Weddings and technology 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 July 25th, 2004, 04:05 AM   #1
Major Player
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Copenhagen, Denmark
Posts: 219
Weddings and technology

Hi There.

I am a journalist writing for PCWorld in Denmark specializing in digital media. And there is something about the media marked i need to clear up. I have been talking to Canopus, Matrox, Adobe, Canon, Sony the lot, and they all mention WEVA as a very big driving force behind design and feature of their products.

Now in scandinavia wedding and event videos are something that is usually done by a relative on purely ad hoc basis. It is somebody's uncle with a camera and a shaky hand. I've spoken to 50 % of the danish wedding video business (one out of two) and 80 percent of their business is non-related to weddings or other family events. Their biggest job ever was a two camera production at 1.000 USD.

So this event video business is something very foreign to us. Unfortunately I have never been i USA at a time where I had any chance of attending a wedding, so I have only the Hollywood POV. I can see from WEVA's website that it is biig business. But I would like to have a better understanding of the video marked dynamics. I would be very happy if any of you would take some time to point me towards mere information on this. If there is sources on the web, that I have missed pls. forgive me, but some googleing only gave me a lot of producers.

More precise:

What happens media-wise to a typical american wedding?
What are the typical demands by the customer?
What is considered quality in productions of this type?
How is this boiling down to demands for the equipment?
What is the economics in this event/marked?
What is the current trends/fashion?

Any information would be most appreciated and again thanks for your time.

PS: this is a copy of my message in another forum, but i Can't delete my old post, as the software tells me that I am not allowed to do that.
__________________
----------------------------
12c41

JOS. Svendsen
Jos Svendsen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old July 25th, 2004, 04:56 PM   #2
Wrangler
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: Philadelphia, PA
Posts: 2,898
Re: Weddings and technology

Hello Jos, welcome to the forums. I'll do my best to answer some of your questions....

What happens media-wise to a typical american wedding?
"American" weddings vary greatly depending on the religeous background of the particular couple. In my experience I've dealt primarily with Christian/Catholic ceremonies. Even within this catagory there lies a great deal of variability. The most comon important events are: bridal party entrances (either escorted by groomsmen or solo), bridal march (bride entering w/ father or family member), bibical readings (usually by friends or family members), exchange of rings, vows, unity candle, recessional. Sometimes Catholic ceremonies will have full mass including Communion. The best advice is to overshoot- cover EVERYTHING. It's best to have more footage than needed than not enough. It's also best to have at least 2 cameras to act as a buffer for mistakes and/or add additional camera angles (ie Grooms face as the Bride enters- parent's reactions during the vows/rings exchange). I've shot with as many as 4 cameras during a ceremony. 2 manned and two locked- one in the balcony and one on the floor in the rear shooting down the center isle for some artistic entrance and recessional shots.

That's just the ceremony- following the ceremony is the recessional which usually includes a photography session. I usually get some shots of this prior to heading to the area where the reception is held. Sometimes the couple does photos in the church- sometimes at a park or other location, and sometimes both. A basic outline of activities at a standard reception are: cocktail hour (usually held during the downtime while the bridal party/grooms men are getting their photos taken, formal entrances (when the entire wedding party is introduced by the DJ into the reception hall), first dance (reserved for the bride and groom), toasts/blessing, bouquet/garter toss, cake cut, and various dancing througout the night. I sometimes get candids or "interviews" from guests at the couple's request. Sometimes couples include additional novel activities...too many to mention. Again the best thing to do is do your best to capture everything and make sure you definitly capture the things they ask you to.


What are the typical demands by the customer?
Again this is an issue that is unique from couple to couple. Some of the demands I've consistantly recieved was to make sure certian family members were included, usually ones that don't live nearby and are rarely seen by the couple. I've also been asked to get coverage of the crowd around the bar area at the reception as many vidoegraphers can tend to stay where the "action" is and never get shots of friends and family members that don't visit the dance floor during the night. I usually include a cotail hour montage. Usually a short vignette consisting of shots of various people mingling at and around the bar. Like I said every couple is different in there demands/requirements that's why it's always best to get as much coverage during the day as possible. Can't overstress the importance of "over-shooting".
A good way to organize the "demands" of the client are to offer different packages that include varying coverages and extras. That way the client can choose what their demands, exactly, are.


What is considered quality in productions of this type?
This is open to interpretation but quality to "me" would be a program that depicts the events of the day and helps convey the emotions and feelings of the people involved- all the while maintaining good pacing and athestic cinematography.

How is this boiling down to demands for the equipment?
A very comon demand for wedding videographers are cameras that perform well in low lighting due to the fact that churches and, even more so, receptions tend to be farily dark environments. A good wireless sytem is advisable for good audio for the vows during the ceremony, also even some good diffused on-camera lighting. Despite how well your cam may perform in low-light sometimes an external light source is still needed- especially later in the night during receptions when they dim the lights for the ongoing dancing during the night.

What is the economics in this event/marked?
This varies greatly on the region/demographic your marketing in. I know videographers that do solid work that can't get much more than $1,000 usd for a high end wedding package due to their area, likewise I know some who's rates *start* over $5,000 usd. You can take wedding/event videography as far as you want- you just have to keep in mind regardless of how good you become at your craft your always limited by the general income of a particular area. You simply have to be marketing to a more wealthy demographic to make a good living- that...or do a high volume of weddings per year (ie 50+). I'd rather be doing 10 weddings a year at $5000 each- than 50 weddings at $1,000 each.

What is the current trends/fashion?
I'm assuming your referring to overall editing/shooting styles. They change constantly- organizations like Weva are great ways to keep up to date with the newest "trends" in the industry. Each videographer has their own style which can vary greatly from one to the next. I personally shoot exclusively in "short-form" style in that I don't edit thing in real time....a 2 hour ceremony isn't going to be 2 hours in the finished product. I heavily abbreviate the days events with tighter editing yet keeping the most important events in real-time. Each section of a finished program is similar to a music video/montage. I feel one of the most important things in videography in general is pacing. If you were to sit and let your camera roll the entire ceremony and include it in the video *as is* it wouldn't be conducive to a well paced program. Sure the couple might watch it from beginning to end once or twice but will soon be hitting the fast-forward button to get to the "good parts". I try to make my entire video "good parts" adding a cinematic flare and really good achieved through tight clean editing. Then again there will be that rare couple that perfer "long-form" but as I've said before every couple is different.

It's really hard to give concrete advise as there are so many variables in this genre. Nothing replaces experience. The more weddings/events you do the more mistakes your patch up and your workflow will become more streamlinled. In addition to that you'll begin to develop your own style. I'd suggest doing the first 1 or 2 weddings for free to get experience and/or get footage to piece together a demo. A good wedding demo can be invaluable to getting clients in the future. Another note- this industry is heavy on referrals and word of mouth. Do your best to network with other professionals in the industry (dj's, photographers, caterers, florists, etc) and never, I repeat NEVER stop until your client (bride) is happy. It's very important (especially when getting established) to exceed the expectations of EVERYcouple. Every satisfied customer increases the chance of a referral.


This barely scratches the surface of the various aspects surrounding wedding videography. If you have any other question feel free to post. Again welcome to the forum- look forward to seeing you around. -Glen
Glen Elliott is offline   Reply With Quote
Old July 28th, 2004, 03:20 PM   #3
Major Player
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Copenhagen, Denmark
Posts: 219
Thanks!

10**3 thanks for your very comprehensive and informative answer. I must amit I am a little bit overwhelmed. The average cost of a american wedding must be astronomical!

Do you know it there is any samples of wedding videos available on the net?


Thanks again for taking time to reply.
__________________
----------------------------
12c41

JOS. Svendsen
Jos Svendsen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old July 28th, 2004, 04:23 PM   #4
Wrangler
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: Philadelphia, PA
Posts: 2,898
They are all over actually. A good way to find them is go to Weva.tv and look under "member listings" go to various sites and check out their samples. I have some friends of mine who do some absolutly breathtaking work but I don't want to give out their URL unsolicited and burn up their band-width. Email me and I'll send you a link to a few.
Glen Elliott 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 08:41 PM.


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