3 Simple Ways to Turn a Photo Shoot into a Video Shoot

Collecting content isn't always easy. And quality photo shoots can be hard to come by. Even if you shoot great photos on your phone, it’s not always clear how best to capture what your clients do, or why your audience should care.

It’s clear across Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube and more: social users don’t just want quality photos; they also want quality video.

That’s why it’s more important than ever to maximize those (often) rare opportunities for photo shoots by additionally capturing video footage.

But how best to collect video content in ways that are visually engaging? This can be especially tricky for clients like restaurants, whose products don’t perform any actions on their own (or at least we hope your food doesn’t leap off the plate 😳).

Here are three simple and easy ways to duplicate your photography efforts in order to capture engaging video assets for later use. Whether you take your own photos or hire a pro, these tips should help you get the most out of your next photo shoot:

1. Rack Focus

While you’re set up to shoot a still object or person, lock your tripod, turn your camera to Video mode, and capture a long take in which you slowly “rack” the focus from soft to sharp.

If you’re using a mobile device’s camera instead of a DSLR or other professional camera, try hitting record, tapping the background so your object/subject is out of focus, then tap the object/subject to bring it into sharp focus. Tap back and forth a few times so you can ensure you got at least one good rack clip.

2. Loops

Before GIPHY and Boomerang, the old school folks had to make their own loop clips from scratch. What a time to be alive!

To create a sweet loop without the use of an app, find a repeating pattern or get your subject to perform one. This can be waving a hand, showing off a product, or in our case, tossing a bowl of fries. Similar to racking focus, you’ll want to have your phone or camera set up with a tripod, especially if you’re trying to achieve that coveted “perfect loop” where it’s hard to see the cut in the footage.

3. Time-lapses

Almost any business can find a way to make their product or service look cool using time-lapse. Find an action or task that takes between 30 seconds and a few hours, and set up your camera to capture it. Broken record time: using a tripod is essential to time-lapse because if the camera is even a little shaky, the whole clip will be messy and harder to watch.

Once you’ve captured your long clip of action(s) being performed, speed up the footage until it’s as rapid as you like. Ideally, your sped-up clip is only 5-15 seconds.

But what to use for editing? We assume DSLR photographers have editing software already, such as Adobe Premiere Pro. But here’s a bonus simple way for you mobile phone photographers:

4. Videoshop


This is just a cool and cheap mobile app that lets you edit and rearrange video clips. You can merge multiple clips into one video, copy/paste clips for loops, change the clip speed for time-lapse, and much more.

Good luck making the most of your photography opportunities! Did I miss any easy ways to make more videos? Tell us in the comments or tweet us @ThinPigMedia!