How Do You Do It?
A lesson in equipment purchasing, from a novice content creator.
I started on DRIVETRIBE way back on the 24th of January in 2017. After creating an account and getting an idea of what DT was about I created a tribe and began posting pictures, everyday. The only problem was the pictures I was posting were ones I had found on the internet. I wanted to start creating something new and unique.
The problem I had was the only camera I owned was inside my iPhone 4s. At the time the phone was about 2 years old and took good enough pictures if you just wanted to remember something, but they weren't spectacular. I didn't have much money and didn't want to spend a large amount on something that I didn't know if I'd continue with, so I asked my brother, who happens to be very knowledgeable about photography, what camera I should look for. He suggested a Leica Model 5
My first digital camera:
He recommended it, because he had one that he wasn't using and gave it to me. This simple little camera really changed the way I thought about photography. More important than that, it changed the way I experienced car shows and cruise ins. I now had a reason to walk around and look at every car in detail. Car shows had started to become a little boring, but now I had a new reason to enjoy them. Point and shoot cameras are an excellent way to start recording your car doings. They are easy to operate and are capable of making beautiful pictures.
My first tripod:
In order to get better framed and stable shots I had to purchase a tripod. I looked online and found this Geekoto tripod for a reasonable price on Amazon and snapped it up. It is lightweight, but durable and has served as both a platform for taking stable pictures and as a way to record video.
My first video:
Video is a whole different animal from writing! I started out with the idea it would be a simple thing, once I figured out how to do it. That might be the case, but I'll admit that I've still not figured it out yet! In order to record the above video I purchased the following equipment.
My second digital camera
I picked the Canon M50, mirrorless camera for two reasons. Firstly, it records in 4K. Secondly, it is a mirrorless camera and therefore weights less than a DSLR camera. I wanted the 4K video, because it looks good and the low weight, because I was going to carry the camera around at car shows and liked the idea of a lighter camera. The Leica totally changed the way I thought about pictures. The M50 has changed the way I think about pictures and video. It is a easy to use camera, but does require some planning to use properly. It has problems operating in low light, but I'm still glad I bought it!
I can't hear you!
If you watch enough videos on YouTube about how to make YouTube videos you'll learn that everyone has a different opinion on how to go about doing it. That's because different things worked for each person, but the one thing they'll all say is, you have to have good audio. I headed to the interwebs and after some research I purchased a Rode video mic pro. This microphone can be used in videos and it can be put on your camera to get general sounds. I paired it with a microphone stand, so I don't have to hold it while shooting videos. Instead of recording directly onto my camera, I purchased a Zoom H1n recorder. The recorder has a built in microphone, but it will accept a microphone input. This allows the Rode to act as a clearer sound mic, while the recorder captures the sound with higher quality than a camera can record. The Zoom also has a headphone out. It's nice to hear what you are saying!
I can't see you!
Lighting is one of those things I'm having problems with. I borrowed a pair of studio lights from by brother and have used them once and I didn't like the result. I'm sure it is user error. Check back and I'm sure I'll have figured out how to use them!
When I first started out I focused on the big pieces of equipment. That's fair enough considering they are important, but the little stuff can become big stuff, if you don't have it. Also, I've found that I have needed to purchase some big stuff that I hadn't thought about beforehand. Here's a handy list:
1) A computer, dedicated to video and photo storage and editing.
2) An external hard drive. (video files are huge and take up lots of memory)
3) Memory Cards (the larger the better)
4) Picture editing software (I purchased Adobe Photoshop elements)
5) Video editing software (I purchased Adobe Premiere elements and it is worth it!)
6) Word Processor Program (You'll need to write things down in a clear way)
7) Spreadsheet Program (You'll need to organize all of those posts your creating)
8) Grammarly (The free version is worth it! I use it and it helps out)
9) Camera Bag
10) Pencils and Pens (put them in your camera bag!)
11) 3X5 index cards (put them in your camera bag)
12) Studio Space (this is the hardest one! If you don;t want to have to lug all of that equipment around, you'll need a space you can dedicate to your social media aspirations)
That's nice and all but...
Ultimately, if you want to create content for any social media platform, don't let your lack of equipment hold you back. Don't let the fact that all you may have is an iPhone or some other cell phone stand in the way of putting your voice out there. Be creative! Make something! Once you've done that, put it up on DRIVETRIBE. Learn from what works and what doesn't. That's what I'm doing and it's been a pretty fun ride so far.
Keep on Cruisin'!
Art by: Chris Breeden
Thanks for reading!
About the Author:
"Chris Breeden is a Social Media content creator for Custom & Hot Rod Life on DRIVETRIBE, YouTube and Facebook. After spending 5 years in Southern California, a.k.a. Hot Rod Heaven, while serving as a jet engine mechanic in the United States Marine Corps, he moved back home to Tennessee with an even greater love for Hot Rodded Vintage Tin. Since then he has worked in retail sales and the transportation and logistics industry. In 2018, seeing a gap in Hot Rod and Custom Car coverage on DRIVETRIBE, Chris began advocating for their inclusion on the platform. During the summer months, he can be found all over the Tennessee region covering car shows, meets, and cruise-ins. During the winter months, he can be found in the garage working on his custom 1949 Ford two-door sedan and 1954 F100 truck."