The ABCs of Video Making for Ministry! – Part 2

Shyju Mathew

"Experience the Word of God, in the power of the Spirit."

May 15, 2014

You may be someone with a small house group or a church interested to get into the video ministry. In this post I want to guide those who want to make a start into the video world. (If you are wondering why make videos for ministry? Read the first part here.)


This post may not be an ‘expert advice’ post, but I want to advice you as someone who has learnt (the hard way) to use whatever God placed in our hands.

Tools to Start With:

Equipment are endless. If your waiting to get a good equipment before you start making videos, that wouldn’t be a good idea. Whatever you buy, odds are that there’s always going to be something better out there.

To begin with, I’d encourage you to start with whatever equipment you have. This is important for a reason. There’s no point in investing 1000s of dollars into equipment that you have no clue of how it works. It’s always more efficient when you know how a gadget works. And later on you can always upgrade it as per your need.


Did you know you can make good videos just with your cellphones. I know some of you think this is ridiculous. But did you know recently, a director used an iPhone and the the $2 iPhone app “8mm” to shoot part of his Oscar winning 2013 documentary. So don’t be so held up and you don’t have an excuse. You can even use your normal digital cameras for the same. The point is to start somewhere and to start now!

Start by recording a 3-5 minute encouragement or a short word from your pastor or a testimony of someone you know that you really want the world to hear. (Remember start with short videos) While recording remember to keep the phone steady. If the person is seated, you’d probably perch your cellphone or digital camera on a support so that the shakes can be reduced and you get a steady output. Due to comparatively low resolutions, its best to avoid zooming in on your phone camera.

See more resources here:

Making the best video on a cellphone

Shooting with two mobile phones

Let There be Light:

The people of the Light must be conscious about the light in the video too. Lighting affects the quality of the video. This does not require for you to have a big budget either. Make use of natural lights by opening your window wide. Make sure the light is not too harsh either. (It’s also called over exposure) When it’s a sunny day and you’re shooting outdoors, shoot in the shade with your back against a dark background to avoid overexposure of your background. Learn more about natural lighting here.

Beware of backlight. You want your subject or yourself facing the light. If you have uncontrolled light in your background this is what happens to your video:

Subject Framing:

Get your your subject within the frame. The natural inclination for a beginner is to put the subject right in the centre of the frame – but resist that urge. Subject in the centre is fine, but try the rule of thirds by placing your subject in third part of the camera frame. This style is more cool 🙂

When seated the subject must face the side to which there is more room in the frame.

See an example below. Note: Ignore my face, that’s my head-office at Starbucks. (I mean office in the head)

Notice the space on the left..

Notice the space on the left..


My friend Pastor Subi doing a video greeting. Notice the space to the right..

My friend Pastor Subi doing a video greeting. Notice the space to the right..

Don’t limit yourself to a single person video. Quietly try the same at your group meetings too. And don’t forget to ask the permission of the person in charge if needed!

Note: Get down on to your subject’s level for a more dynamic shot. Shooting someone from a top angle increases more chances for a distorted angle. It’s a better perspective when its on the same level especially when shooting a conversation or speaking.


Take note of the audio quality. Audio can make or break a video. It’s really easy to put your finger in front of the lens of a mobile phone and or block the mic from clear audio. So watch out for that. Make sure you are not in a place that is too noisy. The recording device should be stationed close to the subject you are recording without lots of space or noise in between.


It’s great if you got the recording well in one go, otherwise you can use an app to edit out the contents that you’d like to remove or add text into it.

For phone editing softwares: Try iMovie for iOs (extremely easy to use), or check out 5 best android editors here (More tips to shoot with iPhone here). Camera Plus Pro ($2) is one of the best mobile phone apps out there, allowing you to adjust exposure, add filters, do time-lapse etc. The 8mm Vintage Camera ($2) by Nexvio emulates 8mm style retro videos with five lenses and as many film types to get a variety of looks. Also used by professional filmmakers despite its low price.

Once your done with that, the next step is to go on your channel on YouTube and upload the video. Basically the video acts as a hosting platform for your video. You can then embed the video on your website.

How to Upload to YouTube:

To get started uploading videos on YouTube, follow the steps below:

– Sign into YouTube.
– Click the Upload button at the top right of the page.
– Select the video you’d like to upload from your computer and hit upload. And as the video is uploading, you can add the title and description for the video. Then hit publish.

Once the upload is complete don’t forget to share the link with your friends on your social media. Your partners will also be able to subscribe to your channel to receive your videos.

That’s it you have mastered the basics behind posting a video.

You can follow our YouTube channel too.

Few more considerations while creating your videos:

– Keep it interesting.
– Let’s glorify the Lord in everything we do.
– Don’t be too focused on the number of views your video gets initially.
– Aim to post at least once a week, and the more you post, the better you will get at it.

That’s it for now. I’d try to cover an in-depth content for those who like to take the leap towards videos.

Have a question? Discuss below.
Are you a seasoned videographer, do share your tips with us below.
If you’ve posted your first video after reading this post, don’t forget to share the link with us below.
All the best.