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Storytelling through videography is one of the most captivating forms of communication for our brand. It helps honor our past, celebrate our traditions, define our identity and unleash our imagination.

The University of Idaho has stories to tell, and through every video, we unveil a little bit more to the world about who we are and the value we bring to the state of Idaho and beyond.

The Video Process

All video projects should begin with a clear understanding of the communication objectives as well as a thoughtful storytelling approach. Prior to any video production, producers should:

  • Define the tone and communication objectives.
  • Define the target audience.
  • Define the action and/or conversation.
  • Determine the channel(s) of distribution.
  • Compile a thorough shot list.
  • Scout locations with the videographer.
  • Make sure all cast and crew are available within the schedule and budget.
  • When budget and timeline allow, provide a storyboard for visuals to align with the script. 
  • Work to develop a clear, concise and producible script or project outline based on budget, timeline and need.

Every video tells a story, and a large part of how the story resonates with the viewer, both emotionally and logically, depends on production techniques. That is why every technical and tactical decision should be motivated by the communication objectives set in pre-production, with a careful consideration of tone and context for the target audience. All video should abide by these guidelines for each component of production.


  • Use natural light sources when possible.
  • Establish a proper white balance to ensure flattering natural skin tones.
  • When artificial lighting is required, it should not appear contrived.


  • Create visual interest for the viewer.
  • Consider multiple vantage points at which every shot can be captured.
  • When possible, use more than one camera with different focal lengths on each scene.
  • Consider principles of design when framing subjects.

Camera Support

  • Steady camera movement is recommended for most shots. Camera stabilization devices — such as a gimbal, brushless motor system or tripod — should be used to create smooth and consistent camera movements. This helps the viewer to focus on the content and not the camera.
  • Camera movement should match storytelling objectives and never be erratic.
  • Consider other camera mounting options as well as height and proximity for capturing unique angles and environments.


  • Bad audio is less forgiving than bad video. Always use professional recording equipment and monitor sound closely.
  • In every environment, consider background, machine and HVAC noise. Position your subject in a location conducive to capturing high-quality and uninterrupted audio.

The production process after shooting the video is very important. This is where editing, music, motion graphics and sound design really come into play. So it’s important to use the approved typography in this brand guide for all supers, cards and any typography-based motion graphics. We also recommend using clean, simple transitions between scenes, and ensuring sound design is created in a way that enhances the video, but doesn’t get in the way of its eloquence.

  • Editing
    • Pacing should match the intended energy and tone.
    • Use simple and sophisticated transitions that do not distract from the story.
    • Assure consistent color-grading from scene to scene.
    • Work to hide all cuts both visibly and audibly with supporting footage, cards, motion graphics and natural sound.
  • Sound Design
    • Always sync audio with visuals.
    • Speech must be articulate and audible.
    • Licensed music must be used with legal permission.
    • Select music that matches tone and communication goals.
    • Capture high-quality natural sound to mix in whenever possible. Clean, crisp sounds help immerse your audience in the story.

Visual Elements

Videos produced by the University of Idaho should support the brand visually through the use of U of I colors, fonts and logos.

For more information about getting access to U of I’s templates for cards, lower thirds, motion graphics and other visual elements, contact the Video Production Center at or 208-885-0569.


  • Cards should use university-approved wordmarks and logos.
  • Always use brand fonts and keep text within title-safe zones.
  • Opening and closing cards should appear briefly on screen, so to not distract from storytelling or disrupt pacing.
  • Font size should be large enough to be legible, but not overpowering.

Lower Thirds

  • Use a concise attribution that highlights the subject’s most significant role or title within the context of the story.
  • Always use brand fonts and keep text within title-safe zones. Font size should be large enough to be legible, but not overpowering.
  • Lower-third graphics can be positioned on the left or right side of the frame, depending on the subject’s location.
  • When possible, use a university-approved template. For assistance developing a custom card that meets approved guidelines, contact UCM.
  • All videos must include captions to identify speaker(s) in video.
  • Caption descriptor (e.g. job title, student major, etc.) should be in title case and grammatically correct formatting. (Note: this is an update to previous brand guidelines, which used all lowercase design elements.)

Motion Graphics

  • All motion graphics should be appropriately timed with pacing and sound design.
  • Motion graphics should not use distracting pre-set transitions or filters.
  • Transitions should have reason and meaning, such as moving the viewer between sections, highlighting key messages or concluding a section.
  • All video should identify the University of Idaho at the end of each segment using the closing motion graphics created by Creative Services. Please contact the Video Center at 208-885-0569 to request files.

Video Closing Card

  • All videos should end with the University of Idaho main logo closing graphic.
  • Only the main U of I logo can be used in the closing scene graphic. College logos or department graphic marks are not to replace or be added to the main logo closing graphic. (The college/department will be identified in the channel used to send the video).
  • It is not necessary to include a URL in the video closing card. Video traffic can be tracked through the channel where the video is posted.
  • Using only the main U of I logo at the end of all videos unifies our voice and creates a strong, cohesive U of I brand.

Closed Captioning

  • Closed captioning is mandatory – please ensure Digital Services is reminded of this.

Open and Close Sequences

Creative Services

Physical Address:
875 Perimeter Drive MS 3235
Moscow, ID 83844-3235

Phone: 208-885-6293