Tuesday, January 8, 2008

10 Things To Consider Before Going On TV

Ten Things You Need To Know Before Going On TV

TV appearances, video marketing, and web-casting can be a huge boost for your business and reputation as an expert. Navigating the technical terrain of these media can make or break you. Here are some important things to consider when dressing for the camera.

The human eye is very forgiving. Television and video cameras are not. The technical elements of lighting, digitizing, high-definition, and translating the 3-dimensions of real life into the 2-dimensions of a screen effect the way we will ultimately appear on a TV or computer.

  1. Black and white are very difficult for the camera to "see." Black disappears and white reflects too much light into the camera lens. Nothing screams "I'm an amateur" louder than wearing black or white clothing.
  2. Fine patterns can appear to "crawl" across the screen when they are digitized. Avoid small-scale, high-contrast geometric patterns like pin dots, hounds-tooth, herringbone, and narrow stripes.
  3. Details such as lace, tone-on-tone embroidery, and delicate pleats are too fine to be "seen" by the camera. Clothing with these details will appear to be a solid color and can make you appear wider than you really are.
  4. Clothing in a color and shade similar to the studio set tends to disappear and can make your head appear to float without a body. Choose clothing that contrasts and compliments the set and background colors.
  5. Clothing that gapes, pulls, bunches, or rolls is distracting for you and the audience. Choose an outfit that feels comfortable and looks smooth and polished in standing and seated positions.
  6. Shiny fabrics will reflect too much light into the camera and create "hot spots" that are too bright. Avoid lustrous and sparkly materials such as satin, sequins, rhinestones, and polished metallic accessories.
  7. Jewelry and clothing can interfere with technical equipment in the studio making it difficult to focus on you or decipher your speech. Choose outfits that accommodate wireless microphones, auto-focus mechanisms, and other miscellaneous equipment.
  8. Shiny skin reflects a lot of light. Use adequate powder to conceal the shine on exposed skin of the face, throat, and scalp. Choose a shade that matches the color your skin will appear to be in the studio.
  9. Many popular makeup formulas contain ingredients that are highly reflective and can make your skin appear many shades lighter on camera than in real life. Choose a foundation makeup that will stay true to its color in all environments.
  10. High-definition cameras tend to "flatten" facial features and emphasize skin imperfections. Accentuate facial contours to counteract the "flattening effect." Choose make up with a texture that is fine enough to diffuse imperfections and make your skin appear smooth.
Many of these considerations also apply to public speaking and online broadcasts. Give me a call if you get stuck and I'll be happy to walk you through it.

Sarah Shah is an Image Artist & Media Coach. Contact her at (713) 686-8587 or sarah@sarahshah.com.
© Sarah Shah, Imagine Unlimited 2008, All Rights Reserved