The business of shooting, editing and producing music videos is a business for a reason – somewhere, someway, somehow, money is going to change hands. If you’re looking to shoot a music video though, there are plenty of methods to help cut down on the costs associated with getting one shot, trimmed and rolled out. Florida is a music video hotspot, with tons of knockout beaches and urban backdrops ready to be filmed. Navigating the sprawling urban environments and untamed nature of the state, however, is not the easiest thing, especially in an age where you’ll likely need a permit to do what you plan on doing.
While the concept of guerilla shooting is far from dead, it also carries with it the risks of ending up with fines that far exceed what you think might not have been enough of a budget to get something quality made. Consider the following when going ahead with getting ready to shoot a music video and you’ll have far fewer headaches to deal with.
One of the fastest ways to get footage under your belt is also one of the most common formats: shoot footage of your audience during live performances. There’s no need for actors, staged reactions, or even lighting or sets most of the time. A live performance usually has everything you need already in place to get the energy of a video pumping. The downside, of course, remains that you’re stuck with completely live reactions and lighting that hasn’t been aimed to provide the best clarity, so be mindful of it if you choose to film your crowds.
Spend your money wisely, and always look to get the most bang for your buck. Being on a budget for a video means you should sweat the small stuff. Hire services that offer the greatest deal or most complete package to cut down on the total number of services you need to bring on board – doing so will also cut down your costs. The more a single company can do for you, the more likely you are to strike an affordable deal.
If you’re in the position to, lean on crowdfunding. A dedicated fanbase is a hungry fanbase, and their desire to see you can be converted into a way to make that a reality and help bring a music video to life. Enthusiastic fans are a resource to tap wisely and sparingly though, because like anything that’s crowdsourced, the result will be foremost in everyone’s mind, and you’ll have an obligation to deliver if you don’t want to get on the bad side of the most important group of people for your music.
It should go without saying, but it’s worth it to carefully consider what song you’re using for your music video. You know your music better than anyone, and that means whatever you want that song to evoke on an emotional level is going to permeate the tone of the video.
Plus, the song you choose will impact how much video you have to shoot – and how much you have to spend on the shooting – which in turn has an effect on the overall price of the project. Your ten-minute epic might be good on the record, but it might not be the best idea for converting into a visual feast. Also, remember that choosing to cover a song might add unexpected costs to the shooting of your video. Run through all the proper channels that go into releasing something that uses another copyrighted IP or your video may never see the light of day.
Pick something that you know will motivate the band to keep at it. While you might not be doing the editing, color grading, lighting and all of the technical nitty-gritty, you’ll still need to be present for shooting, and if you’re not 100% “there” when you’re shooting anything you have to show up in, it’s going to shine through on the music video. There’s no magic way to make you look like you care, after all, so make sure you do!
If you don’t plan on using a pre-built set or in-house set with the company you choose to help with shooting and editing, it’s worthwhile to spend some time scouting out locations. Not only does this open you up to places you may have never considered in the process, it also helps clear the air on issues concerning filming on-site.
If a place needs a permit, now you know ahead of time, instead of showing up day-of and finding out that your budget not only didn’t account for a permit to film on location, but can’t accommodate it either. Bring up locations you’re considering with who you choose to collaborate with too, as you may not be aware of problems that could make shooting a video more difficult, more costly, or even outright impossible.
Finally, scope out the businesses around you that offer services, especially full-suite services. If you’re looking for a Florida video production company, try to find one that offers pricing up front and sets expectations immediately with the packages on offer. Look for obvious inclusions like a professional videographer, equipment, and high-fidelity recording equipment. But also keep your eyes peeled for things like sets, set design, additional crew, attached professional editors and talent casting for extras and models.
If the budget allows for it, consider if the service also offers up storyboarding, scripts, cinematographers, talent casting for actors and actresses and vehicle rentals. A ton of the headache that goes into making a music video, even on a budget, can be alleviated by taking advantage of a full-service production company. Permits, shooting on location, editing and lighting become far more manageable once you have someone else taking care of it, and help leave your plate with more room to focus on what will make your vision come to life best.