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


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Old April 5th, 2006, 10:03 PM   #16
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I thank God that I know most of the photographers I work with, since they work for the same company I do (the DJ's, too). I'm rather blasť about the photographer getting in the shot - I've sometimes flat-out told them I don't care if they're in it as long as it isn't excessive. The way I see it, the photographer is a big part of some events, such as the cake cutting, when he/she pretty much directs the whole thing. My approach is to just record whatever happens - the only time I usually take an active role is for guest interviews, and even then I tell them I'm not looking for a rehearsed speech, just say what's on your mind.

Most outside photogs are pretty cool as well, but some of them do give off an "I'm better than you and my (expletive deleted) don't stink" vibe. If you haven't dealt with someone like that, you inevitably will. Just develop a thick skin and know that you have just as much right to be there, and your work is just as important. Don't make any enemies, but don't take any (expletive deleted) from anyone, either. Remember, the art of diplomacy means being able to tell someone to go to hell and make them look forward to the trip...
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Old April 6th, 2006, 11:36 AM   #17
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I am fairly new to the wedding video business, having started just this year. However I have done a few weddings now and am feeling comfortable with it, and so far my customers have been quite satisfied. Recently I had a very negative experience with a photographer, so I thought I would share. Also, in my own defense I would like to say this is the first negative experience I have had with a photographer. All the other weddings I've done I have been able to work great together with the photographer.

((Good to hear. THis is as it should be.. work hand in hand and you get awesome results in stills and in video.. ))


First you should know there wasn't just a single photographer. This photography company had seven photographers at the wedding. I only had two cameras and two camera people. I set up one camera in the back of the church in the center. The bride specifically asked me to set up a camera at this location, and I had it okayed with the wedding planner. However, one of the photographers threw a fit. He said that my camera was obtrusive at that location, would distract the guests, and generally ruin the entire wedding. I told him that this location was requested by the bride and okayed by the wedding planner. He then went off to talk to the wedding planner. I'm not sure what he said to her, but I could see him throwing his hands up in the air and it looked like she was yelling at him. This was on the other side of the church though, so I did not hear what was said- he didn't come back and talk to me though.

((7 Photogs obviously shows that this couple have either much money than sense to know any better, or that the photographers themselves are useless and need 7 acquisition points to get the results required. Ive seen one photographer get amazing results. u dont need 7.. thats a joke and an absolute scam... if the photog has a hissy fit, stay out of it.. ))

Durring the ceremony, the same photogapher who tried telling me i had to move my camera, walked right in front of me, and set down his camera and tripod just barely two feet infront of my camera!
((Obviously when he saw where u were set up he realised that his wide shot vantage point would be interrupted. That one particluar shot can be taken while on ones knees out of your camera shot. But no, this guy believes he was top and he acted that way. Ive had photogs ask me to move from centre aisle for their shot, but i always keep an eye out for them, coz when they get their shot, im right back in there. No way in hell am i letting ANYONE dictate to me how i am going to work. I do my job they do theirs. Simple equation.))


This was durring the middle of the ceremony! He turned around, like he wanted to make sure he was right in front of me,

((He was... dont ever doubt that))

then turned back to his camera and stayed there. I had to move my camera durring the ceremony so I could continue to shoot.

((At least u could move... many a time this has happened to my unmanned second camera shooting a reading... and many a time do u see my hand reach out (still in frame and visible to the couple) gently moving them out of frame. Put it this way, around a lectern, I am shooting from ONE point.. not much to ask for... and a photog can EASILY step aside one step to get a similar shot to what im getting. They dont have to screw it up, but this is where consideration comes into play. Most have it, most are good with it, and most are aware of your presence. Others jsut dont give a hoot
I cant say ive ever had a problem with redirecting Them though. usualy by then were best buddies and im helping them get their shots while i continue to shoot... ))

After the ceremony, durring the recieving line, another one of the photographers walked up to me. He said that his photographers had been complaining that I was getting in their way.
((How?? were u moving?? were u talking? were u badmouthing them?? for them to say that, there must be reason.. need more info mate))

He went on to explain the bride was paying his firm alot of money to do these pictures and he wasn't going to let some video guy ruin them. I wanted to hit him, but i managed to restrain myself and walk away.

((LOL.. had one guy tell me that "this was his time" during the photoshoot. I laughed in his face after he went on to say that "your time is the preps, the ceremony, SOME of the fotoshoot and the recpetion. After i died down from hysteria, i asked him, "apart from the fotoshoot, what do u do?? "
That stumped him i didnt speak to him after that. even after he apologised.
Thing is ive nailed a market in an area where demand for my work means people are changing their wedding dates to get me to shoot for them. That much kudos allows me to be a prick sometimes, but im usually a nice guy to those that are nice to me.
I ALWAYS respect what theyre doing above what i myself am doing, BUT i will not stand by and let a wanky photographer or anyone for that matter tel me how to do my job. Obviously your there for a reason. Make sure they understand this. ))

Durring the reception the photographers continued to constantly step in front of my cameras,
((I know some photogs who are close to me who deliverately do this with wanker videographers. Dont ever doubt that this kind of behaviour is not deliberate. 90% of the time, theyre doing it prolly coz they know a video company which they work well with didnt get the job over you. They prolly work with a production house (not intimately, but close enough to be called friends) Either way, with u there, they see it as lost business.. why else would u have 7 staffers if u didnt also offer video>?? or KNEW someone who offered video...
In this case, speak up. go to the had honcho and tell him that he has free reign to do what he likes BUT that to interfer in your work is unprofessional and that you have given him the common courtesy deserved for what he does, all u want in return is the same thing.

I cant say ive ever had this issue.. i had some wanker photogs try to start with me, but usually when they realise my compositions and shot set ups would look good as a still, they usually shut up and get to work... usually i give them a prompt and offer a spece for tehm to take teh same shots im taking.... ater that they become friends, and in a week or so when they check out the pics which YOU composed, they want to work with u again coz they know their gonna get good shots without even trying... so they refer ppl to u..
It happens.. ))

and durring the dance one photographer asked me if i would mind moving because he wanted a shot of the couple dancing framed against a window. The same exact shot I was trying to get- he wanted me to move so he could get it.

((that happens.. but tel me. HOW MUCH FRIGGIN ROOM was there.. im sure he could have stood beside you.. and if he couldnt. he should have taken a friggin chair and stood on it.. moron.. like i said, its obvious these guys didnt have a clue..
I hope your camera wasnt on auto iris.. hell dude, your shots would be getting nuked by all the flashes... ))

Two days after the wedding the bride called me very concerned. The photogapher had apparently told her she shouldn't have paid me a deposit to lock in the date because I could just disapear and keep her money without ever deliving her video. I had to assure her that I would indeed finish her video and that it would be the best possible quality.

((do u have a contract?? ive had this happen to me when family members stick their noses in.. either way throw the contract in her face. Show her the invoice and show her your a registered business FFS.. Sorry but this is starting to upset me.
Like i said this bride has more money than sense.. and this just proves it.. and also just proves to me that im right in wanting to get out of the game.. ))

Several weeks later the bride called me again. She wanted me to print freeze frames from the video for her.
((HA.. ))

She was making a wedding scrapbook and there were several shots the photographers (all seven of them) missed- such as cutting the cake, a close up of the rings on their hands, or leaving the church after the ceremony, and arriving at the reception.

((You get that.. i had a photog act like the bees knees to me once and he lost 4 rolls of film.. all the family shots were gone..
EIther way, i hope your charging her for this.. If she wants U to print them, find out how much shes paying for a print from this photographic firm she hired and take 2 bux off.. again, like i said these guys have no clue...2 i can understand, maybe 3 if the couple is hardcore, but 7 is a joke.. most likely theyre students or sumfin or maybe theyre jsut too inept to be able to shoot a wedding on their own.. ))

Anyway, that is my photographer horror story. Like I said, this is the first time I have ever had a problem with a photographer, I just wanted to share.

((good story mate.. I cant say i have any horror stories as i usualy bite them in the butt before they can get going. Most of teh time photogs are good at what they do and account for the fact that your there.

From here, take it as experience, as im sure the photog also laid afew words down about "your conduct" and "you getting in the way" to her.. which is prolly what put some doubts into her head.. but like i said.. have an airtight contract and if they wanna bitch and moan, throw it at em.. i do that as a last resort and ive only done it once..
usually there are ways around these problems.. but remember that u can please everyone..

good luck with it dude..
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Old April 9th, 2006, 10:21 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Adam Grunseth
Durring the ceremony, the same photogapher who tried telling me i had to move my camera, walked right in front of me, and set down his camera and tripod just barely two feet infront of my camera! This was durring the middle of the ceremony! He turned around, like he wanted to make sure he was right in front of me, then turned back to his camera and stayed there. I had to move my camera durring the ceremony so I could continue to shoot.

Durring the reception the photographers continued to constantly step in front of my cameras, and durring the dance one photographer asked me if i would mind moving because he wanted a shot of the couple dancing framed against a window. The same exact shot I was trying to get- he wanted me to move so he could get it.
You're not in the Houston area are you? j/k

I have not read all posts... yet.

This happened to us the very first time we went to videotape a wedding. Since we barely were going to start video work, I asked existing clients (I do DJ work) if they planned on having their wedding videotaped. I wanted to make sure that I didn't take food off of anyone else's table just because I wanted to "play" with my camera.

Those who responded with a "no" were the ones I approached with videotaping their event at no cost. Since it wasn't in their budget to hire a videographer anyway, nobody was losing business.

Well, the very first wedding we shoot, the photographer was completely hating on us. He jumped in front of our camera in every shot, and I mean EVERY shot. At first we thought it was just where we were positioned and that WE were in his way, but soon realized that he was doing it intentionally. We attempted to get out of his way and shoot other things, then he would move quickly from wherever he was in the room just to jump in front of our camera.

Since it was a freebie, we didn't want to concern the bride with problems at her wedding. We edited the video as best we could but his back was in a lot of shots. I explained to the bride what happened afterwards when I delivered the video. She said, "yeah I know, I got a weird vibe from the guy too."

I then looked up his information on the BBB and he had a rap sheet a mile long. He is still in business, but now under a different company name.
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Old April 9th, 2006, 10:55 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe Allen Rosenberger
even if we had a photography wing of our company, it wouldn;t help because almost all of our clients are referrals and thet tend to have a photographer booked prior to video.....so having your own photo co. wouldn;t help with exception the few who haven't booked photo yet.
Not true. You would have to push your photography first and then your videography. This way they hire you as their photographer then you let them know they can add video.
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Old April 9th, 2006, 02:19 PM   #20
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No....it is true, and with our company we do not "push" anything salesman like, we do not nor do we believe in that tactic regarding weddings anyway. THere's already so many other pushy vendors that brides tell us about, that is the last thing we want clients saying about us. But sure...I hear ya......it is a way of doing it but not for us as we're video production and want nothing to do with photography or to be a "all in one" inclusive type company.




Quote:
Originally Posted by Jay Villa
Not true. You would have to push your photography first and then your videography. This way they hire you as their photographer then you let them know they can add video.
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Old April 15th, 2006, 11:12 AM   #21
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Speaking as a photographer, stay close to the photogarpher, don't be 25 feet behind me and we will do great, I will galdly walk behind you, I certainly do not want to be part of the video.

I realize a videographer has a job to do, I actually try to help the videographer, many times a videographer will actually help me, many times we work together. To my knowledge I have never had a problem with a videographer and I've been doing this for many years.

Bill
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Old April 15th, 2006, 01:08 PM   #22
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Nah Bill.....YOU stay close to the videographer. What an arrogant thing to say, I'd laugh in your face if you were a photographer at one my clients weddings and said...."stay near me". Guy's like you crack me up.
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Old April 15th, 2006, 01:48 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe Allen Rosenberger
Nah Bill.....YOU stay close to the videographer. What an arrogant thing to say, I'd laugh in your face if you were a photographer at one my clients weddings and said...."stay near me". Guy's like you crack me up.
If you think it is arrogance you totally misread me and don't know me at all. Whether I stay close to the videographer, or he to me is not important, the point is if he stays close to the action I can move around him.

If anything it is a total lack of arrogance since I am moving behind the videographer.

It is not a him or me, it is a working together.

Bill
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Old April 15th, 2006, 02:20 PM   #24
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Agreed....working "together" is the best, as we all have a common goal, (to produce he best we can given the circumstances of our environment). Sometimes posts come across the wrong way to some people....including me, I meant no disrespect. I think talking to photog's and videog's prior to the shoot is best way to see what the game plan is and how you will work together.
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Old April 15th, 2006, 03:11 PM   #25
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photographer horror story

Adam I can relate to your misfortune! ive since gotten out of doing weddings for this reason. Lets face it photo guys can be a real pain.
I can testify to that. I now just do a wedding hear and there to fund
my indie movie making. Hang in there video has alot more to offer
than weddings.


shawn
Digital Video Productions
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Old April 16th, 2006, 09:52 AM   #26
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there was a comment about staying close to the action..

one thing modern videography has evolved into has is pretty much be there but dont be seen. With the long zoom ranges on most cameras in this production range, we really dotn have to be close to the action to get it..

In the real world though, we all know this isnt the case and to get good shots, u MUST be seen... not as in people see u do your work, but u must be in there to get the shots which are needed... these day swith Digital cameras and handycams, everyone wants to be a pro.. recently i shot a jewish wedding with 600 odd guests, i was alone, was running 2 cameras and one of the groomsman bought along his handycam.. no shit, durin he ceremony, he jsut shot away not hthinking about how much of a dick he was making of himself.. in turn he ruined almost half the shots when the photographer turned to him and asked him to keep an eye out simply becuase he wasnt considering the fact that i was paid ALOT of money to be there and him running in and out of shots as he moves around me pretty much duplicating what im doing was ruining quite afew shots.. in the end though, this will stay in the edit as my shots are STILL good, only thing being is that hes gettin in my way.. i will use this as an example to future clients and i ALWAYS farwarn people that if they know people with flash cameras and handycams, stay away from me, coz i WILL walk on them if they get in my way.
Put it this way, if im doing a motion tracking shot whereby im steadicamming around the couple as they do their bridal waltz, theres no way in hell im gonna stop to let some moron get in frnt of me to get the shot.. they can work beside me or behind me, but im there to do a job..
Its a simlpe equation..
Sure i sound likea wanker, and sometimes u have to be..
Ive doen weddings where phtoographers have literally walked in front of a camera on a 8foot tripod (u CANT miss it.. ) and stand 3 feet from the lectern to get a shot of teh speeches.. now this is unecessary and called for.. so u know what i do.. i leave it.. it PROVES to the cient that the phot they paid 3 times what they paid me WASNT as professional or as discrete as the were led to believe..

Unfortunately the stigma surrounding video is already in place. Its already negative, and its already had a major impact on what we do and how we do it as a supplier, producer and more importantly as an artist.

Its funny, coz alot of photographers will do whatever they can to make thier job easier and so will we, but sometimes, theres jsut one dipshit who thinks theyre the bees knees and they ruin it for everyone..

Im through being a nice guy... belive me, it gets u nowhere.. be it with customers or photographers..
If theyre nice to me, all the better, if they re not i jsut ignore them and keep hammering away.
If they ruin my shots, tough shit.. theyre PAID to work around me and i am paid to work around them.
Its a 2 way street and if "professionals" cant see this, then they shouldnt be playing this game..

Ive blacklisted about 3 photogs.. not because i dont get along with them, but simply for the fact that theyre attitude is all high and mighty. One in particular is from a "boutique" studio which overcharges and underdelivers. Turns out that he missed half the ceremony and wanted to redo afew shots.. which is fine with me, im happy with an abundance of footage, but when it came time to asking the clients to go back in, he tried to turn it back to me by saying that it "might make the video look better if we did this again" and im like.. hey ive got my shots dude, i dont need any more, im hapy to move on.. he scowled at me but the way the clients reacted was as if i didnt know what the hell i was doing.. and becuase i am relatively young (30) people automatically assume that the older guy knows more, which is definaltey not the case with me.. Sure ive got tickets on myself sometimes, but ive worked my ass off to put them there..

We videgraphers DO NOT have the luxury of being able to stop an event as its happening so we can put ourselves into position for a shot. Of the 300 odd weddings ive shot in the last 5-6 or so years, EVERY single photographer has done something along these lines simply to get a shot. BUT when i used to ask to do a similar thing, people would just look at me funny. People DONT SEE that the cinematography onvolved in creating a decent video is a hell of a alot more difficult than a still photgraphic composition.
Until the clients understand, and more importantly, ACCEPT THIS FACT, then were all pretty much doomed..
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Old April 16th, 2006, 10:03 AM   #27
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Ya know...
I have had to photograph MANY weddings in my years and from the very first one I shot I took a long hard look at the equipment you video guys have to carry and what it takes to get a great vide of the wedding and I decided to be the guy that stayed out of your way. I have always got the shots the bride needed and every shot I wanted for the collection and not a single time did I get a complaint from the video crew. What matters most is that the bride gets a quality product in her video and the photography and it only takes a little extra to make sure she gets it.

This is coming from someone that now has a LOVE for video and made a decent living shooting pics. Sometimes we let our "I am an artist" gene kick in and we act a bit silly. The trick is to always remember why we are at a wedding. Regardless of what anyone will tell you its all about the bride so make her day something that will be shown for gererations to come.

If you remind the "problem person" about this when they are being artistic nazis things will go better. Remember to always keep a smile when you are pointing our someones fault. It makes the day go much better.

Just my thoughts
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Old April 16th, 2006, 10:16 AM   #28
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"What matters most is that the bride gets a quality product in her video and the photography and it only takes a little extra to make sure she gets it."

And this is what i dont understand, Bob here has hit the nail in the head. so why is it SO HARD for people in this profession to be able to do this??

what theyre too good for it?? what is it??
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Old April 16th, 2006, 03:48 PM   #29
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Lucky for me, my brother is the photographer at 90% of my photo&video weddings. He never ruins a shot in the video.....you can actually see him looking over his shoulder for the video camera in order to avoid it. Most other photographers I deal with duck for the camera and such....every once in awhile you get unprofessional behavior caused from lack of experience.

It’s up to you to educated your clients before the wedding.


-John
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Old April 17th, 2006, 02:59 PM   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John DeLuca
Most other photographers I deal with duck for the camera and such....every once in awhile you get unprofessional behavior caused from lack of experience.

It’s up to you to educated your clients before the wedding.


-John

I totally argree with educating your clients prior to the wedding. If they instruct their photographer to play nice, it usually happens.

Some photographers, despite 15 years or more just don't care about video and or their clients wish for a good video. They only care about themselves. I just avoid working with those photographers.

Good Luck!
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