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Old December 8th, 2010, 07:04 AM   #1
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Chinese wedding short - feedback grately appriciated

Shot by 1 videographer with a Sony Z7. This is the highlights part of the video (4mins) filmed in central London. Would love some feed back

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Old December 8th, 2010, 09:28 AM   #2
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Sophie,
While I don't watch many highlights and rarely comment on those I do watch I felt compelled to make a couple of comments about this one.

First, the shots you had are rock solid steady which IMO is the first thing clients looks for. Wild pans, tilts and zooms can make one dizzy and I truely appreciated the solid steady shots.

Now on the other hand there were 2 things I noticed right away. One is that a few of the wide shots, specifically the shot of the aisle was slightly tilt of plane. IOW, the horization was leaning but all in all that isn't that a big a deal but the thing I noticed thru out was the cut. Meaning some of the shots were cut ON the beat and others weren't. Just my feeling that if you're going to cut ON the beat then it all needds to be cut that way. It's my opinion that when using a hard cut especially in a wedding video they need to be set to the beat. I just had a jarring feeling thruout when the shots transitioned off the beat.
I cut a lot of stuff to the beat and yeah it can be a real pain but IMO it makes all the difference.
Just my $.03 worth, overall I enjoyed the piece especially the rock solid steady shots.
Nice job.
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Old December 9th, 2010, 12:40 AM   #3
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Hi Sophie,

Overall some very nice work. I am not a wedding videographer so my perspective is coming from a narrative and documentary storytelling perspective.

Like Don mentioned it is nice to see someone have well framed shots and not rely on zooms, pans and supper shallow DOF.

With that in mind, it becomes very important to frame your shots with even more thought. There were some interesting opportunities I think you could have used that could have improved the story. An example would be at about 0:38 seconds where the bride is getting dressed and the photog is in the room. In "movie" terms this could be your establishing or master shot. Then cutting to a nice tight shot on the bridesmaid's hands lacing up the dress, then cutting back to a medium of the bride looking back in a mirror at the bridesmaid lacing could have a lot of impact in showing an intimate moment shared by the two. If you were scripting it you would have a nice shot showing both of them and they share a laugh.

A couple of other things to watch out for in the edit would be to look out for cuts that feel abrupt or what feels like a continuity error. 0:43 is an example where a half a second can make a big difference. You cut to that shot when the camera is still, but a split second later the camera starts to pan. This might just be me but it jumps out. Also, during the shots of the tea ceremony (2:23) you start with a shot of the ceremony, cut to some people watching, then cut back to the B&G during the ceremony. The same elders are seated but when you cut back there is a person in the left side of the frame. Because he wasn't there in the first shot, he jumps out and your focus goes to him instead of the ceremony. If something like this happens you could pull in tighter on the B&G and elders to keep him out of the frame.

Again, I'm coming from a filmmakers perspective, but it feels like you had a lot of quick shots to show a lot of different people but it starts to feel like a lot of unrelated scenes. Try to make sure every clip you use has a purpose. The shot of the photographer at 2:10 is one example of a shot that feels like a "filler".

Unlike Don I tend not to cut on the beat. Cutting just before or just after can either create anticipation or tension. I reserve cuts on the beat only for shots that I want to emphasize. Pacing is another thing to watch. In some spots it feels like you start to get into a rhythm where the scenes roughly seem to be the same length of time. It starts to feel a little repetitive. By varying the length of the scenes you can play with peoples emotions and draw them into the video more. Using some fade to black can also give your audience just enough breathing time to make the transitions work more for you.

Overall it looks like you've got a lot of good footage to work with. You might play a little with the edit just to see how subtle changes make a lot of difference.

As always, these are just my thoughts and I reserve the right to be totally wrong :-)

-Garrett
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Old December 9th, 2010, 07:09 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Don Bloom View Post
Sophie,
While I don't watch many highlights and rarely comment on those I do watch I felt compelled to make a couple of comments about this one.

First, the shots you had are rock solid steady which IMO is the first thing clients looks for. Wild pans, tilts and zooms can make one dizzy and I truely appreciated the solid steady shots.

Now on the other hand there were 2 things I noticed right away. One is that a few of the wide shots, specifically the shot of the aisle was slightly tilt of plane. IOW, the horization was leaning but all in all that isn't that a big a deal but the thing I noticed thru out was the cut. Meaning some of the shots were cut ON the beat and others weren't. Just my feeling that if you're going to cut ON the beat then it all needds to be cut that way. It's my opinion that when using a hard cut especially in a wedding video they need to be set to the beat. I just had a jarring feeling thruout when the shots transitioned off the beat.
I cut a lot of stuff to the beat and yeah it can be a real pain but IMO it makes all the difference.
Just my $.03 worth, overall I enjoyed the piece especially the rock solid steady shots.
Nice job.
Hi Don

Thank you for taking the time to go through our video. It is really appreciated and I have taken all your points on board. Especially about cutting on the beat or off the beat, (its always such a struggle to get enough shots).
Wedding videos is something we are relatively new to, so the tone and visual language is something we are still experimenting with.

Again thanks Don and I am glad you liked steady framing
S
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Old December 10th, 2010, 06:04 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Garrett Low View Post
Hi Sophie,

Overall some very nice work. I am not a wedding videographer so my perspective is coming from a narrative and documentary storytelling perspective.

Like Don mentioned it is nice to see someone have well framed shots and not rely on zooms, pans and supper shallow DOF.

With that in mind, it becomes very important to frame your shots with even more thought. There were some interesting opportunities I think you could have used that could have improved the story. An example would be at about 0:38 seconds where the bride is getting dressed and the photog is in the room. In "movie" terms this could be your establishing or master shot. Then cutting to a nice tight shot on the bridesmaid's hands lacing up the dress, then cutting back to a medium of the bride looking back in a mirror at the bridesmaid lacing could have a lot of impact in showing an intimate moment shared by the two. If you were scripting it you would have a nice shot showing both of them and they share a laugh.

A couple of other things to watch out for in the edit would be to look out for cuts that feel abrupt or what feels like a continuity error. 0:43 is an example where a half a second can make a big difference. You cut to that shot when the camera is still, but a split second later the camera starts to pan. This might just be me but it jumps out. Also, during the shots of the tea ceremony (2:23) you start with a shot of the ceremony, cut to some people watching, then cut back to the B&G during the ceremony. The same elders are seated but when you cut back there is a person in the left side of the frame. Because he wasn't there in the first shot, he jumps out and your focus goes to him instead of the ceremony. If something like this happens you could pull in tighter on the B&G and elders to keep him out of the frame.

Again, I'm coming from a filmmakers perspective, but it feels like you had a lot of quick shots to show a lot of different people but it starts to feel like a lot of unrelated scenes. Try to make sure every clip you use has a purpose. The shot of the photographer at 2:10 is one example of a shot that feels like a "filler".

Unlike Don I tend not to cut on the beat. Cutting just before or just after can either create anticipation or tension. I reserve cuts on the beat only for shots that I want to emphasize. Pacing is another thing to watch. In some spots it feels like you start to get into a rhythm where the scenes roughly seem to be the same length of time. It starts to feel a little repetitive. By varying the length of the scenes you can play with peoples emotions and draw them into the video more. Using some fade to black can also give your audience just enough breathing time to make the transitions work more for you.

Overall it looks like you've got a lot of good footage to work with. You might play a little with the edit just to see how subtle changes make a lot of difference.

As always, these are just my thoughts and I reserve the right to be totally wrong :-)

-Garrett
Hi Garrett

Thank you for taking time out to go through it, really appreciate the feedback.
Wedding video is still something we are trying to get right. We all come from a TV background so not being able to direct anybody is still something we are trying to get use to. Like Don's crit I am really taking your points about the edit on board. ie the balance between shooting Auntie Thingy in her new dress and a sense of rhythm. I think this is our best so far, however there is obviously a way to go yet.
Thanks again Garrett for your time and really helpful comments
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