As an artist, you naturally want to show a large audience how great your music is. On Youtube, Facebook and even Instagram you can make many music enthusiasts enthusiastic with a good video clip. But what does a video clip cost? Have you always lost a fortune or are there cheaper solutions? Guest blogger and singer-songwriter Kevin Okkema from Wedding Tunes shows that a suitable video clip can be made for every budget.
How to Make a Music Video on a Budget
1. Do it yourself video clip (cheapest option!)
I regularly made simple video clips for social media expressions in which I show how I sound in a living room setting. Great for when you want to create content quickly and cheaply. By spending about € 650 on video equipment once, you can record a new video every week. You must be able to handle a camera a bit. But oh well … nowadays you learn everything thanks to YouTube tutorials.
What do you need?
First of all, of course, a camera. Find the best camera for your needs here – https://www.photo-seminars.com/best-camera-lens/. You already have a decent DSLR with a video function for around € 550 (for example the Panasonic Lumix DMC-G7). Then, of course, you have to place the camera on a tripod (€ 40) and it can’t hurt to purchase a cheap LED lamp (€ 60) to illuminate yourself. Videos that are underexposed are viewed as much worse.
Way of filming
With this budget of filming you have two choices. 1: Do I record everything live in one go from a single camera angle? Or 2: Do I record the audio in advance so that I can then film myself playback from multiple camera positions? I myself am always in favor of option 2, because you make your video a lot more interesting with different camera positions. In a free video editing program (for example Lightworks) you can then neatly arrange the clips one after the other.
2. Work with a starting videographer
Many starting video graves working on a portfolio are willing to film for a reduced rate. You do of course make clear agreements that he or she may use the image material for their own promotion. For a day recording, post-production and delivery you have to think of an amount around € 750.
A disadvantage of a starting videographer can be that the person does not yet have the right material (for example professional lamps, sliders and lenses). Fortunately, you can rent this type of equipment for a day. Recently I rented around € 300 in stuff for a recording. It has made the video look much better.
Of course you also want to film in a cool location that matches your image. To keep costs down, I would keep it at one location. Expect to spend around € 200 on this, but better is of course a super location where you can film for free. Who knows, you can arrange something through an old acquaintance.
Do you have a bit more to spend and do you want a professional video that can be used for promotional purposes? Then I definitely recommend this second option. With a budget of around € 1250, you can make a great video clip with a starting videographer and decent video equipment.
3. All the way with a professional production team
Are you a signed artist and is there sufficient budget? Then you can go all-out with the video clip. Of course you can make it as crazy as you want, but I’m not assuming that you, like Michael Jackson, will spend six million on one video.
A production for a professional video clip starts in the Netherlands around € 5000. With such a recording a special production team will get to work for you that will come up with a nice concept in advance. For example, a story may be devised for the video that matches the lyrics of the song.
Free your hands
Many people will be present on the set during the recording day. Think of: director, producer, DOP, gaffer, make-up artist, runner, etc. Who knows, even actors and actresses are brought in for the storyline. The advantage of a production team is that you, as a musician, do not have to worry about minor issues. They take care of the job!
The price can of course rise if there is shooting at many different locations. There is also always a higher price tag on clips that are recorded abroad. For the sake of clarity, I would not opt for more than two different locations in this case.
So you see that a simple video clip doesn’t have to cost a lot. Maybe it requires a bit more of yourself, but if you are a little handy with video, it should definitely work out. Of course, you get the best result with a professional production team, but ask yourself if you really need that to get your audience excited.