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Old April 15th, 2011, 02:37 PM   #1
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Where do you stand during the processional?

I shot about 10 total weddings last year and it seemed like each one was different when it came down to where I should stand for the processional. Tomorrow is my first wedding with fully High Def equipment and i want to make sure I do well.

I'll be operating a XH A1s and I'm curious, where does everyone stand for the processional to get great shots?

I'm also trying to figure out just where I will put my 1 stationary cam and where I should have my assistant shoot from.
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Old April 15th, 2011, 03:39 PM   #2
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Re: Where do you stand during the processional?

For many years I used to take the opposite side of the photographer at the end of the aisle (at the front). Over the last year I changed to about 1/3 to 1/2 way down the aisle on the end of the pew and out of the way.

Standing near the bridesmaids and groomsmen really put me in a position I wasn't comfortable with as I'm sure they would like to see the bride coming down the aisle as well. I'm sure there are others that wouldn't dream of giving up that spot at the end of the aisle, but I found that I really liked the change.
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Old April 15th, 2011, 03:40 PM   #3
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Re: Where do you stand during the processional?

Could you clarify that you're shooting with three cameras, and have yourself and an assistant as shooters?

If that's the case I would place the unmanned camera wide and have your assistant shoot bride's side with a medium-to-wide pan with each couple as they walk in ... while you shoot groom's side with a tight panning shot with each couple as they walk in. That would be great for documentary coverage. You could also be at the head of the aisle but it depends on the location and setup if that would be best or not.

If you're shooting more creatively then you could go about it totally differently.
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Old April 15th, 2011, 06:22 PM   #4
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Re: Where do you stand during the processional?

I do have a 3 camera setup with 1 assistant. The hardest thing for me is the brides entrance, when everyone stands up. I'm thinking of investing in a couple step-ups to stand on if I ever need to look over the crowd.

Tomorrow is an outdoor wedding, so I should have some opportunities. When I'm in a church it seems like there's just no room to stand anywhere near the aisle.
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Old April 15th, 2011, 09:10 PM   #5
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Re: Where do you stand during the processional?

FWIW, I always take a stance to one side of the front while everyone is sitting down, and the wedding party comes forward - you can zoom and pan to track reasonably well - if you've got two shooters, set an imaginary line, one takes them as they are coming forward, the other (typically left front) takes the front (like getting groom reactions, etc.).

If all goes well, you have time to swing/crash zoom as each pair enters and get enough to work with.

Then one of you needs to go to the center aisle as the bride is queing up - I usually shoot from a low angle myself, but since everyone stands, you can get just inside the aisle as the bride comes forward and still be nearly invisible - most everyone is looking the other way! Second manned cam gets the grooms reaction shots, and covers as you pull back just ahead of the bride, back to the side position - from there, with two ops and a static cam from the rear, you'd have most things well covered.

Myself I leave the two cams up front on tripod, carefully preframed, and move to the back, out of the way to get tighter shots than the "safety" cam was set up to get. With two ops you've got more flexibility!
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Old April 15th, 2011, 09:29 PM   #6
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Re: Where do you stand during the processional?

Hi Matt

I'm shooting 2 cameras but just one operator!! What I normally do is have the tripod camera about 3 or 4 pews back and on the right hand side of the aisle (assuming that it's a traditional setup) so when the couple face each other, I favour the bride. On bridal entrance the main cam is rolling and I'm usually halfway up the aisle with the 2nd cam to get the bridal party walking in.

Because I'm shooting solo, I then need to do a hasty run-around the pews to get between the front pew and altar so I can get decent angles of the father/bride handover. I tend to stay on the right of the aisle so the bride has room to walk thru and I also offer the rest of the aisle to the photog so hopefully they will take up the offer and there is less chance of them standing in front of me!!!

With a second shooter it will be a lot easier...less running!! If yours is an outdoor wedding you shouldn't have any problems at all...there is usually plenty of space and lot's of opportunities. I'm also shooting an outdoor wedding this afternoon (it's already Saturday here!!!) and they are a LOT easier and always tons of space so you will find it pretty easy!!

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Old April 15th, 2011, 09:55 PM   #7
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Re: Where do you stand during the processional?

Hi all,

FWIW I normally position my self behind the celebrant and shoot over them for the brides entrance.

If its a church wedding then on the opposite side of the bride between the front pew and bridal party and about 45 degrees off. I have a great angle of the bride then.

Once the bridal party take up their position then in the aisle about 2 - 3 pews back.

I have my 'B' camera either in the choir's position up high or at the back taking the bridal's entrance from behind and then stay on wide ready for the bridal parties departure... in the meantime I scoot outside one of the side entrances to film their departure from the church/venue/beach.

We still have some priests/ministers/celebrants that don't like us moving around to much during the ceremony. Our biggest issue is wind noise on the wireless mics as we do alot of beach weddings.
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Old April 18th, 2011, 03:20 PM   #8
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Re: Where do you stand during the processional?

Thanks for all the responses. Great information.

I must say the weekend was a huge success. The wedding was awesome; outdoor, rained in the morning, sun came out about 2 hours before the ceremony started. It was a little windy but it actually made the ceremony more cinematic in my opinion. I had 5 total camera angles (2 were standard def and were only for filler shots - I put one under a chair to catch the brides feed walking down the aisle and 1 across the pond directly behind the altar). I had my XH A1s in hand and my assistant was in a balcony, I had another Toshiba pointed at the groom from behind at an angle.

I've looked at a lot of the footage so far and I must say, I'm going to LOVE shooting in High Definition from now on.

Thanks again for the replies, I think it's about time to spend a little money and get a Steadicam.
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