With much fear and trepidation... - Page 2 at DVinfo.net

Go Back   DV Info Net > Special Interest Areas > Wedding / Event Videography Techniques

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


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old February 8th, 2009, 06:47 PM   #16
Trustee
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Boise, Idaho
Posts: 1,997
Quote:
Originally Posted by Andrew Dryden View Post
Thanks again for the continued guidance. I have a couple more weddings coming up and for one of them will likely have one camera on a tripod at the back with an operator and one camera up front with an operator as well. My question is...how do you work out who does what in a two camera set up? Do you try and communicate or do you just keep the back camera fairly wide the entire time and leave the front camera to get close ups? These weddings will be my first two camera shoots...for which I will rent another XHA1. Also besides a light I was thinking of picking up a LANC controller to make things smoother on the tripod...but it sounds like you guys suggest not zooming at all...so is this a silly purchase? Finally, I have spent a bunch of time looking at highlights reels etc online...but really want to get a look at a full length DVD so I can see how the ceremony, speeches etc all get edited together. Do you know anyone who is willing to pass along completed DVD's or sell them? I'd be happy to purchase one from either of you if you are interested...
Don't get me wrong, a Lanc is incredibly incredibly handy. When I bought my first camera in 07 it came with one. Till then, I'd shot on rented XL1 with LANCs and a HDR-FX1 with out one.

Regarding the two camera shoot I would almost write out a "script" for the event, and define terms, and review it before hand. Such as for the rings, aisle cam stays couple wide (so there is a term, what does "couple wide" mean..... to me it means you see all of the couple, but not the whole bridal party).

So get a "script for the ceremony and then review it at the rehearsal which BOTH camera operators must attend. Treat it like a ceremony, run tape and everything. IF this truly is your first go at a 2 cam ceremony, then you should take any opportunity to practice. Look at the tapes that night.

You ONLY learn by reviewing hte tapes immediately. I made the mistake last year (08) of shooting 3 weddings before even checking out the tapes from the first. bad idea because some of the same mistakes were made in all three! once you look at the tapes, then you can both get ideas for what worked and what didn't.

now as far a communicating during the event. I put $250 into 4 GMRS radios (and I bought an FCC license for them). my wife and I use them to keep tabs on each other through out the day. if she is shooting b-roll, then I'm in with the bride in the prep room. we always can ring up the other if something needs done, needs help, etc. Now, the FRM/GMRS radios are not the best comm solution..... Eartech is... but a single eartech headset costs about as much as my entire setup, so I went with my solution. Eartech has the benefit of being full headphones that wrap around the ear and also provide a line input so you can monitor camera audio (very critical to do BTW) one your Left ear while you monitor comms on right).

Some other companies use hand signals between operators. Certain signals mean "I'm locked you can move" etc.

but whatever ever you do, you absolutely must NOT have both cameras moving at the same time because that means the shots from both are useless. It is WELL worth in (in my opinion) to by a $300-500 low end camera as a "cutaway wide". This is a safety net. You set it up facing down the aisle towards the alter and don't touch it. I choose the Panasonic GS320 which is a 1/6" x 3CCD camera with minimal manual controls all through software menus. I got a used floor model at Circuit City and have been very handy with that purchase. It also doubles as my tape deck for recording all footage so I don't wear out the heads of my primary GL2.

With a cut away you now can have a little safety net in case you both mess up and zoom in for the kiss (a common mistake for two new ops).

Two cam shoots are very tricky, but you get so much more rewarding a final production. My final tip for two cam productions is to work with the same second cam op for at least three shoots. That way you have a chance to learn from mistakes and get better. if you always are usign different friends, then you will always be stuck at the low quality level.
Jason Robinson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old February 8th, 2009, 08:16 PM   #17
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Portland, OR
Posts: 56
Wow...thanks for the great reply. Good info. Have you ever had a static second cam on stage? I was thinking for my next wedding (which is probably the last free on for a friend) I am going to place my HF10 on stage someplace pointing towards the bride and then just run the XHA1 from the back. This limits entry footage, but I'm not sure they will go for an operator on stage. Anyways, thanks for the great advice.
Andrew Dryden is offline   Reply With Quote
Old February 8th, 2009, 08:20 PM   #18
Trustee
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Boise, Idaho
Posts: 1,997
Quote:
Originally Posted by Andrew Dryden View Post
Wow...thanks for the great reply. Good info. Have you ever had a static second cam on stage? I was thinking for my next wedding (which is probably the last free on for a friend) I am going to place my HF10 on stage someplace pointing towards the bride and then just run the XHA1 from the back. This limits entry footage, but I'm not sure they will go for an operator on stage. Anyways, thanks for the great advice.
unless you can absolutely trust the officiant & B&G to stand on their marks, an unmaned camer is hard to pull off, especially where it cannot be "fiddled with" until the end ff the ceremony. I think it would be a good shot, but only if you can pull it off.
Jason Robinson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old February 8th, 2009, 08:30 PM   #19
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Syracuse, NY
Posts: 98
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jason Robinson View Post
unless you can absolutely trust the officiant & B&G to stand on their marks, an unmaned camer is hard to pull off, especially where it cannot be "fiddled with" until the end ff the ceremony. I think it would be a good shot, but only if you can pull it off.
Ha. Lived that one the hard way. You can't trust people to use or stay on their marks. They are focused on so many other things. I had an unmanned camera on the "stage" of a wedding last summer and most of the tape was useless. It was too bad because there was a lot of great emotion going on that would have had made for some great angles. I wanted to strangle someone (the officiant). It was there for a safety net, but had it not been blocked, it would have had some priceless stuff on it.

Sorry to hi-jack with my rant. I never really did get that out of my system.
Mike Petrucco is offline   Reply With Quote
Old February 9th, 2009, 03:28 AM   #20
Trustee
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Boise, Idaho
Posts: 1,997
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Petrucco View Post
Sorry to hi-jack with my rant. I never really did get that out of my system.
No that is exactly the reason I've only tried an unmaned cam once... and it was a very safe un-maned cam (fro ma balcone overloocing the audience facign the audience to get the down the isle shot.... the only time I've been able to get the aisle from straight on.
Jason Robinson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old February 9th, 2009, 10:26 PM   #21
Major Player
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Lexington, Ky - USA
Posts: 552
Andrew I read our question and was about to hit the quote button with an anxious reply only to see Jason and Mike's responses. They are right on the mark. Whatever you do, do not reply on the unmanned cam from the back or front. i have had great angles from choir lofts ruined by officiants standing in front of the cam or in line of sight and great angles from the rear of the church ruined by the unexpected guest that is 6'4" that happens to stand in front of your wide cam during the procession and recessional. An unmanned camera is a good safety but never rely on it-you will get burned eventually. that said it can give you some great cutaways but just make sure you have it covered somewhere else too because you never know what that cam is getting until you get to post...
__________________
3x-HD1000u - Ikan 8000HD- custom i7 PC - Vegas Pro 13 and 11 64 bit - Premiere Pro CS4 - and a whole mess of other equipment...
Bryan Daugherty is offline   Reply With Quote
Old February 10th, 2009, 05:19 PM   #22
Major Player
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Columbia,SC
Posts: 806
Andrew let me also offer a differing opinion on the unmanned camera... I have shot 60+ weddings in the last 3 yrs and 95% of them were alone. I gotten to where i can usually call the best spot from the back. My 3021 will also jack up to about 8 ft. I know I have 1 shot during the bride' s prcessional, and that's fine. I have a differing opinion on second shooters. They have always caused me more trouble than they are worth. So, I always shoot alone. I wouldn't mind having someone I could trust as my second shooter, but I would need to train them from a pup and trust that they would do exactly what I would want every time. I think the key to the static unmanned back camera is not to go for creative, go for functional. I am not creating art with my ceremonies, I am documenting an event. Everything else can be creative, but that back camera is to be used only when I need it. If I kick my tripod up to 8 ft and frame it wide, I can always count on the shot. Not like a secondd shooter that needs to memorize a "script' to get it right. No thanks, not for me. Good luck.
Bill
__________________
Cinema Couture
www.cinemacouture.com
Bill Grant is offline   Reply With Quote
Old February 10th, 2009, 07:13 PM   #23
Trustee
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Boise, Idaho
Posts: 1,997
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bill Grant View Post
Andrew let me also offer a differing opinion on the unmanned camera... I have shot 60+ weddings in the last 3 yrs and 95% of them were alone. I gotten to where i can usually call the best spot from the back. My 3021 will also jack up to about 8 ft. I know I have 1 shot during the bride' s prcessional, and that's fine. I have a differing opinion on second shooters. They have always caused me more trouble than they are worth. So, I always shoot alone. I wouldn't mind having someone I could trust as my second shooter, but I would need to train them from a pup and trust that they would do exactly what I would want every time. I think the key to the static unmanned back camera is not to go for creative, go for functional. I am not creating art with my ceremonies, I am documenting an event. Everything else can be creative, but that back camera is to be used only when I need it. If I kick my tripod up to 8 ft and frame it wide, I can always count on the shot. Not like a secondd shooter that needs to memorize a "script' to get it right. No thanks, not for me. Good luck.
Bill
Good points Bill. The only reason I work with the second shoot that I do is because.... I married her! And she always hears me complaining from the office about the footage I shot (or she shot). So she has had hundreds and hundreds of hours of exposure to shooting techniques.

Like Bill mentioned, if you have even a little bit of height on that wide unmanned cam down the aisle, then it is perfect for what it does. An unnamed cam cam work, but you have to take some pretty good efforts to make it idiot proof.....er I mean..... guest & photographer proof. Once you do, then they can allow a single Op to multiple their efforts. Just do a Search For Joel P on these boards. 3-5 cam shoots, all alone, AND he does a SDE for the reception!
Jason Robinson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old February 10th, 2009, 10:46 PM   #24
Major Player
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Lexington, Ky - USA
Posts: 552
Bill, I also shoot nearly all of my weddings on my own too so I use the unmanned cam all the time. It is a great tool and allows me to take some jobs that my competition turns down for rate because I don't have to pay another op, but I have been burned when i have shot my primary shot relying on the safety only to find it obstructed or unusable for some other reason. I guess my advice may have come off too heavily against it, I am not against the unmanned cam but I think if you are going to use it you need to shoot like it is a one cam shoot and be glad when the footage on the unmanned works. I use my 3021 for the same deployment but in some circumstances I don't deploy it to the full 8 ft because the high angle can get poor results on the processional if it is too high, but then you run into the tall people issue... live and learn...

So Andrew, Bill is right about the usefulness of the unmanned cam but remember there is a chance the shot won't work and shot your other cam to be ready for it. The 3 or more camera approach makes it safer and lowers the risk but an unmanned camera always has a little risk, so does an op that may not get the shot you need... just my thoughts.
__________________
3x-HD1000u - Ikan 8000HD- custom i7 PC - Vegas Pro 13 and 11 64 bit - Premiere Pro CS4 - and a whole mess of other equipment...
Bryan Daugherty is offline   Reply With Quote
Old February 10th, 2009, 11:28 PM   #25
Major Player
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Columbia,SC
Posts: 806
Also,
90% of the time, I am using 3 cams. I always have the third shot on something safe, either a duplicate wide from a different angle or something like musicians, etc. Always count on your primary cam being the only shot. It keeps you on your toes...
Bill
__________________
Cinema Couture
www.cinemacouture.com
Bill Grant is offline   Reply With Quote
Old February 10th, 2009, 11:33 PM   #26
Major Player
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Lexington, Ky - USA
Posts: 552
Amen to that Bill, even with a second op, i guess that is good advice...
__________________
3x-HD1000u - Ikan 8000HD- custom i7 PC - Vegas Pro 13 and 11 64 bit - Premiere Pro CS4 - and a whole mess of other equipment...
Bryan Daugherty is offline   Reply With Quote
Old February 11th, 2009, 04:45 PM   #27
Regular Crew
 
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Portland, OR
Posts: 56
Thanks guys. So the next wedding I am doing is inside and my last one for a friend for free :). I would like to rent a second XHA1, but the wife says no...so I'll likely be shooting with one XHA1 and an HV20 or HF10. I was planning on using the XHA1 on a tripod from the back and then using the little HF10 as a second shooter to get some processional shots and then set it on a tripod at the front for a low angle shot of the brides and groom. Picture the camera right in front of the mother of the bride on a tripod that is set as low as possible. Does this make sense from your solo shooting experience or would you switch to have the higher quality camera get the up close stuff and use the low quality for wide shots from the back? I know its not the best way to do it, but its what I have...
Andrew Dryden is offline   Reply With Quote
Old February 11th, 2009, 05:48 PM   #28
Trustee
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Boise, Idaho
Posts: 1,997
Quote:
Originally Posted by Andrew Dryden View Post
Thanks guys. So the next wedding I am doing is inside and my last one for a friend for free :). I would like to rent a second XHA1, but the wife says no...so I'll likely be shooting with one XHA1 and an HV20 or HF10. I was planning on using the XHA1 on a tripod from the back and then using the little HF10 as a second shooter to get some processional shots and then set it on a tripod at the front for a low angle shot of the brides and groom. Picture the camera right in front of the mother of the bride on a tripod that is set as low as possible. Does this make sense from your solo shooting experience or would you switch to have the higher quality camera get the up close stuff and use the low quality for wide shots from the back? I know its not the best way to do it, but its what I have...
A lot depends on the actual ceremony setup. I would probably put the better cam with me up front, just off the right hand side of the guest seating so I could shoot closeups of the bride. The lower end cam and shoot down the aisle on a fixed bridal party wide angle. The problem with this is a photographer WILL stand right in front of your camera so you will need to police taht cam every few seconds to make sure no one is screwing with its field of view.

Good luck to you!
Jason Robinson is offline   Reply
Reply

DV Info Net refers all where-to-buy and where-to-rent questions exclusively to these trusted full line dealers and rental houses...

Professional Video
(800) 833-4801
Portland, OR

B&H Photo Video
(866) 521-7381
New York, NY

Z.G.C.
(973) 335-4460
Mountain Lakes, NJ

Abel Cine Tech
(888) 700-4416
N.Y. NY & L.A. CA

Precision Camera
(800) 677-1023
Austin, TX

DV Info Net also encourages you to support local businesses and buy from an authorized dealer in your neighborhood.
  You are here: DV Info Net > Special Interest Areas > Wedding / Event Videography Techniques

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

 



Google
 

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 05:38 PM.


DV Info Net -- Real Names, Real People, Real Info!
1998-2017 The Digital Video Information Network