Shot Size Chart

The Shot Size Chart provides descriptions and examples of various camera shots used in filmmaking, including extreme long shots, long shots, medium shots, close-ups, bird’s eye views, high angle shots, low angle shots, dutch angles, point of view shots, over-the-shoulder shots, tracking shots, and panning shots.
Shot Size Description Frame Example
Extreme Long Shot (ELS) Captures a very wide area to show the scale of subjects in relation to their environment. Often used for establishing a location. Entire mountain range with tiny figures in the foreground.
Long Shot (LS) Shows the entire subject from head to toe. Also called a wide shot (WS), it establishes the subject’s environment. A person standing in a room, full body in view.
Medium Long Shot (MLS) Shows the subject from about the knees up. Also known as a 3/4 shot. Person seen from knees up, revealing some background details.
Medium Shot (MS) Frames the subject from waist up. This shot balances the subject and their surrounding environment. Person framed from the waist up, with the background visible around them.
Medium Close-Up (MCU) Shows the subject from the chest up. This close shot allows for more detailed expressions. Individual seen from chest up, focusing more on facial expressions.
Close-Up (CU) Frames the subject’s face, capturing emotions and details. Sometimes may focus on a specific detail like hands or eyes. Close view of the subject’s face or hands, highlighting details and emotions.
Extreme Close-Up (ECU) Very tightly frames a part or detail of the subject, like the eyes, mouth, or an object in someone’s hand. It emphasizes details. Only the subject’s eyes or mouth in the frame, showing intense detail.
Bird’s Eye View This shot is taken directly above the scene to provide an overall perspective of the area, often establishing context or location. Overhead view of a scene, as if from a bird’s perspective.
High Angle Shot The camera is positioned above the subject, looking down. This angle can make the subject seem vulnerable or small. Subject seen from above, creating a sense of vulnerability or diminishment.
Low Angle Shot The camera is positioned below the subject, looking up. This shot can make the subject appear powerful or threatening. Subject seen from a low point, looking up to portray power or dominance.
Dutch Angle/Tilt The camera is tilted on its side, creating a sense of disorientation or tension. Scene appears slanted, suggesting imbalance or tension.
Point of View Shot (POV) Shows the perspective of a scene from a particular character’s viewpoint. It invites the audience to see through the character’s eyes. What a character might be seeing from their own eyes, such as a view down a hallway.
Over-the-Shoulder Shot Shows the subject or scene over the shoulder of another person. It’s often used in conversations to show reactions and emotions of both speakers. Camera positioned over the shoulder of a character, showing the perspective towards another character or object.
Tracking Shot The camera moves along with the subject — it can follow, precede, circle, or move alongside the subject. Following a subject as they move through an environment, keeping them in frame.
Panning Shot The camera moves horizontally from a fixed position. It can reveal further elements of the scene or follow a moving subject. Camera rotates from a fixed point, showing a horizontal sweep of the environment.

The Shot Size Chart provides a comprehensive overview of different shot sizes commonly used in cinematography. These shot sizes play a crucial role in conveying the intended message and capturing the emotions and details of the subjects. From extreme long shots to close-ups and unique angles, each shot size has its purpose and effect on storytelling. Understanding these shot sizes can greatly enhance the visual storytelling in films, television shows, and other media forms.


What is a shot size chart?

A shot size chart is a visual guide that categorizes and provides information about different sizes of shots used in various industries, such as film and photography.

What units are typically used in a shot size chart?

Shot size charts commonly use units like millimeters (mm) or inches (in) to represent the size of shots.

How is a shot size chart useful?

Shot size charts help professionals determine the appropriate shot size to achieve the desired outcome. They provide a quick reference for selecting the right shot size for a specific purpose.

What are the different categories of shot sizes in a shot size chart?

Shot size charts generally categorize shots into sizes like extreme close-up (ECU), close-up (CU), medium close-up (MCU), medium shot (MS), and wide shot (WS), among others.

Why is understanding shot sizes important?

Understanding shot sizes is crucial in visual storytelling and communication. Each shot size conveys a specific message, emotion, or perspective, and knowing how to use them effectively enhances the overall quality and impact of a visual project.

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