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


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Old February 25th, 2013, 10:34 AM   #1
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Remembering Faces

I think this has been discussed before but after visiting many couples, it is well into the future (years in some cases) that I see them again, and I can't always remember what they look like - especially since I will have seen them 'dressed down' and then on the day they look completely different anyway - especially the bride!

I haven't been really embarrassed yet but I'm sure the day will come when I mistake one of the bridesmaids for the bride (before the dresses go on of course!)

Any tips? Someone suggested taking a snapshot but i'm not sure how I'd sell it (it would be like telling the couple they are easily forgotten!)
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Old February 25th, 2013, 10:49 AM   #2
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Re: Remembering Faces

I used to be great with names and faces but now...not so much. Age is catching up. Last year I did a wedding where 4 couples came up to me and said "Hi, remember us? You did our wedding 4 months ago"... or whenever it was. My excuse was "gee, I didn't recongnize you without your wedding dress and tux". I think they knew that I simply didn't remember them. Do 30, 40, 50 or 60+ weddings a year plus a bunch of corporate work and then throw in some AV work and sometimes I'm lucky if I can remember my own name. I don't pretend anymore, I just tell them "I'm sorry but I do so many events I don't remember your names". Honesty pays!
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Old February 25th, 2013, 01:05 PM   #3
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Re: Remembering Faces

The groom is never a problem here, in our wedding culture the groom comes over in the morning to the bride with some flowers and he rings at the door and then she opens and they see eachother for the first time that day so I always know who the groom is since I start filming ta the bride. The bride is another story, often I don't remember them anymore or they have a sister that looks just like them. I have been thinking about taking a picture when I first meet them but it looks so strange if they don't decide to book me. I just leave it as it is know and fake my way though it until I see someone slip on the dress ;D
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Old February 25th, 2013, 01:48 PM   #4
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Re: Remembering Faces

I haven't yet had the problem of not remembering someone after the wedding; but frequently have the problem of remembering someone before I knock on their door on the day of the wedding. The girl who opens the door often looks completely different from the girl you met at initial consultation, and it doesn't help that there's so many couples...

Have often thought about using iPhone to help. "Hey, could I take your photo so I can attach it to your contact details in my phone so I can actually remember who you guys are?" But it always just felt weird. And at that point, often I'm trying to get their business, so I don't want to do anything that might scare them off.

Maybe the best thing you can do is meet them or Skype with them before the day of the wedding to refresh your memory. I know others on this forum have talked about spending time with the couple beforehand to get to know them properly... Maybe it's also an issue of how many weddings you take on per year. 40-50 couples, maybe you're almost definitely going to run into memory problems. Scale down to 20-25 couples, charging more per couple, if you can attract the business at that price -- and maybe the issue of remembering faces, and indeed giving each couple a more personalised service, isn't as problematic. That's one thing I'm trying to aim for anyway...
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Old February 25th, 2013, 06:51 PM   #5
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Re: Remembering Faces

My big issue is remembering them BEFORE the wedding!!

They book me say 18 months ahead of the date and then a few days before the actual wedding I go to the rehearsal at the Church, which the bride and groom just wear casual gear. I have only previously seen them nearly a year and a half ago and that was only maybe for 30 or 40 minutes so I have no idea what they look like. I tend to carry a camera with me so at least they can recognise me and come over. "Hmm that guy with the camera must be our videographer, I'll go and call him"

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Old February 25th, 2013, 07:42 PM   #6
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Re: Remembering Faces

I actually write a synopsis of what they looked like or anything memorable to trigger the memory of meeting them. It REALLY helps.
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Old February 25th, 2013, 09:29 PM   #7
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Re: Remembering Faces

I always go to the rehearsal so I can then remember their faces easily the few days between the rehearsal and the wedding..at the ceremony the bride is the one in the white dress guys!! The groom normally has a different tie or waistcoat to the groomsmen but one didn't and they had no rehearsal and I nearly put the mic on the best man!!

Afterwards can also be tricky as the beautiful creature in a white dress and flawless makeup will greet you at the door after the honeymoon in tracksuit pants, a t-shirt and no makeup with a scarf around her hair and mop and bucket in each hand.

Actually most brides/grooms normally have features one can remember after the wedding but if they spot you in a shopping mall and treat you like a long lost friend (and remember your name) it's tough when you have to think to yourself "Who are these people? Do I know them?"

Chris
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Old February 25th, 2013, 10:09 PM   #8
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Re: Remembering Faces

most of the weddings I've done over the last 5 years or so I've never even met the couple face to face. Email and phone calls. My how business has changed over the years.
Of course now I can use the computer where as back in the old days, I had a hammer, chisel and a piece of stone. Boy did the mailman hate me! ;-)
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Old February 26th, 2013, 09:34 AM   #9
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Re: Remembering Faces

Trouble remembering before? Ask if they have a wedding website with details (which often also has pics) or ask about engagement pictures (use an excuse about maybe using them in the video, if you want).

Can't remember after? I actually started my wedding blog because of that. I always get a head shot of the couple, post a synopsis of the day with any important details. Really helps because I'll glance through the blog every so often to brush up, especially if I know a wedding is a referral.
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Old April 29th, 2013, 11:28 AM   #10
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Re: Remembering Faces

Quote:
Originally Posted by Peter Rush View Post
Any tips?
Don't sweat it. They probably don't remember what you look like either.

Just make sure they are your #1 priority when you are with them and you will be fine.
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Old April 29th, 2013, 01:24 PM   #11
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Re: Remembering Faces

I started my wedding blog precisely for this reason. I always get a simple head shot of the couple to post and add in some relevant details. Just posting the info helps remember them later, and if you spot someone, and you know you should recognize them, go look it up. I do that a few times a year.
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