How To Make A Music Video On A Tiny Budget

make a music video on a tiny budgetHere’s a guest post from our friends over at who are almost as obsessed about music as we are!

The amount of money that goes into a major-label music video is pretty staggering. I don’t mean to upset you, but there’s a good chance it cost more to make the last music video you watched than you made in a year.

So how are you supposed to compete with that?

You can put down the ski masks and shotguns, you don’t have to rob a bank. I’m going to show you how to make a music video on a tiny budget that looks great.

Start With a Great Idea

If you’re going to cut corners on expenses, your idea is going to have to be engaging enough to make the low quality worth it. You can go for humor, artistic and even tell a short story if you want to.

How To Make A Music Video On A Tiny Budget #musicbiz Click To Tweet

Even if you had all of the most expensive filming equipment in the world, you wouldn’t make a very good music video if your idea is terrible.

For this reason, it’s worth sitting down and spending some time figuring out what you want to do way in advance of anything else.

Get a Good Camera

You can take this in a couple of different ways.

Either hire a professional with a camera, or get a really good DSLR camera with video recording.

The better quality image you get, the better. There are a number of other factors that will influence how good the video actually looks in the end. Even a great camera can’t change the way light works, so you’ll have to account for that too.

If you don’t have the money for additional lighting, there are two things you can do that are very cheap but work great improving the quality of your video.

The first way is to use natural lighting. The ‘golden hour’ is the first or last hour of sunlight in a day, and photographers across the world love it for the great look it gives to images. The same technique also applies to videos.

Another trick you can use is to get some reflectors. These are nothing more than a big sheet of material that reflects light. This helps to soften out features and reduce unwanted shadows, and are great for any footage with people as the prominent subject.

Keep Cast and Crew Minimal

The less people involved, the easier it will be to make a music video on a tiny budget.

music video on a budget

A crew this size, with this kind of equipment, is going to get expensive

First of all, if you have to start paying extras for their time, it’s going to be difficult to come up with enough money to cover everybody. If you can stick to yourselves and perhaps the odd friend and family member, you’ll have a much easier time.

It’s also very helpful to know how to edit the footage for your music video yourself. There are plenty of affordable options, and even quite a few free video editors, that will let you do this yourself.

Choose a Good Location

The less distractions and interruptions you have whilst making your music video, the better. You can get the work done faster and cheaper if you choose an out of the way location.

However, make sure you know the location quite well before you start making your music video. Planning out a little trip beforehand to scope out the place is a great way to get ideas for camera placement. The better you know the area you’ll be using, the more you can get out of it.

A good location is also great footage.

Picking out interesting elements of the background to focus is an easy way to add variety to your music video.

If All Else Fails, Be Deliberately Bad

Instead of trying to disguise your lack of budget, embrace it.

Make elaborate but incredibly bad set designs and costumes. You’d be surprised what you can manage with a few rolls of duct tape, a bit of paint and a trip to a thrift shop.

This is a tried and true technique that’s been used in everything from TV series such as Doctor Who and The Mighty Boosh, to the most cringe-inducingly 80’s music videos ever made.

This doesn’t mean that you should be ignoring the other advice though. You can make something stylistically bad, or just plain bad. One is appreciated for the ingenuity, the other is ignored.

No matter how tiny your budget is, you should be able to have fun while making a music video. Remember, you’ve already done the hard work of producing a great song. Don’t be discouraged by the difficulties of making a music video on a tiny budget. If you’ve already gotten to this stage, there’s not much that will stop you from making a success of it.

Article Name
How To Make a Music Video on a Tiny Budget
Making a music video can put your in the poor house if you try to keep up with the top 40 bands. We'll show you how to make a music video on a budget.
Publisher Name


  1. […] days, music very easily sits in the film narrative remaining consciously unobserved, whilst still stimulating our […]