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


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Old January 3rd, 2006, 08:14 PM   #31
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yi Fong Yu
is the conclusion, then, that the "norm" of the wedding industry is that there IS no norm?
With regard to editing? Yes, that's true. Like most everthing else there are no universal constants.

Quote:
what i'm trying to find out is that some sort of norm, no matter how broad it may appear to be.
10 hours (raw footage only) to 1 year (one man crew that's overbooked).
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Old January 3rd, 2006, 09:03 PM   #32
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Yi Fong Yu
There is no norm because videographers deliver differenty types of products with different levels of sophistication. Some can deliver in eight weeks, some in eight months. It doen't matter what the time frame is as long as it's clear to the client and stipulated in the agreement.


Mathieu
You got a pretty loaded post and I apologize If I misread it. But being a full time wedding videographer, it elicited some reactions ffrom me.

1. Indie filmmaking seems to be held up as the holy grail of digital videomakers. And if you're not one or at least aspire to be one it seems that "you're not all that". There are a lot of areas to digital video - weddings, corporate, indie films, MTVS. Each area necessitates creativity and skill and to dismiss all others as subordinate to one is pretty demeaning. Creativity and artistry are very subjective, to suggest that indie movie making demands MORE of them than do weddings is, umm, BS for me.

3. "And please, don't think this is an attack on videographers, and I CERTAINLY won't say you guys ain't creative in making those menus and stuff, that's all first rate stuff!"

This is pretty sly. You praise the wedding videographer yet for the wrong reasons. The menus are first rate?! Darn, no mention about the videos themselves. (maybe it's part of the "stuff".)
- Darn that was a pretty awesome short!. My favorite part was the trailer! -

I'm a laid back kind of person and don't easily get riled up. I just feel strongly about this one.

Cheers.
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Old January 4th, 2006, 08:07 AM   #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rick Steele
What I wouldn't give just to holler, "CUT!" at a wedding ceremony. :)
LOL!

Jason, I understand about what you said, although I should clear some things up: the reason why I said that about those dvd menu's was because (if I look back on it, it isn't a justified view) I was thinking: good shooting should everybody do, on a filmset OR on a wedding.
But for weddings it comes down in the end on the dvd you deliver. The delivery is soo much more important because you're under a contract.

But I'll admit, for indie movies you have to make a good dvd too, preferably with menus and nice animations too.

And believe me, I care about the shooting you guys do at weddings! I think I'll be one of the first to admit shooting a wedding would be much more difficult then shooting a movie where you can control the lightening and your actors, instead of having people running around and dimly-lit receptions.
Hey, I couldn't do it properly, I think!

So sorry if the post came over as too one-sided.
Best regards,

PS: Yi Fong Yu, I think your question was completely valid in the first place, but because of my inexperience I would be the wrong one to answer.
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Old January 4th, 2006, 09:13 AM   #34
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to be honest, in my 6 years doing "front of house" production where im shooting and directing etc, weddings are the most difficult..
Not to say im unskilled, but the lack of direction, the clientelle, and the "one man band" element of it is what makes it so hard..

wedding producers dont have it easy and there are no second takes..

i respect ANYONE who is brave enough to make afew bux and offer a decent weding presentation...
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Old January 4th, 2006, 09:45 AM   #35
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Of course, and I respect them very much!
As I said, (and like you pointed out) it's a very hard job, that takes up a lot of time and energy.

But I think still most people do this job for the money.
(BTW: I also think wedding photographers are overpayed or - more approperiate - wedding videographers are underpaid, especially in comparison)
When you make an indie movie, you don't have that much work, but you don't earn money too (most of the time). It's stupid trying to make indie movies for living. It's a nice try, but on the level of most people here, you won't earn enough to feed yourself with it.
I just wanted to react on Yi Fong Yu who at a moment asked: is it al about the money in wedding videography?
I don't think it's ALL about the money, but in the end, you want to make money, if you're doing this job, however much you feel for the weddings itself.

But maybe it's best to go back on-topic now.
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Old January 4th, 2006, 12:13 PM   #36
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jason,

while a norm is certainly hard to come by in virtually any industry, i think there are certain things. that's why i said, first you need a ceremony and not ONLY have a reception, ya know?

that's why i made the post. to get people talking. that's the key to understanding the industry more.
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Old January 4th, 2006, 02:43 PM   #37
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4 to 6 months delivery time is WAY too long....I am surprised that any client tolerates this. 2 1/2 months maximum is reasonable.

Perhaps better pre production will save you time during the edit....meaning, you know what you want to do in post ahead of time...prior to shooting.
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Old January 4th, 2006, 03:14 PM   #38
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe Allen Rosenberger
4 to 6 months delivery time is WAY too long....I am surprised that any client tolerates this. 2 1/2 months maximum is reasonable.

Perhaps better pre production will save you time during the edit....meaning, you know what you want to do in post ahead of time...prior to shooting.
brides are used to waiting 4-6 months for a good photo album.

they are aware of this wait ahead of time and are free to go elsewhere if they want it sooner. during slow periods they sometimes get their dvds in less than a month, but no way am i holding myself to that contractually.

i'm a big proponent in under-promise, over-deliver. ymmv.
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Old January 4th, 2006, 08:24 PM   #39
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Originally Posted by A.J. Briones
brides are used to waiting 4-6 months for a good photo album.
Maybe not. Now it's down to a couple of weeks.

The last wedding I did, the couple got their pix from the pro photog in less than two weeks.

This photog shot everything digital, tossed the trash shots, color corrected or whatever the rest, burned to disk, and delivered the disk to couple. End of job.

So, it was up to the couple to pick whatever shots they liked, go to their favorite 1-hr Photo or whatever, and make as many of whatever sizes they wanted. But, bottom line, they had the pix shortly after returning from the honeymoon.

First time I heard of that being done around here, so I don't know if this is an isolated case or a new trend. Took the wind out of my sails, 'cuz I've always had my video done and delivered months before any couple received their photos.
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Old January 4th, 2006, 08:40 PM   #40
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Yeah....I frequent many bride forums to check out what they are saying to each other, and they do not like waiting 4 to 6 months for a video. They say things like, "I liked my wedding dvd, BUT, I had to wait 5 months to get it because ZYX Videography have been very busy"......the BUT part is what you do not want being said about your services. You want.....they did a great job and I would highly recommend them....that's that.

The ZYX Videography is made up for quoting purposes.

As for photographers.....now that most have gone to digital, atleast in LA and OC, California, their turn around times are much faster than 4 months. Many of them do "post" work but even with that they have fairly quick turn arounds.
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Old January 4th, 2006, 09:15 PM   #41
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tom Tomkowiak
Maybe not. Now it's down to a couple of weeks.

The last wedding I did, the couple got their pix from the pro photog in less than two weeks.

This photog shot everything digital, tossed the trash shots, color corrected or whatever the rest, burned to disk, and delivered the disk to couple. End of job.

So, it was up to the couple to pick whatever shots they liked, go to their favorite 1-hr Photo or whatever, and make as many of whatever sizes they wanted. But, bottom line, they had the pix shortly after returning from the honeymoon.

First time I heard of that being done around here, so I don't know if this is an isolated case or a new trend. Took the wind out of my sails, 'cuz I've always had my video done and delivered months before any couple received their photos.
proofs are different from a photo album.

that's like saying i can dump the raw footage on dvd and i'm done.
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Old January 4th, 2006, 09:33 PM   #42
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i tell them straight out.
Im a one man band, i do alot (and i mean ALOT) of corporate work, which allows me to keep my wedding prices reasonable. This is the price they pay..

On top of that, i tell them that demand for the service is so high, that its easy to SHOOT in one day, but if they want a good quality DVD, i will take as much time as needed to give them that product.

here in Aus, its typical for a wedding producer to take up to 18 months for a large format multi disc wedding.. ive trained at least 4 of teh old school guys who have about 30 odd weddings waiting to be cut..

its not the edit that thake time, hell that be done in less than 10 days.. (i recently cut 2 large long forms and 3 short forms in less than 8 weeks.. so it IS possible. I was just lucky they all wanted the same colour grading and editing style)

but in the end, they end up with a DECENT product.

Photogrpahy is VERY different and CANNOT be compared..
hell if i was to do what a photographer does, and shoot a day, consdier that to digitise my footage would take the same amount fo time depending on what i shot.
On average 6 to 10 hours.. that in itself is prollly how long it takes a photog to jstu do what they need to do.. but all ive done is capture my footage.. so far..

and unlike photos, i cant just glance at my shots.. i need to see and her them in motion... that alone would be another 10 or so hours..
were talkin 20hours JUST to review and capture.. think about it thats almost half a work week in itself..
Now if i was to just hack the dreggs out and press afew dvds with this "raw" material, im sure it could be delivered in 2 weeks...

But people dont want that..

But as mentioned, time is a factor and its explained to the client. The ones that know are the ones that appreciate the work and understand that youre work is in demand. But theyre happy to wait to GET THAT VIDEO FROM YOU as oppsosed to going to the next guy who can deliver faster, but cant do what i can...

yeah some get the shits, it will happen but in the end, theyve signed a contract, i even read it out the them and get them to initial the payment and delivery part. There is no excuse for ignorance. Its there in front of them

As for pre produciton, i have a 3 page info sheet, so thats covered. thers also a 7 page contract which details EVERYTHING.. it gives them peace of mind..
If they choose to complain after the fact, they can. it wont speed up the job though...
But in the contract it clearly states that if they try to threaten the business in any way, their work is null and void and the contract is disbanded.
All work stops and they lose everything. All monies forfeited.
They can complain, they have a right to, but they have no right to publicly denounce or make negative comments about a service which they have agreed to.

The fact that all this info has been provided to them AND THEY AGREED is the point here...

If they change their minds, thats their tough luck. I know im good at what i do and they know this too, hell they wouldnt hire me if they didnt like my product, but after the wedding day, when the dust settles, they want it like yesterday.. and THATS when it sinks in that thye have a bit of a wait ahead of them.
Ive had afew clients whinge about delays, but usually they see teh product and they shut up.. ive still got referals coming in from 3 years ago from a job which took 9 months to deliver.. (i was in hospital for 5 of those months..)

Guys, we're in this for the business and the pleasure of it.. if we didnt like it, wed be doing somethign else.
if we make money from it, even better.. but at the end of the day, when u LIVE by what you do, like most of us here do, you cannot forget that you have a business to run, clients to maintain, bills to pay and a life to live.
My work has consumed me and my family and this year i made a vow to not let that hapen again.

I no longer give delivery times to anyone. Once i have their draft in front of me, THATS when i let them know how far we have to go....

also alot of clients want 'Updates" even if i tell a client "i wont get a chance to review your footag for at least 8 weeks" and 'you prolly wont hear from me for about 12 weeks" they accept that.. but after the day they change..
Thats not my problem.
Ive explained it to them before we even hit record.

Weddings can be an ugly beast.

The clients KNOW the deal.... they signed it...
If they choose to do backflips on it, thats their prerogative, but in the end, they KNOW the deal....

we cant afford to be complacent with what we do and we cant afford to let clients and other professions (like photographers) put a negative spin on a service which is probably more important than the photos themselves.

Now reading teh above, i might sound like a heartless bastard, but above everything at least i know that the client has made an INFORMED CHOICE.

If they dont like what i offer or how i offer it, the door out is on the left..
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Old January 5th, 2006, 06:41 AM   #43
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i think the longest ive hit was 10 months and that was when i was in and out of hospital with breathing issues..

but yes, 18 months is common... then again thee guys do double and triple bookings. i wll only do double bookings if im not busy.

but like i said, if the client is informed, they really dont have a leg to stand on. I mean lets be realistic, do u honestly beleive that u can shoot 50 odd weddings a year and delivery them all within a week of when they were shot?

Who does your consultations then? WHo does your accounts? Who does your maintenance, who does yoru grocery shopping, who goes out and pays your bills, who spends time with your kids...

guys lets face it... we should work to live, not live to work..
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Old January 6th, 2006, 09:16 AM   #44
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Every event video I've done, I've delivered the first copies by 6 pm the next day. I often stay up all night, doing the editing and run off several rush copies. I couldn't sleep anyway, until I finished what I started. I give myself one more day to either make all the other required copies or get a duplicating house to finish them by then. Sometimes, I've been able to get copies out as early as 8 am the next day, depending on how complicated the editing was. By shooting as carefully as I can, I speed up the editing a lot. I sometimes do an event on a moment's notice, as I always have a complete shooting kit packed and ready. These policies make me the first person other videomakers call, when they can't fulfill a scheduled gig at the last minute or need another camera. I don't do big and extravagent productions, just simple and straightforward coverage, because that's what a lot of people want. There's a need for my kind of video service, as not everyone wants an elaborate work of fiction and special effects, to portray their wedding or other social affair.
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Old January 6th, 2006, 09:26 AM   #45
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i hear ya mate..
with events, i usually take about a week at the most, everythign else goes on teh backburner till these events/corporate jobsa re delivered.
My wedding clients know the priority of the business is corporate, else they wouldnt be gettin their wedding video this "cheap"
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