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Old January 10th, 2013, 03:23 PM   #1
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Multiple camera operators at ceremony

If you don't have at least three shooters at a ceremony, is it really consistently possible, during vows, to capture two close-ups of faces, and a close-up of rings? Won't you always have to make some sort of compromise, unless you leave an unmanned close-up rolling and hope for the best?
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Old January 10th, 2013, 03:59 PM   #2
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Re: Multiple camera operators at ceremony

Most of the time there isn't even room for three shooters around here.....!
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Old January 10th, 2013, 06:07 PM   #3
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Re: Multiple camera operators at ceremony

Plus you have to charge three times the price (or work for one third of the price if you are foolish enough) The only time I use a second shooter is for bridal prep when the bride and groom are in different locations and getting ready at the same time.

Yeah the Church is already full of people and photogs and enthusiastic guests so 3 videographers would be somewhat squashed and very much over the top.

Chris
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Old January 10th, 2013, 09:21 PM   #4
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Re: Multiple camera operators at ceremony

Well, I'm always in a two-person team. Toying with the idea of getting a third person for just part of the day(from ceremony, to start of reception).

But also thinking -- if one is willing to get on a few photographers' nerves, there's a way to get three close-ups at once with two operators: put three cameras in centre aisle and have one person manning them -- wide shot, facial closeup, hands closeup. The second operator could get another facial close-up, favouring the bride.
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Old January 10th, 2013, 10:07 PM   #5
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Re: Multiple camera operators at ceremony

Hi Adrian

Fair enough..it is nice to work with a companion but unless it's your wife/girlfriend/lover then sadly you need to pay them so for me that eats into my profit (Nope my wife is not interested in being a second shooter) So basically you need to take a cut in profit or charge a lot more so the 2nd (or 3rd) shooter makes a decent amount of money too..!! Just for interest, is your 2nd shooter a partner or do you employ someone ?? Over here the going rate is at absolute minium $35.00 an hour if they have no gear and at least $60 an hour if they use their own gear so even just for the ceremony and video shoot you need to pay them a minium of 4 hours. What does having a 2nd shooter cost you and would a 3rd get the same rate??

I work as a business so extra people equals extra overheads..something I can do without unless they are really necessary!!

Chris
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Old January 11th, 2013, 02:08 AM   #6
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Re: Multiple camera operators at ceremony

purchase 2 gopro, install them covert at the righ place (in flower pot, under a table, on a tripod with nice drape, and let run. (you can even manage to have them remotely started.
since it is HD and you will probably burn DVD, it still leave room for framing in post.
unfortunately, most small camera like gopro are bad for low light, so you can possibly improve by using little bigger camera (but also more expensive).
another way is to mount the camera far from the action and use zoom.
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Old January 11th, 2013, 04:13 AM   #7
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Re: Multiple camera operators at ceremony

Yea, I'm a one man band myself with an unmanned second camera on a wide shot. I try my best to look over the officiators shoulder. Means you get a close up of one face, and the other persons face is visible in the opposite angle wide shot. Its the best i can manage. Normally you are competing with a photographer and here in N. Ireland I'm often restricted by fussy priests.

Like has been said, I just can't financially have a second shooter never mind a third! I think I manage to produce a fairly comprehensive product documenting the day.
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Old January 11th, 2013, 05:13 AM   #8
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Re: Multiple camera operators at ceremony

Hi Clive

I do the same except for the vows my main camera (on the tripod) is a tight shot on the couple and I shoot cutaways and wides with the second cam on my shoulder. My lifesaver is my GoPro which is on a lightstand next to me and high up so any photog can never stand in front of it. It's amazing how many times I have had to rely on the footage when everything at normal height is blocked solid.

Chris
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Old January 11th, 2013, 06:11 AM   #9
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Re: Multiple camera operators at ceremony

Chris i think I heard you mention that before and thought it was a great tip!

I had a GoPro but sold it again because the low light was some of the worst I've ever seen. I bought a Nikon P310 point and shoot because it was also tiny and i had read its low light performance was decent.

But i find that all these secondary cameras need substantial post coloration etc to make them even look slightly similar to my DSLR footage. And so I only ever use the footage from it if I'm really stuck.

I might look at very tall light stands and strong clamps rather than all tripods for as you say higher vantage points, or tighter spaces.

Peter on the other thread, has listed a lot of detail about his equipment. I haven't had time to read it yet though.
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Old January 11th, 2013, 06:43 AM   #10
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Re: Multiple camera operators at ceremony

Quote:
Originally Posted by Adrian Tan View Post
But also thinking -- if one is willing to get on a few photographers' nerves, there's a way to get three close-ups at once with two operators: put three cameras in centre aisle and have one person manning them -- wide shot, facial closeup, hands closeup. The second operator could get another facial close-up, favouring the bride.
why not do it properly - what about a camera on a jib and a gopro on the brides hand as a pov shot or a steadicam that can circle the couple and get right in between them and the celebrant for the rings & the kiss. or an octocoptor than constantly hovers overhead.

3 cameras in the isle? setup while the ceremony is going on? or would you set them up before and just get the bride to squeese past? and for the recessional? how are you going to get them out the way?

We have to remember that this is a wedding ceremony, we are there to film it, not to be part of it and certainly not to make a mockery of it.

I always have 2 operators shooting OTS bride & groom (from the extreme right & left front row) and a 3rd unmanned up the back getting a wide. from the time the bride is halfway down the isle till the signing we don't move. There are lots of times I don't get a clear shot of the rings and I've never had a comment or complaint. I think we can get sucked into tinking we need to get the same shots as the photog.
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Old January 11th, 2013, 07:01 AM   #11
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Re: Multiple camera operators at ceremony

The new GoPro Black edition shoots at 2.7k at 24fps. You can make that a wide shot, but, in theory, you can crop that picture in half and still get an HD resolution. I haven't had a chance to really test this, but it's an opportunity to use a GoPro and then reframe it as needed.
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Old January 11th, 2013, 07:12 AM   #12
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Re: Multiple camera operators at ceremony

Hi Paul

Very good point and thanks too for the PM!!

I tried my stedicam once as the bride came down the aisle (it was a wide Church aisle) but it's still very obstructive and hadly lets you fade into the background. I would say to be totally professional the absolute max is two shooters and the 2nd really should be off to the side ...trying to squeeze just one tripod against the pews in a Church is tough enough and I try to get one leg inside the seats so to give the bride maximum space ...having three in the aisle is bordering on ridiculous. I was in a narrowish aisle last Saturday and "a friend of the Groom" setup his 5D and tripod almost on top of me until harsh words were said..he was constantly in the way but he was "a friend of the groom" so I had to grin and bear it!!

I could imagine 3 shooters all fighting for elbow room in an aisle and as you say it makes your presence at the Church tacky to say the least ..bear in mind there also could be 2 photogs as well. Whenever I can "fade into the background" so I don't disturb a sacred ceremony I do so and if I do shoot with a second cameraperson they are told normally to also stay as invisible as possible.

I think you certainly can easily go overboard with shooters and gear and forget that the day belongs to the bride!

Chris
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Old January 18th, 2013, 12:39 AM   #13
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Re: Multiple camera operators at ceremony

If you can afford the additional operators and gear, the sky's the limit.
Just watch any Jackie Chan stunt.

If it's just the close up ring shot, you can ask the BG to go back into the Church or Garden area once they've been congratulated by their family/friends and get that shot, unless of course they're running behind schedule or the venue is getting prepped for another Wedding.
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Old January 18th, 2013, 04:01 AM   #14
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Re: Multiple camera operators at ceremony

trying to squeeze just one tripod against the pews in a Church is tough enough and I try to get one leg inside the seats so to give the bride maximum space

If you use a heavy duty lightstand instead of a tripod you can get the whole contraption within the standing area between pews by virtue of the feet being low profile enough to slide under most furniture. I recommend the Cheetah C12 Air because its feet automatically spread and contract when you set it down and pick it up, making is very simple and quick to change shooting positions.

There are some instances where they are not suitable - if the total available floor area is insufficient to accommodate the feet spread then you are out of luck and you have to use a tripod with legs that can be independently adjusted for spread but that pretty rare.

https://www.cheetahstand.com/Cheetah...r-p/c12air.htm

Also lightstands are a lot easier for you to step around in confined spaces than are tripods because of the single column rather than in effect three columns from tripods. I have three of these stands all with tripod straps on them for ease of transport.

Pete
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Old January 18th, 2013, 04:34 AM   #15
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Re: Multiple camera operators at ceremony

Hey Peter, I'm astonished at some of the innovative things you do with support gear. But about using lightstands instead of tripods, do you find that the cameras are more prone to shake? And what about smooth pans and tilts -- surely more difficult than with a tripod?
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