B-roll is your friend. If you don't have that shoot with more than one camera. If you don't have that shoot at 1080 and edit in a 720 timeline. That way you can have your 1080 footage sitting at 67% of actual size then jump it to 100% on jump cuts without it looking aweful. You know what I mean? It makes it look like you've got two cameras - one wide and one close-up without losing resolution. Still not pro but it's a little trick to fake two cams.
I've done it with two cams and you can jump around to make it look like four. Scrounge up a little b-roll in the middle to throw them off and you look like a right production company.
DON'T use transitions on a continuos talking head unless there's a clear break in time.
thanks Norma, I actually do that, its a good trick that I saw on youtube
Im afraid I dont have b-roll because their videos its stuff that doctors shoot by themselves, obviously shooting with two cameras is out of the question for them
the only resource Ive got, as far as I can tell, is using transitions between the clips to add a bit more diversity, but Im not sure which transitions I should use and how often
Well then use the 1080 jump method and only use a transition when the subject completely changes and even then only use dip to black. To spice it up use a L cut to have your audio come in while it's still black before the video to add interest. While in the black you can add a sound effect for mood or emphasis or text to drive home the point. Break it up with subtle soundtracks for each block. If it's a doctor talking about cancer very subtally put in some gloomy music but after the fade when he talks about the kids he's helped SUBTALLY put in some happier music. Place a vignette arount the talking head to focus the viewer on the speaker.
Assuming only one interviewee, the two techniques I use to 'mix it up' are B-roll and graphics. Bullet points are especially useful, especially if animated.
Having said that, I am of the mindset that this is the kind of business where you get what you pay for. If the Docs don't want to fork over the dough for a professional camera and post production crew, then their video will just not be as good as it could be. Plain and simple.
I like adding text and graphic overlays that illustrate the point. This is especially good if the subject mumbles or the audio is difficult to hear. You actually "hear" it better if you see the words at the same time! Also, think of the cool graphic overlays in something like "Sherlock"! Okay. so you don't have to go *that* overboard but think about the subtle arrows and highlights and pointers they use to draw attention to important parts of the screen. If there are no "important parts of the screen" consider importing graphics or still images that illustrate what the subject is talking about. I've been following a few "Coursera" courses (www.coursera.org) and it's really interesting to see how professors jazz up their lectures (or don't!)
thanks guys and gals
"Bullet points are especially useful, especially if animated."
Jim could you illustrate this point with an example?
I have nothing available for viewing at the moment. On the projects I use that with, the clients weren't mine.