Having a professional studio set up for your video content can really advance your content to the next level. Whether you're a vlogger or producing content in a business setting, with millions of videos watched every day on YouTube alone, these five simple tips can help your videos stand out.
1. Use A Seamless Paper Backdrop
A crowded or cluttered background can be extremely distracting and can instantly make your video look unprofessional. A seamless paper backdrop is a perfect solution for a clean, sleek look. Of course, you can consider alternating between different colored backgrounds to improve your channel aesthetic and add more variety to your video catalog.
We recommend neutral colors like neutral gray, fossil gray, beige, because typically it’s easier to color correct skins tones than on a bright neon color. But ultimately, you’ll want a color that adds to your production value and helps represent your brand. Depending on how many people will be in the frame, we have two sizes—53”x 12yds or 107”x 12yds. The 53” would be 4.5ft wide and good for one subject. The 107” is 9ft wide and better for multiple subjects or wider shots.
2. Incorporate Artificial Lighting
If your studio space doesn’t afford lots of indirect natural light, artificial lighting is essential. Ring lights or the Phottix Nuada lights are popular for video content creators because of their soft, even look that help compliment facial features. Plus, many of these lights have model options that include a bi-color feature which allows you to manually adjust the color temperature, making it easy to match ambient lighting, and complement your chosen background.
3. Eliminate Shadows
Standing too close to the backdrop can result in harsh or distracting shadows in your shot. When the subject moves a few steps away from the background, the distance allows shadows from your main light source to soften or be eliminated entirely depending on your lighting, creating more depth in the scene. Utilizing a two-light set up, one acts as your main light and the other as your fill light to balance any hard shadows on the subject’s face and background.
4. Add Depth with A Backlight
A light placed behind your subject and directed at the background creates a graduated halo effect that draws interest and provides more separation as well. Another way to spruce things up would be to add a color to your backlight with a light like the Nanite Pavotube or Aputure MC RGB. If you have a dedicated space that is free of distractions, adding color in a dark background can provide more depth and moody vibe.
5. Choose the Right Angle and Focal Length
When shooting for YouTube, make sure you shoot horizonal or at a 16:9 aspect ratio. Using a wide-angle focal length is great for casual vlogging or showing your environment when you’re on the go, but for a more professional look, we recommend using focal lengths like 50mm or 85mm. These focal ranges have narrower fields of view and are typically more flattering. Plus, if you’re using a seamless backdrop, using a narrower field of view helps keep the background paper across the entire frame, keeping your composition clean, and distraction free.