Are you thinking about a family trip to one of the most incredible US east coast beaches? Or would you better like to go mountain hiking? Whatever your choice is, filming your family vacation might be a great idea. It will not only let you keep the most precious and memorable moments of your trip but will also become a great experience of filming a real story. Are you ready for that? Then you would probably like to get some nice tips to turn your family trip memories into a real movie.
This post is part of our Travel Photography series
Tips for Making a Great Family Vacation Video Story
Travelling is the thing we all associate with positive emotions, new impressions, interesting people, and adventure. Sounds like a great basis for a video story, doesn’t it? But what should you do to make your shootings look professional? How can you make them exciting to watch? How to turn a nine-hour-long hike into a movie you’d like to watch again and again? Catch some tips on how to create an awesome family travel video.
Get A Quality Camera
It’s OK to use your phone camera if you own something like the latest iPhone. If you don’t, then it would be way better if you film the journey using a Full HD camcorder or DSLR. But if your budget can’t handle such pricy equipment, you can get some camcorder shooting videos in MiniDV, MPEG-2, or any other format. There’s no reason to worry that not all video software for editing supports such video formats. You can easily convert the footage to any format you need using a video converter.
Such video converters as Wondershare UniConverter or AVC Ultimate provide all the tools for converting videos to the desired formats. Besides, they allow compressing videos and doing some minor editing. Still, you have to pay for this software. Not ready for extra expenses? Then use a HandBrake video transcoder. It’s open-source and is free to use.
To diversify your footage and be able to shoot aerial videos, get a drone camera. If you travel to places where you can do some diving and snorkeling, you might want to get some filming of underwater life. In such a case, an action camera can be of great help. In fact, any extra camera your budget can handle is a good idea. Just don’t forget about your luggage weight.
Keep the Line between Shooting and Overshooting
Striving to catch each and every moment of the trip, you risk forgetting what you are actually doing there. Enjoy the time spent on a vacation and have fun! Otherwise, you won’t see anything with your own eyes – just through your camera lens.
Another reason to control how much you shoot is the duration of the footage you’ll have to work with after turning back home. If you are an experienced user of video editing tools, 20 hours of video won’t become a problem for you. Yet, those who are new to video editing might get at a loss when they get down to structuring and editing all those hours of footage.
Concentrate on the most exciting moments, pick out the shots that you definitely want to see in the final cut. Choose the best hours of the day for filming, like early morning and sunset, while giving the rest of the day to live emotions, communication, rest, and all the good stuff you can find on family travel.
Think about the Story You’d Like to Tell
If you want your travel video to look cinematic, it is important to think about the story you’d like to tell in it. You may start with why you have chosen this exact destination for your family trip. If this is somehow related to your childhood memories, filming some photo albums with your childhood pics in that very destination might be a nice background for the upcoming story.
If you’ve been dreaming of visiting a desert because you loved the One Thousand and One Nights stories as a child, tell about this before bringing your dream to life and traveling to the United Arab Emirates. Are you a Disney fan? Show your collection of Mickey Mouse stuff or Disney princesses before visiting Disneyland.
Plan your trip to visit as much as you can but don’t get too overwhelmed with the idea of seeing everything as this may spoil your impressions because of tiredness and excessively busy travel plans.
Create Diverse Footage
Experiment with the angles and perspectives to make your footage more diverse. If you have a GoPro camera or a drone, use them to catch breathtaking bird’s-eye videos of the location or incredible colours of the corals and fish you’ll meet under the water. Such videos can fit great to join the cuts shot in different locations.
You can also diversify your videos by shooting some short clips and making photos that can be added to the final cut as b-rolls. For instance, shoot some exotic animal or the waves rolling onto the seashore or some close-up shot of the locals with an unusual appearance. Such small elements will allow your video to show the atmosphere of the destination better.
Concentrate on the Destination, not People
The main distinction between a travel video and any other type of videos is that the former is about the place, not about the people visiting it. Of course, you can, and you should be present in a video. Still, more attention should be given to the destination you are visiting.
Film the locals and their traditions if you are travelling abroad. Show the scenery and architecture. Concentrate on history if you are travelling to some historical destination. Shoot the local foods and all the other stuff you may get excited about.
Don’t Forget that Video Is about Motion
How is travel video different from travel photography? It has motion. Filming static buildings is boring and pointless as you can better give the atmosphere of the place through the photo. Choosing to film the location, take care that you bring some motion into the picture. Film your family members enjoying the waves or couples dancing the tango in the streets of Buenos Aires. Anything that would bring life to the footage is a great idea.
Whenever you want to create a stunning video story about your family trip, go for it. Don’t be afraid to experiment. Catch with your camera lens any moment that seems important for you and your family history. Film your emotions and don’t forget to enjoy the trip. Have a nice vacation!
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