Making a Music Video on iPhone in One Take – BTS with Lazybones

by | Jan 13, 2019 | Behind the Scenes

This project was a unique challenge that I undertook with the Brighton-based band Lazybones, specifically for their song “Heartbeat Like a Drum”.

Concept and Planning

Song and Video Concept

  • Song Theme: “Heartbeat Like a Drum” is essentially a love song capturing the excitement of being near someone you fancy.
  • Video Approach: Lazybones wanted a video that mirrored their personality as a band – fun, quirky, and approachable. The goal was to create a video that invites viewers to connect with the band, not to showcase them as unapproachably cool.

Execution Strategy

  • One Take on iPhone: The band wanted the video shot in one take using an iPhone, embracing the challenges and limitations it presented.
  • Preparation: We held a detailed planning session in a pub, sketching out the entire shoot, step by step. However, the actual execution was the first time we went through the complete process.

Challenges and Solutions

Technical Challenges

  • Stabilization: To achieve smooth footage, I constructed a custom rig using a piece of wood and a Zhiyun Smooth Q mobile gimbal.
  • Monitoring: I used an iPad with an improvised sunshade for exposure monitoring.
  • Battery Management: The iPhone’s battery life and overheating were significant concerns. I used DJI drone batteries as power packs for charging.

Filming Challenges

  • Brightness: The shoot day was extremely bright, presenting exposure challenges. In hindsight, using filters on the phone lens could have been beneficial.
  • Coordination: Ensuring props and performers were in the right place at the right time was a complex task, especially with limited hands on deck.
  • Physical Strain: As the primary videographer, I faced physical challenges, like constant movement and dealing with intense sun exposure.

The Filming Process

  • Rehearsals: We spent around five hours rehearsing the two-and-a-half-minute song, perfecting the choreography of movements and prop placements.
  • Takes: We ended up doing twelve official takes, with numerous rehearsals preceding these.
  • Creative Solution: To facilitate movement and prop coordination, we slowed the track down to 80% during filming and sped it up in post-production.

Post-Production and Final Thoughts

  • Editing: The one-take approach significantly simplified the editing process. It mainly involved trimming the beginning and end, plus color grading.
  • Outcome: Despite the challenges, the video captured the essence of Lazybones – it was fun, authentic, and highlighted the band’s unique character.


The experience of shooting a music video on an iPhone in one take was both challenging and rewarding. It pushed the boundaries of what’s possible with smartphone videography and emphasized the importance of creativity and resourcefulness.

For more insights and to see the video in action, check out the full video on YouTube. If you’re inspired to try iPhone videography, remember, you can achieve remarkable results with just the phone in your pocket!

Till next time, keep exploring new horizons in videography!

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I'm Will Chidlow, passionate about creating visually captivating content that tells a story. Whether it's through video production, photography, or content creation, I'm here to help you share your ideas with the world. Learn more about my work. Follow me on Instagram and don’t forget to subscribe to my YouTube channel.

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