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Old July 6th, 2009, 01:28 PM   #1
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Mountain meadow location wedding

I'm shooting a wedding this weekend on a mountain meadow in one of the most beautiful places on earth.... the Sawtooth's in Idaho.

The logistics of this wedding (and transportation costs) almost killed my bid (see previous posts about other company doing it with no transportation fees).

But I wrote an apparently persuasive email to the MOB and here we are, planning a wedding & reception where there might not be any electricity for either event.

The event location is the Galena Lodge and some of the sample photos are breathtaking.

So here are my questions.

1) Do ya'll frame your shots differently when presented with vistas like these?

2) How in the world am I going to shoot for this many hours with potentially no rechargers for my batteries! I'm calling the lodge this week to see if the actual wedding location is at the lodge or at this mountain meadow location I've heard the client reference. Hopefully something is near an outlet!

3) I am so tempted to try to mount my camera on the hood of a vehicle driving up there to get some of these scenic drives! Anyone done this (and not messed up the lens with bug splatters?)

4) Any other general advice for very remote weddings? I've always been pretty urban in my filming so this will be a welcome change, but I don't want to make critical but easy to avoid mistakes.
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Old July 6th, 2009, 01:55 PM   #2
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#1
Yes and no. I would do much the same but also incorporate some additional wide shots. Try using lower angles to get a more dramatic look.

#2
Extra batteries. Less use of the LCD screen (use the viewfinder). Car adapter for chargers.

#3
I haven't done this but I've driven while filming before (not that I'm recommending that, lol). You could also mount your camera on a tripod INSIDE the car in the passenger seat and have it secured there. Safer for your camera. In other words, rock chips could be a bigger issue than bug spatters.

#4
Double check all your gear, especially anything that requires AA or AAA batteries. Make sure you have plenty. Also, might want to have extra water/food, just in case. Don't count on cell phone coverage for anything. Oh, and check your car fluids before you leave. I blew my engine on my way to a Twin Falls wedding a few years ago because my oil was low AND leaking.


Good luck. Glad you got the booking!
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Old July 6th, 2009, 02:29 PM   #3
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Oh an hat tip to Travis for the referral on this one. I found out from the client that the other bidder I was up against was the other vendor at the wedding show.

Oddly enough I blew my fan belt & water pump just two weeks ago on my way to Mountain Home for a booking meeting. Anything can happen on these destination weddings! And they wonder why we charge the IRS rate for wear & tear!

Using the viewfinder vs LDC screen will be a pretty big change to my shooting style, but obviously if that is what we have to do, then that is what we have to do.

For batteries I've got 2 6hr batteries (or whatever the big Canon batteries are) for the primary cam, and 1 x 6hr + 1x1hr for secondary cam. Third cam only has one piddly little battery but that is usually good enough for the ceremony.

In looking at the photo selections on their website, I am seeing a lot of higher framed photos. Now that could just be their marketing photos to show the location, but I have to figure that anyone getting married up there WANTS scenery in the pictures.
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Old July 6th, 2009, 04:00 PM   #4
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Wow, I can't believe he was offering to do it sans travel fees. That pisses me off. Supposedly he's booked solid all summer, so why's he giving away travel fees? Ridiculous.

Especially when an engine replacement costs $5-6k. d;-)
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Old July 6th, 2009, 05:34 PM   #5
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can you buy 1 extra battery? I can't even leave the house without 6 Sony 970s for the 2 cameras. What if one blows a cell? It can and does happen. Happened to me twice. Not the same job thank goodness.
Bring lots of extra AA/AAA batteries if you use them.
Some food and drink is a good thing as well.

DON'T mount your camera on the hood of your car. There a better than even chance the lens will get damaged.

Make sure your car is ready to go. Oil change, all fluids topped off, spare tire ready to go (jack also). As stated earlier, you might not have cell phone signal or GPS signal so make sure you have the directions, there and back and a flashlight. A big one.

As for shooting, man, sounds like a great place. Let your creativity go. Open your mind, when you see something that looks like a great view put the B&G in the shot and go. Worst that happens, the shot doesn't work, just don't get so cought up in the views you forget why you're there. ;-) I played golf on the big island of Hawaii and on one hole was so enamored by the view, I hit a terrible shot :-( but honestly I didn't care but remember why you're there.
I'm sure it will be an awesome job. Have fun with it.
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Old July 6th, 2009, 05:53 PM   #6
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Hi Jason,

You've got some good advice there.

I'll only add comment on your battery issue. Aside from simply having more Cam batteries, I've also used an RV type Deep Cycle battery, along with other smaller Gel type batteries to provide power for all day shoots using a Cam, 2 VCRs or DVRs, and a small monitor. Just size your battery to your equipment and the run time needed.

Most recently I added a Honda 2000i Gen unit. (very quiet and easy to handle) A 1000i would likely do you well enough. You could set one of these outside and run a wire into your equipment if necessary.

Harold
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Old July 6th, 2009, 07:17 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Harold Schreiber View Post
Hi Jason,

You've got some good advice there.

I'll only add comment on your battery issue. Aside from simply having more Cam batteries, I've also used an RV type Deep Cycle battery, along with other smaller Gel type batteries to provide power for all day shoots using a Cam, 2 VCRs or DVRs, and a small monitor. Just size your battery to your equipment and the run time needed.

Most recently I added a Honda 2000i Gen unit. (very quiet and easy to handle) A 1000i would likely do you well enough. You could set one of these outside and run a wire into your equipment if necessary.

Harold
I like the idea of a RV / boat battery (heavy as heck I bet) connected to an inverter to power a cam in an emergency. I might look into that. As for batteries, we have felt the pinch in the past of only having two batteries per cam (and one cam not having two big batteries), so I may look into getting a new battery or two for the GL2s. I just hate to put more money into my SD systems which I may not be shooting Canon in 2 years! Who knows. I may go Panny or Sony depending on pricing.
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Old July 6th, 2009, 08:07 PM   #8
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Hi Jason,

That's why I mentioned the smaller 12V Gel type Batteries. I've got two of them in Camera carring cases that I can just throw over my shoulder. Cheaper, smaller, lighter and can go for Hrs for a Cam.

And YES, those RV Batteries are too Damn heavy, so only use for stationary shooting, although when set up in a wagon - they can be very portable.

Harold
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Old July 7th, 2009, 11:28 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Harold Schreiber View Post
Hi Jason,

That's why I mentioned the smaller 12V Gel type Batteries. I've got two of them in Camera carring cases that I can just throw over my shoulder. Cheaper, smaller, lighter and can go for Hrs for a Cam.

And YES, those RV Batteries are too Damn heavy, so only use for stationary shooting, although when set up in a wagon - they can be very portable.

Harold
I spoke with the venue today and the mountain meadow will have a generator for the DJ to run the PA system on. Doh! So that will spoil the mountain atmosphere. I'll have to see about going up earlier to record some ambient audio - B-roll.
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Old July 8th, 2009, 08:21 AM   #10
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Hey Jason,

1) If they're using a Honda, Yamaha, or other similar units, you probably won't hear it.

2) If you can pull power from it, make sure it's one of the newer units with the proper out put for electronics - not all are.

If they were using my unit, you'd be good both ways.

Harold
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