooting and video editing skills.

Getting Started, Things to Consider

The right camera for you is one that is equipped with the controls and tools you need. Cell phones for example are portable, user-friendly, and are necessary for mobile uploading capabilities. It’s important to note that cell phonevideos get recorded according to orientation of the device. Make sure to rotate the cell phone horizontally (landscape) before recording. If you plan to only share your videos on social media platforms like Instagram, Vine, and Facebook, a cell phone is the most cost effective option for you.

However, cell phones have smaller light sensors compared to video cameras. While you may not notice the difference between both options when you’re outdoors, they will become obvious indoors. Cells phones also have digital zoom capabilities that crop an image, resulting in a grainy and pixilated image when you get closer to the subject. The end result might be distracting for creating bigger videos to share on YouTube.

Digital cameras on the other hand have optical zoom, which allows you to get a clear and close image of an object from afar and up close, so you capture every detail.

As you continue to learn the multiple elements of shooting video, think about the best way to capture your nails and your technique. With practice, you’ll develop a better eye and can plan ahead, especially if these essentials are top of mind.

Controls. Camcorders come with manual features allowing you to control the look of your final video. Being able to personalize the adjustments like focus, will give your videos a specific feel.

Angles. One of the most effective ways to make your footage more interesting is to change the angle you’re shooting from. When setting up your shot, think about the perspective your viewers want to see your video from. If the main subject is nails, get a tight (macro) shot. Most digital cameras have a macro shot setting typically represented by a flower symbol. When activated, the camera automatically sets to take high-quality, close-up shots, which is ideal to capture details.

Sound. The mic built into video cameras can pick up accompanying audio but if you want clean, crisp, and plain sound, you need a dedicated mic. Headphones with a built in mic work just as fine.

Lighting. Outside in the daylight, the main light source is the sun. Your nails will look better if they face a primary light source. If the subject is behind the main source, the subject will look dark or backlit. Back light is problematic for the auto exposure feature on a camera. If the camera focuses on the light in the background, the subject will be dark and indistinguishable. Avoid shooting in areas that have high contrast such as dark versus light settings or bright light and shadows.

White balance. This process removes unrealistic color casts so that subjects that appear white in person will also appear white in the final image. The intensity or temperature of the main light source will get picked up by the camera. Sunlight, for example, takes on different shades of yellow or orange at sunrise and sunset, and blue in the shade.

In order to fix this and fill in any harsh shadows you might have from a primary light source, hold a piece of white paper next to the subject to reflect any light. Digital video cameras usually come with an automatic white balance feature that tells the camera which color is white and the rest of the colors are adjusted to make the image look more natural.

Tripod. A valuable creative technique, a tripod works great to create more professional-looking content, particularly if you’re shooting something that is not moving. Without a tripod, your video will look shaky and amateur. The steadier the shot, the more you can focus on the subject. If you don’t have a tripod, find something to steady the camera. MacGyver it!

Batteries and memory. Before you hit the red button, avoid a novice mistake by charging your batteries and making sure you have enough memory to spare while you record.

Clean your lens. Don’t let smudges ruin your shot. Wipe away any grime before you shoot. Any typical silky smooth microfiber cloth will do.

Next page: The Stages of Editing

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