Continuity of movement: A moving subject attracts attention more readily than a static one, but continuous movement exhausts the interest. When action is momentarily interrupted or changes direction, the impact is even greater.

Continuity of movementLine-crossing. Camera angles can easily influence the viewer’s sense of direction and spatial relationships if camera positions are not selected carefully. To avoid this, draw an imaginary line along the direction of the action (called the action line, axis of action, or eye line). Then make sure the cameras shoot from only one side of this line and not cross it. It is possible to dolly across the line, shoot along it, or change its direction by regrouping people, but cutting between cameras on both sides of this imaginary line produces a reverse cut or jump cut.

Anticipating editing

One should think about the editing process while shooting. If proper planning is in place, the director and camera operator should have a good idea of how the shots should be created.


Any time you and the camera are ready to take the next shot, think about future editing or you will end up with a series of shots that do not fit together. This happens often when repositioning the camera to shoot a repeated scene from a different location.

The most frequent problems are:

  • Part of the action is missing.
  • The action shot from another angle does not match that from a previous shot.
  • The direction of the action has changed between successive shots.
  • The shot sizes are too similar or too extreme.
  • Action leaves the frame, and re-enters it on the same side
  • Successive shots show continuity differences, such as with and without glasses or different clothing.

Improving Editing Flexibility. When shooting, editing flexibility can help in many ways.