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Old August 1st, 2011, 07:28 PM   #16
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Re: Where do you set up at Receptions?

I need to re work my coverages for the receptions. Our brides think they want all the dancing but its like watching paint dry editing it. And I seriously doubt they ever really watch it.

I think the 30 minutes after first dance seems about right, and like you said edit that down to 15 minutes.
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Old August 1st, 2011, 07:39 PM   #17
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Re: Where do you set up at Receptions?

I'm much the same as Don and on my feet most of the time at the reception. Our receptions usually begin at 6pm with pre-dinner drinks for the guests and I also do interviews with them before they get too many drinks under their belts!! Ours usually have the bride arrival at 6:30/6:45pm and then dinner, followed by speeches. The only time I'm not moving around a fair amount is speeches where CamA is on tripod filming the unlucky few who have to make a speech and unless I have a 2nd shooter, I'm running around filming guest reactions...if the FOB talks about Aunt Gladys, then I need to get over to her table so I have a cutaway shot of her!!

Unless they are doing dancing in a circle (then I'm inside the circle) I also do roundy rounds on the perimeter of the dance floor so the footage is not boring and taken from a fixed point. Apart from the one fixed cam during speeches the rest of the reception is all handheld..no tripods at all!!! Then again we are using nice stable shoulder-mount cameras!! Plus I use a DVEng rig to help make the cam even smoother!

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Old August 1st, 2011, 09:31 PM   #18
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Re: Where do you set up at Receptions?

Yeah Denny, I do the first dance, F-D and M-S dance in full then usually the next 40 minutes or so then I start kind of pickin and choosing. For editing they get the "special dances" in full then the rest is in short clips (about 1:30 to 1:50) and dissolving the music so it blends nicely. Of course each is a bit different but that at least is the plan. I don't do interviews but I do look for the unusual, fun, oof beat type of thing as well. After all, how much of Aunt Harry and Uncle Sally doing the twist can one take. (apologiys to anyone who has an Aunt Harry or Uncle Sally). Plus for the most part once the DJ or band leader announces the dance floor is open I'm there for about an hour or slightly more maybe an hour 10. Generally after bouquet and garter (if they do it) I'm done, if they don't I time it out so I'm done about when it would have been done. That is plenty of footage for me and them and yes they do watch it. Maybe not all the way thru everytime but I know they watch the dancing. How? Last week I got a call from the Mother of the Bride complaining I didn't shoot more people dancing. I politely explained that when there were on 9 people on the floor at pretty much any given time I can't just magically make more appear. She asked why I didn't go to the DJ and have him make an announcement about dancing. I simply asked her "really?" I then explained to her that that was not in my service agreement nor am I responsible for the DJ who was a friend of the mothers and not at all professional. I won't go any further about this converation but well let's just say she didn't like my answers to why I didn't make more people go on the dance floor.
Anyway the actual time of open dancing is generally in the area of about 30 minutes which is in my mind plenty. Add the intros, cake cutting, blessing, toasts, special dances, bouquet and garter and BAM! about 50 to 60 minutes of reception. Been doing it this way for years. Works for me.
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Old August 1st, 2011, 11:06 PM   #19
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Re: Where do you set up at Receptions?

Hey Don

You do a lot!! I will do the first dance and then the song after it usually so that's maybe under 10 minutes!
Then during the general dancing I'll add maybe 4 songs tops (say around 12 minutes) That only changes if they have any special dances that would enhance the production..I had one bride specifically want the "limbo" filmed as well as a huge conga line...I can see the value of "specialised" dancing but surely it's boring watching people just wiggle their bodies for 40 minutes ????

At my last weekend's wedding the bride hurried thru the formalities "to get more dancing time" and while the dance floor was generally empty, when the odd few (I think I counted 10 people tops!!) danced it was only for one song!! When that happens it's tough to film when there's nothing to film!!!

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Old August 2nd, 2011, 12:35 AM   #20
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Re: Where do you set up at Receptions?

I guess we all have the problem of empty dance floors and all have to explain that we can't CGI in extra dancers. We then get the "well everyone was dancing later". Of course I apologise and explain the terms in case that actually happened but in reality I doubt if they have a clear recall of how many people were actually dancing at any given time. Some parties are dancing parties, others aren't.

I was chatting to the DJ before the first dance at a recent wedding and opined that the songs that seem to get even the most moribund party dancing are Mama Mia and the Scissor Sisters' "I don't feel like dancing" and that I'd never seen them fail. 20 minutes later I was saying to him that I'd only once seen them fail to get the dancing going!.
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Old August 2nd, 2011, 03:32 AM   #21
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Re: Where do you set up at Receptions?

One of the reasons I use fixed cameras is to try and get some shots which don't have the photographer dancing around between me and the couple. I sometimes think, to paraphrase Princess Diana, there are three of them in this wedding dance. Two's company, threes a crowd, four would be a mob.

I'm trying to remember back to when it became de rigueur for the photographer, or two, to stay for the evening dancing for the sake of two or three still shots.

Last edited by George Kilroy; August 2nd, 2011 at 05:40 AM.
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Old August 8th, 2011, 01:21 PM   #22
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Re: Where do you set up at Receptions?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Philip Howells View Post
I guess we all have the problem of empty dance floors and all have to explain that we can't CGI in extra dancers.
Why not? You could charge extra for it. ;-)
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Old August 8th, 2011, 01:23 PM   #23
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Re: Where do you set up at Receptions?

Quote:
Originally Posted by George Kilroy View Post
One of the reasons I use fixed cameras is to try and get some shots which don't have the photographer dancing around between me and the couple. I sometimes think, to paraphrase Princess Diana, there are three of them in this wedding dance. Two's company, threes a crowd, four would be a mob.
Interesting to hear that sometimes it's not just the amateur shooters (otherwise known as guests) who are spoiling the shots. (See the thread I started for context.)
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