Pros vs. Joes
Begin with the ‘end in mind’. It’s a pretty simple, yet concise phrase that good producers and videographers use when shooting a project. We start with thinking about the object of the video and what the project will look like when it’s completed. The same can’t always be said by parents or non-professionals when they’re shooting sports of their high school athletes.
What is Your Purpose?
So, you are shooting some video of your son or daughter playing sports in high school. Question: what are you going to do with it? What’s the result you are hoping to achieve? Are you shooting for memories? Or are you shooting video to send to a college, hoping to help your child earn an athletic scholarship? Unless you are a professional shooter, I can guarantee one thing: your video won’t be as good as what I
The Cheerleader or the Shooter?
I don’t mean that in a bragging sense; I mean it in a practical sense. You are
engaged on a very different level as a parent. You are half shooting/half watching the
Maybe you’re shouting encouragement to your child, and cheering them on as
they make that pass, or shoot that shot, or make a play. A professional video operator is
trained (or should be) to be dispassionate about what they are shooting.
Be engaged in your job, but don’t be a cheerleader. Watch the game through the viewfinder, not peeking over the top of the camera, losing track of what you are supposed to be shooting.
Will You Walk that Thin Line?
Every time you, as a parent, go out to shoot video of your child competing in
sports, you need to ask yourself a question: what am I doing, and what is the end in
As the parent of a Division 1 college athlete, I found myself walking that thin line
each and every time I went to shoot my son playing baseball. I could not both root for
him in his high school games, and shoot video that I knew would help him at the end of
Make a Decision and Stick to It
I made the clear and distinct decision to focus professionally some days, and
be a parent on others. Yet, I ran the risk of, ‘what if I miss a great play, or remarkable
performance?’ One day I battled within myself to watch my son play or shoot his game,
and on this day, I decided to shoot. I ended up videoing my son pitching a no-hitter. If I
didn’t shoot this, I would have missed having it. But unlike most parents, I was able to
enjoy the game through the viewfinder. And THAT, my friends, is the difference between most parents and a professional videographer.
An Investment in Your Child’s Future
Professional videographers can be worth their weight in gold, or the weight of a
scholarship. Think of them as ROI, return on investment. A good video, well done
with both quality video, and shot with the end in mind, is an investment in your child’s
That video could be what gets them a scholarship. So if you are thinking about a
recruiting video for your son or daughter, call a professional videographer. You’ll get
both video of them playing, and you’ll get to be a spectator. That’s a win-win.
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