At Fusion Studios, we film a lot of public/keynote speakers in Orlando and other location nationwide. When filming these type of presentations there is always the right and wrong way to do it; it’s important to understand how the presentation will be filmed prior to the event so the video production company prepares the gear that will be needed.
The best way to shoot your presentations is to have a camera filming a close-up or a medium angle on the speaker. The camera will follow the speaker as he or she moves on stage. Filming the presentation with two cameras is a possibility, having one being the close-up and the other camera filming a wide angle shot (having 2 cameras will also help you have a more dynamic edited version of the presentation). As for the powerpoint, we recommend not filming it on the same shot as the speaker. It is better if the PowerPoint slides are giving to the video team prior to the shoot. The slides will be edited into the final product of the video in Post-production because the resolution on screen will be way better than if you film it.
Now, the reason why we don’t record the speaker and the slides (projected on a screen) in the same shot is because one of them will either be too dark or too bright. In other words, the screen is usually brighter than the speaker so if we really want the screen to be legible we have to make sure the camera doesn’t make the screen too bright (overexpose); this will also make the speaker appear dark. On the contrary, if we make the speaker bright, the screen now would be way too bright to even read what’s on it.
It’s also important that the speaker does not walk in front of the projector. This will cause the speaker to look washed out (on camera) and therefore create a distraction. So make sure your speaker understands what areas of the stage are safe for him to walk through.
We usually try to concentrate only on filming the speaker, but in some cases, they prefer to be filmed with the screen on the shot. If this is the case, there are ways to brighten the speaker up in post-production (during editing) but it will duplicate the editing time and therefore the final cost of the project. Also, the image quality might not be the best after adding all the effects to brighten up the subject.