Last month, we partnered with Sailing Magazine to produce video content at the Miami International Boat Show, the largest boat and yacht event in the world. We filmed interviews on location (on location means in a real-life environment, not in a studio) on the sailboats, on the water at Museum Park Marina. Following our experience filming on location, we thought we’d share 7 tips for filming interviews on location that you can use for your next video shoot.
To begin, here’s the behind-the-scenes recap video we created:
The main recap video features interviews with 15 sailboat brands, b-roll of the event, and aerial stock videos.
Many of the brands supplied existing videos and photos so we could create additional videos highlighting their brands in particular, too. For these, we cut together longer portions of their interviews with their photos/videos as b-roll to illustrate their talking points.
Here are the videos we cut for HH Catamarans and 69F Sailing:
HH Catamarans makes luxury performance cruising catamarans. Just filming on one of these was a luxurious experience!
69F was one of the newest, most exciting brands at the show. They have created a 6.9 Meter foiling monohull, which you have to see in action to believe how it moves.
7 Tips for Filming Interviews on Location
7. Get Minimalist with Your Equipment
Shooting 15 different interviews on location, meant that we needed to move easily and set up for interviews quickly.
So we kept our set-up super minimal with just a Canon DSLR — no lights and no audio equipment. In retrospect, we probably could’ve attached an on-camera directional mic to help reduce the background noise but fortunately, our subjects’ voices were clear, and the environmental noise adds to the authenticity of the behind-the-scenes videos, showing the buzz of the boat show.
6. Keep a Flexible Schedule When Filming Interviews on Location
The people we filmed were at the Boat Show were there to represent their brands and sell boats, which meant we needed to squeeze in our interviews whenever was convenient for them.
For example, above you can see that we interviewed HH Catamaran’s President and 69F’s CEO — these are important brand representatives who have demanding schedules when at the world’s largest boat show.
We needed to be ready to film immediately or open to scheduling a time to return. By keeping a flexible schedule over 3 days, we were able to interview everyone on our list and not have to scramble around or rush through shoots.
5. Have Key Questions Prepared
Before arriving at the Miami International Boat Show, we had 3 key interview questions prepared:
- What is the origin story of your sailboat brand?
- Which innovations are you unveiling at this year’s show?
- Can you share with the readers of Sailing Magazine what new products or features you’re excited to be working on, in 2022 and beyond?
By doing this, we were able to give our interviewees a heads up on the questions right before we turned the camera, putting them at ease and ready to answer.
And because the brands are so different, those 3 key questions allowed each of them to go in different directions with their answers and allowed us to produce a video that really showed off the people behind the brands.
4. Capture B-Roll After The Interview
Filming b-roll after the interview is over means that you can hunt down the specific things the subject mentioned during their interview.
For example, in HH Catamaran’s video, Seth made note of the “C-shaped daggerboard foils” on the HH50 so we made sure to get beauty shots of those to show off in the video.
3. Bring Extra Storage Cards and Extra Batteries
This is a must for any shoot, on location or not.
But if you’re filming outside of the studio, it’s much harder to find a place to charge your battery pack or somewhere to get a blank SD card. So always come extra prepared.
2. Be Clever in How You Position Your Subject
When filming an interview on location, you need to make quick decisions on the fly. One of the most important ones is where to position your subject so they look great and you tell the right story visually.
For these interviews, we tried to position each person:
- in front of natural light
- on or in front of their brand’s boat, or in front of signage with the brand logo visible
- at a different angle/position than the last interview, to ensure visual variety in the finished, edited video
1. Bring The Energy
While interviewing, make sure the person asking the questions brings a solid energy and good vibes to the conversation.
This may sound a little silly, but people truly mirror the energy they encounter in an interaction.
As the interviewer, if you bring good energy to the situation and establish a positive rapport, the interviewee will feel comfortable, at ease, and enjoy answering your questions. And this will make for a truly great video.
We hope our 7 Tips for Filming Interviews On Location will be helpful for your next video shoot.
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