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Old March 6th, 2015, 12:09 PM   #1
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Will you take this gig?

Saw this on Kijiji

"Hello
Are you a stealthy girl or dude who knows her or his way around a camera?

We need a videographer to cover our upcoming wedding on May 16th, 2015 at the Toronto Botanical Gardens. You will be covering the ceremony and dinner from 5 PM to 9 PM.

However there is a catch, and perhaps there is no polite way to put this to any self respecting videographer, but here it is: There are going to be two photogrophers at the wedding that work for a studio located downtown. We hired them since we always cared more about the pictures as opposed to the video. However we have now decided that it would be cool to also have a record of the wedding in the moving images format. We need a person with a video camera who's just doing their best to cover the wedding while completely staying out of the way of the photographers and everyone else. You'll try to be practically invisible, quite like a Ninja, since we also don't much care about a videographer getting close up shots of people mingling and eating and that sort of thing. We don't expect anything fancy; we realize the constraints you will be working with, and won't be judging you on the artistic quality of your work.

So if you're ok with playing second fiddle, and accepting that this is not one of those scenarios where you get the chance to be your best as you are used to, then please get in touch with us by responding to this ad. We would appreciate if you include how much you expect to be paid for this gig, and a few samples of your work, and a bit about yourself - anything really that you care to share.

If I was a videographer, I can imagine being hurt by this blatant disprespect for my trade. For that, I apologize. However, it is what it is.

Thanks in advance for your interest in this. "
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Old March 6th, 2015, 12:49 PM   #2
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Re: Will you take this gig?

You know what? I'd rather people be honest and upfront than sly and sneaky and dishonest.

Of course, as per their post, they don't really care about video, though they now think it would be cool, and are trying to minimise their own view of your worth, since they'll be out of budget already and really want you to do this for next to nothing because after all, they\re actually doing YOU a favour by allowing to to enjoy their wedding and you'll get lots more shots for your portfolio. Oh, and if you do a great job we'll tell all our friends about you (including how cheap you are) and you'll get lots more business ;)

Nope, I'm long past the el-cheapo and freebies.
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Old March 6th, 2015, 02:51 PM   #3
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Re: Will you take this gig?

At least hey are honest about it but since they are asking for a price instead of telling how much they are willing to spend it's almost obvious they will take whoever is cheapest. I hope they end up with uncle Bob, that would be cool.
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Old March 6th, 2015, 03:29 PM   #4
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Re: Will you take this gig?

I agree they're probably looking for a low price, but I suggest you make a quote you're happy with and if they say yes, take the gig. My clients are divided between 2 groups, those that give a damn about video and those that don't and are booking for other reasons, like parents influence, sick relative who can't make it, pressure from friends etc.
When it comes to thanks and praise after the Wedding, I get both from either side. Some who aren't that bothered come back to me afterwards and say how much they loved the video and in hindsight glad they went for it. Of course, some you never hear from again, but then I get that from clients who seem quite keen on a video before the day. There's no pattern to people's behaviour and response.

As I do an online Trailer for every client, even those not so keen on a video can lead to further bookings if they happen to link the Trailer to their Facebook page. In the end, I tell myself to not be so proud and think of the money. I've just bought a jib from money earned from a winter Wedding where the client was less keen on Video and asked me to keep out of the Photographers way. The jib will serve very well some of my clients that do value my service. Of course, it could have equally paid for a holiday. If the money's good, so's the job, whatever the client's personal feelings.
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Old March 6th, 2015, 05:47 PM   #5
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Re: Will you take this gig?

Name your price and do the job if they accept. Forget the ego.

The pitch is probably coming from the photographer who does not want one of those video guys getting in his way. Do the best you can and likely they will be telling you they wished they had made you more of the process, and will tell their friends not to listen to the photog. Be sure your contract allows you to use the event for your own promotion, as the venue sounds great!
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Old March 6th, 2015, 06:47 PM   #6
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Re: Will you take this gig?

Is it possible to get the email address of all of their guests, and insist that they record every moment with their smartphones, ipads, or old VHS cameras?
I wouldn't want to work for a couple that could care less about the final product. That's probably just my ego though, and I'm not looking in the couch cushions for spare change (which is probably their budget). I wouldn't want to spend the day tip-toeing around some dilettante photographers so that I could give them a substandard product. What kind of good footage are you going to get for yourself when you have to blend in with the wallpaper?
For me, it's a no go.
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Old March 6th, 2015, 07:19 PM   #7
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Re: Will you take this gig?

Names cannot hurt me and if they wanted to have me sneak around the venue dressed in black with a tiny handycam concealed on my person, yeah I would do it in a heartbeat for $300.00 an hour!! However as already mentioned it would probably be more like $300 for the entire evening!!

I'm sure they will find a weekend warrior that will do it for a mere pittance ... regardless of the gig it's amazing what miserable prices people are prepared to work for.
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Old March 7th, 2015, 12:48 AM   #8
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Re: Will you take this gig?

Sounds ideal to me. Could just set up a camera in each corner of the room, press record then go to the pub.
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Old March 7th, 2015, 01:24 PM   #9
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Re: Will you take this gig?

I would have thought it's a given - to not get in others way!!
I do that as standard, of course i'd expect the same of the photographer(s) no matter how many awards plaudits they have ;-)

Obviously this couple have a perception that a video service resembles a Hollywood blockbuster set with cables, clap-boards, sound people, lights and jibs etc. etc.

But if you can cut a deal and apparently they have agreed that they're not too fussy on quality considering the constraints they're admitting to, it mightn't be all that bad.

I like the idea of a CCTV style approach :-)

Course i guess they're hoping on someone doing it for the price of a few drinks and a meal!
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Old March 7th, 2015, 04:29 PM   #10
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Re: Will you take this gig?

Far too precious if you you get upset. I don't do weddings, but in my world (theatre) you get amazing restrictions. Don't look the artiste in the eye, he may well have a tantrum and walk off, so try to keep your back to him. I have loads of restraints as to where I can go and what I can do, and if they pay the amount I ask, who cares - I just do the job within their rules. I work in an area where sound, light and video often annoy each other intensely and each thinks it's much more important than the others.
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Old March 7th, 2015, 09:11 PM   #11
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Re: Will you take this gig?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Paul R Johnson View Post
Far too precious if you you get upset. I don't do weddings, but in my world (theatre) you get amazing restrictions. Don't look the artiste in the eye, he may well have a tantrum and walk off, so try to keep your back to him. I have loads of restraints as to where I can go and what I can do, and if they pay the amount I ask, who cares - I just do the job within their rules. I work in an area where sound, light and video often annoy each other intensely and each thinks it's much more important than the others.
I do corporate, not weddings, and get all kinds of weird requests. People will book a full day and fly me across the country, and when I get there the VP who we had all day with suddenly only has 10 minutes and his leg hurts so he can't do the walkshot, just the interview. I mean, in a way it's frustrating, but you can't get pent up about it - it's him who looks bad, not me. In fact, I'll re-light the whole thing (if there's time) and brainstorm a new idea so we can do some video without a walkshot. Not really in a "money's money" kind of way, more in a... here's the best I can do within your limitations kind of way.

I also get hit up for corporate video on the cheap sometimes. I don't get offended. If I quote you $3k and your budget is $500, I'll tell you what I can do for $500, and if it's not what you need, I hope you go elsewhere, and get what you're looking for at the price you have to budget. Sometimes I eat at McDonalds. Sometimes I eat at Ruth's Chris. I get it.
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Old March 7th, 2015, 09:44 PM   #12
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Re: Will you take this gig?

"we realize the constraints you will be working with, and won't be judging you on the artistic quality of your work."

And yet ... they want to see samples of the work. It boggles my mind. LOL
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Old March 8th, 2015, 10:26 AM   #13
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Re: Will you take this gig?

Thanks for the great advises. I just ignored the posting, you are right the Photog sold the whole idea that the Videographer is a distraction site. I don't want to shoot in a toxic environment, I always work well with any photographer I work with, the photogs in this wedding might be the one off so I'd rather stay away from this one.
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Old March 9th, 2015, 06:37 AM   #14
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Re: Will you take this gig?

The problem with this sort of "We dont actually care about the video" ones is that when they get the film and its a crock of poop because of the limits you had you can bet your bottom dollar that they will complain and confess that they actually had higher expectations.

Ignore it, someone will do it and charge rock bottom prices. Which is clearly what they want.
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Old March 9th, 2015, 08:18 AM   #15
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Re: Will you take this gig?

I wouldn't mind at all, they were up front about their expectations. I would just reiterate those sentiments in the contract, that they forgo expectations X/Y/etc...
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