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Old May 3rd, 2014, 09:03 AM   #16
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Re: Why do brides value photos more than video?

I post over at a Micro Four Thirds forum, where the photogs (of which there are some pros / retired pros) consider video to be the new photo.

They bemoan Grandma and their cousin, who have DSLR cameras, who are now considered as worthy replacements for professional photographers.

This will never be the case with video - nobody can fake a video. There are too many elements, whereas a talented photographer (who is an amateur) can still reproduce some decent looking images with some knowledge of lighting and a decent prime.

After watching videos at Creative Live and hearing people scream, "OMG Ray Roman is going to video MY wedding!" I can only suggest that people's minds are changing.

There was a recent wedding placed on Facebook. In fact, it was one year ago. The bride had her photos, which people liked; but the two minute video that was shot to, "To Build A Home" by Cinematic Orchestra blew people's minds. The video was shot in black and white, with highlights (lights) flashing across the bride and bridesmaids subtly. It was a moving piece and definitely worthy of their day.

It captured the hearts of her family and friends, scored close to 100 likes and had everyone screaming that the creator was going to somehow make thousands (he may do, but I think he was an amateur using iMovie to cut as he used a few of the effects from that software programme and made 'wow' moments through extended shots with X30 speed, which was cleverly used).

After watching the video, my friends asked if I could do similar... I accepted but pushed them to get a pro, but they declined, saying they'd already blown their budget and hadn't considered a video until they saw the one on Facebook (but had spent 2k on a photographer).

After watching the video that I created, their reaction was similar to that of the other person's wedding.

The more videos that are shared like this on Facebook, the more video is going to be requested by the people who are viewing, but are not yet married. I believe the tide IS going to change.

I'm fairly sure that both films were created by amateurs. I'm certain a professional could do a better job. Value here was lost (as both films were created for free). But the guests responses? I think they value video more now and I think they'll be wanting their wedding filmed in the future - and I think they'd be willing to pay out more than they would have considered before.

The truth is, people don't know what you guys can do! People are still used to the old, boring 60 minute documentary style weddings, where few shots are changed and it's mostly like replaying the entire day.

DSLR video, handheld rigs, monopods etc. the production value is raised, the duration is lowered, the vows over the top creates dynamism that can't be met by pictures alone.

I honestly think the tides will turn. Videographers will become valued enough to make as much as the photogs!
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Old May 3rd, 2014, 10:54 AM   #17
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Re: Why do brides value photos more than video?

Tides will definitely turn. But there is still a long way to go ...

More and more people are discovering the whole cinematic video or documentary edits with cinematic elements!

Gear is just getting better and better enabling videographers to produce amazing footage for clients that they will cherish more than photographs in the future.

If I was a young kid, I would love to see my grandfathers wedding video with crisp audio and amazing picture clarity! it would be much better than pictures.
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Old May 3rd, 2014, 12:32 PM   #18
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Re: Why do brides value photos more than video?

Interestingly I saw a comment by an Australian top end society wedding photographer (sorry name escapes me) who said that when he started in the 1960s that about 50% of these high end weddings were filmed on 16mm. I imagine that this was by no means a full documentary style and don't even know if it had audio but probably was just highlights but the novelty of moving images would be sufficient to make it interesting
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Old May 3rd, 2014, 12:57 PM   #19
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Re: Why do brides value photos more than video?

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Originally Posted by Craig McKenna View Post
I post over at a Micro Four Thirds forum, where the photogs (of which there are some pros / retired pros) consider video to be the new photo.
Yes, but how many brides say that?

Remember, it's just the latest generation that's had the opportunity to access the current stock of video cameras. Their moms didn't -- their moms would have had to hire a 16mm (or 35mm) crew which wasn't at all reasonable. Middle America just didn't do it. And it's those same moms and dads that are paying for today's weddings. Like it or not, those moms still have influence.

When the current generation of brides becomes the next generation of moms, then I think it might be possible for video to become the norm at weddings. Time will tell.
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Old May 3rd, 2014, 01:51 PM   #20
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Re: Why do brides value photos more than video?

Tell your brides that on the day they will be pretty busy just making it through the process of getting married.

It's only later after the event ... when they are watching the video ... that they can actually sit down and enjoy their wedding.

(based on the feedback I have had)

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Old May 3rd, 2014, 04:46 PM   #21
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Re: Why do brides value photos more than video?

The title of the thread is Why do brides value photos more than video? I don't believe that they do!

I do agree that only 10% of brides book a video, but in my 30 years and 2000+ weddings, I find that once the wedding video is delivered, it has much more value to the Bride than the photographs do. I find that past clients tell me that they watch the video far more than they look at the photographs and that their children also love watching the video, seeing family members that they may not have ever seen or heard and others such as grandparents that may no longer be around.

The problem we face as videographers, is to get those planning to get married, to see the value of the video before the wedding. As an example, I visited potential clients 3 days ago, who had met Claire and I at a wedding show and were intrigued enough to invite me to discuss it with them. On arrival the groom made it quite clear that he wasn't really interested and would never watch it, and it was only his future wife that had persuaded him to at least have a chat. We all got on very well and talked very informally about life in general for quite a while before I suggested they looked at a typical wedding of ours. I suggested that they fast forwarded through it whenever they wanted and just watched the bits that interested them.

After about 10 minutes, I noticed that they were both laughing at humerous moments, and commenting on aspects of the venue, flowers etc. The bride to be, even got a bit choked up watching the vows. When they had seen enough, they both said that it was nothing at all what they had expected. They expected to see a home video style with lots of zooming in and out on self conscious guests. They didn't expect a 3 camera discrete professional production, which they described as like watching a tv programme. they were also impressed with the sound quality and visual clarity. After they looked at some still photos as well, I left them a booking form incase they wanted to book and made my departure. Yesterday, the bride rang me saying that they both loved the video and stills, the groom had changed his opinion and they had put the booking form in the post for the joint video and photo package.

So for me, it justifies talking to people if you exhibit at wedding shows, taking the time to explain just why you feel that wedding video is so important. I also never show video on my website, and always make a visit to show new enquirers, making it quite clear that I do not take a booking on a visit so that they don't feel pressured. My 2 year record of 100% bookings from visits was spoilt last month by one couple who decided to go with another company, but I felt on the visit that they had already booked before I visited them. Of course, you can never be all things to all people.

Roger
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Old May 3rd, 2014, 08:24 PM   #22
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Re: Why do brides value photos more than video?

Hey Roger

Definitely +1 on that from me.

I think it was Don you said he saw a survey done with brides and 98% said they should have had a wedding video at their wedding.

So does this tells us that we are NOT doing our job and not promoting video enough to the bridal market?
We need brides to be wise before the event not after it. I have found that offering combo packages does help me as brides are still initially looking for a photographer and not a videographer but when they visit my site they are often convinced that a dual package is a good idea.

It's not perfect but at least it's a start!! I now wondering if I should completely turn the tables and advertise myself as wedding photo/video packages rather than video/photo packages ... sadly I think brides still tend to look for photographers first so do I really have to offer myself as a photographer that also offers video even though I prefer the latter. My main site at present is very much video oriented with photos being the option.

Do people see you as a photographer or a videographer based on your website?

Chris
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Old May 4th, 2014, 07:56 AM   #23
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Re: Why do brides value photos more than video?

I think that even though 98% want video there are maybe 3 reasons they don't regardless of what they say. 1) They haven't seen found someone they click with. Imo you need to get along and feel comfortable with the B&G. If they aren't comfy with you or they don't like you they won't hire you.
2) They haven't met anyone whose work is what they're looking for style wise.
3) They don't have the money to hire the person who does do the style of work they do like.
Please be aware these reason's are all bull. I am only relating things I've been told over the years by B&Gs.
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Old May 4th, 2014, 08:14 AM   #24
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Re: Why do brides value photos more than video?

Hey Don

and number 4 : they got conned into paying double what they thought a photog would cost so now they cannot afford video!

Like Roger I'm doing dual packages now and it definitely pays off cos there is no photog to kill their budget and more often than not our dual package (like Roger just my wife and myself) comes out less than some of the over-priced photogs... I mean, seriously, I worked with two young guys who charged the bride $3200 for 6 hours and all she got was a disk with image files ...

Whatever people say brides still tend to book the venue and photog first and all the rest later, mostly based on budget.

Chris
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Old May 4th, 2014, 08:52 AM   #25
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Re: Why do brides value photos more than video?

Interesting debate
I think you can see a still image (especially a hanging photograph) for as little or as long as you like, its immediate and always available, you don't need an electronic device to see it.
Whereas you have to make a conscious decision to view a video.
I have a series of studio photographs that I shot of one of my sons and my grandchildren that I see every day and is a source of constant joy for me. Obviously I have lots of video of them too that I treasure, but it's much easier to see the stills.

@Chris you might be on to something there with an afordable10" tablet or similar device that could contain a menu driven high res video.
Top end wedding albums can cost as much as 1000 so the provision of a comparable device to show video could be the way to go, anyone open to some product development?

There are many valid points to why stills are perceived to be more valuable than video, I think it's partly down to lack of education on our behalf and the fact that for a lot of clients a wedding is a one off event, theres not enough of them saying "the next time I'm having video as well"

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Old May 4th, 2014, 04:25 PM   #26
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Re: Why do brides value photos more than video?

Some more random thoughts I wanted to add:

-- Ironically, the fact that photo is a more democratic art form -- everyone's got a camera, everyone takes photos all the time, everyone circulates photos by email and social media -- increases the use-value of photos and leads people to appreciate the skill in a good photo more.

The stakes are higher also -- everyone is a photo critic more than they're a video critic; everyone has opinions about what makes good/bad photos.

-- I think the work and expense that goes into video is a lot more invisible than photo, and that's part of why photos are valued more and cost more. For instance: people know that pro photography gear is, minimum, thousands of dollars of investment, but often have no idea what video gear costs (even photographers often don't realise). Or: where editing in general is concerned, people tend to underestimate the post work that goes into video, and overestimate what goes into photos.

But even if people realised the effort/expense that goes into video, would this necessarily heighten the value? It would justify increasing the dollar value, but would it increase "number of units sold"? If the client doesn't really value the end result in the first place, why should they care how much effort/expense goes into it?

-- One more thought... For photos, there is very often a "creative tax". In the mid- and high-end markets, photographers can to some extent charge what they charge because they're an artist, they put their soul into their work, so there is that intangible factor raising the value.

For mid- and high-end video, this is not true in the same way. There are some videographers who are able to impose a "creative tax", certainly; but, for many people, including those charging with apparently high prices, the figure reflects reflects actual expense, and time invested at a low hourly rate.

Clients don't understand the creativity/skill involved, so don't value video as much, and certainly aren't prepared to pay as much. One of the indicators of this is: clients often almost always (in my experience) ask videographers what gear they're using, but do they ever ask the same question of photographers? One of the underlying ideas might be that, with video, gear is what makes the difference between good/bad quality and that this isn't the case with photography.
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Old May 4th, 2014, 04:47 PM   #27
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Re: Why do brides value photos more than video?

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Originally Posted by Adrian Tan View Post
One of the indicators of this is: clients often almost always (in my experience) ask videographers what gear they're using, but do they ever ask the same question of photographers? One of the underlying ideas might be that, with video, gear is what makes the difference between good/bad quality and that this isn't the case with photography.
Interestingly, I don't recall any client ever asking what gear I used for video, but a couple did ask what gear I was using for photo (they were either Canon or Nikon biased).
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Old May 4th, 2014, 05:15 PM   #28
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Re: Why do brides value photos more than video?

This will be the first generation to primarily view "photos" that are digital, on a screen, it will also be the first generation to be used to watching YouTube videos that are both professionally and amateur produced.

EVERYONE and their dog have phones/tablets/phablets capable of pretty "decent" photos and video, or will have such a device sooner or later! People don't pass around photo books they just happen to carry with them, they pass their PHONE!

Traditional Photo "albums" may well become rare enough that they have a perceived value for their rarity alone - print media of ALL sorts is being replaced completely or at least partially by digital images on a screen, yet some people still appreciate the tactile nature of flipping pages... there will likely always be books, but it's not a "growth industry".

My point being that while the delivery options for video and stills are changing, ultimately it is the content and the QUALITY and skill of capturing it that "move" the viewer.

Hopefully showing good examples of "moving" images (whether still or video!) will illustrate the value thereof. If not, it's not the fault of the media...
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Old May 5th, 2014, 03:10 AM   #29
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Re: Why do brides value photos more than video?

My website emphasises the video, with the photography as an add on and not separately bookable, but I do think the joint package attracts more interest.

We all worry about 'Uncle Bob' doing a video on the cheap so perhaps less interest in professional video, but as has been mentioned, everyone at a wedding has a compact still camera or smart phone, yet over 90% of weddings still employ a photographer.

The perception from the public of a wedding photographer is different to a videographer because at a wedding, the photographer is highly visible and guests defer to him traditionally. He takes control, tells people when he needs them with authority, and carefully and efficiently organises the poses. He is high profile and this gives the look and feel of someone using a skill to capture the pics. The videographer on the other hand is usually unobtrusive and in the background and people take little notice except if they feel he is intruding. They of course expect the photographer to intrude as he is paid to set up shots and the guests expect to stop and pose.

When I do the joint video/photography package, I cover both roles, so am in control and higher profile during the posed photo parts. That probably gives a much higher kudos value in the eyes of the guests and more respect from them during both video and photography.

Roger
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Old May 5th, 2014, 05:44 AM   #30
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Re: Why do brides value photos more than video?

Hi Roger

My video website obviously emphasises video with photography as an add on and my photo website does the reverse.

I must admit that brides do like an all in one package .. Yesterday I did a booking and the bride chose the dual package, today's appointment resulted in the same and the bride I'm seeing on Friday again wants a dual package so there is a common factor there. Most of my season bookings (ours ends this month) have been video only with just a couple of dual packages but then again I only started offering both in late 2013 so most of the brides already had booked a photog.

Just for interest I call the packages video/photo in some parts of my site and then photo/video in others (my fault which I will change this evening) but the bride I am booking on Friday was concerned that I might be giving more importance to video rather than treating them with the same importance. I assured her both were equally important and she was then happy. Do you maybe get brides asking/wondering if you are doing video with just some photos as an "extra" ..If they looked at a dual package that way they might be inclined to rather play safe and get a photog as well ?

However bottom line seems to be if you offer both then video does become a much higher priority than it used to be.

Chris
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