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

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Old March 23rd, 2011, 04:01 PM   #16
Inner Circle
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: LOWESTOFT - UK
Posts: 2,002
Re: Potential issues letting brides cousin film too?

I really cannot understand the wedding video industry - it's so far away from my work as to be just amazing!

Intellectual property - shooting techniques? And where, pray, did most of us learn our craft? From others doing it better - we didn't dream up this lot ourselves starting from scratch.

If I understand it correctly, you get engaged to provide video services, the same way as the photographer does. You get well paid for the service and have the luxury of an extended timescale to produce the end product for which you've had a sizeable advance.

You don't get granted exclusive Katy Price style rights to be the ONLY person allowed to take photographs or video. As the couple are paying you, then obstructing your view with somebody else working for them is their call to make - if they are stupid, it's their problem. If you don't like it, then don't accept the job - or back out and look foolish.

Please - we record things for money. We do our best to produce a good product. Sometimes events conspire to thwart us. People do the wrong things, they get in the way, they mess things up. If it's not our fault, and there was nothing we could have done, then we must learn from it, then forget it and move on!

In my world, if somebody pops up with their consumer cam on some wobbly tripod - and there's no legal reason why they shouldn't record, then it isn't a problem at all. Only this week we did a big job where the client had some of his own domestic cameras feeding a screen - so we offered him our output from a much better camera and he had some closeups. No charge, no fuss - life's too short.

I guess I just cannot understand this wedding desire to retain the ownership of something with no real residual value. You do the job, take the money and then forget that client - repeat business seems unlikely from the same client - the best you can do is their friends and relatives?
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Old March 23rd, 2011, 10:46 PM   #17
Inner Circle
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: Miami, FL
Posts: 2,933
Re: Potential issues letting brides cousin film too?

A few thoughts on your comments ...

If we don't say anything to the bride about how an amateur running around at a wedding could potentially affect the product we produce for her, doesn't that then somewhat make it our fault? The bride can't possibly guess whether or not her cousin would be a problem. This is her first time getting married and she likely has zero experience with shooting a wedding.

Also, referrals are huge in this business. That old saying about how one negative comment can outweigh ten positive comments? Well, that pretty much applies in this industry. You really can't afford to have a client unhappy with your work ... not if you want the better gigs. So referrals ARE the residual business.

To be honest, it doesn't matter to me if it's a small wedding or a large corporate event (both of which I'm shooting next week). As a professional it is my job to set myself up to do the best work I can, and if that means informing a bride that her cousin's aspiration to film the wedding could cause us issues ... I'm going to tell her just that.

Again, guests at a wedding should sit in the seats that were rented for them. Shoot all you want from your seat. Let the professionals do everything else. Seems like a simple concept to me.
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