The control of different plans will be really useful to you for your music video productions. You have to consider all these plans as a toolbox that you are going to use for transmitting an emotion.
This music video « The lazy song » of Bruno Mars, produced by Nez Khammal, has the particularity to be filmed in a single shot and without montage; we call this a single-shot plan.
As in cinema, the production of a music video needs a large diversity of shots, called plans. We can also remark that the short format of a music video has the tendency to generate a need for numerous plans per time unit, much bigger than in cinema. This observation is even truer when it comes to modern music.
Plan + Plan = Scene
Whether it comes to cinema or music videos, the montage of many plans includes a consistent set that we call it a scene. In cinema or in the music video production of type « Story music video », the realization is based on a story or a scene consists a piece of the story. For the “Figurative” type of music videos , one scene is a set of plans belonging to the same context (décor, background, universe…).
The characteristics of a plan
From a technical view, a plan is characterized from its duration, its framing, its movement and its camera angle. Concerning the making of a music video, it wouldn’t be completely wrong to talk about plan styles, because within a musical movement we can see many repeating shots appearing, that become a kind of trademark, like in Hip-Hop, for example, where the plans with mimes and gestures are somehow omnipresent.
The duration of a plan into a video clip
The duration is in general very short, in the range of ½ to 2 seconds, particularly for the music with faster tempo and especially for the modern music, for example the rap music videos, the electro music videos…
However, there are obviously no rules and the proof is this famous clip of Bruno Mars presented in the introduction of this article.
The different framings in cinema as well as in music video production
The different plans
- Big close up ( BCU )
- Close up ( CU )
- Close shot ( CS )
- Medium close shot ( MCS )
- Medium shot ( MS )
- Full shot ( FS )
- Medium long shot ( MLS )
- Long shot ( LS )
- Extremely long shot ( ELS )
Then, there is the concept of insert shot or detail shot but those are terms used during filming and we will discuss them in a future article.
The camera movements
- The Panoramic
- The Zoom
- The Travelling
The angles of camera shot
- The shot parallel to the ground
- The high-angle shot
- The low-angle shot