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Wedding / Event Videography Techniques
Shooting non-repeatable events: weddings, recitals, plays, performances...

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Old August 18th, 2015, 05:24 AM   #76
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Cambridge, UK
Posts: 1,737
Re: Second Shooter Add On

[QUOTE=Steve Burkett;1895408]
I still reserve the right to complain about it mind. /QUOTE]
Surely not you Steve ;-)

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Old August 18th, 2015, 05:40 AM   #77
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Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Romsey, UK
Posts: 903
Re: Second Shooter Add On

[quote=Roger Gunkel;1895424]
Originally Posted by Steve Burkett View Post
I still reserve the right to complain about it mind. /QUOTE]
Surely not you Steve ;-)

Yes I know it flies in the face of my calm, easy going, forgiving nature, but needs must. :)
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Old August 20th, 2015, 05:27 PM   #78
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Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: Juneau, AK
Posts: 799
Re: Second Shooter Add On

Yeah, different countries after all, so there is bound to be differences.
I would say, that if I was doing weddings and was only able to charge
what it sounds like your market will bear, I'd be inclined to 'solo'
everything, as I'm not going to want to part with much of what I am able
to charge. Probably go with a number of cheaper camera set up at
various angles 'unmanned' in strategic places (Wide shot back of aisle,
mid/close up from back of aisle, MCU on bride, MCU on groom, maybe
a reverse angle of crowd, and then me with a 'roving' camera to
'pick off' shots I see. Then I'd just deliver a 'doc edit' and have to hope
I got the coverage I needed from the angles I chose.

I will also say, that I used to charge $500 for a wedding in my market
and almost starved. I thought if anyone tried to charge more than that,
they would go out of business for sure. Granted, I do not do weddings
exclusively, as I provide web promo videos for businesses and organizations,
as well as other event coverage and even freelance news from time to time.
Anyways, I saw wedding photographers had no problems charging 10-20 times what
I charged and would get it. I finally decided to raise my rates. Not sure
how it worked, but I suddenly got much busier. Now I would not want to try
to live off doing weddings alone, but I will say, I have booked a lot more weddings
per year at my higher price, than I did at my lower the same market.
Still not sure why but I swear it's true.

As for travel, with weddings it's not really an issue, because I'm in such a remote
location. There are enough wedding shooters in the US, that charge my rates, that
someone can find a wedding video company in my skill and price range in their own town.
I'm not good enough to be at the high end and get flown all over....and remember
there are no roads into or out of my town so the only way to get hired for a wedding
shoot that is not in my small town is a VERY expensive jet ticket. I have been hired
to fly and shoot a wedding outside my town exactly twice in the last three years so
it doesn't happen often.

As for my rates, something I learned was this. I don't work as a second shooter at
any price. It's just dumb for me to compete against myself by letting others hire me
at cut rate prices as a 'second shooter.' I will work as a partner on a wedding with
one particular company, and she pays me my normal shooting rate......which is
pretty much the exact same rate that she charges for the shooting of a wedding I
might add.

So, maybe the reasons I get away with charging what I charge is because I do
NOT only do weddings. There may only be 5% of the wedding population that will
pay what I charge. But I also get hired to do events, lots of web promo videos,
TV/Broadcast, documentary shooting and things like that. So if someone IS
doing weddings and can't live off the top 5%, they lower their prices to stay in
business. Then when a 'bigger budget' wedding comes along, those brides are
going to usually hire me and not the 'low budget' video companies. That's the
only way I can figure out why I get more weddings at my higher rates, maybe
it's because there is less competition there at the higher end.....because you
can't stay in business ONLY doing high end weddings but if you do other video
work as well, then you can? I dunno, it's just a theory.
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