slow-motion emotion adding production value to your film

posted by Rob Stewart Oct 12, 2016

Slow motion doesn’t have to be all super slow bursting balloons and water splashes, although that can look amazing. If your video has a message, using a touch of subtle slow motion filming can add a more thoughtful and more emotional feel to everyday situations and actions. It will also give your video a feel of higher production values.

Using this subtle slow-motion technique, visuals can better complement an emotionally led message, or a message where you want your audience to look at a familiar activity with a sense of re-assessment. You can also break down a familiar routine into stages, or highlight particular parts of a process by speeding up and then slowing down material.

Activities that naturally have a particular speed can be really effective. With pouring liquids or objects dropping we know by experience how they should move. Slow motion adds a disruptive dimension to our everyday experience of these activities.

Sony have used the image of dropping thousands of ping pong balls filmed as slow motion in a famed advert for their Bravia TV.

How does it work? Usually a camera will have a standard filming rate between 24 and 60 picture frames a second. Cameras with a slow motion setting can increase this to 180 frames a second or more. When this fast frame video is slowed down to a normal speed in the edit suite, it becomes slow motion. An example might be that 1 second of filming has now become 7 seconds of viewable video, so is slowed by 7:1

With edit software you can vary the speed to smoothly transition from normal looking video to slow motion and back again, and this flowing technique can also add a greater sense of production value to your video. You can try the effect for yourself as many of the latest phones, such as iPhone 7, can also shoot in slow motion mode.

Examples of subtle slow-motion can be seen in our clip below:

At MEDIAmaker we use the Sony FS7 for our slow-motion shots. Here’s a link to the camera features.