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Old July 19th, 2010, 09:57 PM   #1
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cutting up the vows for the highlight video?

Typical scenario: B&G recite their vows by repeating after the officiant.

In my last edit I just chopped out what he said and played the clip in the highlight video covered mostly by B-roll and it didn't work out too bad. In my next wedding I want to show the B&G saying their vows because they get emotional and it's really sweet but I dont want to put everything the officiant says in there.

What are some techniques you've used in the highlight edit to make this part flow?

Is it acceptable by your standards to chop it up or just leave it all as one long piece?
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Old July 20th, 2010, 04:00 AM   #2
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David, here's what I did with one "Dream" wedding (what we call our summary which is set to a piece of music the couple choose) - fortunately there was a fairly long orchestral intro.

Under a sequence of glide shots of the church (recorded before the event) I put the couples' responses to the vows, she in the left channel, he in the right, cut (after the first line each) so they seemed to be reciting them together, with a mix of the music beneath their voices.

At the end of the vows I mixed through the image to the bride entering the church on her father's arm. The rest of the "Dream" was supported by the song alone.

Weddings are, inevitably a bit formulaic, and I use the intro to the Main programme and the Dream as my indulgence, the opportunity to be really creative, so I've only done this device the once.
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Old July 21st, 2010, 08:51 PM   #3
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hmm that sounds nice thanks for the info.

I think for this one I'm going to play as much as I can in a row before it looks too awkward.

Hopefully it turns out nice! lol.
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Old July 24th, 2010, 03:58 AM   #4
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David, just a note of caution. I tried to use the device I described again but really came unstuck.

Firstly the groom had a strong Northern Irish accent and spoke very quickly; his bride spoke much slower and more distinctly.

However, to make things worse, the Registrar conducting the ceremony broke up the sentences differently for each of them. Consequently they each accentuated the words differently. It ended up sounding like their first "domestic altercation" so have a careful listen before using the trick.
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Old July 24th, 2010, 08:48 PM   #5
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ah that doesn't sound like a very ideal situation! hope you figured out a different approach that worked! What I ended up doing is only using part of the vows for the highlight and alternating his and hers camera angles and it seems to flow quite well.
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Old July 25th, 2010, 06:05 PM   #6
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danger danger danger

why does it sound like a standard to have the vows in the highlights? what makes it a standard? if your going to question whether you can cut it up, move it around - why not also question why it is there at all, and whether it is even needed?

i say that only because of the inherent danger of creating a formula for which you approach each shoot. granted it makes it easier, but it also squelches our any sort of originality from film to film.

to me, it all comes down to what is important to the couple and their story. do the vows matter to them, are they personal, are they recited, have they been excited about this moment, the commitment it represents? do they know the officiant, what does he/she mean to them, how does that play into the overall equation? we try to approach each shoot with the couple in mind when we have questions such as yours and it always seems to yield entirely different results. the most exciting part is that they are always inspired by couple.

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Old July 25th, 2010, 10:10 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by Philip Howells View Post
Weddings are, inevitably a bit formulaic, and I use the intro to the Main programme and the Dream as my indulgence, the opportunity to be really creative, so I've only done this device the once.
Patrick, I'm puzzled by your posting. I specifically mentioned above that I did this once (and considered using it again two years later) - that isn't what I'd call formulaic.

I would also dispute whether there's any evidence in what's written her that inclusion of the vows is "standard" in the "Dream" or summary programme - it is in the full wedding programme of course. Indeed, I state that certain elements of any wedding video have to be formulaic, simply because the wedding ceremony is invariably that itself. Whenever the subject isn't, then neither are our programmes.

In the UK at least most religious ceremonies and many civil ones have pre-ordained vows thus they're recited - and, as the Canon in charge of the oldest church in one local diocese tells his bridal couples, they have recited the same vows on the same spot in the same building for 800 years; the trend for couples to write their own vows is relatively new.

Finally, I have never been at a wedding let alone recorded one at which the vows didn't mean a great deal to the couple. Maybe I need to get out more.
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Old July 25th, 2010, 10:22 PM   #8
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hey philip

i never actually read your post, i was referring to the original post only. it may be jumping the gun a bit with my response, but i've heard countless times all kinds of paradigms of what people think they have to do, or include, or shoot, etc.

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Old July 26th, 2010, 10:33 PM   #9
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Patrick,
I understand where your concern stems from and I appreciate your input. You're completely right, they don't really have to be there in every video.

In this case (as well as the previous one that I mentioned) The brides reactions during the vows were what compelled me to want to use them. They were obviously emotional when reciting them so I knew I had to put them in because of the apparent meaning that the vows had at the time of reciting. In this particular edit in question I only used the first part of the vows (which showed the bride choking back tears) and followed it up with a piece by the officiant(grandfather) declaring their union (showing the brides look of elation at hearing the "husband & wife part).

Not only that but I'm trying out a chronological timeline for this one which I think needs the vows.

So I certainly think the vows are a big part of this edit, however you're correct in mentioning the need to be wary of falling into a formulaic trap and so I thank you for your input.
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Old July 28th, 2010, 07:53 AM   #10
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I agree with Pat. I used one line from each couple that was fricken funny then cut to the officiant saying, you may kiss the bride. It looked great. So you don't have to use all of it. Take the best 1-2-3 lines and find a spot for them in the song first then edit the rest.

It's tough for me too. I like how Mayad Studios does it. See their examples.
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Old August 18th, 2010, 08:34 PM   #11
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I guess the question is, assuming that the vows have a lot of meaning and significance and would add a lot to the video, how can they be incorporated without having the pastor/JP/etc heard as well. I don't think there is any trick or approach that will usually work. I think it's just a sense of timing and a "deft hand" on the audio side, and finding images to match or contrast on the video side. And what Kelly says is great, select the words and lines that work the best. Everyone knows how the vows go, and watching/listening to something you know really well = boredom unless it's done in a very unique and unexpected way.

Also, if you find you are having to fiddle way too much with getting a certain aspect of your edit right, chances are you are stifling your creativity and you need to try a different approach. Some things are better left out or just hinted at. I think the whole day is in a way an embodiment of the promise the b&g are making to one another, so including the vows may be redundant or too obvious. And don't forget to save some of the emotional high points for the main feature!
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Old August 19th, 2010, 01:28 AM   #12
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Erik that's an excellent point about saving for the full length. I've always struggled with feeling that my highlight videos are everything I want them to be but then the feature seems like an afterthought (though none of my clients have felt that way).

Thanks for the thoughts!
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Old August 22nd, 2010, 01:24 PM   #13
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The relationship between ones style and a templated or formulaic production is an interesting consideration. The relationship between your own style and keeping it fresh can be a cause for concern, perhaps more than is warrantied. Either extreme can be a problem. One extreme is the boilerplate template; the other extreme is a problem as well. That is the feeling that every production should be completely unique and therefore shouldn't contain anything that was used in a previous production. That, if overdone, can needlessly constrain the work you do. Over time that can mean that you can't use any of the "good stuff."

In my opinion, the best approach is to look at the actual clip assets that you have and then consider the wishes of the B&G as well as your own style ideas. Whether or not you have used a particular element before is not an important issue. The B&G don't have the global perspective of all your work so they aren't poised and ready to shout, "A-ha! You used that scene before. Gotcha!" Their perspective is much more subjective and they will gauge your work on how it makes them 'feel.' If you avoid a particular element simply because you used it before, you are needlessly limiting your work.

That isn't an attempt to justify an overly formulaic approach. In that vein, my most disliked overused scene is where the groom is standing staring into space and the bride walks up behind him and taps him on the shoulder. But even that scene was probably never seen by a B&G and they may really like it in their production.

This is an interesting subject. I personally think it's best to avoid either extreme; that is the boilerplate template on one hand and the totally unique production on the other hand.
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Old August 24th, 2010, 11:28 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Philip Howells View Post
David, here's what I did with one "Dream" wedding (what we call our summary which is set to a piece of music the couple choose) - fortunately there was a fairly long orchestral intro.

Under a sequence of glide shots of the church (recorded before the event) I put the couples' responses to the vows, she in the left channel, he in the right, cut (after the first line each) so they seemed to be reciting them together, with a mix of the music beneath their voices.

At the end of the vows I mixed through the image to the bride entering the church on her father's arm. The rest of the "Dream" was supported by the song alone.

Weddings are, inevitably a bit formulaic, and I use the intro to the Main programme and the Dream as my indulgence, the opportunity to be really creative, so I've only done this device the once.
I've used this technique before and it works out very nicely.
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Old August 24th, 2010, 12:02 PM   #15
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For me it just all depends on the wedding. Sometimes they rush things and jump on each other's words. Or, if you try to separate out only the couples' words, the intonation is bizarre when you leave out the priest or officiant. It all depends. Best of course is when they recite their own vows and say them slowly. Then, you have pretty much free artistic control to do what you'd like.
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