How to start creating video clips for YouTube

How we got into YouTube productions 🙂

We as a travel blog thought why not sharing our experiences not only through written reports, but also as living content in form of little video clips. And which platform is better suited for this task than YouTube, right? So, in this post we’ll tell a little bit about our journey towards our own YouTube channel.

Get your filming kit together!

If we are going to produce little video clips we probably need some stuff, right? For example, a camera which can be used to take the video. Well, we actually got 4 of them, two mobiles, one digicam and one DSLR. They are not solely movie cameras, but hey, for our purpose it’s more than enough. To be honest, the Nikon D5500 does a pretty good job.

Get the scissors ready, it’s cutting time!

The next thing we need is software to cut our masterpieces. I’ve searched the web quite a long time for this and I have to say it’s not easy to find something which has everything you want. Since we’re just starting out, we can’t effort a big price tag on a program. We even tried some apps on our android phones, good if you like to join a few clips together, but not really suitable for exact clip cutting, music editing and speed regulation.

Luckily after a few research rounds I found something promising. The software is called Lightworks and it’s completely free in its basic version. There is an option to pay for full access. The only limitation for us is the partially restricted export functionality. 720p is as high as you can get, but for now that’s perfect. There is a steep learning curve in the beginning and with a lot of tutorials on YouTube from the developer, you’ll become a video producer in no time. 🙂

Do you like some music with your video?

Now we’ve got everything right? Camera to shoot video and software to cut it…mmmhhh turns out that you might want to put some music to your clip as well. Sounds easy, but actually here it gets pretty tough. You can’t just take any music you like, even if you bought it in the store and the last thing you want is a copyright infringement claim against you just for uploading a video on YouTube. Hence, before using a track in any of your films you have to sort out the copyright situation.

Actually, you need to ask the copyright holder for permission. For the music in our charts and on the radio that’s usually a big label and they probably won’t allow it unless you put a lot of cash on the table. Luckily it’s not over here, there are a lot of websites which offer music especially made for videos and podcasts. And sometimes you can find tracks which are published under a creative commons attribution license. Those can be used in any video even for commercial use, the only thing you need to do is giving credit to the author. A good starting point is the Free Music Archive. Just have a look around and see what you can discover.

If you don’t have much time searching for the perfect soundtrack and got some cash to invest in your music, then you can go to Epidemic Sound and sign up for a suitable package.

Now mix it all together!

This one out of the way, we can finally start. I only hope my Lenovo Flex10 netbook is up to the task. Since we’re travelling the world we really don’t have much space to take a big 17” power notebook with us. So far I only used it for building our website and to write some code in visual studio, but video editing is tough on the hardware.

Turns out it works better than expected. Not as smooth as one would hope, but if you don’t use 1080p material you can actually go with it. Especially since our free version of the editing software spits out 720p files anyway.

Our first attempts creating videos are actually not that bad :-). You can go and see for yourself on our YouTube channel. We wish you all much fun watching them and if you start out creating your own, just let us know because we love watching YouTube clips.

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