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


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Old August 17th, 2009, 01:25 PM   #46
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I man one up front and have one stationary in the back. How do you keep people from blocking your stationary camera?
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Old August 17th, 2009, 01:42 PM   #47
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Originally Posted by Gerald Labrador View Post
I man one up front and have one stationary in the back. How do you keep people from blocking your stationary camera?
a very tall tripod, or a hired assistant to tap photographers / guests on the shoulder to ask them to move.
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Old August 17th, 2009, 01:46 PM   #48
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What % of you guys use 2 cameras (2 cameraman) for weddings?

For me, 99.9% of weddings uses only 1 camera (1 person) because people are not willing to pay too much for a wedding video. And people are very happy with the finished product with 1 camera.


*Note that most small weddings still don't have a videographer because of the cost but they always have a photographer.
2 cameras 100% of the time, the second camera is with my assistant videographer.
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Old August 17th, 2009, 02:03 PM   #49
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I have a set of Bogen 3046 tripod legs that I can get up to 8 feet if need be using the leg extensions and center column. I have yet to meet a person who can block it.
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Old August 18th, 2009, 01:53 AM   #50
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That's my answer too Gerald - use a tall tripod. Here's me showing how useful the Manfrotto 075B can be - as an unmanned tripod it sees above the heads of congregation, toasting guests and dancers. Yet it collapses small enough to easily fit into the car.
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Old August 18th, 2009, 02:29 AM   #51
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Always 2 cameras for us, sometimes 3 (the third is either like the first, that means not stationary, or on glidetrack or with 35mm adaptor). As many already said, the second cam is stationary and high, but one solution we've found is one handle that is attached high on the lights tripod and keeps the HV20 so there is no need for extra tripod. That makes the setup of a 2nd camera very easy, since you don't occupy extra space in church. During the reception though, we always go with 2 cameras on steadicam and flowpod.
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Old August 18th, 2009, 11:19 AM   #52
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Or for the "cheap" solution, look for the Sunpak/Quantaray 75" tripod (going by various model #'s). Fairly sturdy, heavy enough to stay put, not so heavy to be a pain to lug around. If you compress the legs in a bit it will be even taller, but it's plenty high fully extended.

The head's not the greatest thing around, BUT if all you need is a tall locked down shot, it's sub $100 (which is nothing for a tall tripod...). I've got a couple of them, plus an old 72" Focal brand with a surprisingly decent head on it. You need the height, may as well have all tall 'pods... you've got to both be able to shoot over heads AND be high enough to angle down a bit if needed - hopefully your couple will be on a riser/stage type setup, but if not...
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Old August 18th, 2009, 12:38 PM   #53
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Or for the "cheap" solution, look for the Sunpak/Quantaray 75" tripod (going by various model #'s). Fairly sturdy, heavy enough to stay put, not so heavy to be a pain to lug around. If you compress the legs in a bit it will be even taller, but it's plenty high fully extended.
That is exactly what I did. I bought that tripod, which was the most expensive POS at Best Buy and it works just fine for a locked down tripod. The tripod I got was silver-ish and has a "monopod" center that can extend up an additional 2 feet (no crank, just friction locking screws). The total height is easily around 7' which is extremely very absolutely handy and unobtainable for that (or almost any) price for a "real" video tripod.

But no one touches the tripod while it is shooting, so it does its job just fine.
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Old August 20th, 2009, 11:39 AM   #54
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I always shoot with 2 cameras. I just found out it's less stressful. Don't have to worry about missing scenes during tape changing. It makes editing a whole lot easier.

I have the second cam unmanned on wide, with the tripod center column jack up high and on dolly (it makes it less likely to tip over when mounted on dolly). Now I hire an assistant ($8 an hour) to control the second cam. All he has to do is to make sure the second is framing correctly, have enough tape and enough battery.
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Old August 22nd, 2009, 01:47 PM   #55
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Originally Posted by Tom Hardwick View Post
Here's me showing how useful the Manfrotto 075B can be - as an unmanned tripod it sees above the heads of congregation, toasting guests and dancers. Yet it collapses small enough to easily fit into the car.
Tom, I just noticed something from your photo. Your head cannot level, and your tripod is leaning forward. If you pan left or right, your shots will be tilted. How do you level your camera?
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Old August 22nd, 2009, 02:11 PM   #56
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Tom, I just noticed something from your photo. Your head cannot level, and your tripod is leaning forward. If you pan left or right, your shots will be tilted. How do you level your camera?
...Or he could call it "style" and "creativity". That seems to be used for a lot of other shooting slop; why not use it for a crooked tripod as well. Oh wait, "organic" seems to be the latest operative term for lousy camera work. You can even use an abbreviation such as OTS (Organic Tripod Shot). When you use an abbreviation, not only do you create a good cover for rotten shooting, you also create an intimidation factor - - People are afraid to ask what your abbreviation means for fear of revealing their ignorance. If you spin it really well you can hoist some real garbage off on people and make them feel like you gave them an original Van Gogh as well. And if you spin it really, really well, you can feature OTS and charge extra for it.
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Old August 22nd, 2009, 03:24 PM   #57
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Good one Jim <wink> - it's not a BUG it's a FEATURE, as we used to say with computers/software...

I took another look at Tom's pic, if you look at the bricks, it appears the camera taking hte still was tilted... looks like the tripod shaft is pretty close to vertical when compared to the mortar seams. If the shaft is close to perpendicular, you can tilt the cam down and pan without it tilting.

Don't know about that specific tripod, but mine have these cheap bubble levels on them, and I'll usually try to reference a known vertical surface from a couple angles if I'm not sure or on uneven ground, gets me farily close.
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Old August 23rd, 2009, 09:48 AM   #58
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Originally Posted by Dave Blackhurst View Post
I took another look at Tom's pic, if you look at the bricks, it appears the camera taking hte still was tilted... looks like the tripod shaft is pretty close to vertical when compared to the mortar seams. If the shaft is close to perpendicular, you can tilt the cam down and pan without it tilting.
Exactly right Dave. Warren - take another look at the photo and you'll see that your eye is being drawn by that middle tripod leg. The centre column is indeed vertical and the inbuilt spirit level on the Manfrotto is very easy to use. The markers on the centre stays (insert pic) means it's easy to level.

But as I say, generally this very tall tripod is used for my unmanned camera, so it shouldn't be off doing pans, it should be sitting still and be solid enough to stay there.

tom.
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Old August 23rd, 2009, 12:16 PM   #59
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...Or he could call it "style" and "creativity". That seems to be used for a lot of other shooting slop; why not use it for a crooked tripod as well. Oh wait, "organic" seems to be the latest operative term for lousy camera work. You can even use an abbreviation such as OTS (Organic Tripod Shot). When you use an abbreviation, not only do you create a good cover for rotten shooting, you also create an intimidation factor - - People are afraid to ask what your abbreviation means for fear of revealing their ignorance. If you spin it really well you can hoist some real garbage off on people and make them feel like you gave them an original Van Gogh as well. And if you spin it really, really well, you can feature OTS and charge extra for it.
Jim,

Tom took the time to post the pic of his setup and contribute to the discussion in a valuable way. I for one appreciated it. Your comment could be percieved as an insult, even though I'm sure it wasn't intended that way. I wouldn't want others to not contribute for fear that they may be ridiculed. Remember that this is a global forum and indeed that is the beauty of it. What might not be perceived as an insult in Santa Clara, may be considered one in the UK. I've certainly benefitted from posts that you've made, and dialogue that you've contributed to, but this wasn't one of them.
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Old August 23rd, 2009, 01:00 PM   #60
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Ken, I certainly meant no harm with my tongue-in-cheek comment. It was so over-the-top that anyone could tell that it was meant as humor. However, I will spell it out for you to aid your understanding.

Tom's post was very instructive and useful. My post was actually in defense of Tom's post using a bit of dry humor to do so. What WAS intimidating was to have someone start a techno-critique about the setup of his tripod, which was what was about to happen to Tom. I used an obviously facetious post to head off the thread from turning into a tripod "symposium" rather than the thread's topic. Tripod leveling techniques have nothing to do with the thread's topic and I didn't want the conversation to head off in that direction. How would you like to post a picture of a piece of your equipment only to have someone tell you how you were using it wrongly - especially if the purpose of your post had nothing to do with the criticism of your "bad" technique?

As for your didactic "observation" about Santa Clara and UK humor, my wife is British and we spend a lot of time there. The style of humor that I used is much more British than Santa Clara humor. As a matter of fact, I learned that type of dry humor in the UK - they are masters at it. If we have to abandon our sense of humor, we will all live in a sad world. I'm sure Tom is a big boy and doesn't need anyone to explain things for him and take care of him. In fact, I'm sure he doesn't need your patronization at all.
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