Composition is Everything

What sets good video apart from great video are the small things. 

The accumulation of seemingly unimportant details will determine the quality of your video and as a result the viewer’s resting opinion of your business.  So while your going through the process of making your videos you will need to be keenly aware of everything that has the potential of working its way into the shot.  In film making this is known as composition.


Composition is the filmmakers equivalent of a painters canvas, and everything within it should be chosen with purpose.  If you are a business owner or entrepreneur going about the film making process we recommend that you focus on these 4 areas.



1.) Avoid filming wall sockets and other unnecessary items like electrical cords, water bottles, etc.  Anything that looks disorganized or chaotic will read as unsettling to the viewer.


Exit Signs

2.) Exit Signs are one of the most commonly overlooked details that are too often included in home made videos.  They make you feel comfortable in chaotic situations and your video shouldn’t be one of them.


Bad lighting

3.) Always be prepared with more lights on the set than you think you might need.  You can pick up some inexpensive lighting fixtures from Wal-Mart or Home Depot for under $5 a piece.  Leave the tags on and return them when you’re done just make sure you have them when your filming



Bad composition

4.) The Relationship of your subject(s) to other focal points in the shot is a more advanced consideration but one that will pay of in the end.  There is a rule in cinematography called “The Rule of Thirds” which was actually borrowed from 19th century painters and adapted into filmmaking.  The rule states that there are specific points of interest in a shot that are comfortable to the viewer’s eye and the more consideration you give this the more comfortable the viewer will be. 


Imagine a “tick-tac-toe” board drawn onto each one of your shots.  You want the important subjects or objects to appear at the points of intersection while keeping the middle portion empty. 


These are theories used by the industries best professionals but as the saying goes “rules are meant to be broken”.  If you have an idea for a shot don’t let these ideas keep you from experimenting but they are something to consider.



Tom KurlanderComment