How to Get the Most out of Bad Footage
You could have the best script, crew, actors, and equipment, but sometimes when you sit down to edit the final product you’re in for a rude awakening. For whatever reason, the footage just does not look appealing. Rather than waste time and money trying to film the entire thing again, your first step should be to try to work some editing magic. In fact, whether you are shooting a commercial or any other type of commercial video, you often won’t be given a second chance, no matter what. This scary truth makes the editing process all the more important when you are dealing with bad footage.
If you find that the footage looks bad because the camera was too shaky, there are a couple of things you can do. For one thing, you can add a strobe effect to the shot that will artificially make it steadier. Another way to combat shaky shots is by slowing things down. While this may not always be practical, if you have some shots without dialogue try slowing down the footage. This can make rapid shaking much more bearable.
One of the worst things you can discover after filming your video is that most of the shots are too dark and grainy. There are a few ways you can combat this. If possible, try running a filter on some of the shots to make them black and white. This can increase the contrast and make details easier to see. While not great for every type of video, a black and white effect can actually enhance things like retrospective videos because it gives them a nostalgic look.
Use these tips to make the most out of your bad footage, but also take the time to realize what went wrong and avoid the same mistakes during your next shoot.
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