10 Tips for Shooting Video Outside 

Ethan Beute, BombBomb, Chief Evangelist, The Customer Experience Podcast, Wall Street Journal bestseller, Human-Centered Communication, Rehumanize Your Business.

Ethan Beute

Former Chief Evangelist
shooting video outside


March 3, 2020

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shooting video outside

For many, recording videos indoors is a go-to option. And there’s nothing wrong with that. But it’s nice to change it up every once in a while by shooting video outside.

In fact, it’s one of my 12 tips for better-looking videos.

It’ll get you out of the office – away from the fluorescent lights and computer screens – to make unique, eye-catching videos for your viewers.

You may be worried about the unpredictability of filming outdoors, but the final result outweighs the risk. So get out of your comfort zone and do it.

Watch the video below and keep reading below for some tips to keep in mind…

1. Keep in Mind That Timing Is More Important Than Good Lighting

Yes, video lighting is important. But sometimes waiting around for perfect lighting is not an option. Especially since outdoor lighting can be so unpredictable.

It’s more important to get your video message out in a timely fashion, so you don’t miss out on key business opportunities.

Connecting with people at the right time with poor lighting is better than connecting too late with good lighting.

2. Don’t Wear Sunglasses If It’s Not Necessary

Eye contact is necessary for establishing trust. So, when shooting video outside, avoid wearing sunglasses if there is soft natural light created by clouds or snow.

Let people see your eyes when you send them a video. It makes your videos feel like a more personal conversation.

3. Wear Sunglasses In Harsh Lighting

If the sun is too harsh when you’re filming outside, sunglasses are OK. Viewers won’t be able to see you’re eyes anyway if you’re squinting too much.

The squinting can distract from what you’re saying, as well as your engaging outdoor background. And that just defeats the purpose of making outdoor videos altogether.

4. Shoot Your Video Before the Sun Is Too High

The best time to film outside is shortly after sunrise and shortly before sunset when the sun is not too high. This is commonly referred to as the “magic hour.” You get more flattering light when the sun is lower on the horizon.

Good windows include 7-10 a.m. and 4-7 p.m. However, this varies by time of year, time zone, and location in time zone.

If the sun is too high, the harsh lighting creates long shadows down your face. You don’t want these distractions in your videos.

5. Find Shade When Video Shooting in Bright Sunlight

Sometimes the lighting is still too bright during magic hour, especially if you’re recording outdoor videos in communities located in higher elevations.

If this happens, or you’re shooting video outside when the sun is high, find some shade. This can be a tree, building, etc.

It’s always better to record a video in the shade, instead of direct sunlight. But as a rule of thumb, try filming when there’s more cloud cover or haze for nice, diffused sunlight.

6. Avoid Filming Outside in Weird Shadows

Do not shoot videos in areas that can cause weird shadow patterns on your face.

 shadow patterns

Avoid places like wooded areas with trees that have lots of branches, or any shade that causes distracting shadows in your videos.

7. Record Outdoor Videos on Cloudy Days

Recording on cloudy days is much better than shooting video in bright sunlight. Clouds just make for better lighting because you’re able to film with natural light that’s not overwhelming.

Recording on cloudy days

There aren’t any harsh shadows, and the lighting is perfectly balanced. It doesn’t matter where you’re facing because you’ll always have a beautiful, even light.

8. Use Nature to Draw People In

People are drawn to nature. It has so much to offer. Incorporate beautiful outdoor scenery into your videos. 

Film outside on a hiking trail, at the beach, or with a gorgeous scenic view of the mountains behind you. Feature places in your personal videos that will make it hard for recipients to resist pressing play.

9. Find Some Go-To Outdoor Filming Locations

After shooting videos outside a few times, you’ll find that there are locations you enjoy filming at.

Make these your go-to spots. That way you’re not scrambling for places to shoot your videos outside later.

10. Embrace the Spontaneity of the Outdoors

One of the greatest things about filming outdoors is that there’s so much room for spontaneity. You can capture awesome moments from the world around you.

You’ll see people hiking in the trails behind you, kids playing in the local park, birds flying, and more.

This all makes your video feel more authentic. And that’s what people like to see – real life, not perfection.

Need On-the-Go Setup Strategies and Gear Recommendations For Outdoor Videos? Download Our Guide!

You have all the basic tips you need for shooting videos outside. Now you need to put everything you’ve learned into practice.

If you need on-the-go video setup strategies and gear recommendations, we’ve got you covered.

Our Salesperson’s Guide to Video covers this and so much more. You’ll find out just the gear you need when filming outdoors.  And the guide walks you through great on-the-go video setups.

Get immediate access to the guide below!

18 08 Salespersons Guide to Video Edits 02 01 | BombBomb

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