16 Tips On How To Make Professional Videos At Home

Written by
Kevin Alster
Published on
May 17, 2024
Table of contents

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It's not easy to make a professional video, even when you have the necessary equipment, budget, and space.

So you can't make a video right now — it's nothing to feel bad about.

Some people have entire careers dedicated to making the colors in videos look good (yup, it's a real job! They're called colorists).

But a career switch might not be what you're after.

That's great because this post is here to teach you how to make professional videos using the resources at your disposal.

If you can, check one or more of these boxes. Then keep reading:

✅ You want to know how to shoot your own videos in the space you have without wasting money on unnecessary professional camera equipment

✅ You have a ton of decisions to make about software and equipment and don't really know where to start

✅ You've already tried shooting casual videos on your phone camera, but you want to make them look even more professional.

Well, the right answers have come to you. In today's blog post, we'll clarify how to make professional-looking videos at home and help you unstuck. 

TL;DR 🥱

In this post, we'll give you 16 tips on how to:

  • Get started as a beginner
  • Work with a limited budget
  • Overcome time-pressures
  • Use your home space effectively
  • Find inspiration (even when you're not feeling it)

Let's dive in. 👇

How to get started as a beginner

Making professional videos at home when you're not quite an expert comes with multiple challenges.

You need the right equipment, which is pricey. And even if you're willing to invest in expensive cameras and lights, you still have to learn how to use them.

It would be terrible to invest in professional equipment and end up with a video that has an amateur look and feel. But you don't have to go through this. Here's how to tackle challenges when you still have much to learn regarding techniques and tools.

Tip #1: Master the basic filmmaking skills

Don't bother with complex techniques. Instead, check your lighting, sound, and camera angles. These will directly impact the quality of your video, especially if you choose to make all the visuals yourself.

Tip #2: Film shots that will be easy to transition

Editing plays a big role in making your video look professional. As a beginner, you'll want to have shorter video clips to work with. Focus on making your video seamless by mastering transitions before introducing fancy camera movements.

Tip #3: Invest time learning the editing process

If you lack knowledge, you're bound to make mistakes during filming. Some can be prevented with planning, and others can be fixed with editing. If there's any area where you need to spend more time to tackle your lack of knowledge for creating videos at home, it would be editing. It will make a massive difference in the final product.

How to overcome a limited video budget

You might think it's hard to make high-quality online videos on a budget when the average cost of video production is about $1,000-$5,000 per finished minute. But you've already significantly cut down your costs by choosing to tackle video creation at home. And there are some other ways to trim your budget without skimping on production quality.

Tip #4: Use natural light

Natural light is free, can be more flattering than studio lighting, and its color temperature varies throughout the day, potentially making your footage more dynamic.

Seasoned creators know about the "golden hours" right after sunrise and before sunset. That's when light can be warmer and softer, thus more suitable for filming. Try test filming at different times of the day to find how much light you need before you start shooting. See what your location offers; don't just go with the theory.

Tip 💡

Set your stage near a large window or door facing north or south, as they provide even light without the harsh shadows you might get when you shoot outdoors.

Tip #5: Use stock footage

Stock footage can help you spice up the visuals, adjust your video pacing, and drive your ideas home. Check the free or more affordable stock footage websites and ensure you fulfil their licensing agreements when using such content.

Tip #6: Use affordable audio equipment

Good sound can be ensured by low-cost audio equipment such as a Lavalier or shotgun microphone. Pay close attention to the background noise when filming. You want to have as little as possible and cut it out as much as possible during the editing.

Tip #7: Use free video editing software

A good video editing program helps you achieve a lot with limited resources.

  • Most well-known names like DaVinci Resolve, HitFilm, or Lightworks have free and paid versions. You can start with what's free and see if you can afford to upgrade or even need it.
  • iMovie or Windows Movie Maker are designed for basic video-making and are more user-friendly if you need to edit some shots together.
  • Depending on the type of video you want to create, you could even look into an all-in-one integrated learning platform like Teachable.
  • Online video creation tools like Synthesia use AI to make videos super easy and fast. They combine many different features and are typically more user-friendly than traditional video software options.

Did you know? 🤔

The more built-in features your chosen video software provides, the easier and faster it is to make your at-home video look more professional. Here's an example of what it's like to quickly work with specialized software 👇

Synthesia Product Demo | AI Talking Head Avatars (New!)

How to create quality videos when the clock is ticking

Choosing your home as a filming setting you can fully control will free you from the waiting line. No need to wait until the filming studio is free to rent and then wait some more if you have to go back and retake some shots. But if you want to speed things up even more, consider the following tips.

Tip #8: Use a framework

A framework shows you the way step-by-step. It takes you from profiling your target audience to deciding your outcome, with all the content structure, script, and visuals in between. 

4 elements of all great videos 🎥

Creating good videos is mostly about knowing what to do and what not to do. Check out the 4 elements of all great videos, and everything else will fall into place.

Every Good Video Has These Four Elements (+ framework)

Tip #9: Use templates

Video templates are pre-designed video projects with placeholders for text and visuals, preselected transitions and audio effects, and other customizable elements. They'll help you assemble a professional-looking video in no time because they were planned and developed by professionals with advanced design knowledge.

Online video makers typically include templates; you can use them as inspiration or as a starting point for your video. Check out this massive library of video templates.

image

Tip #10: Use voiceover instead of on-camera dialogue

On-camera dialogue requires much editing time and an excellent acting voice. Conversely, narration or voiceover is the easiest way to bring your script to life.

You can pay for an actor to read your script or use text-to-speech technology. Text-to-speech reads your script out using a human-sounding voice generated by AI.

Here's how it works:

Learn more about our text-to-speech feature | Synthesia

How to make your home space work for you, not against you

Your available space could cause certain limitations. The coming tips will give you some breathing room about those video clips you're trying to shoot.

Tip #11: Use vertical space

When setting the filming stage, one big objective is to free up the floor space and make the background look more professional. For the actual filming, consider using wall mounts/brackets to keep filming equipment up and even experiment with filming from a high angle.

Tip #12: Use simple backgrounds

You want simple backgrounds that support your information and don't distract the viewers. A simple white wall, a whiteboard, or a chalkboard can get you started. 

Consider using a bookshelf or display case if you want more visual interest. Just arrange those items nicely and try not to make them too distracting. No need to show pretty things, only what serves your video purpose.

Tip #13: Get creative with your camera angles

The right camera angle can make your video content more explicit or add more impact.

You could try an overhead or high-angle shot to showcase a process or activity from above. Alternatively, a low-angle shot, with the camera on a lower surface and tilted upwards, will capture subjects from below and add a sense of drama.

For an off-kilter effect, try the oblique shooting angle. It's a powerful technique that will create a feeling of unease or tension. But to get maximum impact, use it sparingly.

How to find your inspiration when you're feeling clueless

You could have all the necessary tools and resources, but without a winning idea, they're all for nothing. So, if your biggest issue when filming videos at home is inspiration, here's what you can start doing right away.

Tip #14: Research your audience

Your video theme is only as good as your audience considers it. To get it right, you need to have a clear image of who's your audience, what they need to know, and what they know already. 

Tip #15: Search for inspiration online

With a clear audience profile, you can start looking around for inspiration. What other video content can you find that speaks to your audience? You don't just want something that people engage with. You want some novelty to catch their eye. And you can't bring up the wonder when you don't know what else they've seen.

One way to find the novelty is to look at some videos in a different niche or industry than yours and think of what you can adapt from there.

Tip #16: Keep it simple

The most effective videos are simple. They drive action by asking the viewers to do something they're genuinely motivated to do. And they perfectly match what's being spoken with what appears on the screen.

Simple is always better when dealing with the various limitations that may occur outside a professional filming studio. So, at every step, ask yourself, "How can I simplify this?"

How to easily overcome the challenges of filming videos at home

You can do many things to create incredible videos within the walls of your home. But what if you could do the minimum required and still pull out beautiful, engaging videos that look like they were shot in a studio?

All it takes is:

  1. A beginner-friendly online video maker: Don't waste time learning complex editing tools.
  2. Quality audio: Try generating your voiceover using text-to-speech, with no equipment involved other than your computer.
  3. A charming presenter: Use an AI avatar and video template to replace cameras, actors, or self-recording, especially if you're uncomfortable in front of the camera.

After everything we've discussed, it seems hard to believe that these three steps alone can spare you all the headaches, expenses, and learning curve. But it's true.

Here's a preview of what it's like to create professional-looking videos, at home, in as little as 5 minutes, with an AI video maker like Synthesia.

Try making your first AI video for free and see how easy it can be to make great videos at home!

faq

Frequently asked questions

How do I create videos that look like a pro made them?

Good video content is all about a great idea and an equally great execution. The audio and visuals are two aspects that can make or break the professional look and feel. You can work with quality equipment and actors in a dedicated studio to get these right. Or you can use advanced video-making tools that give you access to professional-looking stock images and footage and flawless text-to-speech voiceover.

What makes a video look professional?

  • Clear audio and high-quality visuals are the two most important elements of a video that looks professional.
  • Good lighting is also essential because it helps eliminate shadows and improves clarity, making whatever you’re filming look more vibrant.
  • And finally, smooth editing with great attention to detail can help you give it that professional seamless flow.

How do I start making home videos?

Making videos at home starts with a clear and straightforward idea, followed by using the right equipment. Depending on goals and budget, one can begin to film with a basic camera, even the smartphone's camera, or invest in a more advanced camera, a tripod, a good microphone, and some essential lighting equipment. The rest is about experimenting with the video editing software.

What equipment do I need for making videos?

Equipment is necessary when you want to create your visuals from scratch. In this case, you should be looking for a camera and an external microphone, a tripod that will keep the camera steady and avoid shaky shots, and at least a basic lighting kit or softbox. Other helpful equipment includes memory cards, extra batteries, and external hard drives to store your footage.