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


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Old May 14th, 2011, 03:07 AM   #16
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Re: Indian Wedding

Got a call to film an indian wedding in stoke england they wanted three days filming, explained to them i will only do a 40 min edit cinematic style, all agreed, got me down to 2,500 from 3000,
It was the worst experience i have ever had, planning goes out of the window, they wanted me here there everywhere, filming in aunties miles away filming various parts of the country because such and somebody cant come so.
Then when they get the dvd they want this changing that changing, a complete nightmare, personally will not do another indian/or pakistany wedding again, never never never
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Old May 14th, 2011, 09:20 AM   #17
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Re: Indian Wedding

Geoff

I think that the general opinion should be pretty clear to you by now so it's really up to you to decide whether to attempt this shoot or not.

If it were me, I think I would echo Steve's sentiments of "never, never, never" !!! Mine was an interesting encounter but I don't think I would ever repeat it again either!!!

Chris
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Old May 14th, 2011, 12:35 PM   #18
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Re: Indian Wedding

I shot one about 3 or 4 years ago...just me with 2 cameras... yeah never again.

The wedding events occurred over 3 days, in 2 different cities 30 miles apart... and it amounted to at least 24 hours of actual on-location shooting time (with the actual wedding day starting around 7:00AM and ending closer to 10:00PM - stuff was still going on, but that is when I left), with I'd say maybe 10-12 hours of actual footage on miniDV that had to be captured later.

For something that big and involved, it a fair price would be in the order approaching I'd say at least $6,000 and probably more along the lines of $8K or $9K... maybe even $10K!

I of course didn't charge but a fraction of that because it was more of a favor in my case for a friend.

But, ever since then, I only accept regular American/Christian type weddings. In and out in normally 3 or 4 hours. Much better!
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Old May 14th, 2011, 01:27 PM   #19
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Re: Indian Wedding

Take a look at the scale of Kevin and Patrick's work in that "feature presentation". I have to ask how much a production like that would cost? While it's beautiful, it has a huge "cast", a substantial "crew", , location filming, and although it WAS shot with DSLR's, the support gear was extensive... and in my mind should have a high 5 to low 6 figure "budget"... even if one considered it to be and "indie production" for a limited audience, there still have to be realistic production costs... I mean, really, ELEPHANTS?

OK, it's a cultural thing, and superbly beautiful, but I'd be afraid to even pick up a camera without a full storyboard! I love Kevin's work, though it does make one tempted to put down the camera forever... you have to substantially adjust your scope and expectations to even try to capture a "large" event with multiple locations and long hours on "the set"...

If the "general expectation" is for an extravaganza, there is an entirely different price structure at work, it's not a 15-30 minute ceremony/3-4 hour reception/edit to 60 minutes of gripping content proposition...

Thinking about it more, I'd suspect one would have to budget for a couple extra camera ops, at a minimum and multiply a "normal rate" by a factor of 4-6, plus the aforementioned double to allow for haggling - that'd probably be a more realistic "starting point" if one wanted to attempt one of these?
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Old May 15th, 2011, 12:41 PM   #20
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Re: Indian Wedding

Hahaha Steve, that tends to be how those days go. You can see why the guys who specialise in Indian weddings charge so much. The couples will haggle, need a number of days and have change after change.

Weve done a couple of indian weddings but they were looking for a more western style of edit and way of working.

Some couples know that they can get a western videographer whos never done one before to do it on the cheap as they just dont know whats involved.

If you can handle it then it could be a very lucrative market to get into. As long as you charge enough going forwards of course.
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Old May 15th, 2011, 06:36 PM   #21
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Re: Indian Wedding

Maybe Danny but i think i will leave that one well alone, hope your ok!! steve
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Old May 24th, 2011, 07:55 PM   #22
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Re: Indian Wedding

I think you are all crazy. We do tons of Asian weddings, Hindu, Sikh and Muslim, modern and traditional and they are great. We have had none of the experience mentioned above. The footage always looks fantastic as everything is interesting in the frame. The costumes and dress really look good even in average lighting. We have shot with 1, 2 and 3 camera operators all in differing locations, we are even doing one this weekend while currently editing an Hindu extravagansa with what must have been near to 1000 guests over the 2 days. Plus the food is fantastic.
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Old May 24th, 2011, 08:14 PM   #23
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Re: Indian Wedding

I've shot 3 full on Hindu weddings and have never had an issue. They have always been extremely pleasant to work with, were happy with the final product and referred new clients to me. Also, all three Indian couples tipped my nicely! That's not to say that you shouldn't have a well though out plan in advance. And I never let couples talk me down on price so I'm not angry after the fact at the amount of work I had to do at a reduced rate.
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Old May 25th, 2011, 01:39 PM   #24
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Re: Indian Wedding

If I might chime in here, being that I'm Indian and actually got married recently and now am trying to get into videography in the Indian market, I would love to do this wedding.

First, In no way did I take offense to any comments or experiences anyone shared. I'll defend the wedding because I myself think its an event to remember. At my wedding, my husband had a lot of American friends who had never seen anything like our 3 day event. Its colorful, vibrant, music is always playing, food and drinks and dancing every single day...that being said, to film that event is not an easy task.

You have to know what you're getting into. Most Indians I know do have 2-3 days of festivities, but they don't usually hire professionals to cover all the events. The wedding ceremony and the pre-ceremony (from the same day) are important, and then the reception as any reception would be. But since the ceremony is long, what I would recommend, and a lot of people here do it that way, I would deliver 2 DVDs. One surrounding the Wedding ceremony, and the actual ceremony lasts around an hour or so and brides and their families really want that captured. They don't care fo anything fancy with the editing there, as long as the ceremony is covered. And than a few minutes of people congratulating the bride and groom and giving hugs and kisses and all. Then I'd do a second DVD for the reception. Thats where you'd cover the same things you'd cover at any wedding reception. Yes, the Indian couples usually want Everything filmed, but you can let them know that you'll capture all the events but on your final DVD you'll have the special moments, like cake cutting, first dance, speeches, a little mingling from the guests, and then about 10-15 minutes of dancing. That's usually enough for them. Usually.

Another thing to keep in mind, unless it's a modern Indian couple, yes, then they do like a lot of 80's style on their DVDs, like fireworks, Big Ugly Fonts and a lot of flash. Basically the cheesy stuff. If I were you, I'd recommend them to get one of their friends/cousins to capture the other events and tell them you'd do the most important day. And it depends on their budget, or your interest-level in how much you're willing to do. Just know that it'll be a FULL day of work.
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Old May 25th, 2011, 07:00 PM   #25
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Re: Indian Wedding

Even though i am not Indian, i find some of the comments very shocking. I do multi cultural wedding all the time my average shoot is about 16hrs in two days but i charge accordingly. You have to have a contract and stick to it. if you are new to the game be honest and show them your sample and tell how you are going to shoot their wedding. i capture everything i could and present to them in documentary style. About the cheese factor you can always say no to that and most of them understand.
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Old May 25th, 2011, 07:16 PM   #26
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Re: Indian Wedding

I think as some of the other posts have mentioned... it's all about knowing exactly what you as the videographer signing up for, and when you're not totally familiar with the culture and what all goes on... you may set your price low... waaaaay to low, to make it worthwhile.

Similarly, it's hard to do set a price when you and the couple agree, and then the parents come in and start modifying stuff last minute and then asking you to film a bunch of other ceremonies and events that weren't part of the original deal.

Granted the wedding I filmed was a favor for a friend, but the fact that I had on location time of like 24 hours over 3 days in different cities etc... Minimum price on a production like that is easily $6,000-$10,000.

I swore I'd never do one, but I imagine if the couple wanted to pay the $10,000 cost I -might- do it.
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Old May 25th, 2011, 07:31 PM   #27
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Re: Indian Wedding

Great point kyle. Blame the player not the game.
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Old May 26th, 2011, 11:59 AM   #28
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Re: Indian Wedding

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kiflom Bahta View Post
Great point kyle. Blame the player not the game.
Nicely put :-)
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Old May 26th, 2011, 02:23 PM   #29
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Re: Indian Wedding

To sum it up... know what you're getting into (this forum has been enormously helpful should any of us have a ceremony we're not familiar with come our way!), price and quote according to the job, and if possible understand and be respectful of cultural differences.

Granted, someone used to a 15-30 minute ceremony and a 3 hour reception might go into "culture shock" when faced with a multi day celebration... heck, I get tired at a 2 hour kids B-day party... but somehow I'd still like to be a part of one of these extravaganzas some time... if the compensation is right (I think Kyle's $ figures are probably a good starting point, and significantly higher that "usual" wedding rates).

I also could understand how one would NOT want to be the videographer either... it looks like a lot of work, and not everyone is cut out for "getting outside the box" culturally... I watched Guy Fierri (Diners, Drive ins and Dives) eating a "pigs ear" sandwich, and even he was a bit squeamish, but I gather it's a delicacy! Dunno if I could do it... cultural thing I guess...
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Old June 26th, 2013, 11:13 AM   #30
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Re: Indian Wedding

I just booked my first Sikh wedding, that came from a Photographer friend. I've already taken the time to browse a number of videos that were quite easy to find, so I have a good sense of what will be going on during the day (and evening!). And I knew I'd find some commentary on this forum!! I do want to thank Raji for her comments as they were sincere, and brought a nice perspective to the thread. As a (former) Marine, hard work doesn't bother me, and I'm sure the mantra of "improvise, overcome & adapt" will be put to the test. But it's all good...will report later!
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Last edited by Terry Wall; June 26th, 2013 at 11:14 AM. Reason: added something
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