t s locations, B-roll, etc. (Figure 1). From a crew’s
perspective, it’s nice to know these things ahead
of time. The day of a shoot can be hectic enough,
and having some familiarity can make a big
There are times where you can’t physically
conduct a site check. In these cases, I like to use
Google Maps to get a general idea of what we’ll
be working with (Figure 2).
You can also use Google or other map soft-
ware to see if things like airports, hospitals, or
no-fly zones are near your shoot, since they may
prevent you from using a drone or other gear.
3. Plan for Postproduction
If you’re not shooting for live delivery, start
thinking about postproduction before you even
shoot your first frame of video. Editing is where
the video starts to come to life, but that life needs
a heartbeat to get started.
It’s always helpful to know
what inspires a client or brand.
Ask them if any companies or
people move them. You can
also ask them about genres of
music, color palettes, art, lighting choices, etc. While this may
be overkill for some clients, it
never hurts to ask.
Most people, especially busi-
ness owners, have a story and
are very passionate about their
companies. If it makes sense,
ask them to share their vision
boards or Pinterest pages to give you a better
understanding of their personality (see Figure
3 on page 53).
A majority of larger companies have style
and branding guides that will list fonts, composition, lighting, logo usage, and other important details that you will need for a video.
Review this material ahead of time to ensure
that it aligns with the creative choices you will
be making during post.
Doing so will speed up the post process
and will allow you to start editing right after
4. Avoid Day-of Pitfalls
The day has finally arrived, and it’s time to
shoot your video. Assuming that you’ve got
your gear, crew, and client ready, I wanted to
share some things that have slowed down our
Snap some pictures
of the location in
crew in place of
talent if necessary
to assess potential
If you can’t do
a site check in
Google Maps to
learn what you
can about your