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Old November 9th, 2009, 12:10 PM   #1
First Time Wedding Trailer
Adam Holt Adam Holt is offline November 9th, 2009, 12:10 PM

I guess I'm a long-time lurker and first-time poster here. I've put together my first trailer, and am looking to see what you guys think. I do have a question about one of the scenes, though. I screwed up and made the camera for the sand ceremony too dark. I tried lightening it up some, but I don't know of much else to do to it to get it to match the other footage. Be gentle, guys. :-)


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Old November 9th, 2009, 06:06 PM   #2
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Your 2nd shot of the bride, she says something right to the camera, and you can't hear her. Might want to just take that out and switch it to something else. Also, you might want to raise the light level of the mirror shot.

Otherwise, I like the flow of the video :D Especially the "you may now kiss the bride" reveal at the end. :D
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Old November 11th, 2009, 10:13 PM   #3
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Hi Adam,

Welcome to the forums, and thanks for posting.

We are very fortunate here that so many great wedding shooters post their work for us to learn from. We study, apply the lesson, and improve. As we improve, we develop confidence in our abilities. Because having confidence is really what you need a lot of to consistently charge a reasonable rate for your services. Especially when it comes to weddings, because we as film-makers have so little control, so being able to adapt to changing lighting, audio challenges, etc., is critical to becoming great. It's not the quality of the tools, so much as our ability to master them. I spend a lot of time here, learning from the masters of the craft.

That being said, the bridal prep sequence in your trailer doesn't take place in a particularly attractive setting, so I would tighten the shots up considerably to focus on the brides eyes, and close ups of her hair. And you can always shoot close-ups of her dress, and shoes while she is getting ready.

As an example - not a particularly good one - here is a clip I shot where the bride was prepping in a kitchen (not too tidy), so I kept the shots tight (really tight). When I shot the dress, I had to create a somewhat interesting looking shot (and make the bed before I laid the dress on it). There's a lot of other things I now don't like about this clip (weak titles, overly strong vignette, very cold look, etc.,), but that's that point of progression. The point is, the room where the prep took place was not adding any aesthetic value. And when I saw what I had to work with, I wasn't even going to bother shooting the dress.

Anyways, I hope this helps somewhat, and keep at it.

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Old November 12th, 2009, 09:10 AM   #4
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Thanks for the feedback guys. I have a clip that I can use to replace the bride talking to the camera. This new clip really should have been in it in the first place, but that was my oversight. I'll try to even out the lighting and warmth for the overall clip, as well. I'll definitely remember to try and keep tight shots when the background isn't the greatest, too.
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Old November 12th, 2009, 09:46 AM   #5
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At 1:49 I would tighten up a bit to remove the people standing there gawking...

Maybe a circle around the bride and the father? with a gradual blur to black to take them out.
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Old November 12th, 2009, 03:18 PM   #6
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The trick to making a good trailer is to pick only your strongest shots, combine them with moving music, and time it so that they all work together to create a dynamic, emotional piece. That being said, seeing a bride get her hair done for 1 minute while a less-than clean audio track plays vows didn't really push any emotional buttons for me. When we finally get to see the bride and groom (around 2 minutes), its a tilted shot with the photographer taking up too much of the frame. In general, and as previously stated, you need to tighten up the shots, get a variety (angles/and subject matter), never rely on auto exposure and think more about the arc of the story. I know you were looking for gentle criticism, but I promise you that I've learned more from those who weren't shy with their critique, than those who kill with kindness...next time, ask for the brutal, honest truth and you'll reap greater rewards.
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Old November 12th, 2009, 06:57 PM   #7
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Another thing you might want to do is ask the B&G what kind of music they like, or even specific love songs. That really helps me get a feel for what kind of video they are looking for.

You can't go wrong with your romantic music, but if they're country fans, using a country love song might make a bigger impact on them.
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Old November 13th, 2009, 08:24 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Oren Arieli View Post
The trick to making a good trailer is to pick only your strongest shots, combine them with moving music, and time it so that they all work together to create a dynamic, emotional piece. That being said, seeing a bride get her hair done for 1 minute while a less-than clean audio track plays vows didn't really push any emotional buttons for me. When we finally get to see the bride and groom (around 2 minutes), its a tilted shot with the photographer taking up too much of the frame. In general, and as previously stated, you need to tighten up the shots, get a variety (angles/and subject matter), never rely on auto exposure and think more about the arc of the story. I know you were looking for gentle criticism, but I promise you that I've learned more from those who weren't shy with their critique, than those who kill with kindness...next time, ask for the brutal, honest truth and you'll reap greater rewards.
I understand that watching the bride get her hair fixed for over half of the clip can get rather boring. The auto exposure killed me. I saw that after the fact, and will remember to lock it in next time. For the sand ceremony, that camera was unmanned. The photographer was in the shot for the entire time, and actually stood directly in front of the camera until one of the bridesmaids told her to move. Is there anything that can be done after the fact to tighten up the shot without looking like pure cheese? I'm not quite sure what you mean by the audio track not being clean. The only background noise that I can tell is from the ocean. Is there something that can be done for that? In all honesty, I'm looking for the honest truth. My be gentle quote was more along the lines of me not wanting to hear "That video sucks!" Thanks again.
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Old November 13th, 2009, 09:53 AM   #9
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Adam,

You're learning what many of us here already know; shooting a wedding well isn't easy. Especially when you're producing the whole thing by yourself. If weddings were a film set, we'd have about a dozen people running around working on lighting, audio and camera.

One thing that I am also learning is in order to get better at this you have to have a relentless pursuit of excellence. This is especially true when putting together your highlight reel because it is just that. It will most likely be used to sell your next client on your ability to handle typical as well as challenging situations. So if there is a shot that afterwards you realize shouldn't be in there... fix it. Then you will develop a more critical eye of your own the first time around.

A beach is not the ideal place to shoot a wedding - especially without much experience. But that being said, the sand ceremony shouldn't be shot with an unmanned camera. It's too important a part of the day - though I don't find the shot to be that bad. Photogs are always in shots. I found the lipstick in the mirror shot before that to be much less appealing.

Even the very best in this business are always learning. And there is no substitute for experience.

Also btw, maybe it's just me but I would hesitate to put clients full names on-line (as in your intro), preferring to use just first names. It's one thing to do it for the DVD, but it's another to put it online.
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Old November 13th, 2009, 10:47 AM   #10
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I've done enough beach weddings where you can barely hear the noise of the surf...and even then, I get to control how much of it to include. Best way to do that is with a cardiod lav mic placed very close to the source, with wind-protection. You can further 'clean up' the track with noise reduction software. My goal isn't to make it seem completely sterile, but to lower the level of the white-noise background so that it doesn't distract.
For your unmanned camera's shot, you can zoom in a bit, but not enough to get rid of the 'tog entirely without looking bad. If possible, adjust your shot when the opportunity presents itself (during the ceremony). It's not always possible, but if you place your 2nd cam in a position close enough to have access to it, you get the results of a 2-cam shoot for the price of one.
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Old November 13th, 2009, 11:01 AM   #11
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Since I shot the wedding in HD, I suppose that I could crop out the shot with 720x480 pixels before it is downsized to fit on DVD and insert after the fact. That should allow the resolution to be the same.

I used a lav mic on the groom to catch the vows. The unmanned cam couldn't hear a thing, and my other one had a shotgun with a sock, but the surf is too loud to have great audio. So noise reduction should be able to pick it up as a static type sound and reduce the surf? I don't have a whole lot of experience as far as cleaning up audio so I'm kinda learning on the fly.
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