My Video Gear – 2022

My Video Gear – 2022

Creativity Letterbox

People often ask me what gear I use to make my videos, so I’ll keep this post up to date to save us time!

Thanks for asking – but please know that in terms of finding equipment for your projects, my rule of thumb is to decide on a budget and find something that works within that. I started off filming bands on a Handycam bought on eBay, and I worked up from there. I’ve been doing this for 20+ years now, and now own some very nice pieces of equipment, but you don’t have to spend a lot of money to get good results.

Your ideas are the most valuable part of anything you make – so just make stuff.

Please note: this post contains affiliate links. If you click through and buy the item (or any other item in the same web session) I will receive a small percentage from the sale, but you won’t be charged any extra. So, by clicking my links you are directly supporting my future music and videos – thank you. Please do shop around, though!!


Cameras

  • Main camera: Canon R6
    (I also highly recommend the Canon 80D or similar if you’re on a budget)

Tripods

  • Manfrotto BeFree travel tripod – I love this because it goes really tall and is very steady, unlike most smaller / lighter tripods. I use it all the time in my studio, not just for travel.

Lenses

The three lenses I use for video

If I ever had £2000+ lying about I’d love the Canon 15-35mm RF lens but…yeah right!

Lenses I already owned from my event photography days


Audio

Audio is more important than picture quality – I mean it!

  • Tascam DR-10 portable recorder – I have trust issues with radio mics but many people use them with no issue, and there are some really affordable options these days. I prefer to use the Tascam, though, and plug in the Rode Lavalier II (though the Tascam comes with its own lav mic which is fine but not great). The Rode Lavalier Go is also an excellent wired lavalier mic.

Lighting

I ignored lighting for years, assuming it was really difficult and really expensive. It’s actually not hard to do a decent job, just search for “three point lighting tutorial” on YouTube or Skillshare!

  • Godox SL-60W (my “posh” light, that I use as the main / key light) – there is a “silent” Godox ML-60 now which is better for video (though more expensive), though honestly I don’t pick up noise off this as I make sure my microphone is away from the camera on a stand.
  • Smallrig RA-D55 Parabolic Softbox – goes perfectly with the Godox, diffuses the light and is compact, unlike this Andoer Godox SB-UE 80cm softbox I had originally which would be great for larger spaces.

Bits and bobs


THANK YOU for visiting my website! I’m Laura Kidd, a music producer, songwriter and podcaster based in Bristol, UK. It’s great to meet you.

Get your copy of my album “Exotic Monsters” and browse my back catalogue right here.

+ Get two free songs immediately when you sign up for thoughtful letters about art and music.

+ Watch my weekly YouTube videos here and browse episodes of my music podcast “Attention Engineer” here.

+ You can also follow me around the web, on TwitterInstagram and Facebook.

Have a lovely day xo

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Be more Kate Bush

Be more Kate Bush

Creativity Letterbox

Kate Bush’s 1985 song “Running Up That Hill” is top of the UK singles chart for the second week in a row, 37 years after release! After appearing as Max’s saviour song in “Stranger Things Season 4”, the song is reaching a whole new audience, and I’m delighted to see it happening.

In this video I talk about how and why to “be more Kate Bush”.


🎵 The music in this video is the instrumental version of my song “Out Of The Blue”.
➡️ Listen here
➡️ Get the album here

🔎 I mention my friend Marc Burrows’ article “Muso Snobs Don’t Own Kate Bush” – read that here

Join my mailing list for free songs and stories, subscribe here for future videos and get involved from the start of Penfriend album #2 by joining The Correspondent’s Club.

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Experience “Exotic Monsters” Live!

Experience “Exotic Monsters” Live!

Letterbox Music News

Let’s celebrate! It’s one year since my debut Penfriend album landed at #5 in the Independent Albums Chart and #24 in the Official UK Albums Chart, and got me a spot next to Billie Eilish in Music Week Magazine.

I couldn’t have done this without your support, so I’d love you to join me for a special FREE livestream event.

The gig will take place on my YouTube channel – here’s the direct link to set a reminder / watch live on the night / watch later.

Hooray live music!
Hooray first gig poster in forever!

If you’re a Facebooker, here’s the event – all sharing much appreciated!

And if you’re like “Exotic whatnow?” – here’s the album.

Hope to see you there xo


THANK YOU for visiting my website! I’m Laura Kidd, a music producer, songwriter and podcaster based in Bristol, UK. It’s great to meet you.

Get your copy of my album “Exotic Monsters” and browse my back catalogue right here.

+ Get two free songs immediately when you sign up for thoughtful letters about art and music.

+ Watch my weekly YouTube videos here and browse episodes of my music podcast “Attention Engineer” here.

+ You can also follow me around the web, on TwitterInstagram and Facebook.

Have a lovely day xo


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A week in my life as an independent artist VLOG

A week in my life as an independent artist VLOG

Letterbox Mindfulness

I wanted to share an average week in my life as an independent artist BUT it went slightly off track because I got a new puppy!!

I still got a lot done though, so join me behind the scenes of this self-employed musician, artist and video maker creating things in my home studio and making direct connections with music fans via the internet.

Join my mailing list for free songs and stories, subscribe here for future videos and get involved from the start of Penfriend album #2 by joining The Correspondent’s Club.


THANK YOU for visiting my website! I’m Laura Kidd, a music producer, songwriter and podcaster based in Bristol, UK. It’s great to meet you.

Get your copy of my new album “Exotic Monsters” right here.

+ Get two free songs immediately when you sign up for thoughtful letters about art and music.

+ Join my Correspondent’s Club for exclusive member perks, and to power the making of new music, videos and more.

+ Browse episodes of my music podcast “Attention Engineer” here and subscribe via your favourite podcast platform.

+ You can also follow me around the web, on YouTubeTwitterInstagram and Facebook.

Have a lovely day xo



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Plans change…

Plans change…

Letterbox Mindfulness

…meet Luna the 8-week old Cavapoo puppy from Wales who’s taken over my life. I love her. Tim loves her. Albydog loves her and guards her while she’s sleeping. My heart!

In this video, I use my 41st birthday as a benchmark to compare my January 2022 plans with what’s happened since, talking about what’s gone awry, what’s changed and what’s coming from Obey Robots, She Makes War and Penfriend.

I also discuss what it’s like to be a monetized YouTuber, what I’ve earned so far (oh, the £££!) and what it feels like to have stuck to a weekly upload schedule for 27 weeks in a row.

Plus…puppyyyyyyyyy! Subscribe here for future videos and get involved from the start of Penfriend album #2 by joining The Correspondent’s Club.


THANK YOU for visiting my website! I’m Laura Kidd, a music producer, songwriter and podcaster based in Bristol, UK. It’s great to meet you.

Get your copy of my new album “Exotic Monsters” right here.

+ Get two free songs immediately when you sign up for thoughtful letters about art and music.

+ Join my Correspondent’s Club for exclusive member perks, and to power the making of new music, videos and more.

+ Browse episodes of my music podcast “Attention Engineer” here and subscribe via your favourite podcast platform.

+ You can also follow me around the web, on YouTubeTwitterInstagram and Facebook.

Have a lovely day xo



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For anyone feeling overwhelmed…

For anyone feeling overwhelmed…

Letterbox Mindfulness

I made this video to help. I’ve been feeling completely overwhelmed lately, and I know I’m not the only one. World events can make it feel like our “first world problems” don’t matter, but grief, stress and sadness can be a very heavy load. It can be hard to take care of our physical and mental health, whatever level of privilege we enjoy.

In 2019 I was gifted a bag of poppy seeds at one of my gigs, and this week they’ve been instrumental in helping me find a way forward. 2022 hasn’t been a great year, and that’s ok – I’ll keep trying to keep trying, and I hope you will too x


THANK YOU for visiting my website! I’m Laura Kidd, a music producer, songwriter and podcaster based in Bristol, UK. It’s great to meet you.

Get your copy of my new album “Exotic Monsters” right here.

+ Get two free songs immediately when you sign up for thoughtful letters about art and music.

+ Join my Correspondent’s Club for exclusive member perks, and to power the making of new music, videos and more.

+ Browse episodes of my music podcast “Attention Engineer” here and subscribe via your favourite podcast platform.

+ You can also follow me around the web, on YouTubeTwitterInstagram and Facebook.

Have a lovely day xo



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It’s one year since THIS happened…

It’s one year since THIS happened…

Letterbox Music News

My first album under the name Penfriend (and my fifth solo album), “Exotic Monsters” marked the start of a new musical chapter. Written, produced and recorded in my home studio The Launchpad between February 2019 and September 2020, and funded by my beloved member’s club, the album was released on my label My Big Sister Recordings on 21st May 2021.

Thanks to the support of independently minded music fans, it reached #24 in the Official UK Album Chart the following week (plus #5 in the Independent Album Chart and #3 in the downloads chart!), a win for indie music makers and fans everywhere. We bloody did it!

Thank you so much for helping make my childhood dreams come true. Thank you for supporting indie musicians. We need you! Eternal thanks to all Supersub Club and Correspondent’s Club members for always having my back. 🖤🖤🖤

Now then…who’s ready to make another album?

🛒 Get a copy of “Exotic Monsters” on limited edition coloured vinyl or CD plus browse my back catalogue and merch in my shop.

🔍 Read more about how I made the album and how we got it in the pop charts.

Stream the album in full below and scroll down for the three music videos so far…






THANK YOU for visiting my website! I’m Laura Kidd, a music producer, songwriter and podcaster based in Bristol, UK. It’s great to meet you.

Get your copy of my album “Exotic Monsters” and browse my back catalogue right here.

+ Get two free songs immediately when you sign up for thoughtful letters about art and music.

+ Watch my weekly YouTube videos here and browse episodes of my music podcast “Attention Engineer” here.

+ You can also follow me around the web, on TwitterInstagram and Facebook.

Have a lovely day xo


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“Little Battles” mini gig experience

“Little Battles” mini gig experience

Creativity Letterbox

My second She Makes War album “Little Battles” just turned 10, so I celebrated with an online gig on 27th April 2022, welcoming you into the new Launchpad for the first time!

Here are three songs from the show: Magpie Heart,. Shields And Daggers and In This Boat.


NEXT:

+ Get studio quality recordings of the full gig here for a limited time, pay what you want/can

+ I’m releasing “Little Battles” plus my debut album “Disarm” on limited edition vinyl for the first time this year, along with CDs and rarities collections

+ Watch the full livestream here


THANK YOU for visiting my website! I’m Laura Kidd, a music producer, songwriter and podcaster based in Bristol, UK. It’s great to meet you.

Get your copy of my new album “Exotic Monsters” right here.

+ Get two free songs immediately when you sign up for thoughtful letters about art and music.

+ Join my Correspondent’s Club for exclusive member perks, and to power the making of new music, videos and podcast episodes.

+ Browse episodes of my music podcast “Attention Engineer” here and subscribe via your favourite podcast platform.

+ You can also follow me around the web, on YouTubeTwitterInstagram and Facebook.

Have a lovely day xo



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“Black Car” on Welcome To Night Vale!

“Black Car” on Welcome To Night Vale!

Letterbox Music News

I’m somewhat stunned and very excited to announce my song “Black Car” is The Weather on episode 208 of the Welcome To Night Vale podcast, “Cecil in The Big City”.

Wow. Hugest thanks to the Night Vale team for picking my song. What an honour!

I wrote and recorded “Black Car” alone in my home studio The Launchpad in September 2020. It’s a song about love and death, guilt and gratitude, taking time to figure out what’s most important, feeling desperately sad and isolated and grieving the loss of so many.

I don’t know what other bands “Black Car” sounds like, or have any clever phrases lined up to entreat you to click “play”. This is an honest, melancholy song about a universal experience that will be discussed in the history books of the future, guitars and synths centred around a heady electronic heartbeat, with a reverent Kurt Vonnegut reference (“loving echoes”) in the middle.

Keep your loved ones close x

GET THE SONG // READ MORE


THANK YOU for visiting my website! I’m Laura Kidd, a music producer, songwriter and podcaster based in Bristol, UK. It’s great to meet you.

Get your copy of my album “Exotic Monsters” and browse my back catalogue right here.

+ Get two free songs immediately when you sign up for thoughtful letters about art and music.

+ Watch my weekly YouTube videos here and browse episodes of my music podcast “Attention Engineer” here.

+ You can also follow me around the web, on TwitterInstagram and Facebook.

Have a lovely day xo

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Make that thing! How I write songs and why I stay independent

Make that thing! How I write songs and why I stay independent

Creativity Letterbox Mindfulness

Answering your questions on how I make things work as an independent musician, music producer and YouTuber in 2022, how I write lyrics, who I’d like to cover my songs and who my dream collab would be (spoiler: Massive Attack / The Prodigy / UNKLE!).

Thanks for such great questions! Head to Barnsdale Wood, Rutland Water to see these gorgeous bluebells for yourself.


PEOPLE AND ARTISTS MENTIONED IN THE VIDEO

Thomas Truax – handmade instruments and great songs
Shaun Hautly – Ace YouTuber

Broken Down Golf Cart – brilliant music and animated videos

My fave new recording artists
Wet Leg
Wallice
Faye Webster

My favourite Bristol artists
Silver Stairs of Ketchikan
Thought Forms
Emily Breeze
Milkie

NEXT:

Subscribe to my channel for more videos xo


THANK YOU for visiting my website! I’m Laura Kidd, a music producer, songwriter and podcaster based in Bristol, UK. It’s great to meet you.

Get your copy of my new album “Exotic Monsters” right here.

+ Get two free songs immediately when you sign up for thoughtful letters about art and music.

+ Join my Correspondent’s Club for exclusive member perks, and to power the making of new music, videos and podcast episodes.

+ Browse episodes of my music podcast “Attention Engineer” here and subscribe via your favourite podcast platform.

+ You can also follow me around the web, on YouTubeTwitterInstagram and Facebook.

Have a lovely day xo



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