Too many effects. Overdone color grade. These are hallmarks of a music video with issues.
Music videos are a lot of fun to make. You can get as creative as you want, try new and exciting cinematic techniques, and experiment with the way you tell stories. However, plenty of filmmakers have gone a little too far (or not far enough) with the added liberty and latitude and taken their projects into unfortunate territories, but editor Justin Odisho has put together a list of five of the most common "mistakes" found in music videos in hopes that you might be able to avoid them (or fix them if you've already made them).
Here are the five "mistakes" Odisho talks about.
- Not being original
- Going overboard with effects
- Bad fonts and titles
- Overdoing your color grade
- Bad timing
There is no right or wrong way to make a music video, which is why I'm putting "mistakes" in quotes. I don't think that Odisho is straight up saying, "Don't do this stuff, fool," I think he's merely calling attention to the fact that some cinematic techniques and decisions appear, at least to a lot of pros (and clients), amateurish. Can you use them anyway? Of course. In a totally non-ironic way? Yeah, I guess if you want.
The point to learning about these "mistakes" is that you will be able to recognize them in your own work and decide for yourself if it's something you really want to include. And if you're aware of these "mistakes" and are using them creatively to build a certain aesthetic or narrative, then this doesn't really apply to you. Like Odisho says, Hype Williams' music video for Kanye West's single "All of the Lights" gives audiences a total overdose of effects, but he does so intentionally and with creativity. It's something to think about.
What are some other "mistakes" you see in music videos that you think new filmmakers should be aware of? Let us know down below in the comments.