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Old May 7th, 2014, 05:18 PM   #1
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the use of live sound (outwits the ceremony)

After reading the various thoughts on the: Why do brides value photos more than video? thread, I started to wonder how much live sound everyone uses in their videos (not including the ceremony).
If sound is such an important part of the wedding video experience, how do you use it? What about the random babble that goes on throughout a wedding, or the nonsense that people say to the camera? What do you use and what do you disregard?
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Old May 8th, 2014, 02:08 AM   #2
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Re: the use of live sound (outwits the ceremony)

Other than the ceremony the speeches and the 1st dance virtually none. In the getting ready sometimes you get lucky but more often than not the person making the desirable comment is in totally the wrong place or facing the wrong direction to get decent audio plus there is music from a TV music channel blaring out. In the cocktail hour guests tend to be outside whenever they can be and then you're into minimising wind noise.

Its nice if you can bring up the odd little cute comment but mainly the background is music.

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Old May 8th, 2014, 09:04 AM   #3
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Re: the use of live sound (outwits the ceremony)

Hi Andrew

I'm the opposite completely. Obviously during prep I will pull down the live track and add a music track but for everything else it's live! My thinking has always been that I'm making a record of the event not a music video which I could probably achieve almost as well with stills and a music track.

The ambience for me is vital to the whole wedding so it stays there ..apart from preps where I mix with music everything else is live but I do break my rule during my stedicam romantic shoot and that is the only time I will kill the entire live track as I'm giving the couple instructions and interacting with them so it can't be used.

I guess we all work differently???

Chris
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Old May 8th, 2014, 12:53 PM   #4
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Re: the use of live sound (outwits the ceremony)

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Originally Posted by Andrew Maclaurin View Post
I started to wonder how much live sound everyone uses in their videos
Everyone?

The answer to your question is going to vary wildy, depending on the style of the person posting. The documenatary folks will typically say they use a lot of ambient sound because it's a documentary, but the cinematic editor use less.

Without more specifics in the question answers to your post will only make sense when presented in the context of the style of the individual shooter.
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Old May 8th, 2014, 01:55 PM   #5
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Re: the use of live sound (outwits the ceremony)

I use as much sound from the day as possible.

For preps and reception I mix in stock bg music in parts but the majority is live sound.
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Old May 8th, 2014, 02:54 PM   #6
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Re: the use of live sound (outwits the ceremony)

I'm in total agreement with Chris on this, I'm making a documentary of their day, not a music video. In my experience, my clients want to hear what went on and what was said, the general buzz of a wedding. After all is said and done, isn't that one big advantage that video has over photography? Not just seeing the day but hearing it as well.

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Old May 8th, 2014, 03:43 PM   #7
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Re: the use of live sound (outwits the ceremony)

Indeed. I understand not using much sound in the 3-5 minute trailers, but I always try to use as much audio as I can, even if its gently in the background, like during prep.

Of course, sometimes there is terrible noise going on, like hairdryers or someone's phone playing music, and you just can't use it.

Other times, you get really lucky and you capture a TON of great random moments with clean sound. It's a great problem to have, and the last time it happened, I had so much that I couldn't include it all in the highlights (17 minutes long) because it ruined the feel, but I wanted to show them, so I made an out takes reel.

Really gets going at the 2 minute mark:
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Old May 8th, 2014, 04:15 PM   #8
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Re: the use of live sound (outwits the ceremony)

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Originally Posted by Roger Gunkel View Post
I'm in total agreement with Chris on this, I'm making a documentary of their day, not a music video. In my experience, my clients want to hear what went on and what was said, the general buzz of a wedding. After all is said and done, isn't that one big advantage that video has over photography? Not just seeing the day but hearing it as well.

Roger
I should clarify and say that I would like to include more audio from the getting ready and cocktail hour but more often than not its not really of a usable kind. As Chris has said we have our different styles - I would never shoot clips in the style that Robert just posted because to me thats a bunch of people doing things they wouldn't do without prompting from the video guy. And looking awkward about it. Sorry Robert! My approach is at the opposite edge of the scale preferring nothing scripted, so I guess that means I'm never going to get substantial dollops of good audio at those times. Of course with the ceremony and speeches they get absolutely everything and from multiple angles.

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Old May 8th, 2014, 04:47 PM   #9
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Re: the use of live sound (outwits the ceremony)

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Originally Posted by Peter Riding View Post
I should clarify and say that I would like to include more audio from the getting ready and cocktail hour but more often than not its not really of a usable kind. As Chris has said we have our different styles - I would never shoot clips in the style that Robert just posted because to me thats a bunch of people doing things they wouldn't do without prompting from the video guy. And looking awkward about it. Sorry Robert! My approach is at the opposite edge of the scale preferring nothing scripted, so I guess that means I'm never going to get substantial dollops of good audio at those times. Of course with the ceremony and speeches they get absolutely everything and from multiple angles.

Pete
It's alright, Pete. Note that the only part that was staged, so to speak, was the wedding party introductions (the ending with the groom talking to the camera even came from that) whereas none of the rest was... it was all organic.

We only do the 'talk to the camera' bits when asked. Part of the question of 'what style do you like', along with time-shifting (generally, no for us, unless, again, THEY want it). Usually if we have folks talking directly to the camera its in family interviews done as a family keepsake, not really the wedding film (the idea being, wouldn't it be nice to have your parents or grandparents on film, talking about how they met, to watch in 20 years).
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Old May 8th, 2014, 07:55 PM   #10
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Re: the use of live sound (outwits the ceremony)

I too agree with Chris. I put in music only for the bride prep. The rest is live and ambient. It also minimizes editing and time figuring out what sort of music can fill in chatter and ambient during cocktail. When I used to put in a few songs for fill, there was always the risk that the bride doesn't like the song(s). If she chooses the songs beforehand, most of the time they are not appropriate for the scenes or the mood does not match. I just don't bother figuring the music out anymore as countless editing hours were spent in the past just for that. I learned to minimize/streamline/ make it as simple as possible. 1 song, that's it.
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Old May 9th, 2014, 07:13 PM   #11
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Re: the use of live sound (outwits the ceremony)

+1 for that Arthur!

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Old May 10th, 2014, 03:27 AM   #12
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Re: the use of live sound (outwits the ceremony)

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Originally Posted by Arthur Gannis View Post
I put in music only for the bride prep. The rest is live and ambient.
I found that shots at a reception when there often is no music playing or when the guests are eating then the music is playing very silently in the background, only using ambient sound in those cases gets very tiring as you"d hear that constant buzz of 100 voices talking at the same time and it gets seriously on my nerves if I would not replace that with music. I feel ambient sound is only important when it adds something to a image.
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Old June 11th, 2014, 07:11 PM   #13
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Re: the use of live sound (outwits the ceremony)

I do both - lots of nat sound but often with music under it as well. It helps to cover up "jump cuts" in the audio.

During prep I will usually ask if I can turn off the TV/music player so I don't have spurious background music ruining all the conversation. By adding my own music I can hide camera bumps/handling noise, pull the track down if I say something. You can't follow a conversation of course because there's lots of cuts but you get the gist of what is happening and it sounds natural, adding to the experience IMO.

The photo shoot is sometimes 100% music but if we're not on a beach with a 20 knot breeze I will still bring up bits of nat sound. I like to hear the ocean or whatever the ambient sound was at a particular location so I keep that in under the music.
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Old June 18th, 2014, 02:13 PM   #14
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Re: the use of live sound (outwits the ceremony)

I was thinking about this question this past weekend, as we filmed weddings on back-to-back days. I sat and cleared cards on Sunday morning to make sure we'd have plenty for wedding #2...while it would be nice to streamline and shoot less... just pop into the room, shoot a few details and move on... that's just not our style. At least, not for now.

We have been following the idea of 'Always Be Rolling' during prep and other pre-ceremony precisely because of the random, but often fun or sweet moments. I'll be honest... I average once a wedding where I ask someone to repeat themselves because something was just so good, and said by someone important enough...

Our reasoning is simple: often, this audio, these moments, are the straw that stirs the drink. They offer a much better sense of their personality. That, and we're just not as skilled as most, so we're not going to get by and just a great-looking video :)
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Old July 2nd, 2014, 03:04 PM   #15
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Re: the use of live sound (outwits the ceremony)

I actually do more music video type stuff and still try to insert as much live sound as possible.

Here's a teaser I did: https://traviswilber.wistia.com/medias/uf7pko6y8h

Pretty much after I edit the video I'll adjust the sound and only remove what's distracting like if there's loud music playing during the reception. Even during dinner I'll keep the room chatter noise as long as there's not apparent music playing. I feel like it helps draw people in more and the sounds help with the memory of the day.
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