Travel blogs are an excellent way to record and share the experiences of going abroad. But one thing a lot of people still overlook is vlogging, or video blogging. Most people I’ve talked to have a hard time starting their video blog because they think the barrier to entry is too high. But having run my own vlog as part of my business, I can tell you video blogging your vacation or excursion is much easier than you think.
The most obvious issue is that you need a camera. But if you own a smart phone, you already have one. Many smart phones can even shoot video in HD. Most tablets also include HD cameras as well. The cameras on these things are actually perfect for your purposes and using a smart phone won’t take up any extra pocket space. The only trouble is that the microphones on them are poorly suited to the task of vlogging. The easy solution here is to buy a pair of ear buds with a built-in microphone. These can be found at retailers like Target and Best Buy for less than $20.
Now that you’re all set on equipment, you need a few basic tips on holding the camera. For those big panoramic shots, hold the phone or tablet at about chest level with your elbows against your sides. This helps steady the picture. If you’d rather do a selfie video, hold the phone on its side in your palm with your fingers curled over the top to steady it and hold it out at arm’s length. For tablet, hold it similarly to how you’d do the panorama with your elbows on your sides to reduce shake.
Getting the uncut video off your phone or tablet is the same as getting pictures off of it, but how to edit? Windows and Mac OS both come with default editing software. The options are limited, but you only need the fundamental tools of editing, titles, captions and optionally music anyway. If you want to cut out any stretch of uninteresting (or possibly embarrassing) footage, just remember to try to cut on motion when possible. Don’t stress out about it. When you save the file as an actual movie, the file extension will usually be the default for your OS, which is fine.
When it comes time to host your videos, it’s hard to do better than YouTube, the most populated video hosting site on the web. Vimeo is another good choice. You can also host it on your Facebook page if you’re so inclined. If you’re not sure, YouTube makes a good default. Make sure to put the right tags on when uploading your video so others can more easily find it (i.e. “travel blog,” “Caribbean vacation,” etc.).
As you can see, starting a travel vlog is much easier than you would think. So give it a shot on your next trip out. Whether you’re going cross-country for a holiday or overseas for an exciting vacation at exotic ports of call, a video blog can be a great way to capture memories. If nothing else, it can be a novel conversation starter when you get back home.