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Glossary of Video Production Terms | Part 7 Mastering the Art of YouTube Video Production

Part 7 : A-Z Glossary of Video Production Terms

There are many industry terms used by film and video experts that are used throughout film and video production while planning, shooting and making ready the final film/video for release. Many may be unfamiliar to you, so we have put together an A-Z of glossary of filmmaking words and jargon terms you need to know.

Adobe After Effects: A digital visual effects, motion graphics, and compositing application developed by Adobe Systems and used in the post-production process of film making and video production.

Adobe Premiere Pro: A video editing software application developed by Adobe Systems and used for editing video footage, audio, and images.

Aperture: The opening in a camera lens that controls the amount of light that enters the camera. It is measured in f-stops.

Aspect Ratio: The proportion of the width of a video or image to its height. Common aspect ratios for video include 16:9 and 4:3.

Backlights: Lights used to illuminate the background of a scene in a video or photograph.

Bokeh: The aesthetic quality of the blur in the out-of-focus areas of a photograph or video.

Bitrate: The amount of data used to represent a unit of video or audio. It is measured in bits per second (bps).

Bokeh Image: A photograph or video that has a shallow depth of field and features prominent bokeh in the out-of-focus areas.

B-roll: Additional or alternate footage used to supplement the main footage in a video or film.

Bounce: The practice of redirecting light from a surface to soften or spread the light.

Camera Slider: A device used to create smooth and controlled linear camera movements.

Close-up: A shot that is tightly framed on a subject, typically showing only a part of the subject.

Codec: A software or device that compresses and decompresses digital video and audio data.

Colour Correction: The process of adjusting the colour balance and exposure of a video or image to match a desired look or to fix errors.

Colour Grading: The process of adjusting the overall colour, contrast and brightness of a video or image to create a specific visual style or mood.

Colour Temperature: The measure of the colour of light, measured in Kelvins (K).

Compositing: The process of combining multiple video or image elements together to create a single final image or video. Used in visual effects.

Compression: The process of reducing the amount of data needed to represent a video or audio file.

Crane: A type of camera mount that allows for smooth, vertical and horizontal camera movements.

Crop Factor: A value that represents how much smaller a camera sensor is compared to a full-frame sensor.

C-stand: A type of stand used to support lights, flags, and other equipment on a film or video set.

Cut-in: A type of shot transition in which the camera moves from one shot to another quickly, usually used to indicate a change in time or location.

DaVinci Resolve: A professional video editing and colour correction software developed by Blackmagic Design.

Depth of field: The distance between the closest and farthest objects in a scene that appear in focus in a photograph or video.

Diegetic sound: Sound that is part of the story and can be heard by the characters in a scene.

Diffusion: The process of scattering light to soften its intensity and reduce harsh shadows.

Digital Zoom: A feature in cameras that uses software to magnify a portion of the image, rather than using the camera lens.

Digital Light Projection (DLP): A technology used to project digital images using a digital micromirror device.

Director: The person in charge of the creative and artistic aspects of a film or video production.

Dolly: A camera mount on wheels used to create smooth tracking shots.

Digital Single Lens Reflex (DSLR): A type of digital camera that uses a mirror system to direct light through the lens and onto the image sensor.

DVI: A type of digital video interface used to transfer video and audio data.

Dynamic range: The range of brightness and darkness that can be captured in a photograph or video.

Export: The process of converting and saving a video or image file for distribution or use in another application.

Exposure: The amount of light that reaches the image sensor in a camera.

Exposure Latitude: The amount of over or under exposure that a camera can handle without losing image quality.

Exposure Triangle: A concept that refers to the relationship between aperture, shutter speed, and ISO in determining the exposure of a photograph or video.

Fade: A transition in which a shot gradually becomes darker or lighter.

Fill Lights: Lights used to add light to a scene, typically used to reduce shadows and add dimension to the subject.

Final Cut Pro: A professional video editing software developed by Apple.

Five-by-five (5×5): A term used to describe a 5-foot by 5-foot area on a set, typically used for lighting and camera equipment.

Fluorescent lights: A type of lighting that uses a gas-discharge lamp and a phosphor coating to produce light.

Focal length: The distance between the lens and the image sensor in a camera, measured in millimetres (mm).

Foley: The process of adding sound effects to a film or video during post-production.

Follow focus: A device used to help the camera operator maintain focus on a specific subject while moving the camera.

F-stop: A measurement of the aperture of a camera lens, represented by a ratio of the lens’s focal length to the aperture diameter.

Frame rate: The number of frames or images displayed per second in a video or animation.

Fresnel: A type of light that uses a Fresnel lens to produce a soft, even light.

Full frame camera: A digital camera with a sensor that is the same size as a 35mm film frame, typically used by professional photographers and videographers.

High-definition media interface (HDMI): A digital interface used to transfer video and audio data from a source device to a display device.

High dynamic range (HDR): A method of capturing or displaying more detail in the highlights, midtones, and shadows of a photograph or video.

Hydrargyrum medium-arc Iodide (HMI) lights: A type of lighting that uses a gas-discharge lamp and mercury vapor to produce light.

Hot shoe: A mounting point on a camera for attaching external flash units or other accessories.

Image sensor: The device in a digital camera that captures light and converts it into an electronic signal.

Importing: The process of bringing a video, image or audio file into an editing software.

ISO: A measure of a camera’s sensitivity to light, typically represented as a numerical value.

J-cut: A type of shot transition in which the audio from the next shot is heard before the visual cut.

Jump Cut: A type of shot transition in which the camera abruptly changes its position or angle without a smooth transition.

Key lights: The main light used to illuminate a subject in a video or photograph.

Lavaliere Microphone: A small microphone that is typically attached to a person’s clothing to capture audio.

Lighting Gels: Coloured sheets of plastic or gel that are placed in front of a light to change its color.

Liquid crystal display (LCD): A type of display technology used in cameras and other electronic devices.

L-cut: A type of shot transition in which the audio from the previous shot continues to be heard after the visual cut.

Macro Lens: A lens that is designed for close-up photography and allows for high magnification of small subjects.

Matte box: A device that attaches to the front of a camera lens to control the amount of light and to add filters.

Memory card: A small, portable storage device used to save video and image files in a camera or other electronic device.

Monopod: A one-legged support for a camera, typically used to steady the camera while shooting video or still images.

Neutral density filter: A filter that reduces the amount of light that enters a camera lens, allowing for slower shutter speeds or wider apertures in bright conditions.

Optical zoom: A zoom feature that uses the camera’s lens to change the focal length and magnify the subject.

Pan Shot: A type of shot in which the camera moves horizontally to follow a subject or to show a panoramic view.

Pixel Aspect Ratio: The ratio of the width of a pixel to its height in an image or video.

Polarizing filter: A filter that reduces glare and reflections in a photograph or video.

Post-Production: The process of editing and finishing a film or video after it has been shot.

Point of View: The perspective from which a scene is filmed or the perspective of a character in a scene.

Practical Lighting: The use of lights that are part of the scene, such as lamps or other light fixtures, rather than lights that are brought in specifically for the shoot.

Prime lens: A lens that has a fixed focal length, rather than a zoom lens.

Producer: The person responsible for managing the budget, schedule, and logistics of a film or video production.

Room tone: The background noise or ambient sound of a location.

Resolution: The number of pixels in an image or video, typically measured in width x height.

Rule of Thirds: A composition guideline that suggests placing the main subject of a photograph or video along one of the lines of an imaginary grid that divides the frame into thirds.

Script: A written document that outlines the dialogue, actions, and visuals of a film or video.

Shot list: A list of the shots that need to be filmed for a specific scene or project.

Shoulder rig: A camera support system that attaches to the camera and sits on the operator’s shoulder for stability while shooting.

Shutter speed: The amount of time that the camera’s shutter is open to expose the image sensor to light.

Snorricam: A camera mount that attaches to the operator’s body and allows for a first-person perspective in a film or video.

Split screen: A technique in which two or more images are shown on the screen at the same time, often used to show different perspectives or actions happening simultaneously.

Steadicam: A camera stabilizer that allows for smooth, steady shots while the operator is moving.

Synchronization: The process of matching audio and video recordings so that they play back in perfect harmony.

Telephoto: A lens that has a long focal length, allowing for a narrow field of view and magnification of distant subjects.

Three-point lighting: A lighting technique that uses three lights, a key light, a fill light, and a backlight, to illuminate a subject in a photograph or video.

Tilt Shot: A shot in which the camera moves vertically, typically to follow a subject or to show a change in height.

Timelapse: A technique in which a series of photographs are taken at set intervals and played back at a faster speed to show the passage of time.

Tracking: A shot in which the camera moves along with a subject, typically to follow the subject’s movement.

Viewfinder: The device on a camera that allows the operator to compose and focus a shot.

Wide angle: A lens that has a short focal length, allowing for a wide field of view and a larger area to be captured in a photograph or video.

White balance: The process of adjusting the colours in a photograph or video to neutralize colour cast and make the whites appear white.

Zoom lens: A lens that allows for a variable focal length, allowing the operator to zoom in or out on a subject.

Zoom shot: A shot in which the camera moves closer or farther away from a subject, typically to change the framing or emphasis of the subject.

Check out our A-Z YouTube glossary of terms and terminology here.

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