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Old February 6th, 2015, 03:50 AM   #76
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Re: A turning point in video/photo packages?

Roger, I still think there's an advantage in having a 2nd guy, not important for all Weddings, but some. I use multi cameras as you do, 3-4 Cameras, one camera on top of the other, different angles - Ceremony, Speeches, 1st Dance plus other parts of the day too if I can. I make the most of my equipment to ensure the disadvantage of being 1 guy is minimal. Yet I can't be in 2 places at once. Can't be at the church filming the Groom and the Guests and also at the Bride's House filming her Dad's first look at his daughter in her dress, can't be with the couple at their romantic photo session at some ruined abbey and also at the venue filming the Guests arrival. I do have to sometimes ask the couple what focus they'd like between the church and the venue - their perspective or the guests perspective, and I'll get different replies and priorities from each.

As I say, it's not an issue at every Wedding and multi cameras can achieve a lot, but they can't tell a Guest to get out of the way if they stand in front of it (oh how I wish I could add that), nor move back into position if knocked. Nor change camera angle mid way, if perhaps the initial setup proves less ideal. A 2nd guy is a resource as useful as an extra bit of kit; who complains or says they could never benefit from an extra resource. It still makes it an advantage over a single shooter. Less so as the day goes on, which is no doubt why some 2nd Photographers naff off after the formals.
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Old February 6th, 2015, 04:18 AM   #77
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Re: A turning point in video/photo packages?

Hi Steve, no need to disagree with your points about a second shooter as what you say is quite right on many instances. You could of course make a good case for a third shooter and a sound engineer, but we are talking weddings not film productions, so we have to draw the line somewhere re cost and convenience. I don't disagree with anybody using a second shooter, as I frequently do myself when Claire doesn't have her own wedding to shoot.

There are always odd times when something may be missed the less people are involved, but if it is not something that the couple would notice or worry about, then neither would I. The example you mention of the B&G having romantic shots at an Abbey while the guests are off to the reception is one where I would plan very carefully if I was doing a solo dual package. I work quickly on those kind of shoots and I know from experience, as I am sure you do, that the guests take for ever to get from church to venue, so there would be very little missed. I would also get the couple arriving at the venue with the guests greeting them, so swings and roundabouts really.

There is room for every type of offering but the client is King, or in this case Queen.

Roger
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Old February 6th, 2015, 05:02 AM   #78
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Re: A turning point in video/photo packages?

I think the argument diminishes when you start talking third shooter and sound engineer. A 2nd shooter has a strong case for Bridal and Groom Preps and the couple photo shoot and guests arrivals. I sometimes wish I could be in 2 places at once, never felt the need to be in 3. As for sound engineer, that's a whole other level of Wedding Video. But for my level, what I shoot and deliver, a 2nd guy would have been useful in some cases. Anyway if we're talking advantages here, I'd say you and your wife working a Wedding together will potentially achieve better things than I working alone with an uncooperative Photographer spoiling my shots.
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Old February 6th, 2015, 05:04 AM   #79
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Re: A turning point in video/photo packages?

Good morning Chris.

Yes my attitude to posting clips is the same as yours, it is irrelevant as far as I am concerned. To me the forum is great for exchanging ideas and solving problems! but having my work criticised or admired by fellow professionals has no bearing on what my clients think.

I totally agree that it is easy to get obsessed with technical and artistic perfection, whilst losing focus on what the bride really wants. I mentioned in an earlier post that a couple that I visited a few day ago had seen nine other video companies before booking me. They and the parents, told me that I was the only company they had found on line and at wedding shows that offered a whole day documentary! I was amazed to hear that, and asked them what other people were offering. They said that all the companies they had seen or spoken to were offering short form recordings, with the longest being 45 minutes. The majority were 4-15 minutes with two companies offering unedited ceremony and speeches for an extra price. They said that most were nicely done with highlights set to music and some seemed to be in a jumbled order. Dad said that they were like film trailers, leaving him wanting to see the full event.

I explained that the highlights style of video was a different product that was very popular with new companies and photographers moving into video. Their own worrying conclusion was that if they hadn't seen me, they would have assumed that all wedding videos were like that. I do feel that it is easy to follow fashion, admire other people's work and force a market that was not previously there, while ignoring an established existing market. Developing new ideas is great, as with the dual package, but ignoring what many people want when we already have a very small percentage of the market, strikes me as risky.

Roger
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Old February 6th, 2015, 05:25 AM   #80
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Re: A turning point in video/photo packages?

Roger, your post to Chris has brightened my day. I confess to being worried the impact Photographers offering Video would have on my Business and how I could respond to that. It only occurred to me in reading your conversation with that couple that the answer is to market more strongly my service as a full length documentary video. I tend to just say Wedding Video, forgetting the term covers a broad range and therefore has the potential to be misinterpreted as something much shorter. In brochures, online and ads, I need to make a point of saying what type of video they're getting.
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Old February 6th, 2015, 05:28 AM   #81
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Re: A turning point in video/photo packages?

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Originally Posted by Steve Burkett View Post
I think the argument diminishes when you start talking third shooter and sound engineer. A 2nd shooter has a strong case for Bridal and Groom Preps and the couple photo shoot and guests arrivals. I sometimes wish I could be in 2 places at once, never felt the need to be in 3. As for sound engineer, that's a whole other level of Wedding Video. But for my level, what I shoot and deliver, a 2nd guy would have been useful in some cases. Anyway if we're talking advantages here, I'd say you and your wife working a Wedding together will potentially achieve better things than I working alone with an uncooperative Photographer spoiling my shots.
I love working with Claire as she has the same sort of eye that I do and we know exactly what each of the other's requirements are. Claire always does the preps, because the rapport between her and a group of girls is something that I could never get close to. She has been very interested in this particular thread, as she also does the dual package solo, and one of the things that she has pointed out is that although she also really enjoys us working together, we very often get almost identical shots of things. While I am filming the Bride, she is filming guests, then a few minutes later I end up taking similar footage of the same guests. We discard a lot of duplicated footage on a two person shoot and practically nothing on a solo one.

That doesn't mean that I think a second shooter is pointless, but I do think it has limited advantages, particularly if you are having to charge more for the extra person. That of course is the advantage of having your wife involved in the business, she sees it as a social day out as much as it is work and of course the chance to be around dresses, shoes, hats, jewellery ZZZZZzzzzzzzzzzzzzz...............

Roger
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Old February 6th, 2015, 05:38 AM   #82
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Re: A turning point in video/photo packages?

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Originally Posted by Steve Burkett View Post
Roger, your post to Chris has brightened my day. I confess to being worried the impact Photographers offering Video would have on my Business and how I could respond to that. It only occurred to me in reading your conversation with that couple that the answer is to market more strongly my service as a full length documentary video. I tend to just say Wedding Video, forgetting the term covers a broad range and therefore has the potential to be misinterpreted as something much shorter. In brochures, online and ads, I need to make a point of saying what type of video they're getting.
Steve I think you are spot on and it is something we picked up on a few months ago. At the last few wedding shows we have made a point of telling all interested visitors to the stand, that we specialise in full length documentary video and that they need to be aware that many companies offer a much shorter highlights video that is a different product. I just advise them to be aware of what they are going to end up with, which ever way they choose. We also point out that we are always happy to also supply them with a short highlights video of a few minutes length if they want one.

The fact that so many seem to be going down the highlights route because it is more artistically satisfying for the producer, seems to be bringing us in a lot more enquiries, perhaps I should just keep quiet about it :-)

Roger
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Old February 6th, 2015, 05:53 AM   #83
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Re: A turning point in video/photo packages?

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The fact that so many seem to be going down the highlights route because it is more artistically satisfying for the producer, seems to be bringing us in a lot more enquiries, perhaps I should just keep quiet about it :-)
I actually provide a 3 to 5 minute trailer, a 20 minute highlight and then full length versions of the ceremony, speeches, acts by friends and first dance as a standard package now (only charging extra for the trailer)

The 20 minute highlight however is not to satisfy the producer but not to bore the client and their friends when they want to relive their day, that's how I see it and how I find my clients experience it. The long boring parts like a one hour ceremony they still will get but will only be watched by the couple and maybe their parents and then just only once, the highlights however will be watched much more and a trailer will be watched every time they have the possibility to show it of to their friends on their iphones or ipads.

I also find that my clients (the brides) still want to have it all, including the long versions, and they are willing to pay for it but they enjoy a artistically edited 20 minute version way more then having to sit through a 1,5 to 2 hour version of their weddingday, especially if it's with their friends, when I started out I did offer a long version only as well and my clients come and look at the film in my office, back then they started talking to me at the longer segments like the church and I often would fast forward those parts, now they sit silent for 20 minutes and I don't have to touch the playback :)
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Old February 6th, 2015, 06:22 AM   #84
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Re: A turning point in video/photo packages?

Noa, it's fascinating the totally different feedback that people get from their clients. I find that old clients of mine regularly watch the full length video as they love to see and hear all the people, speeches etc. I had a wedding last year where there were seven couples who were previous clients of mine and I just had to ask them if any of them still watch their wedding video. They all said that they frequently watch them and several now have children who also watch them.

I do agree with you that casual friends would not be interested in 'boring' speeches, but family members and those who were at the wedding don't seem to find them boring at all. They also have numerous chapter points that they can jump to if they want to move on.

We also are very happy to offer a short highlights video if asked, but that is quite rare. I'm not suggesting Noa that you or others offer a highlights video just for your own personal satisfaction, but it is a very frequently repeated view on this forum that the highlights/cinematic shortform gives much more scope to satisfy the creative and artistic desires of many producers here, which they can't get from a full length doc style without putting massively increased and prohibitive time into both filming and editing.

Roger
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Old February 6th, 2015, 06:46 AM   #85
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Re: A turning point in video/photo packages?

I have offered the highlights only for over 2 years with the long versions, like I described above, as a paid option and every single wedding I sold the bride did choose the long version so for me that definitely showed they want to have it all.

I think if you only sell the long version and nothing else your client won't know any better and ofcourse they will be happy with that but if you sell the highlights only and nothing else your client will be missing out on important parts of the day, some might not care but my experience tells me that the clients that contact me do.

Much depends how you set up your business, I spend more time working the way I do compared to just deliver highlights or long version only but I find it important that I can give my clients a nice memory which they can enjoy by themselves and together with their friends which is why I deliver from short to long version.

I know some people do video to make a living and try to make it efficient as possible so they can enjoy their free time and other hobbies more but weddings is actually my hobby so I want to deliver something as well that is satisfying for me also, teh only problem I have is that I have taken on too much work the past years leaving too little time for family and friends and that needs to change. :)
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Old February 6th, 2015, 06:49 AM   #86
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Re: A turning point in video/photo packages?

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Originally Posted by Roger Gunkel View Post
We discard a lot of duplicated footage on a two person shoot and practically nothing on a solo one.

Roger
I have Weddings where if I had another guy filming, I would probably get this, and others where it would be less likely to happen. I've got a Wedding in March where I have a 2nd shooter at the clients requests. His coverage of Receptions differs to mine. He uses a glidecam to do a walk through, pausing with each group to focus on them. Some work better than others, but his best really gives a feel of walking through the venue and meeting people, some even say hello to camera. You get random conversations, then move onto the next. No cuts, just continuous. It's quite a nice effect, but not one I do as my glidecam skills suck. I tend to prefer close ups, detail shots, capture little moments hidden away, which is less his thing. The results of us both covering a Reception with our different styles I think will make the most of having 2 guys covering the video and probably where it works best outside of moments when you need to be in 2 different locations.
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Old February 6th, 2015, 07:34 AM   #87
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Re: A turning point in video/photo packages?

I also love closeup work, but I also do a walk through which sounds very similar to what you describe. I understand what you are saying though, if the clients wants two operators and you don't do a particular style, then why not take advantage of the situation with the other shooter.

Roger
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Old February 6th, 2015, 07:49 AM   #88
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Re: A turning point in video/photo packages?

Thanks Roger

Yes we do get most brides that book us without question and often, if not always, take us on the basis of our online clips and photos. We do long form and don't pretend or try and change or compete with the short form "cinematic" guys and brides like us for what we do.

Would we get more business if we shot video on our Nikons and make a 20 minute "film" ? I have no idea but what I do know is we are comfortable with our end product in both shooting, post production and presentation ... we might not be as arty farty as the cinematic wedding film makers but a lot of brides still want the wedding covered traditionally (if I can use that term) so they can see everything that went on during the day. We don't do trailers either because our edit process is quick enough to have the end result out in a week so no teaser is needed (often before they even get back from honeymoon)

I think in the last 10 years I might have been asked once or twice at most for a highlights disk but brides are 99% happy with just the main event on disk. We do cheat a tiny bit and do a 3 minute stedicam shoot set to a nice romantic song but apart from that it's all "documentary style"

I see no need to get other professionals to critic or praise/condemn my work ..my brides are happy so I'm happy so there is really no point at all in posting clips to anyone but the bride.

I'm quite sure that the creative cinematographers would shudder if they had to produce a Marryoke like Steve does as it's more fun than serious film making ..it would actually fit in nicely with our packages (secretly I'm quite envious as I'd love to offer them) We of course do the formal group photos on the stills side but also do fun shots often bordering on the crazy and also do an open photobooth at the reception with silly props ....serious fim makers might poo poo the idea but brides absolutely love it and she is the client!

I'm sure there is room in the industry for the creative geniuses as well as the documentary shooters and each to their own as long as we are all getting bookings and making money but it's still great to see we are not the only ones not moving to serious cinematic films!!

Chris
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Old February 6th, 2015, 11:17 AM   #89
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Re: A turning point in video/photo packages?

Between the hussle and bussle of today's musings, I've realised I forgot to say that you've also gone and spoilt my day Roger. I've been really marvelling at how this conversation has so far been spared from the 'what the bride wants' speal and you go and slip this little line in. Shame on you.

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I totally agree that it is easy to get obsessed with technical and artistic perfection, whilst losing focus on what the bride really wants.
Roger
How can we possibly lose focus on this when it's mentioned like, oh 10 times a week on this forum. :)
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Old February 6th, 2015, 07:19 PM   #90
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Re: A turning point in video/photo packages?

Sorry Steve :-( How about - I totally agree that it is easy to get obsessed with technical and artistic perfection! :-)

Roger
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