Video: How to PROPERLY film skateboarding by Garrett Ginner
There are many different cameras capable of filming skateboarding well, but there are a few common traits between them. First of all, quality of image capture. Luckily, it's 2015 and pretty much every camera being introduced to the market, whether it's a Smartphone, GoPro, or DSLR, is capable of at least 1080p video capture. Your best bet is always to record in the highest resolution possible, unless you have super limited hard-drive or memory card space. It's easy to take a 1080p video and output it to 720p, or take a 4K video down to 1080p, but not vice versa. The second commonality is a wide-angle or fisheye lens. This is majorly important for filming skateboarding because it enables you to get close to the skater, and capture their entire body from a low angle. Every lens is different though, so you'll want to test out the distance between the camera and the skater to ensure you frame your shots perfectly - every time. The last thing you want is for your friend to land the trick of their life and have his head cut out of the frame! He won't be stoked about that. If you're filming with your phone, there are several aftermarket smartphone and iPhone lenses that will give you a wide-angle or fisheye perspective.
In terms of FPS (frames per second) settings, you've got a handful of options, the two most popular are 30 & 60 FPS. The settings you select are generally determined by your desired end use for the video clip. 60 frames per second means you're going to capture twice as many frames per second as 30 FPS video. That means your video will be smoother and also a better candidate for slow motion. We would highly encourage you to learn and master the capabilities of your camera so that you can capture the best footage possible in any scenario. If you're shooting with a GoPro or DSLR, there are settings options that when controlled correctly, can help improve your video quality.
Lastly, be conscious of your camera when filming. This is a skill you'll develop with practice. Keep your camera as steady as possible, and make sure you've got your shots framed really well. While filming lines and follow cams, the classic style seen in most all skateboard videos is to keep your camera low to the ground. This can be difficult as you may need to push in order to keep up with the skater. Just remember to focus on keeping your camera as stable as humanly possible. There are ways to stabilize your video in post-production, but it's always best to start with the best raw footage possible.
Disclaimer: As mentioned, if you're wondering how to film skateboarding, remember it's an art, not a science. That being said, once you master the basics, please experiment and develop your craft!
Thanks again to Garrett Ginner for the sweet video on how to film skateboarding. If you guys want to check out his skateboarding videos, visit Garrett's YouTube Channel.