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Sony VX2100 / PD170 / PDX10 Companion
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Old March 26th, 2003, 05:01 PM   #1
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Booked my first wedding! yahoo!!! HELP!!

Hey group, I just booked my first wedding without anything.

No demo
No camera's
Nada
Just my unfinished website

I think I am going to s**t my pants. I am so nervous and I have only 2 weeks to get ready. My cameras and equipment are scheduled to arrive tomorrow.

If anyone is interested in being a paid consultant at my first wedding let me know. $$$$ Ceremony in Florida, April 11th.

Any tips, prayers or just advice greatly appreciated. I am so nervous but sure I can do it.
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Old March 26th, 2003, 05:14 PM   #2
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Congrats!
Take a deep breath and SEARCH for and READ the thread
"I was volunteered for a wedding..."
poster was Dylan Couper
Date of 1st post was 2/24/03

Should give you all the info you need to know.
Good Luck
Don
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Old March 26th, 2003, 05:58 PM   #3
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You can do this, Mark. Breathe deeply into a paper bag if needed. <g>

You're not alone. Here's the thread to which Don referred earlier.
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Old March 26th, 2003, 07:30 PM   #4
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Go to the rehearsal. I can only guess that you have been to a wedding before, so, think clearly, practice with your equipment beforehand. Oh yeah, take a deep breath. Remember, they can kill you, but, they can't eat you. Act professional, and you'll do fine. Respect the occaision. Give them more than they asked for, and rake in the praise and good publicity.
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Old March 26th, 2003, 07:39 PM   #5
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<<-- Harry Settle: Remember, they can kill you, but, they can't eat you. -->>

Thank you, Harry. You gave me the best laugh I've had all day!
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Old March 26th, 2003, 07:51 PM   #6
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Attend the rehearsal, ask them what they are NOT rehearsing, Use 2 of everything. Cameras, microphones, etc. Kiss up to the wedding consultant, officiant, etc. If they are on your side, a lot of problems can go away.

Meet the still photographer and arrive at a working arrangement but expect that that person may get in the way of critical shots anyway either out of ignorance or malevolence.

Meet the DJ. This person normally runs the reception and can keep you clued into what to expect and when you can take a breather.

Have a monopod or some other way of elevating the camera over the heads of the crowd.

Expect a surprise no matter what.

Go practice a lot with your cameras and accessories. You won't have time once the ceremony starts.
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Old March 26th, 2003, 11:53 PM   #7
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Hi Mark,

Well, that's the way to learn it-just jump in with both feet!

I have to agree with the posts above- going to the rehersal is an absolute must. It will save you many a headache on the wedding day.

Use the opportunity to get lots of cutaways of the venue - inside and out. You might not have time to get them on the wedding day.

Know how to operate your equipment *without looking*! While you are fiddling with the controls, you may miss a shot or accidentally pan out of frame during an important moment that can't be disguised with a cutaway (yep! I missed "the kiss" on my first wedding while trying to fiddle with the focus ring! -- thank God my wife was shooting B-Roll from the back!)

Make friends with the coordinator and the officiant. Things work much smoother when they are on your side.

My Dad and my Brother are ministers, (I was the black sheep of the family *grin*) so I can speak from experience- respect the church and the ceremony as much as possible.

Follow the wishes of the minister - If they don't want you moving around during the ceremony - don't. I have seen videographers barred from shooting at churches for not respecting the ceremony or the instructions/wishes of the minister.

However, if you need to get a certain shot, or how they want you placed won't work, just explain why. Most ministers or coordinators will gladly work with you if you ask first. (That's why going to the rehersal is so important)

If you expect they will give you trouble about getting a shot that the B/G requests, have the B/G with you when you speak with the coordinator/minister. That way you are covered if they still say "no".

At the reception, get with the DJ and find out the plan for the intros. Find a good spot, and use a tripod if at all possible. Same for the toasts. I thought my arms were going to fall off on a 8-minute toast from the BM--then the Matron of Honor did a toast that was unexpected. The shot looked like I had taken advantage of the open bar! Save the handheld shots for the dancing later.

That's just my $0.02 worth. I'm sure there are many others on this board that can offer better advice than I...

Where at in Florida? If it's near the Tampa-St. Pete area, I would be happy to help for absolutely no charge shooting B-Roll if it's in the evening or a weekend. I love doing this stuff.

<edit>

I see you are from Orlando - If the wedding is on the West side, the offer still applies if I can break free from my day job! (I work until 8:00 P.M.)

Good Luck!

-Phil


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Phil Reams
Timeless Studio Productions
Clearwater, Florida
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Old March 27th, 2003, 02:12 PM   #8
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Phil, the B/G and me live in Orlando

However, the wedding is on Longboat Key off of Sarasota. I would love for you to give me a hand. I just know your roll would catch something I would miss.

The wedding is April 11th. And I would insist on paying you <b>at least</b> $25 an hour for your help. Especially, if you bring your camera. Seriously, it would be such a help.

One day, maybe I can return the favor.

Send me your email and we can work out the details if your still interested.

Mark

<a href="mailto:mark_richman@hotmail.com">My email</a>
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Old March 27th, 2003, 02:57 PM   #9
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I'll drop you a note tonight from home.


-Phil
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Old March 27th, 2003, 03:51 PM   #10
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Hello Mark......Just in case...... If you need a lawyer let me know it. I can give to you legal assistance in FL area....:D
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Old March 27th, 2003, 08:14 PM   #11
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Legal Advice?

Wow, legal advice for a wedding video?

Man, I hope it's not that bad. LOL

Mark
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Old March 27th, 2003, 11:13 PM   #12
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Federico...umm that's borderline soliciting...wouldn't that be crossing the ethics line just a little? :P LOL
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Old March 28th, 2003, 01:07 AM   #13
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The need for legal assistance is real if you screw up someone's wedding video. That's why most of us pay at least $550 a year for insurance through WEVA. Cause if they sue and you lose, if you don't have insurance, they can take it out of your hide and do with fair regularity. Even if you win, you lose.

I'd prefer that we not get into discussing the ethical details of the legal profession since this is a camcorder forum. The ethics of using a camera is of course free game.

I think the spirit of the offer was for free advice and seems innocent on the surface.
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Old March 28th, 2003, 08:56 AM   #14
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Thank you for bringing this to my attention

Frederico, Garret, and Mike,

Thanks for brining this legal need to my attention. I will have to think about this in the next week or two before I do the video.

Mark
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Old March 28th, 2003, 10:12 AM   #15
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Mark,
If you're doing this video for a friend get something in writing as to what you're going to do; I.E.; 1 camera at ceremony and reception finished product to be editied at editor disgression and to be 1 hour in length, that sort of thing.
If you're getting paid make sure the dollars are spelled out also what would constitue a reedit and so on. In other words, CYA! If this is a 1 time deal, never gonna do another wedding probably don't need a lawyer, BUT if you're going to do more and get money for them, get an attorney to help draw up a contract to not only cover your a$$ but it gives the client protection as well. In other words, Practice Safe Video :).
I've been doing weddings for a number of years and have only had 1 occassion in the last 5 years where they threatened to sue me, take me to court, take my 1st born, (I wish they would have taken her, she's 32 and would have torn them a new one. Don't know where she got that from) :] Anyway, since it was the grooms mother NOT the B/G that signed the agreement and it was her name on it the groom, young punk that he was, she was fine with everything and he didn't have a legal leg to stand on. BTW, when he called, I simply gave him the name and number of my attorney. That pretty well shut him up. I never did find out why he decided tio try to play hardball, but I had a legal CONTRACT to protect me.
No contract, just be careful out there!
Don
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