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Wedding / Event Videography Techniques
Shooting non-repeatable events: weddings, recitals, plays, performances...


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Old November 30th, 2007, 08:28 AM   #1
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Question For the Lone Gunmen!!

Where I'm from, most weddings are on either Friday or Saturday. Would it be unrealistic for a one-man operation to be regularly covering weddings one day after another?
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Old November 30th, 2007, 08:39 AM   #2
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I've done it before, but I tend not to accept many Friday weddings anymore as I have a full time job, so I just do Saturdays. I sometimes refer it onto my other videogs and they might give me a commission or some kind of favour in return.
Unless they really want me and I can get the time off and I'm in need of some work.

It can get tiring, but obviously if your getting paid right its ok yeah? I mean if your getting booked with 2 weddings a week they must want your work. The common mistake could be taking on to many jobs and not having enough time to edit all of the footage and getting the product to the couple months down the track. Especially if your doing it as a one man show. Are you just using one video camera? That would be easier for you to manage and keep on top of the editing workflow potentially with less footage to edit through.

I think most full time videographers would be used to filming several different events day after day so I don't think its uncommon for people to do back to backs. Photographers will often do a Saturday and a Sunday wedding where I'm from.

Just my 2 cents worth tho.
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Old November 30th, 2007, 08:56 AM   #3
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Brendan,
If you can handle the work go for it. Just make sure you're covered battery and tape wise. You may want to tell your clients a slightly longer delivery time as you'll have more shooting work and less days per week to edit.

It's up to you how/if you want to grow your business. I started out as a one man show with freelance help at events. As my business increased (I do photo and video), I now have someone who works in-house editing 1 or 2 days per week on a regular basis. I can envision him working full-time in the future as more-and-more jobs come in.

Good luck.
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Old November 30th, 2007, 09:26 AM   #4
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Be cautious of how much work your body can take as well.

this summer, I had a week where I shot two weddings in two weekends, the 2nd one being events on Friday and Saturady. Saturday I shot for 19hrs none stop. Ended up hurting my lower back.. still hurts today. I blame it on myself for not being cautious with equipment handling given that I was working for so much in such a short period of time.
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Old November 30th, 2007, 12:50 PM   #5
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Until this year it wasn't too uncommon to do 2 sometimes 3 in a weekend. Now turst me I didn't do it every weedend nor do I always take it if it was offered to me. A lot depended on the location of the weddings and frankly the personality of the couple but I did do doubles and triples although last year I only did 2 triples this year ZERO. AMMOF, this year I have only done 3 or 4 doubles and frankly next year I will do none unless it's someone that I really want to do the wedding. I'm too damn old to do that schedule any more.
I do agree though make sure you can get your equipment recharged and ready to go again overnight. Tape stock should never be a problem for any professional videocameraperson. I start each year out with an order of 200 and add as neccesary thru the year. By the same token you had better tell the B&G that your delivery time is longer than what you're doing now. Whatever that is. I always tell them that as a minimum delivery is 10 to 12 weeks and could be longer depending on workload and my travel schedule. If you work a regular job fulltime you might need to consider that as well-when do I edit?
The other thing is burn out can occur quite rapidly if trying to maintain a schedule like that. Sure in the beginning it's fun and exciting but after a few weeks of doubles and triples and spending 12, 14,16 hours a day in front of your computer editing suddenly it's not fun anymore.
Is it realistic to do? Yes. Do you want to do it all the time? Not if you're me. Been there, done that. Maybe after 25 years and 1200 weddings (give or take 1 here or there) I learned a few things and the most important thing is that there IS life after video.
Sorry if I sound grouchy-I'm not, I always tell the truth as I see it.
Good Luck and take lots of vitamins ;-)
Don
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Old November 30th, 2007, 01:50 PM   #6
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Hi Brendan

It is not uncommon during the summer to regularly do back to back weddings. Take it while you can. Recharge everything overnight and get a good nights sleep. I have done 3 in a row on several occasions and must admit the third one can be a long tiring day.
All the best
Gary
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Old November 30th, 2007, 02:44 PM   #7
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The only limitations are you (can you handle it physically), and your battery charging capability.
Allen W
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Old November 30th, 2007, 03:01 PM   #8
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I've done it a few times... and as a female, alone in the field, I was able to handle it. Where I struggled is getting stuff ready to go for the 2nd day... charging batteries, packing tapes, loading gear. That's where I enlisted the help of my hubby to double check my stuff before I passed out for the night to start it all over again in the morning! While exhausting, its completely do-able... "where there's a will, there's a way"!
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Old December 3rd, 2007, 10:53 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brendan McElwaine View Post
Where I'm from, most weddings are on either Friday or Saturday. Would it be unrealistic for a one-man operation to be regularly covering weddings one day after another?
Unrealistic? No, not around here. But, I hear that in some areas, the wedding and reception that follow may involve quite a bit of time, so more than one a week-end could be too much. I think you'll have to try it and see what works for you personally. I found out that for me, 3 weddings in 3 days was just too exhausting. My personal limit is 2 per week-end.

Mark
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