August 24, 2017

Let Kai Wong Give You 10 Tips on Better Smartphone Filmmaking

Kai Wong serves up a bunch of free/cheap tips and hacks for those making movie magic on their smartphone.

Smartphone filmmaking has many benefits, particularly the fact that the camera you shoot with is the camera that is always in your pocket, but there are plenty of downsides to it, too. Aside from the obvious limitations of the camera, one of the major downsides is the amount of money it takes to beef up your setup with extra apps and accessories in to make it ready for production.

However, there are ways to avoid spending loads of cash on sliders, gimbals, and lenses specifically designed for smartphones. In this video, Kai Wong, formerly of DigitalRev, shares ten tips and hacks that will help you make better (and cheaper) films and videos on your device.

We've heard plenty of tips on how to shoot films and videos on your smartphone—which are essentially the same tips on how to shoot films and videos on any normal camera. What's great about Kai's video is that it provides a ton of great ideas for free/cheap camera movement, filter, and other hacks that will help boost your production value.

  • Get good sound...duh
  • Shoot close-ups to get a nice bokeh
  • Use plenty of light...again...duh
  • In an emergency, turn sunglasses into a DIY ND filter
  • Use clips to put your phone pretty much anywhere
  • Use tape to get a sticky time-lapse
  • Suction cups work well for interesting POV shots
  • Grab a box, put your phone inside the box, bam...box slider
  • Use an egg timer to get a panning time-lapse
  • Fidget spinners make for a decent panning tool

Though some of these tips are kind of obvious (of course record good audio, of course use plenty of light), there are a good handful of DIY ideas here that are going to save your buns when you've got 1.) no money, 2.) no time, and 3.) no other choice. What are some other creative hacks that can help make smartphone filmmaking cheaper and easier?      

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