Thanks to advances in technology, making a high-quality home movie is easier than ever. This means graduations, little league games, family reunions, and Christmas mornings can all be documented and preserved for generations to come. Easy DIY home videos have also increased the popularity of legacy videos.

What is a Legacy Video?

In lieu of a scrapbook, some families have started making short documentary-style movies, called a legacy video, to document their aging parent’s life and achievements. These videos will normally consist of casual interviews with the aging parent, their children, and their friends. It can also include some old photos along the way to illustrate their life.

How to Make a Legacy Video

The first step is to get your equipment squared away. Using your smartphone will be the easiest option, but you can upgrade to a DSLR camera with a video function if you want. Regardless of the camera, you’ll probably want to invest in a good mic and tripod. These two pieces of equipment will make a huge difference in the quality of your video, and you can pick up both for a pretty reasonable price. They even make tripods and mics for phones! Here are some quick tips for shooting great iPhone footage.

Next, you’ll want to make a list of people you want to interview. It’s best to give your interviewees a list of questions and prompts you’ll be asking them ahead of time so they can plan their answers. Scheduling interviews around holidays and family gatherings is an easy way to knock out a lot of interviews in one day.

While you’re working on getting all the interviews, you can also ask people for photos and memorabilia. This can take a while so it’s best to start this process early. Ideally, you’ll want to get photos of the events and stories that are being discussed in the interview.

Now the only thing that’s left to do is put it all together, which isn’t as easy as it sounds. Before you start, it’s best to think about all the stories you’ve heard and try to write out a rough outline of the narrative you want to tell in the video. This will save you a lot of time sifting through footage.

Legacy videos allow families to remember their loved ones after they pass, and they can even help the grieving process. Getting to hear their voice again and learn about all the great things they did in their life can be a great comfort.