How to Use Zoom: Tips from a Photographer & Videographer

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These days, we are all spending a good deal of time on Zoom. At Endicott College specifically, Zoom has become the primary method for lectures, live mockups of work, and even club meetings. At this point, we feel that our community members are well-versed in how to use Zoom in a functional sense, but in this article we want to focus on putting your best foot—or in this case, face—forward while using it.

The tips below were given to us by Endicott’s own Photographer/Videographer and School of Visual & Performing Arts alumnus David Le ’10. Le is an expert photographer with heavy experience in academic image-making, particularly in the areas of athletics and live events. Beyond Endicott, he has worked for The Salem News, The Gloucester Daily Times, and The Eagle Tribune, so capturing a moment, or the perfect Zoom is absolutely something we trust him with.

Clear the space

As we struggle to adjust to working on kitchen tables, in living rooms, and in all manner of other places, if possible, we suggest taking the time to consider your background. Clear the space of distractions and clutter so that your call can be all about you (especially if you are doing a virtual interview). Le says, “Although mundane, just the white walls of an office or living space are very professional.”

Add some personality

While we do suggest clearing away distractions, a bit of your personality is a good choice! Think about placing a plant or vase of flowers on a side table in the background. That sort of décor is tasteful, visually appealing, and can help add depth to the space.

Lighting matters

Le says, “Choose a room that is well lit and relatively quiet, ideally with a door, so you can have some privacy during your call.”

He continues, “Optimal lighting conditions are during the daytime, when you can use a window to light yourself and the space you choose to Zoom in. Window light is very flattering and will evenly illuminate your face, without creating harsh shadows.

“Position your laptop or desktop so that you are facing the window. Avoid having the windows directly behind you, as it will cause a halo effect and chances are that your face will be dark, or the background will be extremely over-exposed.

Get the right angle

As with any photographic endeavor, we urge you to consider your angle. Le says, “Elevating your laptop, tablet, or other device you might be using on a stack of books or on a higher table or desk, will allow you to be at eye level, or slightly below. Overall, that small change will result in a more flattering video.”

Dress for success

Zoom is being used for everything from casual nights with friends to real-deal job interviews. Dress appropriately for the occasion.

Here are some quick hit tips: 

  • Choose solid colors.
  • Avoid flashy or patterned clothes.
  • Remove chains or jewelry that could potentially make excess noise.

Le says, “If you are on a Zoom interview call for a job or potential internship, dress as if you were meeting them in person.” He laughs, “At a minimum, it will help you get out of the same pair of sweats you’ve been wearing the entire week!

Think about audio

While this article is primarily focused on visual tips, audio matters too. This is of particular importance when you are being recorded. Oftentimes, we record sessions that are edited into more comprehensive pieces later, and audio is definitely an obstacle when it isn’t used correctly.

Le says, “It is preferable when on a Zoom call to use headphones when listening to, and joining in on the conversation. Headphones reduce potential distracting background noise, and also cuts down on the feedback if you were to play the Zoom audio through your computer speakers.”


We hope these tips help you showcase the best of you! Go out there and knock ‘em out, Gulls!

Video Zoom tips for Endicott College