Step 3 Part 1.3 - Rolecards - Cameraman/women

Research and creation of the documentary based on examples of local history


Your functions are :                                             

  • To shoot all the footage for the film. Not only the interview, but also all the images needed to make a good film and build a logical story. 

  • To think about the locations for filming and the actions to be filmed.

  • to consult with the interviewer beforehand so that she/he can determine what and where to film on the basis of the content of the questions. 

  • To keep in close contact with the editor to ensure that there are enough images for editing with enough variation. 

  • To make sure that there is enough light to play with, check that all scenes are properly captured in image and sound.

  • If necessary, to ask a question again or redo a recording. 


  • Filming of all images for the film, both interview and environmental shots.

  • Practise filming according to the tutorial if you need it.

  • Provide the right phone with a charged battery and power bank for recording (possibly via your teacher)

  • Responsible for light when filming indoors.

  • Responsible for good sound.

  • Responsible for good cooperation with the interviewer.

  • Responsible for close cooperation with the editor.

* A good cameraman will watch the filming tutorial → and read the steps for filming. If time allows, also watch the editing tutorial →

Steps for filming

Preparing your materials

  • Make sure you have a charged cell phone with a good camera/extra battery pack/sound.

  • If you are filming in a house or building look for lights if you need them (see tutorial).

Preparing the filming

  • Clarify your understanding: 
    • Who is the main character? 

    • What story are we going to tell and what do we need to see?

    • What actions by the main character will add to the story?

    • Where is the best place to tell this story? (her work, his house, their broken down flat , etc.)

    • Make a list of all the scenes you need.


  • Film horizontally!

  • Reference the technical aspects on the sheet: specifications for filming on mobile phone (annex 4)

  • Use some MS, wide and close up angles during the interview. (see tutorial)

  • Make extra shots of the interviewer listening for the editing.

  • Make extra shots of the main character listening.

  • Use extra tips from the tutorial in improving your filming.

Download your material

  • Bring your material directly to the editor and download together.

Specifications for filming on a mobile phone

VPRO In Europe Schools

Specifications for filming on a mobile phone


Please set your phone to record at 1080p HD resolution by following these instructions:

  • iPhone: Please set your iPhone to said resolution via Settings >Camera>Record Video. Pick 1080p HD at 30fps.

  • Android Samsung, Huawei, HTC, etc): This differs per phone, but these settings can mostly be found via the settings menu inside the camera app or via the general settings menu. In this menu locate the video size menu. Best setting for filming is 1080p HD and 25fps.

  • If this option is not available on your phone, please make sure it is not a number below 1080p and/or 25fps or above 50fps.


Try to create a stable environment by using a tripod or a chair to lean on.


If possible, use an additional microphone. If you do not have one, avoid filming too far away from your sound object or person.

Extra sound and synchronization:

You could also use an extra phone to record the sound but then you have to synchronize both phones using a clap:

  • Start the audio on one phone and the camera on the other. Now synchronize by clapping your hands slowly. Make sure you record and film the hands and sound.

  • Do not stop your phone after this point. If you stop, you will have to sync again.

  • When editing, you can synchronize the clap with the image of the clap and then the sound and image will run at the same speed.

And last but not least, watch the filming tutorial → before you start shooting.

Good luck !