This video glossary covers the terminology and defines the meaning of common video terms related to cameras, codecs, lighting, film set lingo, post-production workflows, and everything else you ever wanted to know about film and video production.

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There are currently 2 names in this directory beginning with the letter O.
Optical Zoom

An optical zoom refers to a zoom that happens via a lens, as opposed to a digital zoom that is applied later on in post. Optical zooms are created when a lens changes its focal length, either getting longer when zooming in or getting shorter when zooming out. Lenses that are built for zooming optically are referred to as zoom lenses, while lenses that can’t zoom at all with a fixed length are referred to as prime lenses.

Over the Shoulder Shot

Over the shoulder shots, commonly abbreviated as OTS shots, are shots taken from the perspective of the camera being behind a subject’s shoulder. These can be dirty, where the subject’s shoulder is seen in frame, or clean, where the shoulder is not in frame.

OTS shots are great for dialogue scenes where two characters are having a conversation back and forth. Depending on how they are used, they can create a feeling of intimacy or a feeling of distance from the subjects depending on how they are shot and used.

Shooting a dirty OTS on a long lens could make you feel like an observer spying on a subject from afar while shooting a clean OTS on a shorter lens makes you feel like you’re right next to the action.