This week in our weekly production video tips, we’re talking about the Selfie Tracking Shot.
OK, admittedly, that’s not a technical term. But you get the idea; the camera sits close to the actor’s face and follows their movement. The desired effect is to have the actor still in the screen, while the background moves around them.
How’s it done? It’s a pretty simple method – you strap the camera onto your actor using a rig. The complexity of these rigs can be varied, according to what sort of shot you need. Some directors want realistic shots that wobble as the actor moves; these shots require pretty counterweight rigs, or even a rig carried by the actor themselves (as we do with the Fig Rig in the video below). Other directors want a much smoother shot; this can be achieved using a steadycam system, or by using Spike Lee’s trick of placing the actor on a dolly with the camera, making them seem as though they’re floating.
Check out our video to see the Selfie Tracking Shot in action