Like most business processes, video production is made up of several distinct stages. The three stages of video production are: pre-production, production, and post-production. Breaking video production down into these stages allows the production team to plan, produce, and polish the video. As with any project, skimping on one area can adversely affect the final product. Here’s a quick look at each of these important video production stages.
Consider pre-production the planning phase. This is the time where the producers and directors create their video production plan, draft a budget, obtain funding, commission a script, cast actors and actresses, scout and line up locations, acquire costumes and props, design, set up and light the set, and create the shooting schedule. Essentially, anything that needs to be coordinated before shooting begins occurs during pre-production. In fact, even some post-production tasks may be handled during pre-production such as hiring an editor or booking editing time in advance.
If you’re a business owner planning a Web video, your input will be needed throughout the pre-production phase. The director will likely consult with you extensively about your target audience, goals and objectives, message, and more.
After extensive planning, the video production will ultimately move out of pre-production into production. Think of this phase of the project as the “execution” stage. This is the time where it all comes together: The actors deliver their lines in front of cameras. Having carefully planned every little detail, the production should go smoothly though a few minor setbacks (such as a microphone not working) aren’t unusual. Professional video production companies expect these mishaps and plan for them. For example, during production, a sound engineer will constantly monitor sound levels from each microphone and be prepared to promptly replace any malfunctioning audio equipment.
Production involves an entire crew complete with makeup artists, camera operators, sound engineers, lighting technicians, control room personnel, the floor director, the director, and various assistants. These professionals are dedicated to helping the talent perform to their best abilities and capturing those performances to the highest standards.
At the end of shooting, you’ll likely hear the director tell the crew, “That’s a wrap.” From there, the crew will begin breaking down the set and putting their equipment away. While the performance has been captured in video form, the work isn’t done yet. It’s time for post-production to begin. For the most part, post-production involves editing the raw footage into a polished video ready to be shown to the masses. Graphics, special effects, music, and voiceovers typically take place during post-production editing though some effects may be generated during production in the control room. After the video has been edited and approved, copies will be made and distributed and the video production process finalized.
The next time you consider making a business or marketing video, pay attention to each of these important stages of video production and commit to doing your part in making each stage go as smoothly as possible. You’ll be glad you did!