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Old July 1st, 2015, 07:50 AM   #1
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Editing of Speeches/Dances/In Betweens

How much do you all trim up the in between stuff during introductions, speeches, first dance etc when they all happen consecutively, yet there's alot of fubling around for microphones, saying "Test Test", Mom or Dad taking a while to come up etc.

I had an outdoor wedding where the highlight trailer came out good, sorta eclectic, however now watching the full cut I can admit (to my own fault) alot of its looking Uncle Bob-ish. There was a bit of hooting & stalling, 'Test test' mic wasn't working etc. Do you all dissolve that out?

One factor was it was mixed light outside (sun, then clouds, around 7pm) and I was shooting on an angle so it was partially outside, yet partially the wall of the pavillion it was under. I balanced for the indoor pavillion, but the outside seems very bright too. Admittedly when fully outdoors I typically shoot auto, but couldn't in the case. I didn't want to face the wall straight on, because that would've blocked alot of the guests views, and thats a dilemna I struggle with, I never try to plop down right in front of guests, however I think I should be a little more assertive. Also using 2 cams for the dances/toasts etc, but its a challenge sometime plus alot more editing time. Although this is probably why people charge higher rates, because its alot more work both the day of, but moreso in editing.

ETA: I go with long form docs, though I'm seeing the benefit to offering & couples receiving more of a short form 20+ minute delivery. On the bright side I realized I could start asking questions about how long/short they want it, and how much reception footage they'd like (more/less - more being a little more tacky & drawn out, short form being prettier & more concise, yet less footage). Only drawback would be answering why they can't have it both ways and thinking someone else can give them that.
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Old July 1st, 2015, 08:11 AM   #2
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Re: Editing of Speeches/Dances/In Betweens

Trimming up the In between bits really depends on whether any of it is amusing of just plain faffing about. If the latter, it gets taken out.

Using two cameras for speeches and dances, doesn't take much longer if you plan it properly. For example, if you are taking lots of short shots with two cameras, then matching them up and editing between them will be time consuming. Filming with two cameras continuously, means simply synchronising the audio on both at the editing stage, then either using multi cam editing and doing a live mix in real time, or dragging clips from the second camera over the first, which I find quick and easy. I often have a third camera up high getting an overview, and again either use the multi camera edit or just drag and drop.

So there is some extra editing time involved but not very much in my opinion.

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Old July 1st, 2015, 08:58 AM   #3
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Re: Editing of Speeches/Dances/In Betweens

I'm much the same .. when the MC walks up to the mic I hit record and if it goes flawlessly I keep all the footage and just do a top and tail ... I'll leave in stuff like "Oops I think I need my glasses to read this" as it's part of the day but as Roger says faffing around and deciding how to turn the mic switch on gets left out so the speeches appear as professional as possible. When the speaker suddenly realises he/she has to do a toast and their glass is sitting on the table I will cut to my b-cam footage and follow them as they go and retrieve the glass. The most common deleted bits still appear to be hand held mic issues and that darn mic switch so in those cases once they have finally tried it three times and then had to walk back to the DJ desk for assistance I will start that one when they actually start making the speech
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Old July 1st, 2015, 09:11 AM   #4
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Re: Editing of Speeches/Dances/In Betweens

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How much do you all trim up the in between stuff during introductions, speeches, first dance etc when they all happen consecutively, yet there's alot of fubling around for microphones, saying "Test Test", Mom or Dad taking a while to come up etc.
How do you do it now then, do you just let the camera roll in between speeches and don't cut at all on the timeline? Why are you not cutting out the "test test" parts and the waiting parts before mom and dad reach the mike, I always thought that was what "editing" was all about, you take out the boring non relevant stuff, I can't imagine why anyone would leave that part in and if a bride would complain afterwards saying; why did you cut out the part where we had to wait 5 minutes for mum to return from the toilet? :)
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Old July 1st, 2015, 09:13 AM   #5
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Re: Editing of Speeches/Dances/In Betweens

Editing is as much about what you cut out than what you leave in. If you ever watch a tv show and there is a scene that drags on too long, or doesn't seem to move the story forward, that is usually attributed to bad editing. Cut whatever you think is a time waster. People rarely notice what has been left out, but they can't fail to notice what was included.
Two cameras are very helpful during the toasts, but if you're not ready to commit just yet, make sure you get some cutaway table shots of guests looking in the direction of the toasts. Two shots, single shots, anything where you don't see people chowing down. Many times, you can get these shots while the DJ is making some announcement, or something is going on up front that doesn't require you to capture (just yet). These make nice emergency cutaways and cover shots when you need them.
Finally, as a resolution to people switching off the mic, carry some black cloth tape with you, even if it's just a small strip you attached to your tripod in advance. Cover that pesky switch until the mic is handed back to the DJ. Problem solved.
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Old July 1st, 2015, 09:36 AM   #6
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Re: Editing of Speeches/Dances/In Betweens

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Finally, as a resolution to people switching off the mic
I am always intrigued that when people are given a handheld mike, it's like second nature to go after the on/off switch, and I always wanted to know why they do that. :)
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Old July 1st, 2015, 09:49 AM   #7
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Re: Editing of Speeches/Dances/In Betweens

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How do you do it now then, do you just let the camera roll in between speeches and don't cut at all on the timeline? Why are you not cutting out the "test test" parts and the waiting parts before mom and dad reach the mike, I always thought that was what "editing" was all about, you take out the boring non relevant stuff, I can't imagine why anyone would leave that part in and if a bride would complain afterwards saying; why did you cut out the part where we had to wait 5 minutes for mum to return from the toilet? :)
Well it isn't quite 5 minutes. I'm talking the ones where it's supposedly bang/bang./bang, but it turns into bang/30 seconds/bang/20 seconds/bang.

As to editing, I edit the bridal prep, portrait sessions, reception etc. But again when it's about 8-10 minutes total for entrances, dances & speeches typically I would leave it uncut. Plus, I feel like they like to hear the announcement "Here's the maid of honor, the brides sister, Lisa". But then it takes her 15-20 seconds to walk up, and yeah they have the mic issue leads to another 20 seconds. That's where I suppose using the 2nd cam would help during this with a cutaway to the B&G closeup on Cam 2 I guess.
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Old July 1st, 2015, 09:59 AM   #8
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Re: Editing of Speeches/Dances/In Betweens

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I feel like they like to hear the announcement "Here's the maid of honor, the brides sister, Lisa". But then it takes her 15-20 seconds to walk up, and yeah they have the mic issue leads to another 20 seconds. That's where I suppose using the 2nd cam would help during this with a cutaway to the B&G closeup on Cam 2 I guess.
What would happen if you cut our the 15-20 second walk to the mike? Is there something happening at that point, other then a person walking from point a to point b? I"m trying to understand why you find it important not to take that part out, if you would have a live show broadcasted to a million people and something goes wrong, they have to fill this time with shots from another camera or have the host start talking again until they fix any technical problems, they can't cut it out because it's live. But you deliver a edited product afterwards so you have all the control, why do you find it important to leave those waiting parts in?
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Old July 1st, 2015, 10:18 AM   #9
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Re: Editing of Speeches/Dances/In Betweens

Me edits are pretty much straight cuts with very few, if any dissolves or cross fades. I prefer a more natural progression of the days events as they happe and use much of the natural audio to setup and run the edit. Some time shift editing is used for the prep, opening, and processional, but most of the edit is chronological.

Introductions are set to one piece of music cued to couple kiss in g at ceremony, then goes into picture shots, guest shots, establishing reception shots, and finally introductions cut to the music.

Before the intros ending dj announces the first dance then cue first dance music before the first clip of the first dance appears.
Before the end of first dance the difference announces the speeches. Then I cue the first toasters vocals before they appear on screen talking. Toast are filmed with 2 cameras, one on toaster, the other on couple.
The edit is simple A/B camera edit, with last clip of the toast being the couple's camera. Then audio starts for the second speech before the toaster appears on screen again. This edit style goes for the entire main edit, where audio for the next section cues up before the first clip appears.
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Old July 1st, 2015, 01:12 PM   #10
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Re: Editing of Speeches/Dances/In Betweens

I cut anything that doesn't actually 'add' to the story. Cut the crap, cut the fluff, cut the mic tapping at the start unless it's actually adding to the story.

Same with cake cuts and first dance. I'm not interested in the 5 minutes it takes to stand there and pose for the photographer, they'll get 5 seconds of that at-best, I'm interested in the cake cut, and even then we try to get 2 camera angles, one wide and one close on the blade so we can cut between them.

First dances that are just a shuffle are the most boring parts of the day so they get edited down if at all possible too.

I'd rather have 20 minutes of good-to-watch video than 60 minutes of boring stuff that adds nothing.
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Old July 1st, 2015, 02:10 PM   #11
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Re: Editing of Speeches/Dances/In Betweens

If I can, I shoot 3 camera. 2 on the subject (one wider than the other, and follow the 30 degree rule), and one for crowd b-roll. Then, if someone is puttering around between, you have something to cut to.

So, if best man finishes his speech, you're wide, and the next person takes forever, you simply cut from wide, the second the best man steps away, to tight on the next person coming into frame. Or to a little b-roll of grandma at her table.
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Old July 1st, 2015, 02:22 PM   #12
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Re: Editing of Speeches/Dances/In Betweens

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Originally Posted by Dave Partington View Post
I'd rather have 20 minutes of good-to-watch video than 60 minutes of boring stuff that adds nothing.
See this intrigues me, I definitely see the value in cutting it short, but I've found that to be an important question I receive from brides "How long will it be", while it varies greatly, mostly on the length of ceremony, they tend to want longer from me at least. This is where I feel a bit of a questionaire would be helpful.

@Rob Benda - do you use 2-3 cams when you solo shoot? I've done 2 at time tho its a bit much with placement during dance & toast of both cameras versus not blocking peoples views, people not stumbling into the unmanned camera while grabbing a photo on their phone, and sometimes the seating just isn't suited for many different angles. I had one indoors where the B&G were basically seated within the guests area also. So me & the photog were crammed between 2 tables as it was with only 1 cam.

Thanks everyone for the responses tho.
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Old July 1st, 2015, 03:09 PM   #13
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Re: Editing of Speeches/Dances/In Betweens

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See this intrigues me, I definitely see the value in cutting it short, but I've found that to be an important question I receive from brides "How long will it be", while it varies greatly, mostly on the length of ceremony, they tend to want longer from me at least. This is where I feel a bit of a questionaire would be helpful.
When had brides asking this question I used to turn it around on them and ask how long they think it should be? I then went on to say your ceremony will typically be [plug-in-your-numbers] based on it being civil wedding or a church wedding, but who knows at this point how long the speeches will be.

I then go on to ask how long the film should be that they want to watch over and over, or perhaps when friends come around. Did they think the friends would want to watch all the hymns / prayers and the entire speeches or just the highlights? The answer was ALWAYS just the highlights (as long as they wee also getting full ceremony and full speeches to watch themselves). So then I'd ask how long their favourite program was on TV, like a soap etc, and after the advertising is removed that usually comes down to about 18-20 minutes. Immediately they see the value in the shorter film.

So the package we ended up selling people was basically three videos:

1) The highlights film that typically lasted between 15 and 25 minutes depending on the events of the day

2) The entire ceremony from the moment the music started playing for the bridal entrance until the couple reached the door exiting as married. However, we severely cut down the register signing and omitted any photos taken at register signing UNLESS there were some live musician etc playing for guest entertainment, in which case we may include one or all songs. We'd place chapter markers throughout the ceremony so they can jump forward using a remote control. We used to do moving chapter menus so they could jump right to a section but TBH we stopped doing that a couple of years ago and no one ever complained.

3) The entire speeches from the toast master introducing the first speech until the end of the last speech - though we may edit out any particular pauses that could occur (e.g. the best man fumbling with a projector prior to their speech). We'd do the chapter points allowing them to jump forwards as per the ceremony.

Now, the highlights film would have:

• Getting ready (if part of the package)
• Guests arriving
• Bridal Entrance
• The Vows (cut everything between the entrance and the vows)
• Exchange of rings (if not immediately after the vows then cut everything between them)
• First Kiss
• Walk out
• Some middle bit (between church and meal)
• Entrance of the B+G to the meal
• Maybe some toasts if they were good - otherwise they all got dropped)
• Cake Cut
• Some of the first dance (if included in the package)

That's it. Of course there were the odd exceptions here and there, but generally we found we could edit this in a day or two days max depending on the length of the ceremony & speeches (both done as multicam). We'd edit these two first so we could place markers in the ceremony to find stuff easily (and already have the angle choices in the multicam) and also in the speeches for any good one-line things to add to the highlights.

If the speeches were awesome we may do some time shifting, if the speeches were poor the highlights film would run chronologically.

The DVD menu would have exactly three items, being the highlights, the full ceremony and full speeches, unless they won't fit on one disc, in which case we'd move the speeches to a second disc.

That's it.

We stopped doing trailer films for brides around 3+ years ago because they took as much time to edit as the entire rest of the DVD if we had to do that first. We made it a "paid for" option that it turns out no-one ever wanted once it was no longer free. Time is money in business so don't give stuff away for free that you can charge for, and if people don't want to pay for it then it probably wasn't worth doing. By the time we'd done the trailer we could have done the entire product and be ready to ship. They'd much rather have the 20 minute highlights than the trailer in the same amount of time.

Oh, BTW we never filmed a wedding (ceremony & speeches) with less than 2 cameras - usually it's 3. The most ever was 6 but that was certainly the exception.
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Old July 1st, 2015, 03:28 PM   #14
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Re: Editing of Speeches/Dances/In Betweens

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The DVD menu would have exactly three items, being the highlights, the full ceremony and full speeches, unless they won't fit on one disc, in which case we'd move the speeches to a second disc.
Interesting way of offering it. I felt a bride would likely want to have the entire first dance with her hubby/father but putting it in uncut as a chapter on the backend is a way of doing that.
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Old July 1st, 2015, 03:29 PM   #15
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Re: Editing of Speeches/Dances/In Betweens

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Interesting way of offering it. I felt a bride would likely want to have the entire first dance with her hubby/father but putting it in uncut as a chapter on the backend is a way of doing that.

Absolutely, you could add a fourth item and have the full dances.
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