Watch: 8 Things You'll Want to Know When Scouting a Location

Does the location have power? Does it have foot traffic? Does it have 747s flying over it 24/7? Location scouts need to know these things!

You did it! You found the perfect location to shoot your scene. It has beautiful architecture, tons of space, and best of all, it looks just like the location you put up on your project's mood board—and—that's all you really know about it. Well, any experienced location scout would tell you that there's a whole lot more information to obtain about a potential shooting location than if it looks cool. In this video from StudioBinder, you'll learn about eight questions you need to answer about a location before finally settling on one. Check it out below:

Now don't get me wrong, it's important to choose a location that captures the look and feel of the scene you want to shoot, but there are many factors that you should consider before making your final decision. StudioBinder suggests you ask yourself these 8 questions:

  • Is there any background noise in this location?
  • Are there any anachronisms present that will ruin my shot? (Ex: A street full of cars when you're trying to shoot an exterior of the Colosseum in "Ancient Rome")
  • Is there enough space to work?
  • Are there sufficient power sources and do you have access to them?
  • Will the weather in this location affect the shoot?
  • When does the sun rise and set in this location?
  • Do I have all necessary permissions and access to this location?
  • Do I have everything in writing (or am I about to get sued)?

StudioBinder actually has a really great resource for location scouting. There Location Tech Scouting Checklist is not only free, but it takes the guess work out of trying to figure out whether or not a location is a right fit for your project. You can download it here    

You Might Also Like

Your Comment


This is really helpful.

July 11, 2017 at 10:52PM

Sameir Ali
Director of Photography

I just scouted a location for a video shoot that turned out to be the world's most reverberant garage, at a house that is under renovation construction, next to a house that is under construction on a busy street. Even after pointing all this out, the client doesn't grasp the obvious location sound issues.

July 12, 2017 at 6:24PM, Edited July 12, 6:25PM

David Patterson