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Shooting non-repeatable events: weddings, recitals, plays, performances...


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Old September 8th, 2015, 05:33 AM   #16
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Re: Camera size no longer important?

I have used small cameras at weddings for many years to be fast and unobtrusive, so am interested to see that others are going down the smaller route. The only comment I have ever had about the small size of my cameras was from a photographer who had 3 full frame DSLRs and a collection of lenses draped around a harness. He was quite derisory and questioned whether I had ever done it before and what I thought I was going to end up with. I was amused when I delivered the video to find that the family were not only very disappointed with his pictures, but also had an album made with stills I took from the video.

I have also never shown equipment to a client and only twice in thirty years been asked about it, although I sometimes get asked about how many cameras I use. I also frequently take bookings based on recommendations from previous clients because of how inconspicuous I am. I am sure some get booked for the opposite reason, but for me, small size and portability is very important.

Interestingly I was at a big wedding show at the weekend where there were another 4 videographers, which is quite unusual around here. One of them had his big cameras, tripods, quadcopter and slider as the focal point of his stand. There were very few potential brides looking at his stand and in my experience they are much more interested in what they will get, not how it is done.

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Old September 8th, 2015, 05:37 AM   #17
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Re: Camera size no longer important?

I find that downsizing from my EA50 (once described by Noa as looking like a bazooka lol) to something way smaller and compact is a very good selling point which my couples appreciate.

A smaller camera such as the A7s allows me to mingle more with the guests and yet still remain unobtrusive. It allows me to film people in a more natural way as they are less likely to be aware of my presence and finally, with this particular camera, it allows me to film without a video light, again filming people behaving more naturally as they are rarely aware they are being filmed.

A bit like a video ninja!
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Old September 8th, 2015, 05:44 AM   #18
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Re: Camera size no longer important?

I never take cameras to a bridal appointment and they never ask about gear either. I also never take samples to an appointment (slight lie cos I do have a DVD in the case but never offer it to them) Brides seem to want to know what I will cover and then they book me ..end of story. However I do have tons of samples on my website and also camera specs too (you have to look hard to find them) so when brides call me they have seen the work and simply book me...I just assume they have made up their minds after seeing the website. I prefer it that way as I'm not the best salesman in the world! In fact most calls/emails read "We would like to book you for Saturday 15th January 2016" .. that's what I prefer so the appointment is purely a meet and greet and discussion of details!
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Old September 8th, 2015, 06:26 AM   #19
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Re: Camera size no longer important?

Aside from 1 Bride who was into Photography and gear, none have been interested in my equipment or requested to see it as this Bride did. Style of filming has come up, particularly of late. Cinematic or documentary. Really its the Groom who shows more interest in the how. I never show gear at a show. Only samples. A slider looks quite boring compared to the footage you can get from it, so why have it there.

At Weddings, it''s usually guests, some who dabble in video, others professionals in a different area of work, who will approach and show interest in my gear. Most of the time I find it irritating as I'm busy working, but occasionally a useful chat can be had. New contacts etc. I've had a fair few more this year than previous as I've been using a slider and a jib at most Weddings and the male Guests do pick up on it.
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Old September 8th, 2015, 08:43 AM   #20
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Re: Camera size no longer important?

Yeah I don't think anyone cares.

Although, I will admit, I wonder what guests think when I'm running around setting up my stationary cameras (Nikon V1, Nikon Coolpix A, and a Canon Vixia Mini). lol
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Old September 8th, 2015, 09:09 AM   #21
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Re: Camera size no longer important?

I started shooting weddings in 1992, and have never had a shoulder-mount camera. Began with Sony Hi8 HandyCams then VX-1000 MiniDV 3-chip, then VX-2000 (x3), then Sony and Canon HDV units. I think maybe 1 or 2 clients ever commented about the camera size and it was never an issue after explaining the technology to them (3-chip digital), and also mentioning how it allows me to be more unobtrusive and more easily get different angles and such in tight spots like limos, dressing rooms, etc.

The Bride and Groom are really pre-occupied on their wedding day and have seen and liked my demo footage already, so the technical aspects of the gear are not a concern at that point.

So in response to the thread title, it would have been more a more timely a decade ago perhaps ;-)

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Old September 8th, 2015, 09:10 AM   #22
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Re: Camera size no longer important?

Funny...I usually set up an action cam on a light stand at ceremonies and guests ask more questions about that than any other camera. They think it's so cool to have a GoPro shooting the ceremony in wide angle. That's the smallest camera and yet attracts the most attention!!
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Old September 8th, 2015, 01:42 PM   #23
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Re: Camera size no longer important?

I rely heavily on the GH2 and have never gotten any comments are sideways glances. Old people still stop to pose, thinking it's a still camera.

Now that I've added the blackmagic pocket to the mix, that gets a few curious looks and questions, but more in the sense that people think it's neat how small technology is getting.

The funniest is on some corporate gigs where I'd pull out the GH2 and then use my old HMC150 as an audio recorder. That confused some people.
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Old September 8th, 2015, 04:03 PM   #24
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Re: Camera size no longer important?

TBH I've found a bit of a reverse effect, using my rather bulky Z5U. I've had a few looks at it like 'Oh, you don't shoot DSLR'. Mostly from grooms/groomsmen. I figure they either work somewhat in a related field having knowledge of where videos been going lately, or they've attended a previous wedding where the videographer shot using one. Anyway I feel like they're poo-pooing me a bit for it, never had comments, just glances & such.

I have a VG900 for my b-cam, which is interchangeable lens. I'm considering slowly going over to that for all bridal prep & dancefloor footage, and the keeping the Z5U for the Ceremony & speeches/dances due to its XLR & zoom. I only got the VG900 a year ago so finally settled in on all its settings & have a couple usable lenses to select from.
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Old September 8th, 2015, 05:03 PM   #25
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Re: Camera size no longer important?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steven Shea View Post
I rely heavily on the GH2 and have never gotten any comments are sideways glances. Old people still stop to pose, thinking it's a still camera.

Now that I've added the blackmagic pocket to the mix, that gets a few curious looks and questions, but more in the sense that people think it's neat how small technology is getting.

The funniest is on some corporate gigs where I'd pull out the GH2 and then use my old HMC150 as an audio recorder. That confused some people.
Last wedding i used my NEX-EA50 as audio recorder and A7s as main video camera!
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Old September 8th, 2015, 07:28 PM   #26
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Re: Camera size no longer important?

I was experimenting when I still had my EA-50's and had a rail under the camera with a large matte box up front. It was a disaster and the already front heavy camera was made worse by the matte box and almost topped 5kg!!

What made me decide to change was a guest looking at one camera on the table and saying "That video camera is so 80's style!!"
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Old September 8th, 2015, 09:29 PM   #27
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Re: Camera size no longer important?

This i what look like, my other camera is on a tripod. My client I delivered to the other day likened us to a television production, it was a complement thank goodness.
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Old September 9th, 2015, 03:15 AM   #28
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Re: Camera size no longer important?

Couples never (ok, rarely) cared about how big our gear was. The only people who ever thought it was relevant were videographers. If anything they would prefer it to be small.

Remember just a few years ago when you visited most wedding video websites. The first thing you saw wasnt a video of what they do but a great big picture of their 'broadcast' quality camera on a 2000 tripod. Because people thought that people would see that and say "Wow, hes serious, must book" when in truth people got scared and walked away. Although I still see it to some degree, you goto a wedding fair and the video booth has a tiny TV showing what they do but they proudly have their camera sitting on a tripod for all to see. I just sink my head into my hands.

When we got our C100's we tried to get used to working it without the side grip to keep the size down but couldnt get the speed of operation high enough so relented and accepted the handle.

If your resisting the DSLR revolution because your afraid people wont take you seriously...
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Old September 9th, 2015, 05:13 AM   #29
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Re: Camera size no longer important?

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Originally Posted by Steven Davis View Post
This i what look like, my other camera is on a tripod. My client I delivered to the other day likened us to a television production, it was a complement thank goodness.
The word unobtrusive comes to mind ;-)

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Old September 9th, 2015, 09:36 AM   #30
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Re: Camera size no longer important?

Hey Roger,

That's what we are, unobtrusive. We've been called invisible. We get the shots we need. The photographers in our area are the obtrusive ones.. lol.
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