How to Make Good YouTube Videos

How to Make Good YouTube Videos

Hello Rebel, and welcome back to my life.

A frequent question I and many other YouTubers get is “How do you actually make your YouTube videos?”

There’s no way to know what TYPE of content you’re going to create, so I’m going to skip all that and go right to the technical aspects of making videos, which I do know a little something about.

First things first is your camera! You can make videos on any kind of camera you want, even a smartphone.

These days the only requirement is you have to shoot in HD, but hardly any current phones DON’T shoot in HD.

However you should DEFINITELY have a tripod, which will keep your video from shaking around, because most viewers hate that.

If you want to go a little bit higher-end, you can shoot on an actual camera. Most YouTubers who do that use what’s called a DSLR camera.

I use the Canon EOS 60D, this one here. A lot of other YouTubers use Canon’s other big camera, the Rebel. Which, of course, I fully approve of.

You can find links to ALL the equipment I mention in the description below.

Next, your microphone. You’ve gotta have good sound. It’s incredibly important. Mediocre video quality can be forgiven, but people WILL NOT put up with bad sound.

I used to record from an external microphone, like this one right here, directly to my computer, but then I switched to a microphone on my camera that feeds sound directly in.

The advantage of a microphone ON your camera is that you can take it out with you to film outside or at events, which is something I really like to do.

Here’s the microphone I use. It plugs into the side of my camera and the audio is recorded directly on the video.

Now your background. You want to choose a background that’s interesting but not too busy. It shouldn’t pull attention from your face.

For that reason you usually either want to use a plain one-color background, or one that all kind of meshes together, like my bookshelves.

For lights, you generally want at one source of “soft” light. A window can work, though daylight shifts and can make your videos look uneven.

I use a light set from a company called CowboyStudio that’s very affordable.

You want to avoid harsh, direct light directly from a bulb. Normally my face looks like this because of the soft light I use.

Here’s what my face looks under harsh light. The shadows are too sharp, if my skin is greasy, it’s looks really bad. Not a good time.

When you’re filming yourself, you want to pay attention to the rule of thirds, and have your eyes on the horizontal upper third line.

I like to stay on one of the vertical third lines as well. It makes the whole shot look better.

You can write a script for your videos if you want. I script almost all of my videos, which lets me film them much faster.

If you write a script, you’ll usually need to do less editing. No script, more editing.

Most of us can’t afford a teleprompter, so I keep my script off screen, right over there, and I refer back to it line by line.

When you’re delivering the lines of your video, you want to keep things as interesting as possible.

You don’t have to talk as fast or move as much as I do—some people love it, some people HATE it—but you should cut down on unnecessary pauses and moments of silence.

Silence is DEATH in YouTube videos, so use it very carefully. You CAN pause … but only when you REALLY want the viewer to pay attention to the next thing you say.

Once you’ve shot your video, you toss it into your video editing program. Obviously I have no idea what video editing program you’re going to use, but I use Adobe Premiere Pro, which you can subscribe to for $20 a month.

Usually my videos are one long continuous video file, which makes things very easy.

I go through and cut out all my stumbles, pauses, and messed up lines.

I also cut off the end of the last word of each line and bump the beginning of the NEXT line right up against it.

Then I put the audio from the two clips on different tracks, and I drag out the end of the previous clip about 1/6th of a second under the next clip.

The human mind fills in that time, so the appearance is that the two words don’t overlap at all, and it means there’s almost no silence in my video.

When you’re done editing your video, you export it. Again, video editing programs vary wildly, but Premiere actually has an export preset for YouTube videos, so I just use that. Makes it real easy.

Once the video exports, I upload it to my YouTube channel, and I’m done!

And that’s how I make my YouTube videos! Obviously that’s a super condensed explanation, but it covers all the basics.

In future videos I’m going to break down the parts of the process in more detail, so if you want to know more about a particular thing, let me know in the comments.

For more study right away, Hank Green also made a really excellent video on making YouTube videos, and that’s the FIRST link in the description below.

That’s it for today. Click up there to see another video from the channel, or right there to check out my Patreon, where you can support my videos, and I will see you on Friday. Byyye!

Garrett Robinson

Over 100,000 readers have read and loved Garrett's books, like the fantasy hits Nightblade and Midrealm. He's also a film festival favorite with movies like Unsaid, and a tech guru who posts lots of helpful how-tos for writers and filmmakers over at garrettbrobinson.com.

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