Tips and Tricks for Filmmakers

Dive into the world of filmmaking portfolio mastery with valuable tips and tricks inspired by the website of Peter Naylor, a versatile Director, DP, and Photographer. This video unveils the secrets to building a captivating film portfolio that effectively showcases video and still imagery.

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Today I am reviewing the website of Peter Naylor, who is a Director, DP, and Photographer whose practice spans the worlds of documentary, lifestyle, and commercial campaigns. His website is a great example of how to effectively create a film portfolio to showcase video and still imagery. By following the tips and tricks discussed in this video, film based creatives will gain valuable insights on how to build a website that effectively represents their work, highlights their achievements, and provides a visually pleasing and user-friendly experience.

Peter’s site makes use of both the gallery pages of his theme as well as custom pages. Because he works with both video and still imagery, he uses the different styles of pages to show off the various styles of work on his site. Peter is using the theme horizon left, which has horizontally scrolling galleries. He uses these theme pages for his still galleries of photography work and then vertically scrolling custom pages for his film work. Having this kind of visual separation is a great way to indicate different styles of work or services on your site. 

You can add embedded videos from youtube and vimeo to both gallery and custom pages. But, custom pages have the added benefit of being able to add hosted video files–meaning that you can host your videos directly on your website. On Peter’s About Me Page, he’s used a hosted video section to show off his reel. Hosted video will also mean that your videos aren’t impeded by any third party branding. 

Annotate projects with text and stills

On his Director and DP project pages, Peter has created a really smart custom page layout. At the top of the page, he has used a large scale video block. Below this, he’s added more context and background on the project by including text and stills from the film. Through the text block he adds important details like his role in the project, names of collaborators, and when applicable, client information. Below the text are beautiful video stills that highlight his skills as a DP and tell the story of the project in a different context. Adding stills of your video project helps to give visitors a quick snapshot of the project, particularly if they are scrolling through many projects and don’t have time to watch all of the videos.

Arrange your site menu to tell a story of your skills

Peter’s site menu is concise and tells the story of his skills and experience; Director, DOP, Photographer. A visitor to his site immediately knows what he does and what his portfolio is going to show. Whenever possible, be direct with your site menu. Focus on page titles that relate directly with your skills and experience rather than less explicit titles like the titles of your work (unless these have immediate name recognition.) 

Organize your projects together into a collection page

Collection pages are pages of video links. Each theme has its own options to display and customize collection pages. On his site, Peter has made a collection page for his projects under the headings: Director, DOP, and Photography. 

Through his collection pages, Peter shows the depth and breadth of his practice without overwhelming the viewer. Visitors to his site get a quick snapshot of all of his best work. 

For video work, I recommend following Peter’s example of making a page for each video and then connecting them through a collection page. Tiled displays of videos can be overwhelming, but using a collection page and which links to your video project gives you the visual benefit of the tiled layout without detracting from the viewing experience of the video. Another added bonus here–with each video on its own page you can add unique SEO data for each video, boosting your site’s visibility on search engines. 

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