Determine the set-up

Importance of location

Bron: (Vadim Sherbakov)When recording videos where you will be on the screen yourself, it is good to think about the set-up in advance. It is the intention that you think about the place where you will film and the way you would like to be portrayed.

Choose a quiet location where you will not be disturbed and where no annoying background sounds can be heard (wind, air conditioning, beamers, ringing of phones, footsteps in the hallway, etc.), since it is difficult to filter these out afterwards. 

Listen carefully if there is no echo in the room. Solve this by putting pillows, blankets, coats, carpets, ... in the room (out of the camera's view of course). 

Bron: sure you have enough space to move around and that you record against a background that supports your story. Do you want to film in your office? Clean your desk and avoid disturbing elements that can distract the viewer's attention. 

You can also choose to film yourself in a studio or in your office before a green or blue screen. This allows you to choose a background yourself, afterwards during editing. Be careful not to wear any green clothes in front of a green screen. You have green eyes? Then choose for a blue screen. 

Bron: (Alexander Dummer)

However, if you choose an even background in 1 colour - for example, a white canvas in the background - this can be very professional. It also makes it easier to show text boxes, images, ... later in the assembly. 

Think about your outfit upfront. Avoid outfits with stripes as they will "move" in the camera. Make sure as well that jewels, eyeglasses, tie-pins, ... cannot come in contact with the (cable of the) microphone and that they do not shine on screen.



By taking a few fist rules into account, you can create beautiful images, making the video more enjoyable to watch.

  • Make sure to have a stable scene. Use a tripod to avoid choppy video images.
  • Make sure the subject of your video is sharp. If your device has an auto focus, try turning it off as much as possible. Otherwise, with every move in your image, your device will focus on that move.
  • Work in a widescreen format. Videos in 4:3 format are from the past. When you upload a 16:9 video with the original aspect ratio (resolution 1280 x 720), the video will come out perfect in a standard video player such as YouTube. If you upload a video in 4:3, there will be black bars on the right and on the left of your video.

    Breedbeeld versus 4:3

  • Film in High Definition (HD). Your device usually allows you to set the resolution yourself. The higher the resolution, the sharper the image, but also the larger the final file of your video will be. Two sizes are recommended:
    • 1280 x 720 pixels (smaller file size but still of acceptable quality) or
    • 1920 x 1080 pixels (larger file size)
  • When making your video with a smartphone, tablet, ... keep your device horizontal.
  • Make sure to have a good composition and avoid disturbing images in your recording. A useful tool here is "the rule of thirds". Get inspired by the following video:

  • Work with a number of basic shots while filming. Try to take 3 shots of the same scene (wide, medium, close-up). A variation in shots in the assembly makes your video interesting and retains the viewer's attention. The following video demonstrates these basics:


Good light is essential when filming. With these simple tips, you can refine the lighting of your video and capture the subject of your video in the best way.

  • As much as possible, use daylight.
  • You have no daylight? Make sure to provide sufficient light.
  • Never place your subject with the back to a window. This causes overexposure (unless you wish to achieve that effect of course).
  • Use face powder to avoid a shining forehead when you’re in a spotlight.
  • Consider three-point lighting. Be creative and use desktop lamps for example. The figure and video below show what is meant by a three-point lighting set-up..

    Standard Three-Point Lighting


Sound A good sound is even more important than good light. If the sound is not good (too silent, loud rustling or faltering sound), the viewers will pull out. Make sure that the sound is good from the beginning, as it is very difficult to rectify a bad sound when editing.

  • These tips will help you to get a good sound during recording:
  • Use a lapel microphone and/or a dictaphone when you see yourself. We recommend a USB microphone when you want to take a screen shot of the computer with recorded text.
  • Do you only have a built-in microphone? Then film up to maximum 1.5 meters from the sound source.
  • Clap your hands before you start recording. Make sure that the moment you clap your hands is recorded. It’s a handy trick to synchronize image and sound during assembly. And action!

    En actie
  • Avoid as much as possible ambient noise (buzzing, rushing, traffic, steps in the hallway, colleagues talking, …). Create a quiet space as described in the set-up.
  • Always make a trial version! This way, you can hear whether the sound is right and the framing is right.

The department Educational Quality Assurance disposes of a number of microphones that you can test (see also "Materials and Apps" below). Would you like to gain more in-depth knowledge about good microphones, but you don’t have the time to test them all? Check out the following links:

Materials, apps and studio

Filmic Pro

In the video training we let the teachers film as much as possible with their own device (tablet, smartphone, own camera). For filming with a smartphone or tablet, we recommend the following handy app: Filmic Pro (16.99 €). This app helps the starting film maker to put into practice the above tips on image, light and sound.

Filmic Pro has developed a number of short video tutorials and an extensive digital reference work, which guide you through the various settings of the app.

DOWA video material (only for Ghent University)

We have gathered a lot of information ourselves and built up experience around good microphones, lighting, stands or tripods ... at an affordable price. These can be borrowed from

DICT video material (only for Ghent University)

The ICTO Multimedia Team not only provides advice and support in the use of multimedia. They also lend out laptops, tablets, mobile phones, video and audio material and projection material. Reservations can be made at

5 steps to creating the ultimate lecture recording studio