Guidelines for video contributors

Here are some guidelines for recording and transferring video files.

Last Updated on 20th April 2021

There are many different ways of recording video and if you are a seasoned pro in this field, you are welcome to use any method with which you are familiar as long as it results in a mp4 or mov video file. For those who are less experienced, I suggest using the Zoom app for recording video because most people are now familiar with its use and it is available on all devices.

If you have ever taken part in a Zoom meeting, you have the technology and the skills necessary to record a video contribution for the website.

These guidelines are based on the Windows interface to the necessary apps, but the process on Apple or Android devices should be sufficiently similar that they are still appropriate.

What you will need

  • a device (computer, laptop, tablet, mobile phone, etc) which has either
    • a built-in camera and microphone, or
    • a separate webcam which can be connected to your device through a USB connection
  • an internet connection
  • the Zoom app installed on the device
    • If you don’t currently have Zoom installed, download and install ‘Zoom Client for Meetings’ by clicking here
  • a suitable recording environment, such that
    • your face is well lit, perhaps by facing a window
    • the background is as uncluttered as possible, especially if you are recording a section to which subtitles will be added
    • your recording will not be interrupted by unwanted sounds, e.g. doorbells, ringing phones, pets/partners/children, computer/smartphone notifications/alerts (consider muting your computer’s speaker for the duration of the recording)

Testing your equipment

You should only need to do this once, before you make your first recording, in order to check that your recording equipment is satisfactory. Click here for details.

Recording the Video

  • Open the Zoom app
  • Click on the Settings icon ( , top right) and go to the Video tab
  • Make sure the Camera setting is set to 16:9 (Widescreen) and Enable HD is checked as below:
  • Close the Settings window
  • On the Zoom Home screen, click on New Meeting and then Join With Computer Audio
  • Make sure your recording device (laptop, tablet, phone, etc) is placed
    • in landscape mode ( )
    • no more than 1 metre away from you (otherwise the audio will be too quiet and/or accompanied by distracting ambient sounds when amplified)
    • with the camera roughly level with your eyes
    • so that you are centred horizontally on the screen ( )
    • so there are no bright lights or reflections (windows, mirrors, wall and ceiling lights, etc) in the background
    • on a stable support so that your image does not jitter about on the screen (which will be very distracting for viewers)
  • Try to look straight ahead by having any notes displayed on your screen or mounted next to the camera rather than on the table in front (or to the side) of you.
    Ideally, you should open the file containing the words in a separate window. Then move and resize that window so that it is just below your camera. You can scroll the text using your mouse so that the bit you are reading is always near the top of the window. The Zoom window can be any size and anywhere – it makes no difference to the recording. So, it is best just to resize it very small and move it to the bottom corner of the screen. It makes no difference to the recording and, if your image is small, you are less likely to keep looking at it.
  • When you are ready, press Record at the bottom of the Zoom window
  • Say a few words to the camera (e.g. “Testing, testing, testing, one, two, three” or “This is the reading for Sunday the tenth of May”) as most microphones automatically adjust the recording level to match the volume of your voice, but need a short sample before the actual recording in order to achieve this successfully
  • Then, wait for a few seconds (excess footage can be cut during the editing process) whilst giving your best smile and then start speaking
  • When you have finished speaking, wait for a few seconds again (with another smile!) and then press Stop Recording
  • Press End Meeting and then End Meeting for All
  • You should see a dialog box saying Convert Meeting Recording
  • When this has completed, a folder should open and you should see your video file called zoom_0.mp4
  • Double-click on this to playback and check you are happy with it
  • Rename the file to something appropriate
    • e.g. 2020-05-03 Intercessions.mp4
  • Make a note of the folder in which the file is stored

Transferring the video file to the editor

This can be achieved in one of two ways – sending the file via a file-sharing service or uploading directly to YouTube. If you have any special requests regarding the editing of your clip (other than removing the pauses at the beginning and the end), please let me know in a separate email message.

Using a file-sharing service (preferred method)

Video files are usually too large to send as email attachments, so it will be necessary to use an online file-sharing service. Guidelines on how to do this are published here.

Uploading the video to YouTube
  • Open a browser and go to
  • If you are already logged in to your own YouTube account, log out by clicking on the icon at the top right (to the right of the bell symbol) and then Sign Out
  • Click to sign in in to the Wiverton in the Vale account using:
    Password: [Call me and I will give it to you]
    It is possible at this point that the site will require two-factor authentification by sending a message to my mobile. If I receive the message, I will of course authorise, but, if not, you might need to contact me to alert me to provide the authentification
  • You should now see the parish logo ( ) at top right
  • Click on the Create icon ( ) a little to the left of this and then Upload Video ( )
  • Drag and Drop the file to the window which appears or choose Select File to locate it in your device folders
  • The file will then be uploaded and processed
    This may take some time depending on your internet connection but patience is a virtue!
  • Once this has completed, it should say Finished Processing in the status bar at the bottom and Saved As Draft at the top right
  • Ignore the button at the bottom and just click Save and Close () at the top right
  • Then let me know and I will do the necessary to get it on the website

Editing and Publication

I would normally do this but you are welcome to experiment if you are so inclined and have access to a video-editing app!

  • Assemble the video clips you want to
  • Adjust the volumes of the individual clips so they are all consistent
  • Join the clips together, cutting any pauses at the beginning and end of each
  • Add (optionally) a title page and end credits
  • Save a final version
  • Upload that version to YouTube and publish it

I hope this is all clear. It sounds more complicated than it actually is. If you have any problems, give me a call or email and I will try to help out.

Nick Perry