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


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Old January 19th, 2011, 02:16 PM   #1
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Name Change

As of now, I'm listed as "Videography". It seems everyone is now using the term "cinematography" or "cinema" and they have been watered down. I've been thinking about changing the name of my services to "Motion Pictures". Any thoughts?
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Old January 19th, 2011, 03:01 PM   #2
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It sound better than 'videography', in my opinion.

Uncle Bob does video.

Joe's Videography does all things video.

Michael Simmons: Cinematographer is DIFFERENT and commands a level respect not given to Uncle Bob...

Although Uncle Bob may be one heckuva nice guy!
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Old January 19th, 2011, 03:25 PM   #3
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I've branded myself as cinematography from the beginning when branding my company due to a difference of shooting style and philosophy from videographers. I don't see it as a "marketing term" but more of a differentiator. If someone asks you what the difference is, could you tell them? I definitely get less overall hits being cinematography branded but I get more precise hits with brides looking for Wedding Cinematography in my area.

In regards to your thinking about changing to "Motion Pictures", if you want to be different, then sure it should be a good change. However, if you're looking to stay "relevant" and have familiar terms couples or brides understand, I'd say you'll lose a few in translation. Are you planning on saying "Wedding Motion Picutres" or something to that effect under your logo? If so, it may help bridge that gap.
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Old January 19th, 2011, 03:34 PM   #4
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Bride is sitting in the hairdresser - yakking on and on about her upcoming wedding...

Does the hairdresser say:

(a) Are you going to hire a cinematographer?
(b) Are you going to get a motion picture?
(c) Are you going to get a video?

Peter Jackson and George Lucus are cinematographers.
We make videos.
We are videographers....
... who wish we were cinematographers.
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Old January 19th, 2011, 03:40 PM   #5
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Hi John

Absolutely correct!! Over here even it we called them wedding films or whatever we wish to call them the brides will still call them wedding videos.

If you clean toilets for a living you can call yourself a "sanitary engineer" but the bottom line is that you still clean toilets!!! I make wedding videos so I'm a videographer.. why confuse the poor bride????

Chris
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Old January 19th, 2011, 03:55 PM   #6
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FWIW,

I have the phrase "Cinematic Wedding Videos" on the back of my wedding biz cards. But I have two distinct and separate brands. The wedding stuff is completely separate (2 different websites, etc.) from my corporate/narrative stuff.
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Old January 19th, 2011, 04:06 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John Knight View Post
Bride is sitting in the hairdresser - yakking on and on about her upcoming wedding...

Does the hairdresser say:

(a) Are you going to hire a cinematographer?
(b) Are you going to get a motion picture?
(c) Are you going to get a video?

Peter Jackson and George Lucus are cinematographers.
We make videos.
We are videographers....
... who wish we were cinematographers.
Bold, blanket statement to make. So if George Lucas shot a wedding "video", he's a wedding cinematographer or a wedding videographer? One would need to be a cinematographer in the motion picture industry FIRST before being able to consider themselves a wedding cinematographer?

Please define your definition of videographer and cinematographer and what one would need to do in order for them to make the switch. I'm sure we'll have different interpretations.
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Old January 19th, 2011, 04:11 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Harding View Post
Hi John

Absolutely correct!! Over here even it we called them wedding films or whatever we wish to call them the brides will still call them wedding videos.

If you clean toilets for a living you can call yourself a "sanitary engineer" but the bottom line is that you still clean toilets!!! I make wedding videos so I'm a videographer.. why confuse the poor bride????

Chris
I have brides who search for the term wedding cinematography and find me thru that term, not wedding video, so again, this is a blanket statement that isn't necessarily true in all parts of the world. In fact, I've found that more discerning brides understand the difference when I speak with them.

Trends and market perception change thru repetition, not thru being complacent. If you (you not being Chris but in general) want to continue calling your product a wedding video and others want to call theirs wedding films, let people be. I'm sure there will come a time when there is a stark difference between wedding films and wedding videos due to the hard work and persistence of those who believe they are trying to produce something more and pushed to tactfully correct people who called them by the wrong term.
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Old January 19th, 2011, 04:20 PM   #9
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I'm with Randy on this...

Personally, I'm trying hard to distance myself from the negative stigma of 'wedding videos', so I use the term 'cinematographer', not videographer. Technically, it may not be true, but I went to film school 20 years ago and studied cinematography, not video school to study videography.

Everyone can chose their own thing. Whatever suits your style and your market.
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Old January 19th, 2011, 05:42 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John Knight View Post
Bride is sitting in the hairdresser - yakking on and on about her upcoming wedding...

Does the hairdresser say:

(a) Are you going to hire a cinematographer?
(b) Are you going to get a motion picture?
(c) Are you going to get a video?

Peter Jackson and George Lucus are cinematographers.
We make videos.
We are videographers....
... who wish we were cinematographers.
This is pretty much the reason I've stayed with "videographer" bc most people know us by that word.
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Old January 19th, 2011, 07:13 PM   #11
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Even though videography doesn't even come up as real world in spell check or dictionary, I hate this whole "Cinematographer" crap. We shoot weddings. We are wedding videographers. That's how everyone knows us as. Don't confuse the client even more, they are already confused by all the video terms. Google searches for cinematography is like 3% compared to videography. It's like calling a house painter an artist. Calling a cab driver a race car driver to "differentiate" each from other cab drivers. Why not? I can charge more and sound like I can get to the location faster than any other cab driver. But who really cares?
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Old January 19th, 2011, 07:39 PM   #12
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I just shot a feature on RED ... does that mean I'm a videographer ??? I shot a doc on a 5D a few months back - would I still be considered a videographer? A cinematographer tells a story through moving images ... regardless of the format. For those of you offering long form boring ass videos to your clients ... you can continue to call yourselves "videographers" all you want - because that would be an accurate description of your product/service.

I studied Cinematography at the American Film Institute - who shoots weddings - I'm a cinematographer.

End rant.
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Old January 19th, 2011, 09:37 PM   #13
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Underlying this whole thread is, I suspect, a universal dislike (to one degree or another) of the term videographer and I'm no different to everyone else.

And like everyone else we've toyed with the alternatives.

Just our 2c.

Cinematographer sounds to us rather grand, very expensive and at six syllables is almost as difficult for the population at large to say as vide-o-grapher.

We settled for the more explicit if no less wieldy "Wedding Video Production". It communicates easily and is "exactly what it says on the tin".

But it's a compromise.

Incidentally we registered the domain moving-pictures.co.uk - Moving pictures Resources and Information. at the end of last year in preparation for a merger with a wedding photographer who actually suggested the name (our pictures move, his move people who see them). In the event the merger took a different form - we now offer a combination service under our own name (using the same photographer) and intend to use the "Moving-Pictures Manchester" brand to sell a different type of video production service - more later).
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Old January 19th, 2011, 10:30 PM   #14
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What a polite heated argument.

Every once in a while I would have the opportunity to shoot something dramatic that would air on the news and I would be introduced as "Photojournalist John Kilderry." Whenever it came time for a raise I was John Kilderry the news photographer.

The truth is the dramatic piece was the easier shoot while the "news photographer" part of the job was the part that demanded creativity on the fly and making something out of nothing.

My point is, we can call ourselves whatever we want, but our body of work ultimately determines what other people call us.

Remember, there are people that call themselves cinematographers that shoot porn. ; )

From Wikipedia:

The cinematographer selects the film stock, lens, filters, etc., to realize the scene in accordance with the intentions of the director. Relations between the cinematographer and director vary; in some instances the director will allow the cinematographer complete independence; in others, the director allows little to none, even going so far as to specify aperture and shutter angle. Such a level of involvement is not common once the director and cinematographer have become comfortable with each other. The director will typically convey to the cinematographer what he/she wants from a scene visually, and allow the cinematographer latitude in achieving that effect.

So, to clarify, when I shoot weddings I am the director, although that consists mostly of bossing myself around.
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Old January 20th, 2011, 01:20 AM   #15
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The definition from Merriam-Webster Dictionary is as follows:

Definition of Cinematographer: a specialist in cinematography

Definition of Cinematography: the art or science of motion-picture photography

Nowhere in that definition does it say anything about the term being exclusive to Hollywood films or should I say Hollywood digital movies for those not shot on film. My point being...I think technology is starting to blur the lines a bit on who we are and what we do. There is no doubt that cinematographers are highly trained individuals who specialize in lens and filter selection, film stock, etc. but I really don't think it matters what kind of camera you shoot on or if your making a Hollywood digital movie or wedding film etc. Now I'm not suggesting that anyone who picks up a handycam for the first time is a cinematographer but I would expect that a large number of us here have had formal or on the job training to become a "specialist in the art or science of motion-picture photography" and therefore have a complete understanding of film stock, lens, filters, apeture, shutter angle, etc. That...by definition would make you a cinematographer. Me personally, I hate the term videographer. It conjures up images of Americas funniest home videos...you know, those shaky home movies filmed by non cinematographers. Come to think of it, my choice of words in that last sentence is all wrong..."home", "movies", "filmed"...but thats the point, a lot of these words seem to be interchangable nowadays.

Just my 2
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