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


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Old February 16th, 2011, 08:27 PM   #46
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I think my point was missed - yes, maybe THIS year they still won't be looking for BR... but the odds are growing that they WILL be looking for it.

With the changes in pricing (and I'm a "late adopter" to BR because I felt the price was "too high"), BR WILL rapidly reach a critical mass in the marketplace, I suspect in short order. Just look at the market forces in play as I've already noted, and ask yourself how much longer will a DVD be a "premium" or state of the art product?

You can wait around until you can't even find a DVD player in the store (anyone still delivering on VHS?), or you can begin to acquire HD capable equipment as upgrades to equipment become logical and necessary, to make the transition.

I'm not suggesting that what works in a business that's delivering DVD's with success is "wrong", only that at some point, you're going to wake up, have to learn all the ins and outs of delivering in HD, or find yourself delivering a product that looks "dated", which if you have competitors that are delivering product that looks fresh and current, will begin to eat into your business.

IMO, with the rapidly dropping costs and ever increasing quality of the equipment/technology, we may ALL find ourselves irrelevant... I saw a computer pretty well smoked the humans on Jeopardy...

Progress/change will happen, whether one chooses to participate or not.
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Old February 16th, 2011, 09:40 PM   #47
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Originally Posted by Dave Blackhurst View Post
I think my point was missed - yes, maybe THIS year they still won't be looking for BR... but the odds are growing that they WILL be looking for it.

With the changes in pricing (and I'm a "late adopter" to BR because I felt the price was "too high"), BR WILL rapidly reach a critical mass in the marketplace, I suspect in short order. Just look at the market forces in play as I've already noted, and ask yourself how much longer will a DVD be a "premium" or state of the art product?

You can wait around until you can't even find a DVD player in the store (anyone still delivering on VHS?), or you can begin to acquire HD capable equipment as upgrades to equipment become logical and necessary, to make the transition.

I'm not suggesting that what works in a business that's delivering DVD's with success is "wrong", only that at some point, you're going to wake up, have to learn all the ins and outs of delivering in HD, or find yourself delivering a product that looks "dated", which if you have competitors that are delivering product that looks fresh and current, will begin to eat into your business.

IMO, with the rapidly dropping costs and ever increasing quality of the equipment/technology, we may ALL find ourselves irrelevant... I saw a computer pretty well smoked the humans on Jeopardy...

Progress/change will happen, whether one chooses to participate or not.
And MY point was.....when my clients want and are willing to pay for HD production, THEN and ONLY
then will I upgrade! I totally understand that at some point they will want HD! But why should
I pay to upgrade NOW when they don't want it now? That's just BAD business planning! When I
do upgrade, I will get a lot more for my money. And I'm not worried one bit about 'needing to
learn how to produce HD content'. I have produced in HD successfully and feel plenty confident
in my ability to do it, I do freelance shooting and editing for a local PBS in HD and
successfully completed a pretty big project for the US government in HD, so I think I'm ok
with all the ins and outs of delivering in HD. What I'm not going to do is spend a bunch of money
on gear that I REALLY REALLY REALLY want,......but don't actually need to make money.

I've done 4 media classes in the past few months.....with a pretty good number of attendees from my
market. One of the questions I asked, was how many people have a blu ray player at home.....just
a show of hands. I have yet to see a SINGLE hand from the audience from any of these classes.
When I ask how many have HD TV sets, there are quite a few hands. And not surprisingly, many '
of them think they are already watching HD on their TV sets.

So yes, you are right, sometime before too long, people will start wanting Blu Ray or other forms of
HD content. And once they are willing to pay for it, I will deliver it to them.
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Old February 16th, 2011, 10:59 PM   #48
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Personally, I'm pushing delivery on USB with some success. HD Media players are cheap and getting cheaper, and I expect will soon be built in to TV and mainstream. 1280x720 is sure better than 720x480
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Old February 17th, 2011, 01:16 AM   #49
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To be clear, I'm not saying that if your only camera breaks,......you should buy another SD one.
Same thing with your computer. I was just saying that as long as what I
have works and people aren't willing to pay for HD video, I am not going to shell out money to
upgrade everything. As my old gear wears out, I have been gradually upgrading because after all,
I HAVE to have an edit suite and cameras to run my business, and I'm not going to spend
money on old tech either. So I'm not saying to go out and buy XL-1's or VX1000's or anything....
but if thats what you have now and they are still working.....use them and make money......don't
feel like you have to upgrade if the demand isn't there in your market yet. The demand will
be there soon enough and when you have a sound business reason to upgrade, you will get more
for your money.

I would also recommend upgrading the computer first. Once you have a edit suite that is capable of
doing HD, you can always rent cameras for the occasional HD job. And nowdays, computers
are crazy fast! Do we really need 8 and 12 core computers to edit HD video? Most NLE's
can't even utilize all the power these things have, so you should be relatively future proof.
(Of course since I said this, they will decide that next year is 'The year of 4K 3D TV and movies'.)
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Old February 17th, 2011, 07:27 AM   #50
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Hi Gabe,
"...and people aren't willing to pay for HD video, I am not going to shell out money to
upgrade everything."


People aren't willing to pay for what they can't see. Your job as a salesperson is to show them what they want. You have no HD samples on Blu-ray. You will get no sales of Blu-ray.
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Old February 17th, 2011, 07:41 AM   #51
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I force feed Blu-ray in my packages, makes no sense for me to shoot in HD and deliver on DVD, they now get Blu-ray and a DVD version. If they say don't need Blu-ray, I make it a point to tell them, it won't hurt to keep 1, remember the VHS days? Eventually DVD knocked them off the market. Same thing will happen to DVD.
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Old February 17th, 2011, 09:50 AM   #52
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Craig Terott View Post
Hi Gabe,
"...and people aren't willing to pay for HD video, I am not going to shell out money to
upgrade everything."


People aren't willing to pay for what they can't see. Your job as a salesperson is to show them what they want. You have no HD samples on Blu-ray. You will get no sales of Blu-ray.
Ahh....you assume much :-) As I have said, I have produced HD before and I DO actually have HD
samples. Everyone (including me at first) assumes that if you show someone both an HD version and
SD version of something they will ALWAYS chose the HD version. I'm here to tell you, IT ISN'T SO!
At this point, in my market people do not own blu ray players. So how would they watch the HD content?
I have toyed with the idea of including a cheap blu ray player in my packages......which means raising
rates......which is the OTHER big reason people give me for not chosing the blu ray option.....it costs
a little more! You have to think about some things here. First the economy is bad in many places,
which means people are not spending money. Second, if they DO spend money, most people will
buy an HD set (just for the space savings of the flat screen!) and don't understand that they aren't
seeing HD on it. When you inform them, they say 'well, it LOOKS better than what I had before
and I can't afford to spend more money'.

So just because I have not yet upgraded to HD does NOT mean I do not try to sell it! I try like heck
to sell it, (I REALLY REALLY want a new HD camera). I have shot portions of a Forest Service
doc on the Tongass forest with the Sony HDW 750 HDCam and produced the documentary of the
totem leaving Alaska to DC with Sony XDcam HD. I've got a few other things shot with borrowed
HDV cams. I am here to tell you, that to my clients, both existing and potential.....IT DOESN'T MATTER!
They don't care that it looks better, they say SD is 'good enough' and a little cheaper and that
'we don't have any way to watch or show HD anyways.'

My computer crapped out a year ago and I bought a new Mac Pro Quad core tower. My edit bay
can deal with HD just fine, and as I said, I've done a couple HD projects.
If my camera craps out and I am FORCED to buy a new camera to continue in business.....I will buy
an HD camera. If enough people start requesting it.....I will buy an HD camera. Until then I will continue
in this strange 'in between world' where I shoot everything in SD, unless I can sell a rare client on HD, in
which case I will beg, borrow, or rent HD gear. No matter what anyone on the internet tells me, I think
I know what works best in my market........better than the 'new guys' who spent a fortune on HD gear
about 2 years ago and are now out of business.
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Old February 17th, 2011, 11:21 AM   #53
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With the web able to display 1080p HD and playback on the most reserved of computers I do find it strange that people choose to hide their work. We are no longer in the days of postage stamp sized videos at super low resolutions. We show our short films online to give them a taste, they must then see us if they wish to see more, location permitting. For the international enquiries we let them watch more online. That's how much we trust the quality of vimeo.

As for blu-ray or not it depends on your Market. I would say 80% of our couples go BD but a year ago when we were sub 1k it would have been the other way around.

This is partly down to the way we present our work. We don't send out demo disks. People must come in to see more of our work (part of the sales experience). We show them our work on Blu-ray. Like Anyone seeing HD for the first time it's something they desire that little bit more. We don't push BD a all, there free to choose.

But if you don't offer it or show it, you can't expect to sell it.
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Old February 18th, 2011, 01:25 AM   #54
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Update: the couple that wanted to cancel on me in favor of another photog has recently changed their mind and wants me back for the wedding video!!
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Old February 18th, 2011, 02:13 AM   #55
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I am finding that couple's who didnt want a copy on Blu-ray a year or so ago, are now calling me asking if they can buy one. Now, whether the couple order one or not at the time of signing the contract I still make a Blu-ray image as I suspect more and more clients will be wanting one sooner or later.
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Old February 18th, 2011, 03:38 AM   #56
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Originally Posted by Kelly Huffaker View Post
Update: the couple that wanted to cancel on me in favor of another photog has recently changed their mind and wants me back for the wedding video!!
thats great news kelly. what did they say?
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Old February 18th, 2011, 05:07 AM   #57
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Seems like there's an awful lot of passion on either side when it comes to changes in technology. I keep getting flashbacks of the great VHS-DVD switch years ago.

But I like to be ahead of the curve, and always be producing the absolute best content I possibly can. Right now, that means producing everything in HD, even if that means I'm not earning any more than if I were shooting in SD.

But then again, I'm a perfectionist and want to be the best.
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Old February 18th, 2011, 06:23 AM   #58
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Update: the couple that wanted to cancel on me in favor of another photog has recently changed their mind and wants me back for the wedding video!!
Time to tell them that the price just went up:-)
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Old February 18th, 2011, 06:44 AM   #59
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Time to tell them that the price just went up:-)
and so did the amount of deposit. Don't take a chance they cancel again.
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Old February 18th, 2011, 07:25 AM   #60
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Take full payment up front now. If they can be that fickle you don't want them deciding the day before that they don't want you again.
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