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


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Old December 11th, 2013, 12:54 PM   #1
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How much of your video is chronological?

I nearly always use the signing of the register along with the couples photo/video shoot to create a 'romantic' chapter on my DVDs. IMO The signing of the register is often a nice but mute affair that would benefit from a little creativity and music, but in itself is never nearly long enough to be a chapter on it's own. That's why I put it in a separate chapter from the ceremony

I've now got an unhappy client who wants the signing including in the ceremony - when I pointed out that as it's an editorial change it will be charged for she's gone a bit nuts and is not happy. She says that because the footage is 'not in order' (even though it's just the signing) then the edit is wrong and she wants it correcting!

First time I've come across this one. I have thought previously it might be a good idea to include details in my packages of the chapters and their contents, but I don't want holding to that as each wedding can be different.

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Old December 11th, 2013, 01:46 PM   #2
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Re: How much of your video is chronological?

I shoot 100% chronological and never had a complaint. I never cut anything out of the service apart from trimming the fat from the signing (cut it down to 60seconds - closeup of pen, shot of mum blubbing etc)

Essentially I'm there to document an event, no matter how boring it is. I never try to 'liven things up' - that's beyond my job description.

All this different chapter stuff, creative storytelling, 1 inch depth-of-field, and time shifted mini-movies does my head in a bit. KISS. :)
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Old December 11th, 2013, 03:41 PM   #3
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Re: How much of your video is chronological?

I do both a full length chronological edit that I call the 'All-Day Edit.' It usually runs 60-90 minutes and includes the full ceremony, speeches, first dance, and anything else they told me are important.

My wedding film, which is 15-20 minutes, is usually mostly chronological, but isn't always. I'll use voice over from the ceremony to punctuate a moment later in the day. Or my last edit, I came back to the first look because it was such an emotional moment for them and that came across, and it's how I wanted to end the whole thing, also using voice over from the ceremony to set it up.

Hopefully your contract says you have full editorial control. I would still probably take care of this for the client, with no issues. For me it wouldn't be hard to do, relatively speaking, and a happy client ends up being the most important thing.
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Old December 11th, 2013, 04:59 PM   #4
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Re: How much of your video is chronological?

Hi Pete,

I would have to side with the bride on this one (22+ years experience with wedding shoots). Like John, I will "trim the fat" to keep things moving. When the minister announces the next reading and it takes the reader 30 seconds to get from their pew to the podium, that's gone. Stuff like that, no one will miss it and it certainly makes the viewing more enjoyable.

But it sounds like you've taken an integral part of the service and cut it out, then put it elsewhere on the DVD, and the client would just like to enjoy viewing the ceremony as it happened without having to skip around the disc to see different bits.

Customer satisfaction is important, more now than ever where a dissatisfied customer can bad mouth you all over the internet. Not worth the bad publicity and hard feelings. Keep her happy and maybe you get other friends/family weddings down the road. The majority of my business has always been referrals.

PS - I'm assuming "signing the register" is something done during the actual ceremony? Customs do vary between countries of course!

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Old December 11th, 2013, 05:18 PM   #5
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Re: How much of your video is chronological?

Hi Jeff - Yes the register signing is towards the end (or actually at the end of a civil ceremony) of the ceremony but for me it's always worked as part of the 'couple' chapter on my DVD - I've never had a complaint in nearly 150 weddings - quite the opposite in fact! Robert - yes my terms and conditions give me full editorial control but in this instance, since it's a small change I'll let it go.
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Old December 12th, 2013, 05:08 AM   #6
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Re: How much of your video is chronological?

not worth fighting over and its easy to fix it the way she wants it, a happy client is much more desirable than a frustrated one!

I do a full chronological account of the day and sometimes i'll mix it up a little bit for the highlights, not much tho! 'keep it simple' is my self imposed motto.
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Old December 13th, 2013, 08:16 PM   #7
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Re: How much of your video is chronological?

I keep all my videos pretty much completely chronological. Even the highlight reel. It just makes it easier for me to tell the story, especially since I haven't done an event yet that has any sort of good audio overlay like a pre-interview, or a good blessing/toast.
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Old December 13th, 2013, 08:40 PM   #8
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Re: How much of your video is chronological?

I like to keep mine chronological, but often play around with the sound track quite a bit with L and J cuts to keep a uniform audio during sequences where I cut out a lot of the boring "in-between" bits.
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Old December 13th, 2013, 08:50 PM   #9
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Re: How much of your video is chronological?

My brides seem to be quite fussy about order and if the cake cutting (which is part of my "events" menu) is done after entry I dare not move it out of sequence!

Everything is in the order that it happened... brides might be hazy on the day but they always seem to remember the way the reception schedule was organised so I have to stick to that order.

Chris
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Old December 15th, 2013, 02:41 PM   #10
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Re: How much of your video is chronological?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Robert Benda View Post
I do both a full length chronological edit that I call the 'All-Day Edit.' It usually runs 60-90 minutes and includes the full ceremony, speeches, first dance, and anything else they told me are important.

My wedding film, which is 15-20 minutes, is usually mostly chronological, but isn't always. I'll use voice over from the ceremony to punctuate a moment later in the day.
Ditto for me. My highlights are much less chronological than the full "running footage" edit. And I too use all the words from toasts and ceremony as a narrative, which can be mixed out of order over the highlights.
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Old December 15th, 2013, 03:25 PM   #11
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Re: How much of your video is chronological?

I have had quite a few brides that asked if they can just purchase the service without any editing at all. Must be in chronological order. They just wanted the entire coverage in the order as the day progressed. I saw a pattern here that I want to share to all as I am adding this service as one of my package choices. The bride that came last week to book said " I don't know if you can do this, but can you cover the wedding in such a way that when I look at it it will be as if I am re-living it exactly as it happened and without any slow motion, effects, added music, color effects. none of that. Just a well documented coverage of the dayas it progresses."
She went on to tell me that she recently saw a wedding done on old VHS tape from her father in law transfered to DVD and exclaimed that it was so real, so raw, and so live that she wanted that kind of rememberance in her wedding too. " I do not need a movie or overly decorated stuff, just give me what will be going on that day, leave also the audio untouched " I smiled at her and said "you got it ". Now the nice part is that I can just put a fade in and a fade out, make her a few copies and be done. This has happened at least 10 times during the past 2 years. This particular bride to be did not even mention a reduction in price, but I gave her 10% off.
Now, what I am seriously considering is to be done with editing altogether just as many photographers do by delivering their work without a finished album. I find that I make more money per worked hour this way even by a reduced price.
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Old December 15th, 2013, 05:06 PM   #12
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Re: How much of your video is chronological?

I keep things in chronological order but the signings often feature in a scene that lasts the length of a song and includes signing, leaving the church, arriving at the cocktail and the cocktail. In saying that, weddings here in Spain are pure chaos so you just have to go with the flow.
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Old December 15th, 2013, 05:54 PM   #13
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Re: How much of your video is chronological?

Hi Art

In my old VHS days when my Panny cameras used to record to a full size cassette, the moment you copied the footage from the master (which was around 200 lines of resolution at best on standard VHS) you lost about 20% of quality as the process was analogue so giving a bride a master was always the best route.

What I used to do is film an optical title on a new tape (normally the wedding invitation) and then on the big day, cue up and edit in camera so as the bride was leaving I could eject the cassette (pre-labelled too!!) and hand it over and get my money. No edits at all!! What an great way to do business!!!

When you say no editing, I'm assuming that you will still need to render and burn to DVD or are you considering using a little DVD camcorder.

Unless you shoot with a single camera there will have to be a little editing of course and the files still need to be written to a DVD

I actually use this exact method at most weddings EXCEPT during the stedicam shoot where I add music and slow the footage. Apart from that I tend to "shoot for editing" so very little footage needs much work at all .. quite often a segment might just need a "top and tail" By planning your shots and editing in camera plus shooting in order it's very rare that I take more than a normal working day to edit an entire wedding from raw footage to finished DVD sets. I consider that a genuine documentary style wedding where all you leave out are the bits where nothing happens so the day unfolds on video, exactly the way it happened!

Chris
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Old December 15th, 2013, 06:14 PM   #14
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Re: How much of your video is chronological?

I agree with most of the posters so far, inasmuch as I supply a documentary record of the day in chronological order. The signing of the register is an important part of the ceremony, and the marriage is not legal without it. I wouldn't dream of putting it somewhere else in the order of things.

I can understand those that want to make a short version and use their artistic interpretation of what is romantic and what is not, but certainly my clients want to see their day unfold the way it happened on the main video. It will be their only way of ever seeing what everybody else there saw of their wedding day., and is an historical family record.

Roger
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Old December 15th, 2013, 09:20 PM   #15
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Re: How much of your video is chronological?

Chris, the non edited delivery is a BluRay disc for the couple. I just edit "in camera" knowing what I will keep in the final cut. I do a very, very little cleanup of when people pass in front of the camera, I usually avoid most of them because I can sense like a dog when the are just about to dart in front of the lens. I hate the most when they duck their heads just a wee bit thinking that they are out of the frame but get the top of it floating by. The other only part I edit is when the maitreD gets his big fat A#$ in front of me while the cake is cut. Other than that, no effects, wipes, slo mo, or fancy schmanzy stuff. I edit that little stuff out in less than the time I finish an espresso. Would you believe I convinced a couple today to sign just by offering them a BluRay player for free so that they can view the HD non edited content. I have 6 of them in stock and give one out immediately when they do the first deposit. I paid $39 each for them.
In my early years with a Sony SL2000 Betamax, there were no title character generators out there to do the titles. I did a little movie style fancy but effective opening clip. I wish I retained a copy of that to show you. I had my camera on a tripod aiming at my Brother manual typewriter as the keys were typing the names of the couple and the bridal party. The audio of them keys typing was a classic.
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