If you are filming and editing video, then the moment will surely come when you have to shoot children. It can be a matinee in kindergarten, a birthday party in a cafe, some kind of event at school. Even if you are shooting not to order, but your children, the tips given in this article may be useful to you.
Let’s say you are filming a New Year’s party in kindergarten. The ideal option would be shooting with two cameras. They put one camera on a tripod and shoot a general shot, and on the other you shoot different shots and angles, a panorama.
In this case, you will have two options for the video, and you can close (or interrupt) the unsuccessful moments and the communication and engagement of shooting with a general plan during editing.
A more likely situation is when you have one camera and you have to make do with one video option. An experienced cameraman always takes many shots with details: a tree from different angles, balloons, close-ups of Christmas tree decorations, posters, spectators, etc.
Such shooting can be done even before the beginning of the matinee, or, conversely, at the end.
This is necessary for interruptions when editing a future film. First of all, interruptions and generally changing plans make the video more interesting and watchable. Secondly, with such interruptions, you can close the communication, engagement and bad shots.
Don’t think that you can shoot a video without interaction and engagement. Of course, you can put the camera on a tripod and shoot the whole matinee in one long shot. But no one will like such a video, and we will not even discuss this option.
In reality, the operator is constantly moving, changing plans (general-medium-large) using ZOOM, turning the camera, shooting a panorama. It is the different angles and plans that make the film interesting and beautiful.
But just at the moments of all the above actions and movements, video defects, shaking occur, sometimes the operator does not immediately line up the required frame, focusing does not take place immediately. And zoom moments (zoom in and out) are usually cut out during editing.
In addition, we are talking about photographing children, and these are very mobile and unpredictable subjects for shooting. At the most inopportune moment, the child may turn away, burst into tears, run away, etc., naturally, such frames will also have to be cut out.
So, all the communication and engagement should be removed when shooting. It is not always possible to do this by simply cutting out bad shots when editing a film. It often happens that at such moments there is a sound that is significant for the film: a song is playing, something is recited.
If we cut out the defective frames, the sound will be removed along with them, there will be a jump or interruption in the sound, this greatly spoils the film.
It is just for such cases that the interruptions are needed, which we talked about above. Unlucky moments are closed with short interruptions, which are placed on the track above the main video.
Thus, the sound is preserved intact, and instead of the defective video, we see interruptions.
So, let’s look at the main points to consider when filming children.
If you are shooting, for example, a New Year’s party, shoot as many children as possible. Parents are interested in looking at their children, and not at Santa Claus, leading and other characters.
Try to get every child into the frame, it’s good if you shoot each one in close-up, at least for a couple of seconds. At different moments of the matinee’s action, you can insert close-ups of different children, especially since the transitions from a general plan to a large one look very good.
Try to shoot children from an angle at the level of their eyes, and not from above, from the height of an adult. Of course, you can use general plans from above, but not always.
Children usually behave naturally and directly, thanks to this, interesting, unexpected, funny moments often arise. Shoot them, even if they do not quite correspond to the official course of the matinee, they will very liven up the video, make it interesting.
If you are shooting a matinee that follows a certain scenario, do not forget to show its progress during shooting in order to preserve the logic and integrity of the future film.
That is, do not get carried away only with photographing children. If, for example, the children called Santa Claus, and he appears in the hall, be sure to show this moment, literally for a few seconds. After that, you can go back to shooting children.
Further, in the course of the matinee, some action takes place – again briefly show it, and then take pictures of the children.
It often happens that children show different activities. Someone is constantly in sight, active, reads poetry, answers questions, performs tasks of Santa Claus. And someone is shy and not at all noticeable.
It is important that the film does not have a too noticeable advantage in filming active children, make sure that modest kids are filmed at different moments. With this approach, you will avoid the dissatisfaction of parents who paid the money on an equal basis with everyone else, and in the film, their child will hardly be seen.
If a kid came out to the Christmas tree and began to read a long rhyme, you should not take it off entirely, unless, of course, you were personally hired by his parents. The rest are not very interested. Film, say, how he reads the first quatrain, and then move on to photograph the rest of the children.
Let the sound of the poem be recorded, and at this time you take pictures of the faces and reactions of other kids, general plans.
The so-called interviews look very interesting. It may be inappropriate at a matinee following the script, but when shooting, for example, a birthday or some kind of holiday, it is very impressive.
You can ask the child something, make him laugh, ask him to express wishes for the birthday boy or your impressions of the holiday. As a rule, children react and respond very directly, and such shots will bring the film to life very much.
You can also write down small interviews or wishes of parents, guests, acting characters of the holiday. Of course, you need to know when to stop, to use the most successful and interesting interviews in the film, and not everything.
When shooting a matinee, such an interview can be filmed after it is over and also used in the film.