Сreating a shot list can alleviate a tremendous amount of stress and pressure on actual shoot days. They can provide a clear blueprint for what needs to be shot so that you can save time. It’s important to understand all of the common shot list abbreviations used in a shot list so that you can effectively communicate your ideas to others and so that you can understand what a shot list says when the shooting days finally come.

Shot list abbreviations

Shot sizes

When using the free StudioBinder shot list software and creating a new shot, there are three different shot elements you must determine: shot size, camera angle, and camera movement

Let’s start with the camera abbreviations for the types of shot sizes. All of the shot sizes are segmented into close-ups, medium shots, and long shots.

Shot list Abbreviations Explained Shot Sizes Example

Shot list abbreviations  •  Shot sizes

To get a better understanding of every type of shot size that you can use in your shot list, check out our ultimate video guide to camera shots in which we break down every type of shot size.

Ultimate Guide to Camera Shots: Every Shot Size Explained  •  Subscribe on YouTube

When using these shot sizes in your shot list, it is important to abbreviate as to save space. Understanding what all shot list abbreviations means will also help you better communicate the visuals of a shot to the rest of your team.

CU: Close-up

MCU: Medium Close-up

ECU: Extreme Close-up

WCU: Wide Close-up

MS: Medium Shot

CS: Cowboy Shot

MCS: Medium Close Shot

WS: Wide Shot

EWS: Extreme Wide Shot

FS: Full Shot

MFS: Medium Full Shot

LS: Long Shot

ELS: Extreme Long Shot

Shot list abbreviations

Shot types

Next up, we have shot types which are determined by the camera height, angle, framing, camera focus and depth of field

Shot list abbreviations • shot types

Shot list abbreviations  •  Shot types

Before learning about how these types of shots are abbreviated, it is important to understand what the shots look like and how they are used in film and storytelling. The first element that determines the shot type is the camera height and angle.

Here is our video that breaks down all camera angles and how they are used.

Ultimate Guide to Camera Angles: Every Camera Shot Explained  •  Subscribe on YouTube

The next element that determines the shot type is camera framing. To understand the different ways a shot can be framed, give our video breakdown a watch in which we cover different compositions.

Camera Framing: Camera abbreviations  •  Subscribe on YouTube

Now that you have a solid grasp of the different types of camera shots, let’s see how they’re abbreviated. Note that not all shot types have an abbreviation. Some shot types are simply written out, but here is a list of shot types that are commonly abbreviated.

LA: Low Angle

HA: High Angle

OTS: Over-the-Shoulder

OTH: Over-the-Hip

POV: Point of View

EST: Establishing Shot

SPFX: Special Effects

Take a look at these shot list abbreviations used in action in a shot list created in StudioBinder's Shot List and Storyboard Creator. Click the image to explore the complete storyboard.


How to Make a Shot List 

Make shot listing easy by learning how to make a shot list using StudioBinders intuitive and free shot listing software. We’ll teach you how to create a shot list that is professional, clear, and simple to create. 

Up Next: Shot Listing Explained →
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  • Kyle DeGuzman graduated from San Diego State University with a Bachelor of Science in Television, Film, & New Media. He currently resides in Denver, Colorado spending his time writing, filmmaking, and traveling.

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