Tips for Filming Interviews

This past week, Skillman Video Group worked at the Harvard Medical Campus just west of Northeastern University. This was the second half of a larger video production contract with a client, and we were glad to work with them again. SVG was tasked with filming a series of interviews about a scholarship program in cardiovascular studies. The interviewees were from all across the globe, so we utilized a few tried and true interview methods from our experience as a veteran Boston video production company.

Interviewee Comfort

In order for an interview to be full of elaborate and eloquent answers, the person being interviewed usually needs to be relaxed and in a low-pressure environment. Unless he/she is a great orator on cue, the interviewee will need to feel very comfortable before they can come up with ideal answers on the spot. This isn’t the easiest thing to do on a busy Boston video production set, but there are several ways to try:

  • Warm up the person. Make regular conversation with him/her as soon as he/she enters the room, thus establishing a casual tone while simultaneously reducing the urge to have a script on hand. Ask about his/her day, where he/she is from, etc.
  • Practice a little before the camera starts to record. Let the interviewee have a preview of the questions so they can start to brainstorm discussion topics.
  • Be aware of the lighting on the interviewee. This is more of a technical aspect, but it can dramatically affect the comfort of the person on camera. While the end goal of studio lighting during an interview should be to use the most aesthetically pleasant levels, keep in mind that too powerful lighting can be intimidating. This is especially true if the interviewer is shrouded in darkness behind the camera.


As a premiere Boston video company, SVG can’t just think about visuals. We also have to plan for the best audio, which is a little flexible with interviews. While there is nothing wrong with using a boom mic, we decided to use LAV mics, which are very small, portable, and attachable microphones that are ideal for interviews. These are typically used on live talk shows because of their incognito designs.

  • Attach the LAV mic to an ideal spot on the person’s clothing that won’t get in the way of their hands or regular movements, like on the flap pocket of a blazer or jacket.
  • Face the mic in a direction that won’t be easily affected or disturbed by rustling from clothes or sudden movements.

These are some of the methods we used during the series of interviews, and we were able to get some great footage because of the techniques. We’re looking forward to the next time we get to work with the client.

Skillman Videography Group LLC specializes in video production Boston. Call us anytime at 1-800-784-0140.