How to Film Great Wildlife Stock Footage

Stock footage is video footage that is not customized to use in any specific television programs or film. It can be used in previous productions, or it may be an archive of video footage from other productions that have not yet been used. In short, these are footages that are in stock or in storage that can be used all over again.

Tools and Materials:

  • Tripod
  • Video camcorder
  • Telephoto lens

Step 1: Choosing a Location

One of the most important steps when filming wildlife footage for stock footage is to choose a great location. Choose a location where it will give you the most flexibility when it comes to shooting. The location should give you several options to shoot the wildlife scene you want to film. You should also choose a location that will give you ample lighting while shooting. The amount of light in your film will make or break you stock footage. In this regard, it is advisable to shoot at a time of day when light is at its maximum, unless you prefer to shoot a night time scene.

Step 2: Set up Your Equipment

The amount of equipment you will need depends on the wildlife scene you want to shoot. Generally, your camcorder, a tripod and some lighting equipment is enough to shoot wildlife stock footage. Set up your equipment where your subject will not be disturbed. Otherwise, you might find yourself without any wildlife to shoot.

Step 3: Shoot the Habitat

Shoot a wide shot of the habitat of the wildlife you are shooting. This will give you more options. You also need to shoot the different sides or views of the habitat. If you are shooting a duck family, shoot the lake where it is swimming, the trees surrounding the lake, as well the entire scene covering the lake and the trees. Make sure that you shoot tight, wide and mid.

Step 4: Shoot the Subject

After shooting the background or habitat, you can now shoot the subject itself. Focus on the subject matter by zooming the lens of your video camcorder or using a telephoto lens if you require being a few distances away from your subject. Make sure that you shoot a moving shot of the subject. A moving shot can either be by filming the subject moving, or you moving the camera to give a different angle (but still focusing on the subject).

Step 5: Shoot from the Wildlife's Point of View

You can then shoot the wildlife's point of view. In short, get a shot on how your subject will perceive or view its surrounding. The tripod is a great tool to use when shooting this scene. To do this, set your tripod low and then place the camcorder on top of it.

Step 6: Keep the Video Camcorder Running

Make sure that you always keep the camcorder running when shooting wildlife stock footage. You must remember that you cannot really control how your subject will move or react, so it is best to get the maximum footage.