Top 5 Myths of Filming Music Videos

  • 25 Apr, 2017

Close your eyes and picture a director; it’s probably some bearded guy in a checkered shirt and baseball cap. It’s easy to get a very specific idea into your head about something, it’s easier to have no idea at all! Here are the top 5 myths about filming music videos.


Now this also goes out to those budding filmmakers and even those who’ve worked in the industry for a while. Shoots are allowed to be fun! Yeah that’s right. Music video shoots can be fun. There’s this weird image of stressed producers, stressed directors and stressed crew all scrambling around to make a film. Sometimes this is the case, sometimes it’s the case and they have good reason for it – but that doesn’t mean that’s how things really are. The best shoots are chilled and fun with people having enough time to do their work in their own time. It’s also the best way to get the best performance from an artist, we want you to be relaxed, comfortable and confident.
So if you show up to a shoot and no one’s stressed and people are having fun don’t worry – the crew will be at their best.


When we think of artists as grand as Beyoncé or bands like The 1975 it’s easy to see them as people who “call the shots”, people who won’t walk on set until they’ve had their skinny Brazilian latte with a light dusting of cinnamon. If this is what you believe then here’s a shocker for you: these musicians are among the hardest working performers in the world! They’re constantly performing, touring, making appearances and rehearsing. When they walk on to a film set, they’re there to work. A lot of time and money is invested in the shoot, it’s important for it to go well and they know it.
Shoots aren’t pampering occasions, okay they can be, but the aim of the shoot is to make the best music video possible. Everyone’s time needs to be respected as well as their efforts and the culmination of everyone’s efforts from production assistant to director will create the vision.

I’d love to say all music video productions operate like a well-oiled machine, heck I love when a shoot operates like a well-oiled machine but the truth is it doesn’t always. The more technical a shoot is the more elements there are, the more elements there are the more things that can potentially go wrong. These things can be small and easily taken care of or they can be larger and require more thinking – it happens. The cult classic ‘Wet Hot American Summer’ set in a summer camp suffered heavy rain fall for a lot of the shoot but they ploughed on!
If something goes wrong, and chances are something will, don’t panic. Things might change but stay fluid and trust the crew’s ability and experience to solve any and all problems so you can focus on your performance.


It’s true that a good production crew can handle any mishap thrown at them but that doesn’t mean change is easy. A lot of planning goes into a shoot and I mean a LOT. We spend more time planning than actually shooting because meticulous planning will help the shoot day(s) run smoothly. Shoots can often be ambitious in the amount filmed within the time available so logistics is paramount but when someone shows up on the day with something brand spanking new it can throw a massive spanner in the works. Now that’s not to say you can’t be accommodated or a well thought out idea can’t be fused with a pre-existing one BUT time has been planned and allocated, equipment has been organised and (most importantly) the idea needs to be cohesive with the concept.
True; sometimes new ideas on the day don’t help, sometimes the idea’s good but there’s no time to fit it in and sometimes we can work it in – or better yet combine it with a pre-existing element to unify both visions. So don’t be afraid to share a new inspiration but don’t feel bad if it just can’t fit in.


I once helped set up one of our studios for a music video shoot. The crew were relaxed enough but in came the client who was also the artist, bags in hand huffing and puffing saying he “Didn’t have time to talk because there was too much to do” stress, stress, stress. Meanwhile the crew were relaxed. Yes there is a lot to do and if you think about everything at once the weight of the production can crush you, but here’s an interesting perspective: you will only ever be doing one thing at a time. I don’t know about you but it helps make productions easier to understand. A, B and C need to be done but in reality you’ll start with A, then do B and when that’s finished C.
There are things to worry about but the A’s, B’s and C’s will be taken care of by the production crew. That man who showed up huffing and puffing could have strolled in all relaxed because he did need to worry, that was his crew’s job and you should never forget to trust the crew.

I hope this helps new comers have a good first experience and those experienced have better future experiences. The main things really are trust your crew, work hard and don’t stress – I know it’s easier said than done but give it a go, the outcome will always be better.

Are you looking to make a music video for one of your songs? We can help!

Last modified on Tuesday, 02 May 2017 11:38
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