We deeply appreciate all your care and effort, and want to make sure you have all the information you’ll need to get started. Below you will find best-practices for video submission, along with other helpful hints.
Please don’t hesitate to contact us if you have any questions.
To take high-quality videos, follow these steps:
Set the Scene
- The first thing to consider is making sure the filming area is presentable for the purpose of your video. Removing excess clutter and noise will help ensure the viewer keeps their focus on you.
- Find a space that is as noise free as possible.
- If you are filming in a frequented area, you may wish to post signs letting others know to not make excessive noise that could be picked up on a recording.
- Clear your area of any items that have visible personal details. This is for ID safety purposes.
Make sure the lighting is suitable for your project. This is one of the most important steps. Be willing to play with positioning and location to get your best well-lit shot.
- Avoid lighting that falls directly on top of you or lighting that is positioned slightly to the side of your face. This causes long and exaggerated shadows to fall on your face.
- Be sure to periodically check your camera viewer to ensure the adjustments you make are having the intended effect on the captured image.
Frame Your Subject
When setting up your camera, be sure that it is at an appropriate distance away from your subject, and that the subject is properly framed.
- Place your camera a short distance away from the film subject, and play with the positioning and focus until your captured image is as you want it.
- Be careful to not place your recording equipment too far or too close to the subject, as that will make any future editing more difficult.
- If possible, please film at the eye level of the subject. Maintaining a flat and level angle will help keep viewers focused.
- Double check with your subject that they will be comfortable in that position for the duration of recording.
Tips: When you film from high above, it will make your head look larger. When you film from below, your body will appear larger.
A stabilized camera is a very important part of creating a clean looking video. Camera shaking, no matter how minor, can distract the viewer from the subject and can distort the video image itself.
- If you do not have access to a stabilizing tripod, you may need to improvise a solid rest for the camera to lay on for the entire duration of filming.
- If you foresee yourself using your camera for videos often, you may want to consider investing in a stabilizing tripod for this and other projects.
Do a Sound Check
After establishing your set and camera equipment, you’ll want to double check that your audio recording equipment is ready for action.
- Double check that your microphone is on, properly positioned, and fully charged (if battery operated).
- Test how your voice sounds on camera before you post your video. If you are speaking into a microphone, keep it a reasonable distance away from the camera, to avoid a shrill, squeaking noise.
- You want your audience to hear what you have to stay, and you do not want to fade in and out. Stay still and speak as you normally would in a conversation, to avoid sounding too close or too far away from the mic.
When you are ready to begin filming, there are a few things your film subject will want to be mindful of.
- Leave five seconds as a pause at the beginning and end of the video so it’s easier to cut while editing.
- Pause after long sequences of spoken information, try to make the pauses seem natural as you transition in what you are saying.
- When talking, imagine you are speaking to a friend or colleague when you look at the camera. Connect with your audience, not the technology.
You are now ready to begin recording! After you have completed your recording process, you are welcome to make any needed edits, or send us the raw recordings.
- Save your video as an .mp4, .mov, or .flv format.
- Try to keep individual files at a 1 Gigabyte size limit.
- If possible, try to export in a high resolution setting. 720p or HD work best.
- Please ensure that the recorded content is entirely family friendly.
If you need help deciding what content to cover in your video, below are some suggestions based on content we have previously received:
- What were the favorite activities in HeartSmarts Adventure?
- Is there a story to tell of a child’s experience from participating in HeartSmarts Adventure?
- Which activities did the child (ren) want to repeat?
- What tools/techniques were the most useful?
- Is there a story or a comment from a child in which using HeartMath tools/techniques really helped change a behavior?
- What is a favorite part of using HeartMath tools/techniques?
If you are working with underage children, unless you are affiliated with a school district that has parents sign consent forms in advance, you will need to provide parental consent to share their image with us.
You are welcome to use your school’s/organization’s own parental consent form, or use the permission forms provided by HeartMath Institute.
Click here for picture submissions, along with other helpful hints!