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


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Old July 18th, 2008, 08:03 PM   #1
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the ceremony edit..

Hi, I'd just like to get your opinion on this.

I'm editing a ceremony very simply. basically as it happened. Do those of you that do it this way keep in the songs they sing? I suppose you also keep in the ministers address (they never say anything new!).

thanks.
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Old July 18th, 2008, 11:50 PM   #2
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For a real-time edit I generally keep everything in (except sometimes a long dead space).
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Old July 19th, 2008, 01:39 AM   #3
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For a real-time edit I generally keep everything in (except sometimes a long dead space).
Yeah I'll cut dead time (like the musicians getting set in their seats, etc), but other than that, everything is as it happened. I am not in the business of wedding highlights (yet) and I have yet to have anyone ask for just a 15 minute highlight of the wedding. Peopel still want to see and hear everything. Of course I put chapters all over it so it is easy to skip around.
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Old July 19th, 2008, 02:56 AM   #4
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Thanks Travis and Jason for your input. That is what I thought I would hear, however I decided to remove the singing from the edit (but keep the wedding address) so that I can make a longer reception edit and fit it all on the same dvd in higher quality. Even with everything I cut out the ceremony is still 25 minutes, so I think my cuts were a solid choice.
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Old July 19th, 2008, 11:12 AM   #5
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I languished over this very issue years ago. Ceremonies have lots of idle time between events like waiting for music to end, walking, generic long-winded sermons that nobody listens to, etc.

So I decided to hack them all down to about 12 minutes including those 90 minute full-fledged catholic ones. :)

I just lay a soft instrumental music bed underneath and only include the highlights of the ceremony which to me include every member of the affair from candlelighters to grandparent seating to portions of dialog by the readers. Of course the vows and ring exchange are intact. I'll also take snippets of dialog from the minister and timeshift it throughout the entire clip - it adds a nice narrative to the peice.

But I also know that brides go to a lot of trouble picking out their music, hiring a quartet (which may have a close relative involved) and it's not for me to say their entire ceremony is boring. I really can't see how any editor can just take this footage and throw it away like so many do.

So with that in mind I will also deliver a 2nd DVD with the full ceremony intact (just cleaned up a bit). I use dual DVD cases to accomodate this copy and the main one that inludes only the short version along with the rest of the day's events.

Yeah, it's an extra DVD but not really a lot of extra work. I use that "cleaned up" full ceremony to base the short one on and just whittle it down.

After 130+ weddings now, never a complaint that I missed something. Great peace of mind for me.
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Old July 19th, 2008, 03:23 PM   #6
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I cut out just about every bit of dead space. Anything a second or longer and it's gone.
I also lay music underneath 98% of the ceremony. I usually don't include the entire bridal party making their way up before the ceremony or their way down afterwards. What's left over is a nice, shorter ceremony that the couple won't get bored (hopefully) watching.
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Old July 20th, 2008, 12:01 AM   #7
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I cut out just about every bit of dead space. Anything a second or longer and it's gone.
I also lay music underneath 98% of the ceremony. I usually don't include the entire bridal party making their way up before the ceremony or their way down afterwards. What's left over is a nice, shorter ceremony that the couple won't get bored (hopefully) watching.
I am probably going to experiment with offering highlight edits and see what sort of responses I get. I don't think I have the equipment & skills to pull off those epic cinematic scenes needed to make a highlight production the ONLY product I deliver. And honestly, I have not had requests to "cut it down" a bit.
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Old July 20th, 2008, 10:23 AM   #8
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Sometimes any shot can be turned into a 'epic cinematic scene.' I'm editing a wedding now and I had a shot of the bride and groom, about 8 seconds after they walked down the aisle together outside hugging each other. I was still inside, so the shot was bluer than (fill in blank).

I slowed the shot down by 50%, made it black and white, had music underneath it, faded to white than black... and BINGO! Instant tears!
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Old July 21st, 2008, 12:48 PM   #9
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I also lay music underneath 98% of the ceremony. I usually don't include the entire bridal party making their way up before the ceremony or their way down afterwards. What's left over is a nice, shorter ceremony that the couple won't get bored (hopefully) watching.
I don't touch anything from the ceremony. No additional audio or soundtrack because I figured the bride set everything up how she wanted it. Now, that doesn't mean adding something to it is a problem, just as long as the clients see that and are aware of what you will do.

I also always show the processional, because that is where the bride's friends are the star of the show for just a moment as they walk down the isle. After all, those bridesmaids are potential future clients for their weddings. :-)
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