Body Language (NV)

We covered your voice or speaking portion. Your non-verbal communication is just as important. Keep facial expressions pleasant and appropriate to the points you are making. You can smile most at the beginning and at end of the production. No crossed eyes, over widening of the eyes, excessive blinking and pouting mouths. In addition, watch your lower body and extremity language. When a person is watching you on video, jerky movements can be distracting. If you are doing a full body shot be aware of how you stand. Usually the model stance is best and helps keep you in balance. Placing one foot slightly in front of the other with legs a foot or so a part. Even a good solid stance of balance with feet evenly spaced is good. This is your time to shine. Avoid rocking side to side. In addition, if you are seated, think before you shift in your seat or cross your legs. You may find after viewing the shot that you jumped (awkward lifting of the body) when shifting or made broad movements when crossing your legs. All of these movements are distracting from your message. Talk with your hands. Yes, hand and arm movements are great when they parallel the spoken word. Again, be mindful not to make dramatic or quick movements that may be distracting. You will know if you’ve done too much when you review what you have recorded. Buddy up. Making your video with a friend or colleague can be helpful if you do not have a director. You each can direct one another when recording and point out any speech or movement that takes away from your production. This is even more important if you are filming with a tablet or smartphone. Try to avoid the 3D giant hand affect. This happens when you move your hands in front of your body towards the camera, as opposed to the sides or small movements in front you.

A final word on body language is posture. Whether standing, sitting or leaning be sure to exhibit a long torso, keep your shoulders back and your head level. Your posture should exude confidence, comfort (being in front of the camera) and respect. Respect is mentioned to the point of not holding your head so high that you appear to be “looking down” upon your viewer, or that the viewer can see up your nose.