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


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Old December 3rd, 2009, 05:43 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by Stephen J. Williams View Post
I'm not going to lie... I HATE when a client asks me for the raw footage on DVD's.
Don't provide raw footage. Photographers don't. They trash most of their mistakes in-camera, yet we are somehow obligated to put all ours on display? I think not.
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Old December 5th, 2009, 06:13 PM   #17
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I have yet to shoot a wedding but I do a lot of event video. Concerts being one area. When we have a multi-cam shoot going and I am on stage handled or with my Steadycam/handheld mini-crane (DIY) I usually just leave the cam running for the entire shoot (HMC150 so storage not an issue). I do not particularly want the client to see all the footage that is on there of me running around or cam at the floor or shakey till I et up the shot. It looks like crap. The edited version always looks golden. Why would I want to ruin that?

The ONLY time I have given raw footage for an event like that was when we were hired at the last minute for a work for hire to cover a band of 35 minutes. The client is an AES sound engineer with video editing experience and this was for his personal band. I did a rough multicam edit with TC burnt in on my own volition so that he could see what we could do (which he viewed before viewing the raw footage).

This may in fact lead to a major gig in the spring shooting a music video for a rather large name musical act. :) (We'll see... this is the music business..lol)

I could see why with weddings the client might want the raw footage "in case you missed something", but I think if I did it wouldn't be completely raw. I would edit out any blurred shots, shots the floor, ceiling, etc, etc. I would also charge for my editing/rendering time for this semi-raw footage.

Last edited by Denny Lajeunesse; December 6th, 2009 at 12:32 AM.
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Old December 5th, 2009, 09:48 PM   #18
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I agree with Craig - we quote for producing a finished programme and have never sold the raw footage.

I have once quoted for it when asked by a friendly photographer for a competitive quote against two others, both offering it as an option. Our quote for raw was much higher, but the client chose the cheapest hobby outfit anyway.

According to the photographer the couple hated the video - serves them right!
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Old December 5th, 2009, 10:04 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by Danny O'Neill View Post
Sometimes its because the bride believes every last second of their day was the most magical thing in the world. Possibly because the edit looks like this and they think "Hey, I bet every other minute of footage is like this" but of course the edit is nice and polished. No shots of feet or out of focus heads.
I agree with this. I think most B&G's who ask for it think the whole unedited shoot will come out this good. Or they can just lay it down to their favorite songs & watch it. Not realizing how when it's unedited it usually get boring after about 10 minutes.

I think most expect they will either watch it, or do something with it themselves (edit it). I bet most just watch half of it once & put it away for eternity.
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Old December 5th, 2009, 11:31 PM   #20
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Raw footage is a pet peeve of mine. People don't understand what it looks like. No matter how much you tell them it's bad, but that's normal, it doesn't matter. They still expect it to look good.

This is not the 'bad' takes of a controlled film shoot. This is the out of focus, shots of the floor and ceiling, wrong white balance, etc, etc, that you get from a high stress run and gun event. It's painful to watch.

So when it looks like crap, hey, who looks bad?

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Originally Posted by Chris Davis View Post
You may not consider that fleeting shot of two teenagers dancing to be important, but someday they will be somebody's parent/grandparent and somebody is going to want to see that.
Chris, I understand your point, and agree on an emotional level. But wedding videography is a business more than a documentary effort. And if you release stuff that makes you look bad, I can only think that will make your business suffer in the long run.

Also, it's our job to take note of important family connections on the day, and do our best to pay attention to them on the shoot, and the edit. I don't know how many times I've come across a dance shot or whatever and said to myself "okay, I have to include this because it's the bride's grandmother/father/brother/cousin/etc."

The only exception that makes sense to me would be to offer a cleaned-up version of the raw footage for an extra fee. Take out the mistakes, add a time code burn in and be done with it.

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Originally Posted by Danny O'Neill View Post
We try and discourage them from this as we know seeing the footage could ruin their memories of the day. Theres always a relative who is tired and doesnt want to be there who just scowls at the camera ;)
This is a great point. What about those times when someone says something unkind, or the videographer swears under his breath, or whatever? Months later if you make a straight dub of this stuff, it could turn around to bite you in the butt.

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Originally Posted by David Barnett View Post
I think most expect they will either watch it, or do something with it themselves (edit it). I bet most just watch half of it once & put it away for eternity.
Exactly. People ask for it because they expect more of a good thing. Then when they actually watch it, it is a big disappointment.
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Old December 6th, 2009, 12:41 AM   #21
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haha. That reminds me. I was shooting football for a friend of mine a few times. The gig was football. Client wanted raw footage of there son so they could look it all over and pick out what they wanted in his demo reel for College. No biggy. Not exactly rocket science from the booth.

Of course the mics are on wild sound and her husband comes up to the booth and is chatting to someone there (I didn't at that point know who he was) and mentions that the crowd is kinda dead and that maybe he should get his wife out there on the sidelines to do a stripper dance. "At least then those pole dancing classes she's been taking would be worth it.". All the men laugh. All caught by the mics. That was probably a fun time to be with the family when they were previewing footage. lol
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Old December 6th, 2009, 06:50 AM   #22
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Ouch! I guess they're not married anymore.
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Old December 6th, 2009, 11:17 AM   #23
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Originally Posted by Danny O'Neill View Post
We try and discourage them from this as we know seeing the footage could ruin their memories of the day. Theres always a relative who is tired and doesnt want to be there who just scowls at the camera ;)

If they pay, they can have it.
This is why we charge so much for raw footage... $500. It's not just the trouble in general, it's also the need (sometimes) to clean it up a little bit. We have had a few people pay for it. In one case we took the time to cut out a few moments in their raw where the bride & groom made fun of his dad (parents are divorced, dad has turned into kind of an odd case and they all joke about it). They may joke about him openly around siblings & mom's new family, but I doubt they want him hearing that.

We also had one couple who did unity sand in their ceremony and as they walk over to the vases the groom says, "my mom fu*k*d it up." If they had wanted their raw, I wasn't leaving that in.

A new question for you... we recently switched to the HMC150. A new client saw on our contract where we provide the raw on DVD for $500. She asked what we would charge if, instead of DVD, she just brought over hard drive or large thumb drive and we put the raw on that? Any input or thoughts? Would you give it to them as a generic file like mov? It would be very simple if we could just copy and paste the original files for them, but I'm guessing few clients would have use for AVCHD files. :-)
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Old December 6th, 2009, 02:12 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by Sarah Pendergraft View Post
A new question for you... we recently switched to the HMC150. A new client saw on our contract where we provide the raw on DVD for $500. She asked what we would charge if, instead of DVD, she just brought over hard drive or large thumb drive and we put the raw on that?
I would charge the same amount regardless of media. I've actually had clients ask if they could get a break on the price if they provided their own blank DVDs!

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I'm guessing few clients would have use for AVCHD files.
Not true. Anyone can pick up a copy of Sony Movie Studio or other consumer editing program for $50 that will handle AVCHD.
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Old December 6th, 2009, 06:33 PM   #25
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Well, considering how much computer horsepower it takes to properly play back AVCHD, that might be one way to avoid the issue <wink>. Although that will change with time of course, but it would be one heckuva jump drive to hold all the raw files from an AVCHD shoot... maybe a portable HDD.

I agree there are SOME things you'd never want to have see the light of day, but the majority probably is innocent and wouldn't be THAT bad... and it's one way to get rid of the archiving issue - hand it to the client and be done with it! I'm pretty sure the "they MIGHT watch it once" is a good approximation.

People don't really realize how much "ends up on the cutting room floor" even in a big budget production - there's a reason there's a huge list of peole on the credits, and only a fraction makes it into a final artistic statement, though I do enjoy "out-takes and bloopers"!
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Old December 7th, 2009, 02:27 AM   #26
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Ouch! I guess they're not married anymore.
No, she seems a good sport. Probably just chased him with around the house with her handbag.
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Old December 16th, 2009, 09:21 PM   #27
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We never give out out raw footage period! It's in our contract! Like it was said earlier...photogs don't give out their raw photos do they? Why should it be any different for us?
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Old December 17th, 2009, 12:28 AM   #28
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Actually Eugene, these days some do. Of those most only give away CDs/DVDs of JPGs but some also give away the TIFs or RAW files as well.

It's not the majority, who still sell albums/portaits etc, but it is a development.

The trend seems to have come from "old time" photographers whose labs used to do a lot of the correction work they now have to do. Since they're not earning extra money for doing the work, some here at least have confined themselves to charging for the attendance and the computer files - if that's what the client wants. It's further exacerbated by the album companies becoming accessible to the general public.
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Old December 17th, 2009, 12:35 AM   #29
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I didn't have time to read through the entire thread, but I can recommend what we do.

We include 'deleted scenes' on the DVD. We also charge $850 to put the raw footage on DVD. The appeal of 'deleted scenes' and the weight of the charge for raw footage prevents us from ever having to give out the raw footage (other than what we include in the deleted scenes).
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Old December 17th, 2009, 09:38 AM   #30
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Originally Posted by Philip Howells View Post
Actually Eugene, these days some do. Of those most only give away CDs/DVDs of JPGs but some also give away the TIFs or RAW files as well.

It's not the majority, who still sell albums/portaits etc, but it is a development.

The trend seems to have come from "old time" photographers whose labs used to do a lot of the correction work they now have to do. Since they're not earning extra money for doing the work, some here at least have confined themselves to charging for the attendance and the computer files - if that's what the client wants. It's further exacerbated by the album companies becoming accessible to the general public.
I might have replied the wrong way! Let me say it this way Photographers don't give out images without editing them! The good photographers don't anyway! And by good photographers I mean photogs like these guys

Here's the thing! Yes there are videographers who give out raw footage, I've even found some videographers who just shoot the wedding and then send the raw footage to their clients. To each their own right?

Our reason for not giving out raw footage is this: 9 times out of 10 our couples end up showing their dvd to their friends and family and we usually get about 3 to 4 more weddings from just that! Before we had a clue about the little ways you can market yourself we gave out raw footage because honestly its not that hard to do.

We had a couple who had seen some of our raw footage and asked us, why that footage looked so different than the other footage? They went on to say that their video better not look like that:)

So from then on out we haven't included raw footage and don't give it out! We only want our best footage to be seen ya know what I mean?

I'm not trying to be that guy in the forum who stirrs up trouble, but I just wanted to share our reasoning:)
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