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


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Old November 9th, 2004, 09:41 PM   #1
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Please critique my wedding demo

You can download the 33MB, 4-minute WMV file from http://tjborekvideo.com/video/demo2005.wmv.

My main concern is my featuring multiple weddings instead of just one or two. I think one wedding is easier to follow, but I think showing highlights from several weddings in a logical order adds to the "wow" factor. (If I even have a wow factor.)

Please excuse the crackling audio during the blonde woman's vows. I will fix that in the final edit.

Thanks in advance,

T.J.
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Old November 10th, 2004, 02:48 PM   #2
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I really like it. Even though it was many diferent weddings it flowed very well, you spent some time editing that one and I would say it was well worth it
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Old November 11th, 2004, 08:56 AM   #3
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Thanks, Ralph!

It took me about six hours just to review footage and choose clips from some memorable weddings. The editing took about a week of late-night sessions, about 60-90 minutes each, after my daughter went to bed. There were times when I literally fell asleep while previewing short segments. It's hard trying to grow a business between a 9-to-5 career I despise and being a family man, but when it's your passion, you do what you can to get your fix :) Noting worth having comes easily, that much I know.
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Old November 11th, 2004, 09:39 AM   #4
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I'm in the same dilema- not that I'm a family man (I'm not married) but I work a day-job 40 hr/ a week. It's difficult to get a good amount of progress done in projects- by the time I look up at the clock it's usually past midnight and I have to save it and shut it down for the night.

If I had all day (did wedding full time) then I think in time I could hone my workflow and pump a wedding out every 2-3 weeks. At this point it's taking me about 8 weeks from catpure to encode/burning.
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Old November 11th, 2004, 10:24 AM   #5
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I have to admit I just did my first wedding (my mother was and was married to a photographer who offered video with some of their wedding packages) and I had no idea it was that dificult but it was worth it and I thought I did pretty well for having never done a video before. My point started out as my job is perfect for this venture into videography I work about 35 hours a week and I do it in four consecutive days so three days off in a row helps alot. What nle and dvd authoring do you guys use I have vegas 4.0 and dvd architect 1.0. Finding and getting those seperate weddings cut at the propper moment really impresses me more every time I think about it. Would it bother you if I stole that idea for my own demo? I live in St. Louis MO if it matters to you.
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Old November 12th, 2004, 12:09 PM   #6
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I don't mind.

Imitation is the greatest form of flattery, is it not? Feel free to borrow the concept. I'm sure I'm not the first person to do this, and you won't be the last, Ralph.

You asked what software I use. That video was done entirely in Ulead MediaStudio Pro 7.2. Nothing too fancy. The music is buyout music I purchased. The cameras used are Panasonic DVC80 and Canon GL2, with a few seconds of Panasonic PV-DV100, and Canon ZR45 (backup, or secondary camera for wide shots).

I don't plan on using MediaStudio 7 for long. After installing Ulead's Service Pack 2 for MediaStudio Pro 7, the program randomly crashes when I render. Not stable at all on my machine. I seem to be the only person having this problem too, so I don't know that the problem is. I should have just avoided the upgrade and stayed with version 6.5. As soon as I finish my current wedding project, I'm going to uninstall version 7 and go back to using version 6.5, which was more stable for me. Minor disadvantages include lack of Hyper-Threading support and no Dolby AC3 audio encoding. But I can use my DVD software to encode AC3 for DVDs. Once I book some more weddings, I'll consider learning another NLE. I have demo versions of Premiere Pro, Edius 2, and Vegas. I just don't have time to sit down with them now and probably won't until after Thanksgiving.
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Old November 12th, 2004, 05:19 PM   #7
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Hmm, I was going to something like this for our promo (which at present is seperate highlight sections) But I was going to do it at a "100miles an hour" to a fast record.

Anyway my 2c - I didn't like the music - I don't like using library music ever - I don't what the situation is in the US for using copyrighted music - and I would change the coloured drop shadow on your text to a sublte black glow.

But other that that great!

Jon
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Old November 19th, 2004, 06:18 AM   #8
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Tim,

Your montage of the different couples exchanging their vows is excellent - that was certainly my favourite part. You could almost use that section as a promo on it's own.

Good work.
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Old February 4th, 2005, 08:39 AM   #9
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Hey Tim,

I have been watching you with some interest since your name began showing up regularly on The Knot. I am in Newburgh Indiana, which is about 3.5 hours south of you.

I think you have improved ten fold since I first saw some of your early work. The website is much better, and your demo shows you are well on your way. Overall I like it.

The only suggestions I could offer would be to use a tripod more often, and watch (or listen as the case may be) your audio. I noticed a few shaky shots in the demo, and at least one time where the bride sounded like she was in an echo chamber. Neither of these are huge problems, but for a demo, you want to show your very best.

I noticed you have also increased your prices. I think you could probably go even higher in Indy. See how your bookings go, and look at raising them again in 6 months.

Todd
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Old February 4th, 2005, 01:16 PM   #10
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Another Hoosier?

Hey Todd,

Stop stalking me!


:)


Thanks for the feedback. All are excellent points. As for the handheld shots, those have been where the more interesting moments take place. The reception footage is about 70% handheld because I don't like to lug a tripod around a crowded room; maybe I'd be better served by a monopod. I'm considering a FlowPod, which doubles as a monopod and stabilizer.

As for prices, I think I've entered what's been referred to as the "dead man's zone." This means prices are too high to attract the budget brides, but too low to attract the most discerning brides. You'd be surprised how many videographers in the Indianapolis market are underselling their services -- at least I think they are. I've seen all-day two-camera coverage with all the bells n' whistles for only 1000-$1500. C'mon! I know the market tends to dictate prices, but who can afford to work for those prices? Retirees, I guess...

T.J.
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Old February 5th, 2005, 08:57 PM   #11
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Tim,

Music: Good choice of music and very good on the buyout music over a copyrighted song. It speaks highly of you.

Pacing: I think that it really went well until after the vow montage. You go into the reception footage and it just drags. I think that you could cut that part down to just 30 secs. of reception footage and end it. Reason why? After I got past the vows I was pretty pumped about your services. Minor tech stuff was there but overall it was really nice and left me feeling confident about your abilities. Then you go into reception footage and I start to wonder why it's draging on. I was happy with just 30 sec. of rec. footage and sold on your services and putting in more of that turned me off.

Shot technique: Nobody likes to carry a tripod but it really shows when you don't. You'll step up your quality tremendously if you use one at every possible oppourtunity.

Overall I really felt good about your production ability. I felt confident that if it was my wedding, you'd capture all the important events.

Ben Lynn
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Old February 6th, 2005, 06:26 AM   #12
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I thought overall this was a good example of what a customer could expect. My only criticism is the crackling on the audio which you have mentioned yourself. Why include that particular shot? It wouldn't detract from the film at all if you had left that bit out, rather than leave it in then make excuses that it will be sorted out at a later date. I would be interested to know how you would take it out? My favourite part was the the vows section, it showed a variety of different weddings you have attended thus giving the client more confidence.

Nice one..!
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Old February 6th, 2005, 02:56 PM   #13
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Hi ,


Your editing was excellent but it was too long , maybe it's just me and my fast editing style but I feel that some shots were not mandatory to really sell your product eg: the onewith the guy taking a picture backward, the young man dancing with the old lady and some others.

Of course I didn't see the whole footage but for my own tastes I really like to shot it up close. Weddings are for girls and the more you show the girl the more both will appreciate the video.

I espacially like the shot where everybody is holding those fireworks stick thingy ( sorry can't find the word in english)

All and all if you would slice 1 min your promo would be great. My personnal experience showed me that a short wedding video is better than a long one , just the ceremony is about 15 min including intro's and credit roll. Seems like everybody is enjoying it because it doesn't bore the friends who come over. They can watch it and still make plan for the remaining of the evening :)

Keep it up you are in the right direction.
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Old February 6th, 2005, 05:45 PM   #14
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<<<-- Music: Good choice of music and very good on the buyout music over a copyrighted song. It speaks highly of you. -->>>

Yes I agree. I think it very immoral for so-called professional videographer's to steal other musical artist's work and call it their own when theys put it on their paid wedding videos. It is wrong and should be illegal. Those professional videographer should be prosecuted and fined or jailed for wholesale copyright violations. It should not be tolerated. And kujos on using buyouts music selections.
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Old February 7th, 2005, 04:20 PM   #15
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<--Those professional videographer should be prosecuted and fined or jailed for wholesale copyright violations. It should not be tolerated.-->

Remember that this is not a nationally distributed piece of work. There is a very specific audience - the married couple in their living room. If it adds to the piece to have a certain popular music selection present (take for example the bride and groom's first dance - who dances to buyout music?) then it is best to use it, right?

I think your reaction, Davi, is satirical.

BTW, I think your work is very nice. There are some areas of low exposure at the reception and I noticed one white-balance problem (the couple exits the church and there's a great deal of 'camcorder blue') but your edit is nice although I agree it's a bit long.
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