Skateboarding and film have a long and colorful history together. For almost as long as skateboarding has existed so too has the skate tape. While in recent years, the skate tape has evolved into the skate DVD, and then into the online skate video, the premise has remained the same – capturing epic skateboarding on film for others to watch in admiration.
This rich union of film and skateboarding also exists in the world of the electric skateboard. YouTube especially contains a plethora of awesome video clips showing people on their electric skateboards navigating obstacle courses, reaching crazy speeds, performing tricks, and wiping out big time.
As soon as a novice rider fine tunes their skill set and masters their craft, the first thing they will often try to do is film their performance to share with their friends and family.
Filming yourself on an electric skateboard comes with a unique set of challenges. There are various ways to go about it and each method comes with it’s own obstacles.
Regardless of how you choose to film, the general process will be the same. You must first choose the setting. You want an interesting backdrop of yourself riding. Choose some cool obstacles to skate around and be aware of the lighting you are working with – you don’t want to film directly facing the sun or in darkness. After your done filming, you’ll need to edit the film. There are a variety of free and cheap editing programs available.
The basic editing process involves uploading the footage, trimming out extraneus footage, fine tuning the audio, adjusting color contrast, organizing the frames, and adding a soundtrack if you want. Once you’re done with all of these steps you’ll have your final cut!
We’ve outlined below the three best ways to film your electric skateboard session.
Electric Skateboard for the Screen: 3 Methods of Recording
Film Yourself Using a Smart Phone
One of easiest and cheapest ways to record your electric skateboard session is with a smart phone.
An easy way to go about this is to set up your smart phone on a tripod. This way you can avoid any wobbling or shaking of the camera. Using a tripod is ideal for flatland tricks or videos where the rider isn’t traveling far distances. The downside of this strategy is that the camera remains stationary, often resulting in somewhat boring footage. The rider will have to remain in the frame the whole time too, so you are limited as to the types of videos you can make using a tripod.
Many people on forums suggest attaching your smart phone to the corner of your electric skateboard and filming from that perspective. While this is a cool way of capturing first person POV shots, it has some obvious limitations, such as the fact that you will only capture what the rider sees, not the rider himself. Also, the camera will be subject to shaking and bumping as you travel.
The best way to go about filming yourself with a smart phone is to use a selfie stick and a fish-eye lens, which will give you a wider shot. The selfie stick will allow you to alter the angles and perspective as you ride with a twist of the wrist. You will need to keep a pretty steady arm while riding, which is challenging, but nevertheless possible.
Use an Action Camera
If you’re looking to capture a first person POV shot, then an Action Camera like Go Pro will serve you better than a smart phone.
Action cameras are designed for extreme sports footage. They are small, easy to mount to any surface, and incredibly durable.
They capture great footage and are extremely customizable. There is no limit to the different types of lenses and ways to film. You can set the seconds per frame, color contrast, and hundreds of other settings. They are great for slow motion video too.
All you have to do is choose your settings, mount the camera to your helmet, press record, and capture your electric skateboard gold footage!
Ask a Friend or Hire a Videographer
The best way to get a great electric skateboard video is to ask a directorially inclined friend to film, or hire a videographer. You can find cheap videographers online through Indeed, Elance, or Craigs List.
The benefits of having another person do the directing are numerous. The director can skate alongside you and get those low-to-high perspective shots that are ideal for skate footage. Plus they can control the zoom, manual focus, change angles, keep a steady hand, and control the shot to a much greater extant than you could ever do with a selfie stick or an action camera.
Now that you understand the best ways to film your electric skateboard session, it’s time practice your set, find the perfect location, and get shooting! Good luck!