How to capture food videos with your smartphone
Today we are talking about how to capture better food videos with your smartphone. The hardest part of making a Foodie Video is actually deciding what type of video you are wanting to make in the first place. To make this easy for you we will be looking at The Story, The Technical, The Technique as well as what to Plan & Practice when it comes to making a Food Video with your Smartphone.
Yes yes, we are going to film the food!!! But, do you know why you want to film food? Clearly something about food intrigues you, but there has got be be a deeper reason for it. This is what we want to get to the bottom of first.
When it comes to Food Videos there are two specific routes you can take to choose the type of video you want to create. On the one side it may be the making of food like recipe videos. Or perhaps you are more into consuming the food like review videos.
Similarly, you will need to decide if you are making once offs or a series. Adding the occasional Food Video into the mix of your otherwise "varied content" channel is fundamentally very different to making a food video series that focuses on recipes, restaurants and cultures across the globe.
Start by making a choice. What are you most interested in? Go with that. When we make videos we should always be interested in the story we tell. For some people this may be how to make a vegan falafel and for others it may be where the best burgers in the world are. What represents you?
Then break down the elements of the story with these two questions: 1. where is this video taking place & 2. who is it with? This should kick start you into developing a more intriguing story than just filming your food before you eat it.
There are 3 Topics when it comes to making a good looking Foodie Video.
To make food look good you need to have a good amount of light on the table. Get yourself an extra LED light so that you are not relying on your Phones Camera Flash. It is always better to light things from a different angle to the one of the camera.
You are going to want to film yourself in your environment. Having only the perspective from your hands is not ideal. We want to see whats going on from various angles and you cant get that nice establishing wide shot if you cant put your smartphone down on the other side of the room.
Food Videos have two main elements. Awesome Food Shots & a Story. For the story you are going to need better sound than what your phone comes with. If you are talking to camera or interviewing other people make sure to get a compatible mic for your phone.
It's all in the Details. A close up will be your best friend in a food video. Get as many Close Up shots as you possibly can. Get the food, the decor, the people reactions, the action of chopping, slicing & pouring.... you cant ever have enough details.
Then as a second tip you can add some movement to your close ups. Move the camera from side to side or lean in forward. Filming these shots in slow motion can also help give you a cool cinematic effect.
Plan & Practice
I get it, we are not all food stylist, but we are going to need to work on this if we want our videos to look attractive. Test your close up food shots with
- light from all angles and
- camera from all angles
There is no exact right way to do this as you can have an amazing shot from above, 45deg angle or straight horizontal. There is no right or wrong, only what looks good and what doesn't and this will only come from practicing.
My last point for this blog is that if you have an opportunity to notify a restaurant that you are coming to make a video, do it! Don't just rock up and film. Ask the manager or marketing department if you can come make a cool video to shout out their establishment. 9 times out of 10 they will say yes if you ask ahead of time. Just tell them where the video is going and what it will be used for.
We sometimes like to say that forgiveness is better than permission, but when it comes to food you need the space and time to make the food look good. And if you have the restaurant on your side (they can even help style the food) you will more than likely succeed.
Good Luck & Have fun out there.