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


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Old January 20th, 2010, 06:08 PM   #1
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Wedding DVD Menus

Hi All

I was just wondering who employs what techniques to 'WOW' the bride when she first pops her DVD into the player.
Do you use a static menu with text links or thumbnails??? Is it more impressive to use a motion menu and music or do most just use a still frame or generic background??

I must admit that I just use the still from the front cover of the DVD (usually shot during the photoshoot) and text links to enable the bride to watch 'all the movies' or individual clips like Bridal Prep, Ceremony, Speeches and Events. I usually add a 30 sec intro if the bride watches from start to the end.

Is this a very '80's way of doing things????

Chris
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Old January 20th, 2010, 07:54 PM   #2
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How you design your menu's should reflect your overall style in my opinion. For us, we used to create motion menu's but later decided that we preferred the beautiful simplicity of a static menu that incorporates a still image and some additional design elements. We do use music as I believe the right music really helps set the tone for what they are about to watch.

There's nothing wrong with creating elaborate motion menu's if that fits your style and fits what your particular brides are looking for. Just know that you don't HAVE to go that route to be successful. You may have noticed that many DVDs released for Hollywood features have static menu designs. So just do whatever is going to work best for you. d;-)
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Old January 20th, 2010, 07:55 PM   #3
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Hi Chris,

I don't think the majority of event videographers were doing DVD's until after 2000 when burners became affordable. I had a stack of VHS recorders that got use through 2003. That seems like a looooong time ago.
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Old January 20th, 2010, 10:24 PM   #4
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As I said in another thread:
I have always took extra effort to make advanced motion menus (dating back to using ReelDVD because it was the only app to do this besides Scenarist which is a PITA).
I typically create exciting fly-bys in 3D space in After Effects with fully animated buttons, backgrounds and menu transitions.
The main menu typically consits of three buttons "Play" which plays the beging to end cinematic scenes with documented wedding/reception (both two camera typically unless couple pay for 3 or more cameras) all the way to ending credits (always do a credit roll at the end with everybody in bridal party in credits as well as DJ/Band and Photog)
Then the "Scene Selection" with animating buttons and background.
and finally "Special Features" which is also animated and usually includes:
Photo story
Love Story
"Out takes"
Bride/groom comments or Guest comments
Recap video

I have about 6 different menu designs and they will each be customized for each couple with their own video in the background and drop zones.
Typical wedding video total content is 2+ hours.

Now, I also said I wouldn't ever use a static menu, but that's just me. I feel that first impressions are very important and many of my clients have commented on the quality of the menus so I'll keep going the extra mile to create advanced motion menus for my DVD's and Blu-Rays.
Oh, I also make popup menus exclusive to Blu-Ray as well.

(Oh and my first DVD-R drive was a Pioneer that cost around $700... if memory serves)
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Old January 20th, 2010, 10:25 PM   #5
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IF i have a montaze, or intro.....I set this as the first play..
For me, it's the WOW factor...
Once that's over, the main menu appears....Sometimes static, sometimes motion menu...

Most of my clients opt for a simple main menu (sometimes scene selection as a second menu), i keep it simple...

But i'm looking to brush up on some of my After Effects, and take advantage of Jon Geddes pre made templates....

This is what DVD menus should look like :)
He's also generous enough to give you full tutorials to take advantage of the menus, and customize them to your liking...

Good luck!!!
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Old January 20th, 2010, 10:32 PM   #6
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I purchased Jon's first menu and since then have made my own similar menus.
I still use his for some of my clients as the "Enchanted Waters" one was pretty good for a "Cinderella" feel (or so said one of my customers who worked for Disney).

His are a good representation of my menus as I took many of his ideas and created my own templates using After Effects.
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Old January 21st, 2010, 12:31 AM   #7
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I created my DVD menu with submenus and multi-lingual. You can take a look here

DVD and BluRay Authoring | L.A. Color Blog

click on the Home button after loading, you can see how the DVD menu layout will be.
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Old January 21st, 2010, 02:37 AM   #8
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Great food for thought guys!!!and very much appreciated too!!

Hmm I think that music would definately enhance a static menu and I must admit that I tend to 'tack" the intro video onto the "Play All" button. It would probably be rather good to let that intro run first and then have the menu.

It's great to see so many people with excellent ideas!!

Chris
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Old January 21st, 2010, 03:39 AM   #9
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Chris,

I use DVD Architect and mine is simple enough but with a little extra.
I insert a button and add a navigated motion menu clip within it. It has music and nakes a difference. The motion clip only goes for 15-30sec tops and loops.

I have a play movie, chapters (which goes to an additional page) and then a special features button (which has highlights etc if applicable). The background is a video still but I alsways try and select one which allows for the clip.

Hope that helps
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Old March 24th, 2011, 03:45 PM   #10
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Re: Wedding DVD Menus

Anyone have a link to share where I can find some good motion DVD templates? I haven't seem to find anything that I'm really crazy about. This one I really liked,

Motion Graphics | Blu-Ray & HD DVD Authoring Template | White Wedding

but it requires AE for editing.

Steve
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Old March 24th, 2011, 10:11 PM   #11
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Re: Wedding DVD Menus

I use pop drops by pixel pops then i'll delete the still background layer and replace it with a jump back sometimes.
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