Basics of Composition | The YouTube Cinematography Guide

Basics of Composition | The YouTube Cinematography Guide

Welcome to part two of The YouTube Cinematography Guide! Today I’ll be going over the three basic rules relevant to YouTube Cinematography: the rule of thirds, head room, and lead room. I frequently see new YouTubers making mistakes that relate to these three rules, and I’m here to help! Be sure to read the notes below to help with your comprehension of these rules.

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Rule of Thirds: The first rule that everyone learns is the rule of thirds – and for good reason. The rule of thirds is used universally in all video works, and should only be broken in certain circumstances. To understand the rule of thirds, make four lines in your frame that split the frame up into thirds vertically and horizontally. These lines form a grid with 4 focal points. These four focal points are used to compose most shots.

Lead Room: Generally speaking, you want to have subjects on the right side of the frame facing left, and subjects on the left side of the frame facing right. This is called lead room.

Head Room: Giving your subject too much head room is basically just having too much space between the top of your subject’s head and the top of the frame. Too little head room is when your subject’s head appears to be cut off by the top of the frame. If you keep the center of the head around the middle of the upper third line created by the rule of thirds, you should be just fine.

Sometimes you can bend these rules. Lots of creators like myself like to position themselves in the middle of the frame (but still on the upper third!) so that it appears as though I am talking directly to you in a more relaxed environment.

Thanks for watching, hope it helps!
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