Many of the video cameras now are quite good. They have many professional specs we would have only dreamed of having ten years ago. One thing that is not too flattering is how sharp the videos render. I know it’s funny, we shoot video but don’t want it to look video-like. Rather we want our videos to look filmic. How can we make it filmic? Lighting is one of the main ways to make your stories shot with a video camera to look more like a cinema picture. Choosing the correct framing, colors, editing also all contribute to a better looking and sounding film. However, even when you use these suggestions you will still have that off putting sharp video.
One way to overcome the sharp look of your videos is to shoot wide open. Open your lens to the max. Most lenses are not too sharp when they are used wide open. Another great way to over come the over sharpening of video is by using a black pro mist filter. This one is a Tiffen filter that makes the picture less sharp and smooths out the overall look. When lights are used it really makes them glow in a good way. They also smooth out wrinkles which is great if you are interviewing someone who does have wrinkles. These filters are not too expensive, but the cost does depend on your lens’ thread size. Here is a video that shows with and without a black pro mist filter. The camera and lens combo was a Gh5s and a Sigma Art 50-100 mm 1.8.
I have been working in television and media for over 18 years. My experience includes news photojournalist, editor, producer and storyteller.