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Shooting non-repeatable events: weddings, recitals, plays, performances...


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Old May 21st, 2008, 02:59 PM   #1
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Guest Interviews- How do you do it

I have a shoot comming up where the Bride & Groom Would like to have guest
interviews done. How do you usually handle this option.

1. Set up a location off to the side with a nice backdrop , lighting & Mic.
and invite guest to drop over to the area during the course of the evening
if they wish to pass along Best wishes, words of wisdom Ect,ect

or

2. Do you prefer to do the circulate around the room during the reception
Requesting comments and good will wishes to the bride & groom from
Guests, bascially the bombing the tables approach.

Do you try and script the interviews at all , or just free flow from the Guests comments ?

I like the #1 option myself , but I know others use the # 2 method
I am just interested how others deal with this option when they have it requested.
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Old May 21st, 2008, 03:43 PM   #2
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I use option #1. First I get the DJ to periodically announce to the guests that messages from family and friends are being filmed in the room just outside of the reception hall. Hopefully one is available.
Then when I get the guests in the room, (with wireless mic and camera on tripod), I ask them to share little "secrets" about the bride or groom or any anecdotal stories...I persuade them to stay away form well wishes if possible,but that is usually unavoidable. In the end, it turns out to be quite funny and the B&G loves 'em. Sometimes they will ask to have certain comments removed.
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Old May 21st, 2008, 06:49 PM   #3
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My experience with #1 is you get NOTHING... #2 if done right works excellent, see my other posts about recruiting a wedding party or family member who is outgoing to "emcee", hand them the wireless mic, and do it "Jaywalking" style - you'll get great material!

That's my 1.35 (.02 adjusted to reflect the current price of gas...)
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Old May 22nd, 2008, 12:40 AM   #4
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Brilliant!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dave Blackhurst View Post
My experience with #1 is you get NOTHING... #2 if done right works excellent, see my other posts about recruiting a wedding party or family member who is outgoing to "emcee", hand them the wireless mic, and do it "Jaywalking" style - you'll get great material!

That's my 1.35 (.02 adjusted to reflect the current price of gas...)
Brilliant idea. I was fortunate enough to do a wedding for a friend where another mutual friend was a news Anchor & Reporter so he was smooth like butter behind the mic. I gave him a preposterous "breaking news story" about somethign wrong with the wedding hall, and we went around gathering "first hand" reports of the groomsmen, Bridesmaids (and Groom & Bride). Great footage. It really helps when you get someone that knows how to work a camera (and mic).
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Old May 22nd, 2008, 07:56 AM   #5
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I go table-to-table with an Azden wireless mic soliciting comments. Once I've got someone holding the mic I have them pass it around the table. You get lots of material to work with.
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Old May 24th, 2008, 09:07 PM   #6
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I could see how option #1 could work - but people are sometimes intimated by lights and cameras etc .... And also getting them to leave the reception area where the party is at could be challenging as well. I can see the advantages though of doing the 'well wishes' etc ... in a more controlled environment.

I agree with Dave ... something that has worked well for me is the 'roving interview' style. Talk the the bride and groom sometime before the wedding and find out if they have a relative who is good at that sort of thing - i.e. funny cousin #3 - then team up with that relative to interview people. That way you break down the camera barrier because they're just talking to someone they already know.

I don't generally script things but maybe have some questions in mind to get things going. Open ended questions work well, sometimes with something funny or quirky to get the ball rolling.

Cheers,

Matthew.
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Old May 25th, 2008, 01:09 AM   #7
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Yep - finding a good "emcee" lets you concentrate on the camera work, and it actually helps make the whole "I'm on camera" fear disappear - they are just talking with a friend or family member. You can suggest a few questions, but usually it takes care of itself.

You need to set you "rig" up a little different, since if you're working the reception, it'll probably be dark and noisy... and lots of people moving around. Set a pattern of tables, start with the "important" ones if possible.

A wireless mic ("stick" type preferred, not a lav...), a pair of headphones to monitor audio (remember to switch mics if you are doing "double duty" on reception action), and an on camera light with a good diffuser and mounted on a bracket up and away from the cam work wonders.
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Old May 25th, 2008, 04:04 AM   #8
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I'm surprised these are still done. At least out here they've become near extinct.

And... HOORAY FOR THAT! :D
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Old May 25th, 2008, 10:14 AM   #9
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I do both to mix it up, round the tables and calling people out to a hall or outside depending on conditions but I've learned not to rely on people to just show up or the DJ for announcements. I solicit and maybe ask the Guest to send me one of thier friends. By doing the interviews away from the music you can mix the interviews in with a dance number getting in 3-4 interviews to break up the monotony of just staying on people dancing. And yes, when a client sees the responses I get and how it's worked into the video, they want it for thiers as well.
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Old May 25th, 2008, 12:57 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill Busby View Post
I'm surprised these are still done. At least out here they've become near extinct.

And... HOORAY FOR THAT! :D
I agree with you from the videographer's point of view, because it's somewhat uncomfortable work. However, we have "interviews" on our own wedding DVD and it's one of my favorite parts. These days I offer "interviews" as an add-on option, so the couples that want it pay for it, and I don't mind doing it.
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Old May 25th, 2008, 01:29 PM   #11
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I understand Travis, but I can't remotely count how many times being solo on a gig & either missing something important or near missing, from being out in a lobby area where I've set up for this. For me, I never liked the table method... doesn't look good, plus there's usually distracting background audio. Having to abort an interview & quickly running back to the recep area for whatever reason was never something I liked to stress over. I'd always tell a DJ or band what I'm doing at the time & to let me know if something is about to occur, but obviously we all know that doesn't always work.

With at least a 2 cam shoot, there's no stress with this. But still... I think they have been done to death, are dated, and many guests dread when they see us approaching with mic in hand, and also goes against any of us advertising how "unobtrusive" we are... but that's just me :)
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Old May 25th, 2008, 01:36 PM   #12
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Again, I hear you, but there ARE couples out there that really want this, which is why I decided to make it a paying option. If I do interviews I do them during the dinner break so I won't miss anything important. Of course, I also have 2 cameras at a reception (my assistant has the other one).
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Old May 25th, 2008, 01:38 PM   #13
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I hear you too... but then people wanna eat! :D

Isn't this fun? :)
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Old May 25th, 2008, 01:43 PM   #14
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Yeah but .... okay, I give up ..... d;-)
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Old May 26th, 2008, 02:06 PM   #15
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Well At this shoot Method # 1 died very a quick death, and initially #2 wasn't going much better with just me ,but then with some minor arm twisting from the second shooter (My wife, people seem less reluctant to put off the opposite Sex ;) ) things started to get going slowly, once some people saw some others doing it quite a few jumped on the band wagon so to speak. We also did a quick round of the smokers outside Later that night that will make good closing credit PIP's I think. but getting the ball rolling sure was an exercise, now I remember Why I never liked doing this, but for this Bride & groom this was someting that they very much wanted and that's what we ended up telling a lot of the guests to get there co-operation once we got rolling.
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