How To Get Started Video Blogging, aka Vlogging

How To Get Started Video Blogging, aka Vlogging

Jason Rodway
Dec 2, 2011

Do you feel a secret talent you'd like to share? Before, it was all about blogging, now many have moved over to vlogging...video blogging. Practically anyone can now utilize video to reach out to a wide audience of viewers who share your interests. Not to mention, if done right, vlogging could open doors and maybe even boost your resume. Sound interesting? Here's how to get started...

The first step beyond deciding on a topic is gathering the necessary hardware. A good camera, microphone and a computer is usually adequate for the beginnings of a great vlog. After all, the first season of shows are usually all about finding a personal voice and tone. Striking gold on the first dig isn't common. The main factors here are work, resilience, patience and to have fun.

Webcam
Youtube now supports 1080p resolution. This means if clarity is necessary for your videos then one of the latest webcams might be worth the extra cash. Most laptops available now have considerably quality webcams built in. However it's also worth noting that a greater resolution can also be a negative factor in the upload and file size department as well as exposing oneself to a harsh, unforgiving audience. Criticism from a faceless crowd can be a daunting experience and enough to crumble a persons spirit right out the gate. Presentation is everything so smoothing out any kinks and creases before shoots can lessen this to a degree.

Left: Microsoft Lifecam Studio - Right: Logitech HD Pro C910
Microsoft Lifecam Studio Microsofts own Lifecam Studio is a gorgeous gem that looks professional and has the specs to back up the look. Lifecam Studio shoots in full 1080p and everything in between with a superior autofocus from 4 inches beyond. TrueColor and ClearFrame Technology keep the video smooth and the colors vivid. We love how the body looks like a little camcorder ready for action! Windows only

Logitech HD Pro C910
Fans of Carl Zeiss camera lens will be instantly won over with Logitechs HD Pro Webcam C910. Face recognition login, 1080p recording, stereo microphone and 10-megapixel stills are just ice breakers for the package deal. Magix video and photo editting software come standard and one-click uploads are available for Facebook and Youtube for quick blurbs. Windows and Mac

Microphone
Webcams come standard with a mic that's operational. Unfortunately they are somewhat notorious for picking up every sound in (and out) of the room or are quite muffled. Voice overs are encouraged when showing instructional or other visual clips, so a clear and concise microphone is necessary. For quality they can cost as much or even more than the webcam but the payout is worth it when they grab clear, crisp recordings. A certain polish comes from good video and sound that makes the endeavour a lot more satisfying which will be clear to potential subscribers.

Snowball
Blue Microphones Snowball does look unusual but don't let that fool you. It's a professional level microphone that grabs recording studio quality sound on your desktop. If you have a camera connector kit and an iPad, it's also compatible with Apples powerhouse tablet should you choose to go the iOS route. We find it to be charming to desktop decor as well as an absolute lifesaver. Microphones like these are proof that it's possible to make independent music on a personal budget.

Left: Windows Live Movie Maker - Right: iMovie
Software Once media has been gathered, it needs to be collected and edited to streamline the information. Editting and publishing software can come in two separate packages or rolled into one for convenience. Both Windows and Mac platforms have a range of paid options however we recommend the native Windows Movie Maker/Sound Recorder and iMovie/Garage Band which are built for this very task and more. Either can piece and string content together into a finished form that can be directly uploaded should you choose the YouTube route.

Venue
After the shooting, editing and the final product is done, all that remains is to publish to a video streaming site. There are several sources such as YouTube, Vimeo, Dailymotion, Metacafe or Blip.tv. The most advisable option is YouTube because there is a lot of traffic and compatibility with software and social networks. However each service has a lot of advantages such as Vimeos Plus account that allows for 5GB HD videos that can last as long as two and a half hours and priority uploading (Vimeo Plus is a $60 a year membership.) Or Blip.tv for its emphasis on genres and shows as their own channels. However there is nothing to stop from choosing multiple sites and creating a channel with each. Maintaining several accounts can be daunting for those who find it hard to juggle multiple accounts however a well organized and persistent personality shouldn't have any issues.

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