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Saturday, October 29, 2011

How I record videos at home








By now you’ve seen a few of the videos I have posted and I think I should briefly describe how I record these at home. That way, you can do the same, if you want to...

You have probably noticed how I raise my hand to turn the camera off at the end of my videos. That’s because there is no one in the room helping me with the recording. Luckily the digital amera I am using - - a Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX3 model - - seems to work out best at arm’s length, so I can reach the start/stop button easily.
Besides the digital camera, which I already had, all I had to do is spend about $40 to buy were three clamp-on lights from the local hardware store. I bought two 10-inch ones  for the Key and Fill lights and one 8-inch one for the backlight - - the Key light with a 100W equivalent Compact Fluorescent Light bulb is at 45 degrees to the left in front of me, the Fill light with a 60W equivalent bulb is at 45 degrees to my right, again, in front. The backlight is slightly behind me, to my left. I clipped on white handkerchiefs in front of each light because the light was too bright otherwise. I think the light is still not that great, as one of my friends already told me, so I plan to tweak it either through camera settings or by moving the lights back some more.
For the backdrop, I clipped on some dark sheets on a bookshelf behind me. I sit on a bench and put the camera on a tripod on a small desk placed in front of me.
Behind the camera desk, I put a small LCD TV facing me that I connected the camera’s Audio-Video output to the TV. That way, the TV becomes my monitor to check on what the video looks like. The camera displays the recording time, so that display on the monitor also cues me when my time’s up.
With all that set, I sit down, turn the camera on, make sure I appear centered in the monitor, then press the Start button and start recording... that’s all there is to it. :-)



Here are some more things to help you get going...


Here are links to some the items I used for my setup. Of course, you probabaly already have a digital camera that can capture video, but, if not, the Panasonic Lumix DMC-LX3 was great... or consider the newer DMC-LX5... and you may want to get an AC adapter (model number DMW-AC5PP) so that the battery does not run out while you record video. And you need a high-capacity SD memory card to record those videos as well.
You know, with Amazon's free shipping for orders over $25, I would have definitely ordered what I needed from Amazon instead of running around local hardware stores :-)




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