The realm of making home movies has changed drastically over the decades, but perhaps never so much as recently with the wide availability of affordable camcorders and digital recording devices. Editing software is now available for most computers, and YouTube (www.youtube.com) has added an entirely new and exciting dimension to sharing these home videos. If YouTube is any indication of the number of people who film home movies, then there's no denying that is has experienced a boom in popularity. In 2006, YouTube reported that on average 65,000 videos were being uploaded to the site per day.
Making home movies is a great way to preserve interviews with family and friends and to document special occasions. If you are in the market for a video camera, there are some things you might want to look for. Image stabilization is a feature that eliminates some of the shakiness that results from using handheld camcorders, and is now available on most models. Optical zoom is another important feature, which differs from digital zoom in that it retains the quality of the image rather than just blowing up the image. Many new video cameras also take still photos, which reduces the amount of equipment you might take to an event you would like to document. Most new cameras also have high-definition resolution, which results in clearer pictures.
How you shoot your home movies can also make them much more professional. A tripod is usually a good investment, and for the more avid home videographer, a light kit and external microphone may come in handy. While both are expensive, both can drastically improve the quality of your home video.
When preparing to film an event, scouting out the location first for lighting and potential viewing issues may be helpful. Remember that holding the camera still for at least ten seconds can help eliminate that nauseating effect created by too much motion in the film. Use the zoom features of your camera--experiment with close-ups, mid-range shots for action, and long shots to establish location. Most of all, be creative and have fun while shooting your home movie.