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


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Old January 14th, 2010, 10:12 PM   #16
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I usally answer to "The video guy" myself:)
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Old January 14th, 2010, 10:14 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Sessions View Post
Have you ever noticed on news broadcasts they refer to the camera operator as a "photographer"? Doesn't make any sense.
Well, this isn't exactly true. Camera operators are the technicians that man studio cameras in a multi-camera live shoot. Photographers are the men and women out in the streets with the reporters, shooting, lighting and editing. They are two entirely different jobs and skill sets. The term photographer is a holdover from the days when they used to shoot news on film. Now most stations refer to the these men and women as videojournalists.

Back on topic. We refer to ourselves simply as filmmakers. It's the one term that encompasses producing, directing, shooting (film or video) and editing. It's not perfect, but it's the closest to the the truth of what we do.
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Old January 14th, 2010, 10:39 PM   #18
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Well, after 21 years producing all kinds of video, I stil cringe when people call me "El Seņor del Video" (something like "That Video Guy")

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Old January 14th, 2010, 10:50 PM   #19
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Im happy enough to refer to myself as a cameraman when interacting with clients.
The fact that im many other things too isn't relevant to them.
Im a trained cameraman. Im a cameraman on the day.
Thats what they can call me.

I dont like 'videographer' either.
Its implications are that I somehow stumbled into this job and am just a getting by at it.
And basically that is the truth of the term.
It was initially conceived by photographers back in the 80's.
They really didnt care what way it reflected on the business.
The only reason they were providing the service was because they were afraid it was going
to take over. It was always a half assed effort up until the late 90's. Now its only a half assed
effort from a certain percentage of the service providers.
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Old January 15th, 2010, 05:54 AM   #20
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Since 1983-video guy, video cameraman, videoAHgrapher, videoTOgrapher, (never could figure that one out) photographer, camera guy, hey you, many others I can't mention here including some referring to an inappropriate relationship with my mother... ;-)
Honestly, I don't care what they call me, call me anthing you like, just spell my name right on the check!!!
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Old January 15th, 2010, 07:23 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by Don Bloom
Honestly, I don't care what they call me, call me anthing you like, just spell my name right on the check!!!
That's exactly right! I can call myself a cinematographer, and sometimes I may make a small, self deprecating joke about the "high and mighty cinematographer" if I feel like correcting someone, but as long as the couple are respectful of me and what I have to do they can call me whatever they please.
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Old January 15th, 2010, 08:25 AM   #22
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I tell people just call me "Roger." Before I retired from the clinical laboratory, there was this big controversy between two professional organizations if people doing my old job were "Medical Technologists" or "Clinical Laboratory Scientists" and then listing all your degrees and titles and certifications and specialties and ... after your name. The bigger our egos, the bigger our signatures can be.

I guess we could be Professional, Certified, Award Winning, Renowned, Celebrity Videographer, Cinematographer, Digital Artist Extraordinaire or what have you, but no matter what we call ourselves, or what other's call us, doesn't really affect who we are and how good we are at our work. Life's too short to worry about it.
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Last edited by Roger Van Duyn; January 15th, 2010 at 08:29 AM. Reason: second thoughts
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Old January 15th, 2010, 09:37 AM   #23
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S
Honestly, I don't care what they call me, call me anthing you like, just spell my name right on the check!!!
Don, I like the way you think :)

I also agree with William that we are simply filmmakers. we produce, direct, shoot, edit.
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Old January 15th, 2010, 10:14 PM   #24
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I've gone back and forth on this one as well. Being that I have worked on several feature films in various capacities from DP to producer to sound mixer to whatever. I feel I can justify the title of cinematographer just fine, but as I recently ordered new business cards I finally decided against having multiple "titles" so I finally settled on the one that covers it all for me in this case.... that being "Filmmaker". After all, I market my work to brides as "wedding films" as my way of distancing myself from all the "videographers" in my market that are cranking out sub-par videos. It seems to be working, like Travis pointed out earlier, I too have had my brides introduce me as their cinematographer and not their "video guy"... not that there is anything wrong with video guy, I answer to anything.
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Old January 22nd, 2010, 06:27 AM   #25
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Originally Posted by Bill Vincent:
calling ourselves "Cinematographers" is downright misleading to those already in the entertainment industry, and, in some ways, actually insulting. True Cinematographers spend years training and learning various film (NOT video) cameras, techniques, film stocks, lenses, gates, and a whole host of other things related specifically to film production (16mm or above). To consider ourselves in a league with them is really neither accurate nor fair to those who are true film Cinematographers

Now, by definition of the Australian Cinematographers Society - "a cinematographer is a person with technical expertise who manipulates light to transfer visual information by the use of a camera into aesthetic moving images on motion picture film or electronic recording systems."

So it is not limited only to film cameras.
Having said that, I am a trained cinematographer, have worked with film & electronic camera systems, shot films, TVC's, corporates, and I also run a wedding video production company. Surely it is not misleading or insulting to other cinematographers for me to call myself a cinematographer. If you don't think you have the required skills or training to use that title, then don't. But to say I'm being misleading is actually an insult to me.

And sure, there are many things that go into producing a wedding video - but in my opinion, the actual shooting of the wedding is the most important part. Get that wrong and the whole video suffers. So I'll keep calling myself a cinematographer. What other people call me is up to them.
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Old January 22nd, 2010, 01:04 PM   #26
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Originally Posted by Aaron Kamp View Post
Originally Posted by Bill Vincent:
calling ourselves "Cinematographers" is downright misleading to those already in the entertainment industry, and, in some ways, actually insulting. True Cinematographers spend years training and learning various film (NOT video) cameras, techniques, film stocks, lenses, gates, and a whole host of other things related specifically to film production (16mm or above). To consider ourselves in a league with them is really neither accurate nor fair to those who are true film Cinematographers

Now, by definition of the Australian Cinematographers Society - "a cinematographer is a person with technical expertise who manipulates light to transfer visual information by the use of a camera into aesthetic moving images on motion picture film or electronic recording systems."

So it is not limited only to film cameras.
Having said that, I am a trained cinematographer, have worked with film & electronic camera systems, shot films, TVC's, corporates, and I also run a wedding video production company. Surely it is not misleading or insulting to other cinematographers for me to call myself a cinematographer. If you don't think you have the required skills or training to use that title, then don't. But to say I'm being misleading is actually an insult to me.

And sure, there are many things that go into producing a wedding video - but in my opinion, the actual shooting of the wedding is the most important part. Get that wrong and the whole video suffers. So I'll keep calling myself a cinematographer. What other people call me is up to them.

Yes, the actual definition varies greatly from the real world definition.
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Old January 22nd, 2010, 01:09 PM   #27
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Aaron, if you wish to call yourself a Cinematographer, that's perfectly fine. I'm wasn't saying that those who feel they are qualified to take that title should not. If you believe in your heart that you are a "real" Cinematographer, great. I'm not saying that you aren't, or that you shouldn't be.

Will you ever get an ASC designation with the work you've done? I don't know. Not my decision to make. But there is a bar to get that designation, and it's fairly high. The American Society of Cinematographers does not invite members lightly. Most (and I would venture to say ALL) members have years of true FILM experience. The prospective members know very specific things about professional motion picture film cameras, stocks, lenses, lighting, etc... They have logged a certain amount of hours on professional, union-based motion picture shoots from major studios. They have EARNED that designation as a real motion picture Director of Photography or CINEMATOGRAPHER, and they are recognized by their peers in the film industry as having the skills worthy of that designation.

So, don't let me or anyone else get in your way of using that title - but all I'm doing is pointing out that the term Cinematographer DOES carry a very specific meaning in the professional film industry, and if you haven't worked with or under at least a few people who DO hold that ASC designation, you aren't going to be taken seriously using that title with film professionals. For someone who does hold an ASC designation, maybe "insulted" is not the right word. Probably the right word would be "amused", since they know what it really means to have that designation bestowed upon a peer. Being indignant about you being deserving of that title is not going to get you the title from other ASC members, I do know that.

In the grand scheme of telling brides what we do, does any of this really matter? Probably not a bit. They will never know or care about what I just said above, but the title sounds good to them. It fits into the idea of "cinematic-style" which is something that we definitely do provide. However, being a "Wedding Cinematographer" is not the same thing at all as being a true film Cinematographer, and never will be. You may be one, and/or the other - but don't confuse the two - they are not the same beast by any stretch.
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Old January 22nd, 2010, 01:13 PM   #28
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Unless your stuff regularly and primarily plays in a Cinema, you are not, by any definition, a Cinematographer.
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Old January 22nd, 2010, 01:43 PM   #29
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Actually, my work does not regularly play in a cinema but by MY definition I AM a 'cinematographer'. d;-p
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Old January 23rd, 2010, 12:18 AM   #30
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Funny, I just read this thread for the first time.

Personally, I use the term 'video producer' for what I do. Though I call my production company a film company. I would only say that my passion is 'cinematography', as opposed to say editing, and, or directing. I went to film school 20 years ago and worked on 20 or so film sets, and there is (was) a fairly strict adherence to titles and status. Maybe DOP (director of photography - a term often used interchangeably with cinematographer) is a better term for what we mostly do.

I think you are a cinematographer when you are planning, and selecting shots, a cameraman when you are shooting (2nd camera when you pull focus), a gaffer when you move a light, an audio technician when you pin on a lav, and so on...
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