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10 Camera Movements for CINEMATIC VIDEO - Creative Shot Ideas (Gimbal & Handheld)

11/02/2023 Matt 0 Comments

In the world of filmmaking, creativity is key to capturing unique and captivating shots. While there are countless videos on YouTube that share creative shot ideas, this video stands out by not only explaining how to achieve these shots but also why and when to use them. Whether you're into travel, fashion, music videos, or short films, there's something here for everyone. Let's dive into these ten creative shot ideas and techniques that can elevate your filmmaking game.


Slow-motion shots can add a dramatic touch to your videos. You don't need a high-end camera with super-high frame rates to achieve this effect. Most video editors offer built-in slow-motion features, but for the best results, consider third-party software. To enhance the slow-motion effect, increase your shutter speed and shoot with a shallow depth of field to blur the background. Avoid rapid movements of small elements to prevent artifacts.

Shot #2 - The Mabo Fall:

Inspired by Max Bolle's creative fashion films, the "Mabo Fall" is a visually striking shot. There are multiple ways to achieve this effect, including having your model bend backward or fall onto something soft like a mattress. Shoot at 50 fps or higher for the best results, and experiment with optical flow to create a dramatic and mesmerizing shot.

Shot #3 - Character Introduction:

Long-take gimbal shots are perfect for introducing characters organically. Proper blocking is essential to ensure each character's movement flows seamlessly. This technique is versatile and can be used in various settings, from corporate promos to TV commercials.

Shot #4 - Lens Whacking:

Lens whacking is a technique that creates unique flares and a tilt-shift effect. It's an excellent way to add character to your shots and can be used as a transition or to make a dull shot more interesting. To execute this technique, set your lens to infinity focus, and consider using a vintage lens or stopping down to about F4 for better results.

Shot #5 - Run Forest Run:

Tracking a subject with a zoom lens on a gimbal can result in captivating shots. Consider including a foreground element to intensify the shot. Ensure that your lens is parfocal, meaning it maintains focus while zooming. This technique works best in natural frame rates, and adding zoom to your lens can take the shot to the next level.

Shot #6 - Gimbal Point of Interest:

This shot focuses on the model and gimbal moving around a central point of interest. It's essential to shoot at a natural frame rate and use a 35mm lens to maintain a natural compression. Custom gimbal settings for this shot can be found in the video's description.

Shot #7 - Passing Time:

A simple way to depict the passage of time in a single space is by using consistent lighting. You can achieve this effect by cloning your character or creating a timelapse. Cloning requires filming a clean plate without the character to use as a base. Timelapse can be enhanced with post-zoom and motion blur.

Shot #8 - Trolley Dolly:

A supermarket trolley can be an excellent, budget-friendly dolly for your camera. It allows for smooth movements over distances and can significantly improve your production value. Check the gimbal settings in the video description for optimal results.

Shot #9 - Slow Shutter:

Using a slow shutter effect can serve as a transitional shot or make a scene more interesting. Slow the shutter speed to 1/5 at 25fps for transitions and 1/20th for creating interest. Wide-angle lenses and gimbals work best for this technique.

Shot #10 - The Roundabout:

Orbit shots on a gimbal with a zoom lens create dynamic visuals. A physical roundabout can be an excellent choice, as it allows for smooth circular movements. The parallax effect, shooting from a lower angle, and the subject's motion add depth and excitement to the shot. Use a long focal length, and consider a frame rate of 50 or 60 fps for the best results.

About Jacques Crafford:

Photo Mentor photographerI'm a freelance DOP & Editor residing in South Africa.
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 Images and video via: Jacques Crafford