DSLR Filmmaking: Video Basics, with Mia McCormick

Join Mia McCormick on location in Las Vegas for a fantastic primer on video basics for DSLR filmmaking. Mia expertly guides you through all of the fundamental concepts required for taking your DSLR video to the next level.

In this class you will learn about the key camera settings needed for video, how to choose the right lens for capturing motion, the important role your memory card can play, how the pros keep their subjects in focus, and so much more. If you’ve been neglecting the video functions on your DSLR because you haven’t been satisfied with the quality of your footage then this class is for you!

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Course Lessons:

Lesson 1: Introduction (Duration 02:34)

Mia introduces the class, discusses what material will be covered, and jumps right into the first topic, resolution.

Lesson 2: Frame Rate (Duration 01:09)

The frame rate you choose can affect the feel of your video, so it is helpful to understand the different frame rate options.

Lesson 3: Shutter Speed (Duration 01:13)

Choosing the correct shutter speed is based on the frame rate of your video.

Lesson 4: Lens Considerations (Duration 04:13)

There are a variety of factors to consider when choosing a lens for DSLR video.

Lesson 5: Using a Neutral Density Filter (Duration 01:43)

Like sunglasses for your camera, a neutral density filter is a valuable accessory for letting you shoot with a wide aperture in bright light.

Lesson 6: Focus Tips (Duration 01:43)

When it comes to video you are going to get better results using manual focus.

Lesson 7: Media Cards (Duration 03:18)

Memory card speed and overall capacity are critical for shooting video.

Lesson 8: LCD Viewfinder (Duration 01:44)

The camera's LCD screen is difficult to see in bright daylight, so having an attachment that shades the sun is incredibly helpful.

Lesson 9: Tripods (Duration 01:24)

The fluid head tripod is a videographers best friend.

Lesson 10: Video Monopod (Duration 00:50)

A video monopod is different than a monopod is different than a still photography monopod.

Lesson 11: Capturing Good Audio (Duration 04:34)

Upgrading your microphone is the best thing you can do for improving your audio. Understanding the different types of microphones will help you choose the right one for the situation you are recording.

Meet Your Instructor: Mia McCormick

Mia McCormick works as a resident technology expert for Kelby Training and B&H Photo - one of the largest electronic retailers in the world. She also conducts a series of…


  1. Just watched this Video Basics Course and as a photographer that rarely uses video it was a great intro. The video sparked my interest to learn more. Mia as always was great in front of the camera and should be encouraged to get up out of her chair more often and expand her role as an instructor. Keep up the great work Mia and Kelbyone.

    • Hi David. We are currently in production for an entire series of classes specifically on DSLR filmmaking. Included will be an advanced class, lighting, post production, stabilization, and much more so stay tuned!

    • Hi Catherine, if you are plugging in directly to the camera and not looking for something professional then the Polsen OLM-10 is an affordable, easy to use option. It clips right on to your "talent's" shirt. If you are looking to capture something more professional try a lavalier plugged into an external recorder. Here's a relatively affordable pair to try : Audio-Technica AT899 and Zoom H4n.

  2. Excellent starter course. Love the basics on shutter speeds and frame rates. Super helpful! Mia, you're the best! Pair this with RC's course on working with video in Photoshop and you're good to go!

  3. This class is precisely as advertised. It is for folks new to DSLR video. Having written and taught this topic for a couple of years, kudos to the Kelby One team and to Instructor Mia McCormick for the right amount of information, presented clearly and concisely without the techno babble that can scare off budding videographers. Since we know that over 90% of DSLR owners have NEVER tried the built in video capability of their camera, this is a highly recommended class and should be part of any Getting Started with your DSLR curriculum.

  4. great class, only thing I would have liked to have seen was the lavalier mic set up. We heard it but I didn't see anything connected to the camera or is it picked up separately on some type of audio mixer?

    • We used a wireless lavalier microphone set up. So Charles was wearing the lav connected to a transmitter in his pocket. The wire was run under his shirt to hide it. That sends a wireless signal to the receiver. The receiver is mounted on the 5D with an accessory shoe and it comes with a cable that plugs into the camera's mic port.

  5. really a wonderful introduction to DSLR video. Ms. McCormick has excellent presenter skills. hopefully, she will continue this course in the future -- a more advanced DSLR video course?

  6. Well, what can I say? First off, the class was short, concise and absolutely wonderful. Now, why did I watch it? I just finished watching The Grid episode where Scott and RC explained how to do the 5-minute video editing on Photoshop and they mentioned your class, Mia. Thanks to courses taken here at KelbyOne, I now have a great, fun and budding career in photography! Now, video's next. Thanks for a great course, Mia!

  7. Mia: What a wonderful intro to expanding the world of our DSLR's to include video. I have been reticent to make the plunge until i recently watched Scott on The Grid extolling the virtues of editing within Photoshop. By combining your suggestions for capture and Scott's for post production I am now preparing to take the plunge. Perhaps with the advanced class you are working on the two of you could combine your talents for the planned lessons? By the way, I was most appreciative to your no nonsense style of presentation. You are a true pro. Thank you.

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