How to Make a Music Video on a Cheap Budget

Breaking into the music business is an extremely difficult task, especially when you consider the fact that there are thousands of other musicians just like you who are attempting to score record deals. Even as an independent artist, creating and releasing music videos is very important as it will help to spread the word about your music. Unfortunately, most independent artists lack the budget necessary to make a video that is shown on MTV, which is why you'll learn how to make a music video on a cheap budget.

Things You'll Need

  • An inexpensive video camera
  • A computer
  • Audio/video editing software
  • Someone to film the video
  • Actor(s) for the video

Instructions

    • 1

      Purchase a digital video camera with the ability to transfer the video to the computer. You can usually get a decent video camera for under $400--especially if you go to a pawn shop or go on an online auction site to purchase it. Before making this purchase, educate yourself on which video camera will meet your needs. It simply must shoot high quality footage.

    • 2

      Purchase or borrow a computer if you don't have one of your own already. You'll need this to edit the video once you have shot it. The computer you use should have at least 512MB of RAM and a 60GB hard drive, as you'll need enough memory to run the applications and enough disk space to save the edited videos.

    • 3

      Download a program to edit your video footage. There are many free programs that can be found via a simple search on the Internet--one such program, known as Windows Movie Maker, is already installed on your computer. To access it, simply go to "Start" and "Programs."

    • 4

      Plot out the video before filming it. Decide what sort of theme the video will have and how many people will "star" in it. If you're not particularly creative when it comes to directing a video (and many aren't), you can enlist the help of a film student from your local college. The student might work for free as shooting a music video is great experience.

    • 5

      Enlist the help of family and friends to help with filming the video and even starring in it. You can probably get them to work for free if you provide food and beverages. After you've found some takers, decide what role each of them will play in the filming of the music video.

    • 6

      Decide where to film the video. Local parks are a great choice, as they are both free and have a lot of scenery/space. If you have an indoor look in mind, you might talk to local businesses and ask if they'll let you film your video there for free in exchange for some exposure for their business.

    • 7

      Begin filming the video. Depending on the length and complexity of the video, this may take anywhere from one eight-hour day to several days. Be prepared to take a lot of footage so that you can mix and edit as necessary.

    • 8

      Put the footage you have shot on your computer and open up your video editing program to begin editing it. Editing video is actually a lot easier than it sounds, and if you have questions, you can always look at the video program's manual to see how to do it. Depending on how much video you have, this process can take from days to weeks.

    • 9

      Add music to the video once you have put together a video that fits your song's length perfectly and matches the vocals (if you are performing in the video). Again, you can use the video editing program to do this. Once you've done this, you've put together a music video on a very cheap budget of less than $500--and you can do it again and again for free after you have the equipment outlined here.

Tips & Warnings

  • Always look to cut costs. In every area of making a music video, there's ways of reducing the cost. You can easily reduce the cost by simply shopping around for things and closely considering every aspect of making the video.
  • Don't get overwhelmed. Recording music isn't that hard, and neither is making a music video. The key is to be willing to learn some new things and to put forth a little work. As long as you do that, you can easily make a music video for your music.
  • Don't pay more than you can afford. Making a music video can be as cheap or as expensive as you make it. Since you're looking to make the video on a cheap budget, you'll probably want to avoid retail stores and instead opt for purchasing equipment used.
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