Advanced Video Camera and Editing


The reporter looks directly at the camera and addresses the viewers. This shot shows the reporter's physical presence on location. Stand-ups are an integral part of the news package; they're useful for producing verbal and visual bridges within a story; the stand-up also solves problems with finding suitable shots that tell the story.

A few tips:
  • Background and props should be relevant to the story
  • Minimal camera moves
  • Can incorporate multiple shots in multiple locations

You should plan ahead what you're going to say and do before you record. First script what you intend to say and then record.

The stand-up is considered part of the story rather than external to it. The reporter addresses the camera and advances the story with a brief bit of information. Sometimes, stand-ups are used as a way of branding the story with the reporter's and the station's names.

For most stories you will need to shot your stand-up in the field before you log the tape and write the story. Learning what to say, and how it will fit into the story can be a challenge to new reporters. You have to anticipate how the rest of the story will be told. As a rule, the stand-up includes only basic information that is crucial to the story, but it must be brief.


Some types of standups

  • Demonstration (or Interactive) Stand-up: demonstrates a point in the story, using props or the natural setting.
  • Bridge Stand-up: bridges the gap or makes a transition between two different ideas in the story.
  • Closing Stand-up: summarises or wraps up the story (we discourage this because it's more memorable to end the story on a strong visual and a great line to go with it.
  • Information Stand-up: incorporates information that you don't have video to cover it with.
  • Scene-setting Stand-up: establishes the reporter's presence at the scene to add credibility to the report.

Standup Tips

  • Look for a relevant fact in the story you can highlight with your stand-up, or an important element you don't have video for.
  • You may use the stand-up to set up a sound bite if you've already done the interview.
  • You may use the stand-up to show yourself at the scene of the action.
  • Try to explain, rather than 'report' or 'read.'
  • Speak in phrases. Relay the information in natural, conversational language.
  • Make maximum use of your surroundings. When appropriate, take advantage of movement, props, etc., without being contrived, cute or staged.
  • The setting/background should be pertinent to the story and immediately recognisable
  • Try to do the stand-up without notes. It helps if you keep it short. Two or three sentences is all you need.
  • If using a hand-held microphone, hold it close to you, but not in front of your mouth. Keep the microphone about chest level and hold it firmly to display confidence.
  • It's best to limit your story to one standup. Stand-ups work best in the middle of the story as a bridge. Stand-ups don't work as well at the beginning or end of the story.
  • Keep your stand-ups to one thought, or one idea. Don't combine two different ideas. Keep it simple.

Take a look at the video below to see a collection of unique and imaginative stand-ups. Released by Bob Pearce, a 30 year veteran as an Emmy-winning television photojournalist and editor.

And some more imaginative stand-ups courtesy of photojournalist and editor Jim Sitton