How I v-log

How I Went From Photographer To v-Logger during the Covid 19 Pandemic

Lawrie Richardson

Lawrie Richardson

Photographer and Videographer based in West Devon.

Im usually a stills guy, as in I shoot images and not video, its been a steep learning curve, but since people are asking how do I shoot video and shoot for my mum three times a week, this should answer any questions that you might have.

Im sure everyone has their own little ways and methods to record and shoot video, me personally I prefer having full control over the entire scene, this includes the aperture, shutter speed, ISO, white balance, audio, lighting and the focussing.

You could use your smartphone

I have and do shoot videos directly from my Samsung S10+ mobile smartphone and then upload directly to YouTube,  and it does an Okay-ish job, certainly nothing I would consider to be on a professional level, but for my own ramblings and some reviews its fine, since recording my mums v-Logs a few people have asked her how I record the videos in such good quality, the answer to that is based on many fine details, its the equipment I use and how I use it –  camera sensor is one main point, you can have a 50mp mobile phone but at the end of the day, the sensor is tiny, a cropped sensor camera has an APS-C sensor whilst the cameras I use mostly for video have a full-frame sensor, the bigger the sensor, the more light / quality can be expected, and also the more you can expect to pay out initially, my Sony Mirrorless cameras are 24 mega pixels each, I have three of them, they are that good and cheap as compared to other cameras, more on that another day.

Camera sensors explained and why they are important

Nikon D7200 Sony A7 Mirrorless Camera

The top image is the Nikon D7200, a fine camera and the image below is the Sony A7, a more recent camera class, being Mirrorless and the Sony is full-frame, the Nikon alternative costs around the same price but is cropped sensor. (APS-C)

DSLR or Mirrorless?

Both cameras can shoot very good video, personally due to the weight and performance I prefer the Sony rather than the Nikon, both shoot manually and its the manual controls that I enjoy using as I have 100% complete control over the scene, unlike a smartphone that would all be down to the smartphone’s ai to control the scene, video, shutter, iso etc.

Its about controlling the scene

So to control the camera’s ISO this is done via a switch, the higher the ISO the lighter the image, although by using a high ISO this can add digital noise / grain to the image, on a full-frame camera this is not as noticable unlike a smartphone with it’s image sensor of the size of your thumbnail.

Speaking of controlling the light, this is where a good lens comes in, I go for lenses that have a low f number – aperture, the lowest the number, the more light that comes in and hits the sensor, the main and only zoom lens I have for my Sony A7 is the Sony 24-70mm f4, this lens is a great focal length that I use 99% of the time although it comes at a cost, this lens was £549.99 used, its a Zeiss.

So what else can we do to add in more light, ? we use a fast lens and also shutter speed is equally important, for video I tend to use 1/50 second for v-logging, although can sometimes go up a lot higher if using natural lighting / outside for example, also a tripod is an absolute must.

Focussing, personally I either shoot manually or use AF-C, Auto Focus – Continuous.

v-Logging Essentials

What about audio ?

I use an external microphone, they don’t cost a lot, the one I use is a clone of a Rode Video Micro and was £15 from Amazon.

Lastly lighting, I do have on camera Led Video Lights and also USB Lights, again I use them when I have too and if I can avoid using them I do.


All that being said, its more than just having the right equipment for the job, you need to consider things like, batteries, fast memory cards, cleaning gear, video editing software, internet connection, a good computer etc.

Additionally things to consider are the correct aspect ratio, white balance, HDR, color profiles, angle of view, background noise etc

I will write more soon, please be sure to ask any questions you might have for me, if you are indeed reading this and you would like for me to either teach you how to shoot video / v-log or come out and do some for you, you are welcome to get in contact with me, I am professional and very affordable.







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