Location scouting for video production

Let’s talk locations!

So you’re making a promotional video. Location scouting is the process of deciding what environment will best suit the video you are creating.

Types of locations

Spending time location scouting during pre-production will help you find the environment for your video. It’s thinking about what will look good on camera, and what will help tell the story. There are three main types: The most common is on-location filming. For example, if you’re creating a video about your business, the shoot would take place at your office. Others include green screen filming, and studio environments.

Location Scouting

What is on-location filming?

On-location shooting means filming in the environment where the video takes place. This could be at a corporate office, on a beach, in a factory, at a sporting field, in a museum, or even an airport. Wherever your story takes place, that’s where you need to film. When shooting on-location there are many things to think about: Accessibility for your cast and camera crew, getting permission for filming, facilities such as access to power and water, and the weather if working outside, must all be taken into consideration.

Film camera

Pro’s and Con’s

The best part of shooting on-location is the sense of realism it creates. It can also help actors to give a more believable performance. This will make your video feel authentic. It’s often more cost effective as well. But there are some disadvantages. Availability may be limited and you may need permits to film in public areas. Unlike in a studio, you can’t control everything. You may need to come up with a plan B if weather conditions make it impossible to shoot.

Film crew on location

What is Green Screen?

Green screen is filming in front of a green (or sometimes blue) screen and then adding the background in during the post production editing. This allows filmmakers to create a computer generated background from scratch that the actors are able to interact with. The possibilities with green screen are endless. You could transport your actors to any place in the world. Or you could present data and statistics as your talent explains the information to the audience.

Green Screen

Pro’s and Con’s

The greatest strength of green screen is flexibility. If you change your idea halfway through production, in most cases it’s easy to adapt with green screen. With the right production company and video editors, anything is possible. The downside of green screen is its time consuming. The editing process takes time. Also the visual style lacks a natural, realistic feel. You don’t get a sense of the person in their natural environment.

Film Studio

What is a Film Studio?

A film studio, also called a soundstage, is an indoor space used to create video content. These videos could be for television, a film, or online content. The studio is designed so that the creator has complete control. The area is soundproof to make sure the quality of the sound recording is the best it can be. Studios also don’t have any windows or any natural light. This means the lighting can be controlled and remain consistent for the entire shoot. This is helpful when filming over numerous days but the footage needs to look the same.

If you are looking for a studio for your shoot check out Hitmaker Studios.

Film Studio

Pro’s and Con’s

There are a lot of positives to working in a studio. You can turn the space into exactly what you need it to be. This is especially useful for product promotional videos. You can show your product and remove all possible distractions. While there are many positives, there are some downfalls. Depending on the studio, they can be quite expensive. It can also feel artificial and sometimes even fake if not used in the right situation.

Video monitor

Site Visits

It’s important to visit possible shooting locations before filming. If you are shooting on-location, go there at the time of day you plan to shoot. Take a camera and make sure it will look good. What does the light look like? Will you need to bring light equipment to get the look you are hoping for? Make sure your cast and crew will have enough space to work. In a studio based environment or working with green screen, visit the studio and make sure you have access to everything you need.

Camera man

Next Steps

Location Scouting is an important part of pre-production. Taking the time to scout locations allows you to find the right place for your video. Continue reading for information on Casting… To return to the main menu, click here.