hey everyone! a long time looker and a first time poster when it comes to this thread. i have been pretty into photography for the last year or two and would like to expand into videography as well. i am going out this weekend and im going to be filming a video of my brothers mkv gli. i will be shooting with a nikon d3100 and im thinking i will be using the 18-55 mm lens for most of the film. im looking for any suggestions and tips to make this a first go. i know most of it will be trial and error but trying to minimize the error part a little
details: i will be shooting in a parking garage, a out side dock at night, it well lit tho, and most likely a few rolling clips!
some things im worried about are the focusing.. am i better off with auto focus?? or manual? also tips on editing are where im going to have the most trouble. any programs you suggest?
Focusing depends on the camera. If you're shooting with an actual video camera there will be situations where AutoFocus is going to be something that you may want to use. Once you get comfortable with shooting you might start to prefer manual focus. On nearly all movies the focus is pulled by hand.
If you're pulling your own focus, make sure you don't go crazy with it. Remember the camera should not be a character in your movie. Your scenes should be able to stand alone on their own with out you pulling focus without reason. It will look like you can't or don't know how to focus your camera. Sure a nice 50mm or 35mm gives you great shallow DOF, but it should be used to convey a certain feel or emotion, not to just "look cool"
Editing software sort of depends on your budget. If you're the type of director/photographer who likes to accomplish most of the work in camera and all you need to do is cut it up and organize the cuts, then things like iMovie will be fine.
If you're trying to go more in depth and professional with multi-track audio and video transitions and effects, then a great start is Adobe Premiere Pro.
If you're interested in someday doing it professionally, you will want to learn Final Cut Pro. Sure it may die as an industry standard in the next couple of years, however as of right now it's still a required program to know (or Avid) if you're looking to get paid work.
After Effects has almost become the gold standard for adding in Visual Effects. It's a bit tricky to learn, but once you start picking it up it's a matter of how far down the rabbit hole you want to go with it.
Other suggested editing software can be seen in this other thread that I started...