Finding interesting locations can dramatically increase the production value of your film
The locations of your film can set the mood and atmosphere and make your film look more visually pleasing. Fortunately these days there are soo many tools available online to help you find interesting locations without leaving your house, but travelling and exploring new places plays a big part in filmmaking too! Here are a few tools I currently use to find interesting locations.
When I was searching for a location for Road To Hell I knew I wanted a long, empty, baron road. I knew it was almost impossible to find a long empty road within Greater London that was safe to shoot on. I remember going on a short Summer break to Eastbourne, Beachy Head where I drove on a long empty road during the afternoon (I told you travelling comes in useful!) so I looked up the road on Google Maps Street View, and I found it. I then continued my research using Instagram and Flickr to discover what other people have found in the area. The great thing about these sites are that people post their best pictures of what they discovered. These people have done all the hard work for you since they have found the best viewpoint, angle, time of day etc. Another advantage of these sites is that you can talk to the people who uploaded the picture! Feel free to ask them - How do I get to this place? Where is it? What's nearby? I have shown some of my research below:
Airbnb is an extremely useful service for finding unique homes for making films. There are soo many amazing places you can rent out on Airbnb from houses to trailers to canal boats! Airbnb has opened up access for filmmakers to new and interesting locations around the UK and the world. But please take caution when using Airbnb for film. Here is a list of Do's and Don'ts.
1) Contact the Airbnb host with your intentions before making a reservation.
2) Offer to send your script and storyboard and be honest about what you are doing in their home.
3) Let them know you are willing to collaborate on what you can and cannot do in their home.
4) Let them know what kind of equipment you are using.
5) Let them know how many people are going to be in the house.
6) Respect that some Airbnb hosts will reject your request and will NOT allow filming in their home. Thank them for their time and move on.
7) Leave the home exactly how it was when you entered the house. This is important for building 5 star reviews so Airbnb hosts can trust you in the future.
8) Treat the home as if it were your own and respect the house rules.
1) Pressure the Airbnb host into saying yes. If they said no once then move on.
2) Lie to the Airbnb host about your intentions. The consequences can be very severe and not worth the risk.
Technology has made it really easy to find new locations but there is nothing better than travelling and discovering new places for yourself. Wherever you go, make sure you take pictures of the places you visit and put them in a Locations folder. When you're searching for a new location you can come back to this folder and refer to places you have been before.