31 Mar The Top 7 FAQ’s for an On Camera Interview
With video content being ever present, it isn’t unlikely that at some point you may be an interview subject for branded content, a documentary or testimonial. Most of the content we create at Midweek is created from interviews, like our short documentary Above it All and our branded doc, The Future of Farming. Though you don’t always see the interviewee in the video, they are the ones who are guiding the story along. Before you sit in the hot seat, we’ve compiled a list of The Top 7 FAQ’s we get before an interview.
1. What should I wear?
A: This is a very common question and honestly, it depends on the individual topic or subject matter. The director or producer will give you more guidance based on their vision. But for some general do’s and don’ts, check out our previous blog, “Get Camera Ready For Your Shoot.”
2. What do I do with my hands?
A: This answer usually depends on the frame itself, but we encourage participants to speak naturally. If you use your hands to talk then use your hands, if you prefer them at your side or on your lap, then that’s what you should do. Our best advice is to not overthink it.
3. Where should I look?
A: Being on camera for the first time can be intimidating. The director will give you an eye line to follow. This means a point to look at. It could be the person who is interviewing you, it might be the lens of the camera or it might be a different point all together. Whatever it is, just keep in mind that you should avoid letting your eyes wander.
4. How long should my answers be?
A: We have seen two different types of people, the types that only have one word answers or the types that ramble on. It’s best to strike a middle here. We want the meat of the story. You will be edited, so don’t worry about stammering or um’s or ah’s or not knowing exactly what to say. Focus more on the content of what you are saying and keeping it to the point. If the interviewer wants more details, they will ask.
5. How do I answer the questions?
A: Most of the time, we ask interviewees to speak in full sentences because you are going to get chopped up in the edit and we need context for the question without hearing the interviewer’s voice. A full sentence does not mean repeating the question asked, if just means answering completely. For example, if you are asked, “What day is it?” You shouldn’t answer, “Wednesday” because we wouldn’t know what that is referencing. Instead answer, “Today is Wednesday.” This gives context to the question without re-stating it.
6. Should I memorize my responses?
A: While you may think it’s beneficial to memorize the answers, it’s actually not. It’s harder on you and you are more likely to sound stilted or be so focused on the response that we will lose your natural charm.
7. Am I done?
A: Most people are pretty antsy to get out of that interview chair and can’t wait to be done. But try to remember to hold for one extra moment. Because everything is chopped up and moved around in the edit, the editor needs pauses and breaks between segments so there is breathing room and you don’t sound like the micro-machine man (remember him?) So after you are done with a statement, just hold your gaze until the director says cut. This may feel a bit awkward but the editor will thank you!