Don’t Rush Into It

Before we start talking about camera angles and lighting, let’s talk about safety. Before you bust out the sad trombone on us, think about all of the horror stories about account hacking and revenge porn from the last few years. Sadly, making a sex tape isn’t a decision you can take lightly anymore.

Of course, it’s hard to anticipate just what someone is capable of in the future, especially if you currently trust that person enough to be having sex with them. I’m sure none of the victims of revenge porn incidents thought to themselves, “you know what, this person seems really sleazy and untrustworthy, but I’m just going to go ahead with this anyways.” We expect to be literally screwed when we make a sex tape, but we don’t anticipate being figuratively screwed too.

 

The bottom line is that you’ve got to be incredibly thoughtful and cautious. You should only ever make a sex tape with someone you’d trust with your life. That may sound dramatic, but leaked sex tapes have literally ruined lives. Don’t let anyone pressure you into it, either. It’s also worth giving yourself time to think through the decision; it’s not like you have an opening weekend deadline to meet! If you get even the tiniest gut feeling that something feels amiss, don’t go through with it.

Get Inspired

It’s your sex tape, so you want it to be sexy and entertaining to you. Take some time to think about what you’d like to get out of this experience, and to talk through it with your partner. Here are some variables to consider:

  • Do you want the film to have a plot? Or do you just want to see sex?
  • Do you want to be yourselves in the movie, or do you want to role play other characters? For some people, roleplaying can relieve the jitters since you’re taking on the role of another person. For others, having to be in character may only add to the pressure!
  • Where do you want to do the filming? The bed is always a safe bet, but you could move to other rooms as well.
  • Which specific acts do you want to film? You can be as PG as a striptease, or go hardcore with pain play.
  • Do you want to play with props or sex toys?
  • Do you want to create little snippets (or even GIFs), or a full length movie?

Having these conversations with your partner can be really sexy. Some people might even find playing with the fantasy of creating a sex tape to be more enjoyable than the filming itself!

If you simply want to have an evening of fun, you don’t have to do too much pre-planning. If you want to create a masterpiece that you’ll watch again and again, you’ll obviously do more preparation and rehearsal. Use your answers to the questions above to create a rough plan for the shoot itself. Knowing what you’re going to be doing beforehand can relieve anxiety. You can also do a PG test shoot, so you can get a sense of what everything looks like. Before your shoot, do whatever grooming habits make you feel sexy, like taking a bath, shaving your legs or doing some pubic hair landscaping.

 

What to Do if this All Seems Awkward

Making a sex tape is intense! It’s perfectly normal to feel timid, nervous, anxious, or awkward. If it feels like too big of a project to take on at once, try breaking it down into baby steps.

First, try taking pictures of yourself in lingerie, or naked in a mirror. Try to get a sense of your favorite body parts, and the best angles for showcasing them. Next, have your partner take naughty pictures of you, and get their input. From there, try taking simple POV pictures while you’re being intimate. Hand a cell phone back and forth and see how creative you can get. You can start with tame sex acts, like kissing or touching, then progress to the activities that feel more vulnerable to you. Work your way up to short video clips with just a few licks or thrusts.

After each time you take a picture or clip, play around with the basic editing software on your phone. This will help you realize just how many improvements you can make in “post-production,” so it can alleviate some of your nerves. You’ll start feeling more comfortable in front of the camera in no time!

Pick Your Camera

Picking a camera for your film is really all about what you want from it, how much money you want to spend, and what your grand vision is. Every option has advantages and disadvantages, and while we’re not going to make suggestions on specific cameras (we’ve covered that before), let’s take a look at the three most common options you have to choose from:

  • Your Smartphone: Most people have a smartphone, and all smartphones can record video, so it’s a pretty natural choice for filming your first sex tape. And, as long as you have enough light, a smartphone will provide decent enough video quality that it may be all you need. It’s also small enough that you can hold it in our hand or switch it over to a tripod depending on what type of shots you’re going for. Smartphones suffer in a few areas, though: Quality isn’t always great at higher resolutions, audio is typically terrible, and smartphones struggle with low light levels. However, if this is your first foray into making videos and you’re most interested in the experience itself, smartphones are the perfect place to start to see how you feel about the whole thing. Just don’t expect extremely high quality results.
  • A DSLR: Most DSLR cameras have a video function, and they’re a great way to record video without dropping serious cash if you already have one. A DSLR intrinsically takes better video than a smartphone and works better in low light, though audio will likely still suffer a bit. As for the video quality, you can swap in different camera lenses (a wide angle or semi fish-eye lens should give you a solid view of all the action) to get a more cinematic look, so if you’re going for a classier feel for your sex tape, a DSLR is a good option. Depending on the body of the camera, a DSLR might prove a little difficult to use for POV, so it’s best suited for a tripod until you get the hang of it. You can follow the same rule of the thumb for regular old video cameras as you would with DSLR.
  • Camcorder: If you’re serious about making a high quality sex tape, an actual video camera is the way to go. Over at the Wirecutter, they recommend the Panasonic HC-V770K, which features a body that you can easily hold one-handed and a suite of stabilization options that are sure to come in useful with all the bouncing around you’ll be doing. The Panasonic in particular is also really good in low-light, which makes it well-suited for a sex tape. (If you don’t want to drop $600, the $270 Canon VIXIA R600 is a cheaper option—we’ve used the M500 and it’s a great little camcorder.) Camcorders also tend to be better at capturing sound than other solutions, and while it’s not a substitute for a dedicated microphone, it’s at least a step up from most other options.
  • Action Camera: Action cameras like a GoPro are perfectly suited for making your own sex tape. It makes sense if you think about it: Action cameras are made to mount to things like bicycles, helmets, and cars, so they can certainly handle the action in the bedroom. Most action cameras also come with a ton of mounting options so you can get creative with your camera work. For example, you can use a tripod, mount the camera to a pole, use it underwater, or strap it to your head. They range in price dramatically, but you can snag a decent one for under a $100 to get you started. Of course, you get what you pay for. Cheaper models will have similar problems to smartphones and might struggle in low light. You also can’t really do much in the way of customizing the exposure or focus, so don’t expect to make anything too advanced. Action cameras don’t usually have viewfinders either, so it’s always a bit of a crapshoot as to how the footage will look. Bonus (or hindrance, up to you): you’ll also look totally ridiculous fucking with a GoPro strapped to your head.

Really, which you use is up to you, what you already have, and what you want to do with it in the end. Either way, start with what you already own before you drop cash on a camera since you and your partner might don’t actually like the experience.

Adjust Your Lighting

It seems small, but lighting can make or break the quality of your film. Good lighting can make a video go from shadowy and grainy to near-professional (seriously). So don’t neglect it.

Unfortunately, lighting a sex tape is tough, because it also has the potential to make or break the mood. If you’re self-conscious of your body (you shouldn’t be!) or want to take a more demure approach, try candlelight. It’s flattering against the skin, and won’t show too much detail. Or utilize a dimmer switch for better mood lighting. They’ll leave you with a lower quality video, but that might be fine for you if you’re not looking for a lot of detail.

 

On the other hand, a three-point lighting setup will make your video quality nearly professional looking, but it’ll also make the filming feel less intimate, not to mention hot (temperature-wise). But you can try to recreate that sort of setup with the lights you have, like desk lamps. Pointing lights at the ceiling can help brighten the room without making the lighting too harsh.

Lighting is intensely complicated, but the above video is a good primer. If you don’t really feel like researching that much, you have other options. The easiest thing to do is to simply film in natural light. Pop open those curtains at midday, let some natural light in (from behind the camera), and get to it. Your film will look great and you won’t have to think about a thing.

If natural light isn’t an option, you might want to experiment with a variety of lighting setups. We’ve walked you through shooting on a budget before, but the best thing you can do is experiment. Start with a lamp above you, directed down. Then try positioning smaller lamps behind the camera and around you. Your results are going to vary depending on your camera and the angles, so be sure to play around with it before you start shooting.

Find the Perfect Angle

Porn is all about finding the right angles. One of the reasons why porn sex is so different than real life sex is that porn is less about pleasure and more about capturing an angle that looks good on film. You can watch porn to find some of your favorite positions and angles, and get inspiration for where to put your camera. (If you specifically search for amateur porn, you’ll also find some examples of what doesn’t look great on camera).

Here are some ideas to get you started:

  • The simplest angle is to put your camera along the side of the bed. You’ll get a wide shot of both of your bodies. You won’t get much detail, but that could be a good low-maintenance option, or for those on the shy side.
  • If you want a better view of your genitals, place the camera at one of the bottom corners of your bed.
  • Use two cameras to get different angles of the action: one with a wide shot and one close up on your faces or your genitals.
  • Have each of you hold the camera in your hands, for interesting POV shots. Find angles that your partner has never been able to see from their perspective. For example, if you’re a man and a woman, have the guy film from behind during doggystyle.
  • Film close-ups of penetration. Find positions where your bodies are slightly separated from each others, allowing the camera to get in for a good view.

During filming, don’t be afraid to play around with a few different angles. It can be a sexy tease to draw out the experience by stopping to check the footage (but don’t take too long, or it becomes a boner-killer). If you don’t love what you see, simply move the camera around and try again.

Have Fun During Filming

There’s no getting around it; you’re going to feel at least a tad awkward filming yourself having sex. Tell your co-star that you’re feeling nervous (odds are they are too), and see if the two of you can help each other feel more playful or at ease. Start hooking up with each other before you turn the camera on, so you feel relaxed and turned on. Be your own fluffers! A single glass of wine might help too (though it’s best to be mostly sober).

During filming itself, try to pretend that the camera isn’t there. The more you can be in the moment and enjoy the experience, the better your movie will turn out. One way to feel more at ease it to stick with the acts that you most enjoy in your normal sex life. On camera is not the place to try something brand new, unless you’ve got a great sense of humor and wouldn’t mind having a sexual mishap caught on film!

Art projects rarely come out exactly how you picture them in your mind, and homemade naughty movies are no different. It’s important not to expect it to look like a professional porn. You don’t have a professional set and team of 15 people on set. It’s not going to be perfect, but it’ll still be hot!

Like lighting, editing film is a complicated process that requires a ton of schooling. However, for your own sex video, you’ll likely only need to know how to do one thing at first: trimming the beginning and end.

Chances are, your video’s a bit long and has some awkward moments you’d like to cut out. You have a ton of options for different video editing software, but for the sake of simplicity, let’s take a look at how you’d trim a video with Windows Movie Maker on Windows (which is old, but should still work) and iMovie on Mac, since they come free with most computers.

Windows Movie Maker

  1. Click Home > Add > Add videos and photos and select your video from your camera or SD card.
  2. Under video tools, click Edit.
  3. Drag the slider on the video preview to the point you want the video to start and click Set start point. Do the same at the end and click Set end point.

iMovie

  1. Click Import and select the video from your camera or SD card.
  2. Double-click the video, and drag the slider at the beginning to where you want to the video to start. Do the same for the end.

This is a very small step that ensures your video starts and ends at the right time. You can go farther by cutting out certain parts, or alternating shots between two cameras, but those require some more advanced skills.

If you want to learn more about video editing, our five-part guide will teach you everything you need to turn your amateur video into something much more professional. Once you get the hang of it, you’ll be able to edit together multiple angles and different scenes.

 

Keep Your Video Safe and Protected

The last thing you want is your video to end up online or for someone to come across it on your computer on accident. Your most secure option is to agree to watch the tape together, then immediately delete it. You’ll still get to enjoy your home movie, with the added peace of mind of knowing no one else will. Another is to keep your faces out of the film, or wear some sort of eye mask to partially obscure your face. Of course, this won’t completely protect your privacy, but could give you some level of plausible deniability.

If you want to keep your footage, let’s make sure you take a few precautions:

  • Do not upload your video to any cloud storage: This sounds like obvious advice, but under no circumstances should you upload your video to any cloud storage service like iCloud, Dropbox, or whatever else. If you’re recording your tape on your phone, be sure to turn off any automatic uploads you may have enabled in the cloud storage app of your choice. Also, get that video off your phone and onto your computer as soon as possible so you’re not carrying around your sex tape in your pocket all day long.
  • Encrypt and hide the video on your hard drive: Okay, first, the self-explanatory: don’t name your video something like “oursextape0111.mpg.” Name the video something conspicuous that you’ll still remember and put it in a folder somewhere nobody’s going to just stumble on it. Next, you’ll want to encrypt and password protect the video so nobody else can watch it. The best way to do this is with a program like VeraCrypt, which creates a private, password-protected virtual disk that’s hidden on your system. After installing Veracrypt, open it up and select the Create a Volume option. Choose “Create an encrypted file container,” and then select your video file. Pick where you want to save it, select AES encryption, then enter a password. From then on, it’ll be protected from prying eyes. Check out our full guide to encryption for more info on how to use VeraCrypt. You can go beyond that with other encryption options if you want, but password protecting your video should be plenty.
  • Delete your videos securely: If you decide you want to delete your video—like if you’re selling your old computer or phone—doing so securely is serious business. For phones, we’ve walked you through the process of wiping it securely so nobody can pull up your video after you sell it. As for deleting that video from your computer, you can use a program like Eraser on Windows or Permanent Eraser on Mac to make sure that video it deleted for good.

There’s no such thing as a foolproof way for keeping your video secure and private, so know the risks before you film it. Still, it’s easy enough to keep your sex tape relatively safe as long as you take the above precautions.

 

9/22/15 4:00pm

http://afterhours.lifehacker.com/how-to-make-a-sex-tape-that-doesnt-suck-1730556997