These are our questions to get you started with your videos for Northern Lights:

1. What can you see?
2. What do you wish you had seen?
3. What do you want to see in the future?

But there’s more; how do you feel about what you are seeing? We had a quick chat with Northern Lights creative director Nick Higgins about ways to engage with your subject and give your clip that extra interest.

What makes a great submission?
Nick: Many things make a great submission; obviously something which stands out, says something unique or edgy is interesting but sometimes the strongest submissions are those that quite simply share a world we’ve never encountered in an honest and authentic way. It doesn’t need to be spectacular, just true to who you are and what you care about.

What should participants be asking themselves when thinking about making a video for Northern Lights?
Nick: We all have things we can video – that’s the easy part; the more interesting aspect of it is what we feel about what we see. What do you feel about your life? Does it make you happy, sad, angry, etc? What is it you want to communicate in your video? How can you convey that meaning and feeling to an audience?

What is the best way for a participant to engage with their chosen subject?
Nick: To challenge it; to find out what is unique and interesting about it. Try and share a point of view that we might not have seen before and that could be funny, angry or poetic.

What are the benefits of engaging with a subject in this way?
Nick: It makes for a more compelling video. But also, you may find something new in that subject, and you may find something new in yourself. It’s like keeping a diary; it’s not until we express how we feel about something that we really come to terms with what we think. This is why video diaries are so interesting. Why not keep one for the next three months?

What makes a video engaging?
Nick: This comes from you being engaged emotionally and personally with your subject. It also comes from asking questions about your subject; you don’t always need to know the answer but a good question or observation is always involving.

What else should we think about before we get started?
Nick: Don’t think too much, trust yourself. The key is to get started. Submissions are open for three months and you might be surprised by how engaged people are by a world you perhaps take for granted. This really is a chance to re-discover Scotland through the eyes and thoughts of the people who live here.