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


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Old July 12th, 2011, 11:32 AM   #16
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Re: Shooting Only - Clients Edit

In part, the question comes down to this: are you in this for business or art?

Personally, I don't care if the client takes my footage and makes a crappy video, as long as they don't put my name on it.

I don't shoot weddings, I shoot mainly business events, so requests for "shoot only" jobs is much more common for me.

First, I meet with the client and make sure they understand how the raw footage will be delivered and that I will charge $85 per hour for *any* additional work (or hand-holding.)

The only additional concern I may have for the OP is that shooting weddings typically happens on only one or two days per week. If you've booked yourself for a $900 "shoot only" event, you may end up turning down a nice $3k "full service" event.

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Originally Posted by Katie Fasel View Post
it would basically mean giving up copyright
Why is that a concern? Besides, you would not give up your copyright (unless that is specifically spelled out in the contract.)
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Old July 12th, 2011, 11:37 AM   #17
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Re: Shooting Only - Clients Edit

Why is this a problem?

GIVE THE CLIENTS WHAT THEY WANT

Be upfront about what formats you shoot in and what it takes to edit. Make sure you understand what format they are expecting. (The tapes? A hard drive? What codec?) If they want to do the editing, there is a good chance they have done this before. Also be upfront *now* about what it will cost if they decide they want you to edit it later.

If handing over tapes is too hard for you, pass the gig on to someone else. Chris Davis made an excellent point about opportunity cost. If taking a one-day-of-work job will cause you to miss out on a multi-day project, pass it on to someone else.
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Old July 12th, 2011, 11:49 AM   #18
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Re: Shooting Only - Clients Edit

Just to add to the discussion, if you do hand over raw footage that you didn't shoot with the intention of handing over raw, be sure to go through it and edit out anything that could reflect poorly on you. Others have mentioned wobbles, focus, etc. I'd suggest also listening to the audio in case you said something that you wouldn't want to be heard by the b&g, e.g. a remark to the photographer about a grumpy member of the wedding party or a technical problem.
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Old July 12th, 2011, 12:48 PM   #19
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Re: Shooting Only - Clients Edit

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Originally Posted by Christian Brown View Post

GIVE THE CLIENTS WHAT THEY WANT
That's the rule of the game!
however I shoot without edit off season only
last time i shot for the edit by client, I did 1 location 10Hrs 4 cameras charged $1400 - easy money
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Old July 12th, 2011, 03:29 PM   #20
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Re: Shooting Only - Clients Edit

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Originally Posted by Christian Brown View Post
GIVE THE CLIENTS WHAT THEY WANT.
Unlimited shooting hours with full broadcast equipment, no crew meals, copyright ownership and unlimited changes to the final DVD until they are 100% satisfied.... for $10 per hour.

Sure thing! I'll report back soon to let you know how it goes...
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Old July 12th, 2011, 07:52 PM   #21
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Re: Shooting Only - Clients Edit

Does the client know how to edit in the codec you are shooting? If I was getting married and was on a budget it would be nice to have a pro shoot and then I edit. Who is the client? Do they have experience with working with raw? If they do then they will understand why shots suck and are out of focus. I would charge $1500-$2500 and then let them have at it. I would be very frank that I will not help them in anyway to get the footage edited and to disc. If they want my help then it's X amount of dollars for my expertise. I did this for a client and made $2K in one day and let him have the footage on a drive that WE provide.

If they have little to no experience then I would shoot the raw, convert it to 720x480 in H.264 and hand it to them.

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Old July 12th, 2011, 09:39 PM   #22
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Re: Shooting Only - Clients Edit

I've seen Craigslist ads asking for this, and I've always been curious as to their "editing skills" and never responded. Just always have a bad & skeptical feeling about the posters, figuring their just cheapskates who want 2 hour of footage to simply put a few songs in here & there and burn to DVD. Another think to think about is if they are really an "editor" of sorts, wouldn't they probably have some contacts in the video field willing to do this shoot at a reasonable rate?!


I'd liisten to what Jim Snow & John Knight stated earlier in the thread. If a couple is asking for an unedited final DVD (ie shot with the intent of no editing to be done), that's different. But when they say they'll edit it themselves I see red flags going up, proceed with caution.
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Old July 12th, 2011, 10:47 PM   #23
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Re: Shooting Only - Clients Edit

I normally put off couples wanting either just raw footage or an edited DVD plus raw footage by telling them "Are you sure you have an editor that can handle Panasonic AVCHD MTS files??"
It usually goes no further but if it does I have a 1 minute AVCHD clip available for download so they can attempt to edit it...which they normally cannot either due to a slow puter or NLE that cannot input AVCHD.

I figure if the enquirer does have a fast computer and a decent NLE then he/she probably has the skills to do a reasonable edit too...(no-one would buy a pro edit package unless they were planning to edit anyway and if they have to upgrade the machine and spend 1K on software it would be cheaper to let us do the edit!!)

I must admit I have only had one client (years back) who insisted on shoot only and also wanted the same deal with the photogs (who laughed at him but still supplied) I doubt he ever managed to get around to an edit anyway..the raw footage is more than likely still on his drive along with his untouched photos!!

However if you are confident that the client DOES have the necessary skills and equipment then it is easy money!!

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Old July 13th, 2011, 08:58 AM   #24
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Re: Shooting Only - Clients Edit

I filmed once as well and gave tapes after reception. Since then I only had one phone call from them asking how to import video to PC. At the end I offered them my editing service if they will struggle with editing. One thing they will learn for sure is how hard it is to make a nice wedding DVD.
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Old July 13th, 2011, 09:40 AM   #25
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Re: Shooting Only - Clients Edit

The concern of giving up copyright is very simple: In the contract or not, if they have all the footage, they can basically do what they want with it, I will never know if they posted things on a personal website, or something like that...just because it's in a contract doesn't mean they wouldn't do it, and doesn't mean they would give me credit for anything...I would never know.

I understand that this is probably the easiest way to earn money in our business, but as others have pointed out, I may not want my name attached to the crap they end up with.

As for giving the clients what they want...OBVIOUSLY that is (or should be) the main directive of anyone in the business...but these clients seek us out based on our samples they have already seen, and in our case, the package and price options that are outlined on our website! Obviously if they like what they have seen so far, they have enough interest to seek out our services, and once they become a client and sign that contract, I will do everything in my power to make them happy with the final video they receive.

I am sure others are feeling the same way about this discussion...Don't make it seem like we all don't go above and beyond for each and every client we have, just because we don't want to turn over all of our raw footage to their [maybe fully capable, who knows?] hands.
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Old July 13th, 2011, 09:54 AM   #26
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Re: Shooting Only - Clients Edit

Professional videographers regularly hand over raw footage to clients. We call it work for hire and charge a day rate. What the client chooses to do with the footage is entirely up to them.
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Old July 13th, 2011, 10:03 AM   #27
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Re: Shooting Only - Clients Edit

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Originally Posted by Rick L. Allen View Post
Professional videographers regularly hand over raw footage to clients. We call it work for hire and charge a day rate. What the client chooses to do with the footage is entirely up to them.
Absolutely Rick. We pros regularly sign all the rights over to the client, because they're likely taking it elsewhere to edit and to use for numerous purposes. Whether it's Joe Shmo on the street or CBS, if they're paying my asking price for the footage, they get it. I'm not paranoid about who sees my raw footage. It's really not that big of a deal.
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Old July 13th, 2011, 11:08 AM   #28
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Re: Shooting Only - Clients Edit

Well that may be fine for a lot of projects...but that would mean they are probably paying someone else to edit, and have some sort of budget involved...would you say you do this regularly for weddings, or what's your usual type of project?

If you market yourself as shoot for hire, then that's a great way to make a lot of money. We do not market ourselves as such.

The client's motivation behind this request was to save money, not go pay someone else to do it. "We Pros" who do only wedding videos sell ourselves based on our style of video, I would say probably half of which -- if not more -- comes from the editing stage.

I am not "paranoid" of people seeing my raw footage, anyone who has a remote understanding of the video biz knows that not every shot is useful/in focus/important. I would say most people asking for corporate/project-based videos know more about this than most people asking for wedding videos.

That's it from me.
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Old July 13th, 2011, 12:07 PM   #29
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Re: Shooting Only - Clients Edit

As I don't do weddings either - so agree with Chris and Christian. Could it be that wedding video prices are actually artificially high, and the long timescales bolster the impression that they take a very long time, and hence cost lots of money. Handing over the material after a single day's shooting means you have to settle for whatever the day rate is. I too probably edit in 1 in 3 projects. I actually like doing the job, handing the material over and moving on. There's also this weird necessity to keep control of copyright? I've done a few of the video inserts for awards ceremonies when the recipients are unavailable - famous names, but why would I want to hang onto the copyright? If you do 30 weddings a year, do you really use the material again?

Copyright can be a real pain to control anyway, so why attempt to retain something that doesn't to me, seem to have any value?

All we seem to hear are the wedding people moaning about having to pay for licenses, the organist, the choir etc etc yet they also want to retain the copyright in their own work? To an outsider - this is a case of double standards, isn't it. Damn churches wanting extra money for copyright! How dare they? .... but the video is mine, mine, mine - so what you paid all that money, it's mine!!!

If the clients want you to shoot because they know you do a good job, but want to edit themselves, I can understand that. I was doing a shoot where the client ended up doing a parachute jump. I paid for the footage and got charged the same price they charge for the edited version - because they were handing over the copyright for me to use in the finished product. I was ok with that.

In the wedding case talked about here, they just want a different product, so why not price it, do it and forget it!
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Old July 14th, 2011, 03:28 PM   #30
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Re: Shooting Only - Clients Edit

Quote:
Originally Posted by Katie Fasel View Post
The concern of giving up copyright is very simple: In the contract or not, if they have all the footage, they can basically do what they want with it, I will never know if they posted things on a personal website, or something like that...just because it's in a contract doesn't mean they wouldn't do it, and doesn't mean they would give me credit for anything...I would never know.
That's why I asked if you're in this for business or art. To me, this sounds like you consider yourself more of an artist than a business person. That's ok, as long as you understand that.

Personally, the only credit I desire is the credit in my bank account. If the client has paid a sufficient amount, I don't care what they do with the footage. I don't care if it's on a personal website, YouTube or wherever. You're worrying about nothing. The chance that your footage will be seen by anyone other than the B&G's closest friends and family is infinitesimal.

The bottom line is the wedding isn't until fall. If you're secure in the fact you can book a full package for that date, then don't book the "shoot only" event. Now if the "shoot only" wedding was a last minute booking for this weekend, and you were open, that would be a different story. BTW, after looking at your website, you're rates are reasonable enough that I'd be suspicious of someone who wants to cut them even lower...
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