I do many many things poorly, but one of the things I’m most proud of is how consistent I’ve been about making family videos over the past several years.
I’ve made one for most of our major trips, plus ones for Christmas and summer, and they are so beloved in our family.
Here’s the one I made of our Hawaii trip last spring:
My girls watch them ALL the time and I love seeing my little girls captured in movement, their little voices, and our interactions.
I mean, I love a good photo, but a video? There is just no comparison.
The good news is that making your own family videos is just NOT that hard and if you’re stuck at home right now, it’s the perfect time to try your hand at it.
Three quick things about making family videos:
I take all my videos with my iPhone. I can get better quality videos with my dSLR but the hassle is so much higher that I would just never do it. And phone cameras are 1) so good now and 2) always in your pocket or purse that I’d rather have a video that’s not QUITE as crisp but actually gets taken.
I always use iMovie on my laptop to make them. You can use the iMovie app on your phone, but it feels clunky to me since I’m used to the desktop version. It’s free and comes on every Apple computer. You can use Movie Maker if you have a PC.
I get all my music from SoundStripe. I buy an annual subscription each year and then I can download as many songs from their (MASSIVE) library as I want. I especially love that I can filter by length, vocals or no vocals, the mood of the song, or even holidays.
I’ve been fooling around with making videos for six or seven years, thanks to sponsored video requirements here and there, so I knew some of the basics, but I felt like my videos REALLY took a big step up when I took Sam Kelly’s Family Films with Sam course.
Whether you’ve never made a video in your life or if you’re already comfortable with the basics but want to take more interesting videos or step up your techniques, I can’t recommend her course highly enough. Use the code JANSSEN for $5 off.
Or you can sign up for a free two-month Skillshare trial and take their video making courses.
My process for making family videos looks like this:
- Airdrop all the video clips from my phone to my computer. I put them in a special folder for that trip or season so they’re all in one place.
- Open up iMovie, start a new project and import all those video clips in to that project.
- I put the video clips in the general order that I want them.
- I go through each clip and trim out excess footage that’s making it super long, plus delete duplicate or blurry videos. I’m usually aiming to have my video between 3-5 minutes long.
- I add an opening title slide that has the location and date.
- I open Soundstripe and filter for songs that will work and then listen to clips until I find one I like. I download it, add it to my movie and then adjust my movie to fit the music length.
- I download my movie and upload a copy to my YouTube channel (I usually set my family movies as unlisted so I can share the link with grandparents or friends but they don’t come up in search or appear on my profile).
It takes me about 1.5 – 2 hours generally to make a movie and lots of it I can do while watching a show or listening to an audiobook.
Any other questions about making family videos? I’m happy to try to help!