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How to Use Stock Footage to Enhance Your Production Value

Learn how to use stock footage to increase your production value.
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This is the era of online content. Videographers and content creators need tips not only to produce full-fledged movies but also to come up with kickass v-logs and online advertisements.

Most of us have limited budgets, hence we can’t always go out to shoot what we need. In this scenario, the best option is to count on stock footage. 

What is Stock Footage?

Stock footage, also known as archive footage, is video content that’s available for anybody to use. Some videos can be used for free but some need a license. Still, it’s usually more affordable than going out to shoot unique content. 

Stock footage can be very useful when you want generic content, such as city lights, a busy mall, people walking on the road, aeroplane flying, animals running around, etc. 

These videos can be used to add value to your content. For example, if you want to show that your character just landed, you can use stock footage of a plane landing and link it to stock footage of a busy airport then cut to your character standing with baggage to make it appear as if you shot at an actual airport. 

Why Use Stock Footage?

You can use stock footage to:

  • Save Time: You will not have to go out and shoot a sequence.
  • Save Money: It can reduce the production budget by providing you high-quality content for your videos.
  • Add Value: The use of stock footage can add value to your videos and make them more authentic.

Where Can I Find Stock Footage?

A simple Google search will give great results. If you’re still struggling, check these out:

Open the platform and search for what you need. For example, if you want to show people shopping then terms like ‘shopping’, ‘market’, or ‘mall’ may give good results.

Make sure the video you choose is of the quality that goes well with your current video. 

Example of Using Stock Footage

The use of stock footage is not uncommon in Hollywood. Many Hollywood movies have used stock footage to integrate notable figures or news footage into the narrative. 

Tom Hanks’ Forrest Gump, for example, mixed stock footage with CGI to show the lead character interact with historic figures like John Lennon and John F. Kennedy.

Many documentaries also use stock footage to add authenticity. It isn’t uncommon for producers to include real-life footage. It’s allowed but you must mention that it’s real footage when you include it in your content.

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