I had some interesting feedback on the last article, where I showed a setup like this to demonstrate how you can look into someone’s eyes on a video call.

Man looking at screen

As we seek to create an on line experience that is as close to reality as possible, being able to look into someone’s eyes seemed like a sensible.

But it is not that simple

1 to 1 video calls are intense, much more so than 1 to 1 meetings in real life.

The discussion I had centred around how the video calls draws you in to focus on the screen as it’s the only thing that both parties are privy to.

How do you feel if I turn my head to look away from the screen and focus on something that you can’t see?

Man looking at screen

In the real world you could look too. But not on a video call.

So we are almost duty bound to focus our attention on the screen and to tell the other person what is going on if we need to look away. I often look down to write notes, so I try to remember to say so – I think that says “I value what you say so much that I want to write it down”

So, back to the screen, we are focussing more of our meeting time looking close to or at the person on the other end. In real life, we don’t intensely look at someone’s eyes, that would be creepy, but we do look I the general area of their face, to show we are listening. So, should we not mirror that on a video call?

If you look into someone’s eyes you get this kind of image staring at you (no one wants that!)

Man looking at screen

So, we tried various camera positions to find that happy medium and it turns out that having your camera about eye level and slightly above the eyes of the person at the other end, meant that you could have a more natural view, appearing to look in their direction without freaking them out.

Man looking at screen

As I said in the last article, It’s not real contact, but it is a step closer!

Andy from Photohello is a Visual Alchemist bringing you media in many forms to help you raise your marketing game: andy@photohello.co.uk


Part one is on this link