Here are 10 tips to remember when filming your dance videos or music videos in order to make the most of your creativity and day-to-day activities.
One of the most crucial things to do is that you should be flexible throughout the day. Weather conditions change, directions can alter once you’re there, and locations might not behave as you expected, cameras could record with errant settings or even malfunction, and the number of steps production transmits has ten more than you thought Be prepared for any situation. However, plan ahead so that you know how to react with a cushion to fall back on! This is how:
Get your dancers to practice with you. I’ve had people asking me, “Can you just show up and make something?” and I reply, “Sure, but it will appear like the way we practiced.” In the case of dancers who are trained They are extremely diligent and will perform for you when you make the effort to practice with them. Practice in a rehearsal area equipped with mirrors and sprung floors (most dance studios are equipped with mirrors). It’s essential to have adequate space as well as mirrors in order for dancers to collaborate with one another and be aware of how their bodies move within the space. This allows for accuracy (if you’re looking for that) and also cleanliness in the dance group. This is also how the majority of dancers were trained and how they’ve been trained. So that, in the event when you put away the mirrors the dancers have already practiced their moves alongside other dancers, and will be aware of where and how their bodies are positioned in the space.
If you’re working with street dance and b-boys/b-girls/b-folx (highly recommended! ) The movements and choreography are more fluid. Sometimes, mirrors cause a sense that you are self-conscious, which you don’t want. However, you should practice in a safe space with hardwood floors at least once and in an exercise studio in an exercise facility. (I’ve performed some of my finest work in gyms!) Make sure to talk with the dancer and determine what works best for them. If you’re looking for an organic look at the time create the image you’d like, think about the framing, and give dancers their own space and then let them roll with it. The magic of the moment can be created.
Also , practice along with the DP and your choreographer. Make an animatic, or depending on your preference you can create a the storyboard. You should guide your DP into the movements that occur in the sequence so that they can understand it just like dancers. Make sure you are clear (or request your choreographer for help to become crystal clear) regarding cues in the dance. There are many DPs are knowledgeable about dance however if you show them to dance as if it were blocking and get them involved early in the process, your day will run more smoothly and you’ll be able to produce thrilling work. I’ve used codes words like “big drums”,” “big leap” and other things that are that are in the music or movements to describe the moment that are easy to recall and are not specifically dance movements. Communication is essential for filmmaking or any other collaboration is to speak the language of the other party and communicating what you wish to convey so that you can convey the story in the way you’d like it to be told or capture the image you’d like to shoot. (Pro-tip Make sure you plan your shots in order to align on the events in your edits to create exciting cuts and an oomph – you’ll be happy that you did! Cut at between the movement and before it comes to an end and not at the end of the sequence!)
2. Camera motion and countermovement are your best friend.
“Cinema” is a reference to “movement” It’s the Latinized version of the Greek “kinemat,” combining forms of kinema “movement,” from kinein “to move.” The power of dancing together with the camera is exciting when film is viewed, while musicals may represent the best cinematic type in any form. Your choreographer should be encouraged to take advantage of the depth of their space and movements, instead of simply vertical space. Take advantage of Steadicam (my preferred choice due to its speed and dynamism). Jibs or cranes are able to certainly create classic styles and movements, providing an angle; however, technocranes be able to get into the action to create a range of framing possibilities that are easily altered. Sliders and dollies are ideal for covering, and give more of an objective and observant feel since they aren’t able to get inside the dance but record the dance. For those with a smaller cost, Ronins as well as Gimbals can also be effective. The most important thing is to ensure that the operator is familiar with how to operate these devices and has been prepared.
Practice moving the camera in towards the opposite direction of your dance. Moving towards what dancers move toward the dancers, and vice versa. Find out which story benefits you. Make sure to lock down with intent. Follow the rhythm of dance. If the location is suitable shooting from different angles to ensure your footage is three-dimensional. Examine how lenses reduce space and dance – test different lenses on camera and tell your choreographer what lenses you’d like to utilize and the method you’re planning to frame so that they complete the frame and give you the depth you desire.
3. Fill in the gap
The freedom of dance on stage is exciting and is possible to experience at its most pure in concert , with a black stage and curtains. However, on film , we must be able to see more depth and texture to be able to engage the camera and keep an interest. It is possible to fill in the gaps by thinking of ways to make your frame appear larger. Atmosphere can be helpful to capture light to fill your space. It gives the illusion of a large area to fill your frame. A frenzied camera motion can make a big difference in making a blank space appear fuller when paired with the camera’s angles, frames, and motion. Select a scene that fills your frame perfectly (or as you envision) and tells your story. Some of the most beautiful places are within the natural world (read that they are often free if time allows). Lighting can carry the majority of your image and story: I’ve witnessed amazing dances lit by the car headlights, or P!nk’s “Call You Girlfriend” is my personal favorite use of lighting in warehouses, paired with the diversity of the dancers meeting the various camera angles and perspectives.
4. Make sure you punch in the camera
Based on the subject you’re shooting, ensure you have wide coverage first. However, you should you should also try shooting body parts that are just an arm, one leg, or just feet. The best dance films aren’t afraid of framing the scene to tell an underlying story. Watch the finale dance from Footloose It’s thrilling when they only show their feet moving on the chorus, since viewers anticipate seeing a lot of the main characters dancing. They keep us waiting for the moment by showing only their feet moving. It’s exciting in the moment they frame back principals. Why? They’ve been fighting throughout the movie to get their feet to dance , and now we can see it in close. The body parts are expressive, and cutting in adds visual interest and makes it an integral part of your story, and you’ll get an excellent combination. (Other great examples are “Maniac” in Flashdance and the closing part of Girls Just Want to Have Fun.)
5. Stuntpeople gonna stunt
It’s probably stating an obvious point, however do not get someone to perform stunts. Get a gymnast who can do gymnastics. There was a professional dancing gymnast, two dancers as well as a stunt person, in the dance of the warehouse in Footloose. Ten points if it’s possible to recognize them. Gymnastics is a sport that gymnasts are trained to master and have a specific type of training. Stunt folx are skilled, trained and education, courage, and a willingness that to do things that the rest of us can’t. It is a certain degree of training and skill and, while you might possess a dancer who’s willing and capable of one or two flips If you’re looking for genuine high-flying in multiple shots make sure you make sure you hire the services of a gymnast. If you can shoot and then light it correctly the audience won’t (ok very only rarely) recognize the distinction.
6. When you’re at a studio take a shot at the mirror
It’s enjoyable and opens the possibilities of space and possibility for you, particularly if you’re looking create a narrative or watch the reaction of a character. Also, we get to see the perspective of the dancer – i.e. what they might observe in their dance classes and allows us to be part of their world. In Center Stage, that’s important as we can share the sensation of the joy Jodie Sawyer feels when she is in her jazz class as opposed to the stress she faces within the world of ballet. In this scene from Silver Linings Playbook, shooting into the mirror makes the room appear larger and expands the room nicely. The scene in All That Jazz reflects the reality of working and the obsession of Joe Gideon with work and self-interest – He doesn’t make eyes contact with daughter during the sequence while he only glances at her reflection to observe how she’s helping him in the dance. In Beau Travail the last scene shows Galoup confronting an uncertain future by dancing by the mirror where Galoup once glanced at his dream woman in a crowd-filled club The mirror, now offering an illusion of infinity.
Contact the experts at Dance Show Filming when looking to record a show.
7. Get ready for your rehearsals
It’s true that this may be not a popular choice for some director, however I’ve seen some great ideas that weren’t doing it. For instance, the sequence that Fred Astaire has called “the greatest music and dance” sequence he’s ever seen in the Nicholas Brothers routine in Stormy Weather was performed in just one go, without rehearsal! It was possible due to the brothers’ talent and their unique language dancing together. The camera was wide and followed the two and the result was impressive – Don’t miss these chances!
Dancers are willing to give it their best and then go back even if they are young – but often their first attempts are the best. (See the Nicholas Brothers!) If your work involves street dancers and b-boys, bgirls, or b-folx you won’t want to miss any of the magic! The dancer’s performance and the stage generally, you’ll get five excellent takes before they begin to get exhausted. After ten takes, you’ve exhausted them and are getting less and less. I’ve seen great directors who wear their performers down having them perform 75 takes in order to obtain the desired performance. Don’t do it to dancers. They’ll begin to lose their lines, their feet begin to hurt and muscle fatigue can occur and injuries could start to develop and nobody wants this. Do it in just five minutes and make sure that your master or wide is exactly what you would like you want it to become. Begin with that first to ensure you have everyone on the same page as fresh as possible. After that, cut into. If you’ve been practicing (see # 1) your dancers are at their best.
Dancers who are good at their job are meticulous trained and well-trained. They will perform what they practice. Dancers can provide you with the energy, rhythm and feeling of freedom and energy and will provide a great coverage if you provide them with basic guidelines and instructions. When auditioning, I prefer to examine not only the style, but also the technique. Or in the case of street dancers, make adjustments to know how quickly and efficiently they can adapt when needed on the set. This is essential for making your day.
8. Set the pace
Be sure that the track to which you practice and shoot is the pace at the level you’d like your final product to be. This is a simple thing to do, but it’s vital to be able to communicate on the front to your group. Also, if you intend to utilize an .wav file for your final version, make sure you shoot the .wav instead of the .mp3 you may already have. They’re not as full of quantity of information and don’t exactly sync. Thank you for your patience; I’ve saved you from a lots of pain. Seriously, as hard as you’d like to try after you’ve put it in the camera it’s impossible to change the frame’s tempo to change (unless you’ve shot it at a different frame rate, in which case you’ve planned it). Be sure to carry playback in your bag and have someone else manage it. It’s a mystery why many people overlook this and it’s extremely crucial. (I’ve been on shows where the actors end with it being sucked out of the car speakers.)
Be aware of your requirements regarding sound on the day. Prepare an thump track when recording live audio. Practice your dancers in this manner with as little new equipment as you can on set the better, because the set is already a brand different environment. If you’re thinking of filming this way, then go for it. Dancers are amazing and they can do it! According to the documentary The Movies That Made Us on Netflix, Dirty Dancing was practiced to other songs , and was planned to shoot using a click track as all rights related to music was being revoked. Muscle memory is by far the strongest memory of the body. dancers’ bodies can recall a beat if they’ve practiced enough.
9. Safety first
Examine your floors and make sure they’re swept and there are there are no sawdust, nails, or water. Dance on the carpet or invisqueen is dangerous and could cause injuries. If you fall in the process that you turn, your feet will be locked and knees continue to roll. Everyone doesn’t want this. Shoes are essential – put your dancers wearing the correct footwear for the surface. Make sure they are tested before the event. If you’re doing a construction and are able to build floors that are sprung it will provide greater endurance and takes throughout the day and is safer, however it’s not always feasible. Be sure to regulate the temperature of your building. Make sure you keep your temperatures warm for the best talent. Muscles can cramp in cold temperatures and dancers are at risk of pulling muscles. Give them the time (and time) to get warm before shooting.
10. Have great fun!
It is a joy to dance. It fills up the frame , and it keeps things moving in your films. The choreography of the camera and movement is stunning in concert when you truly get into it. So try to find your preferred angles and movements. Also, if you’re able take advantage of a screen that your choreographer can use. They do not want to be on your shoulder and you can give them a better chance of making changes quickly. Saves you time. Makes your day. (And theirs!) Let’s go!