I have noticed that often people do not frame themselves correctly when filming a video. The composition of an image is as important as sound recording and lighting and there is a rule that can help you.
The Rule of Thirds
The Rule of Thirds is a well known fundamental of still photography and cinematography. Following this rule will make your video shots look more well balanced and interesting, but also look more professional.
When you are composing your image, you have to imagine lines breaking it horizontally and vertically into thirds like this.
This gives you 9 areas that can be rectangles or nearly squares depending of the size of your image.
The intersection of these lines gives you 4 points of interest (circled in red) and 4 lines that can be used to position your face in the image depending on how you look at the camera.
Let’s see first what mistakes people are making.
A) The face is too small and in the center of the bottom area.
B) The face is bigger, but there is still too much space at the top of the frame.
This often happens when people want to show too much in the background, a title for example…
C) The face is too much at the top.
D) The face is positioned at the left or right of the frame while looking straight at the camera.
This might look funny and excessive examples, but lots of amateur videos are just like that.
If yours look like one of these, I am certain you will improve your image composition after you have learned about the Rule of Thirds.
Let’s see what’s correct now.
A) The face is at the center of the image and big enough to be the main interest.
The face can be much bigger and fill the frame if you want to.
B) If you are filming your profile, you should position your face at the left if you are looking at the right and this versa.
C) If you are facing the camera but your eyes go to the right, you should be positioned at the left and vice versa.
D) Finally, if you are looking down somewhere on your desk the frame composition should follow what you are looking at.
With practice the Rule of Thirds will be like a second nature for you.
I hope that now you will think about this the next time you are facing the camera and that it has been useful to you.
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