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


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Old July 31st, 2006, 03:21 AM   #1
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What's a videographer???

I don't know how many of you live in more rural areas like I do, but even in big cities this may apply.

Regardless, how do you tell people in a clear and concise manner what a videographer is and does within one PROFESSIONAL sounding sentence.

I'm tired of saying, "a videographer is similar to a photographer, except we do video"! What does everyone else say, assuming you run into this common issue (for me)?
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Old July 31st, 2006, 04:00 AM   #2
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I'm not sure about the US, but here in the UK 'videographer' is not a common description of a profession - thank goodness, I think it sound simply dreadful, and I would never even consider using it - for exactly the reasons described - How do you explain it? And if you have to, was it the right name anyway?

When people ask what I do, I tell them I supply video production services. Normally people nod, a few have the courage to actually ask? "er, what's that mean then?"

If they say "but what do you actually do?" I say I'm a cameraman - that seems to mean something.

Using 'video' to replace 'photo' also suggests that 'audio' could be used too - but 'audiographer' sounds even more daft!

postscript

For what it is worth - (I don't do weddings) I have found that virtually all the google searches of just the UK (we have the option of searching just over here) for 'videographer', bring up wedding video services - so maybe it's me out of touch - no doubt it is! I still hate videographer though!
Paul
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Old July 31st, 2006, 10:21 AM   #3
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Corny as it may sound
I tell people I am a cinematographer.

Anyone can make a video, not everyone can create cinema with weddings and events.

I leads me right into a differentiation sales pitch and elevate's me above "uncle bob".
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Old July 31st, 2006, 10:49 AM   #4
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I agree Paul and Dan, the term "videographer" has a negative connotation in the sense that "video" seems to mean lower quality - especially with higher quality phrases belonging to the DVD/HD/Film/BlueRay family nowdays.

It always seems to remind me of my Dad and I going to rent our first "VHS" (that happened to be a beat up copy of "Last Flight Of Noah's Ark" in one of those big oversized plastic cases from Disney). The label looked like it has grease on it and we never could get the tracking just right throughout the movie.

Still, maybe saying "I own a video production business" sounds much more professional than "I'm a videographer"?
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Old July 31st, 2006, 11:13 AM   #5
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I have no qualms about describing myself as a videographer, and feel my blood pressure rise every time someone uses some other term for this profession. I got an email recently from a person looking for work who described himself several times as a "motion photographer" or something inane like that, and that really made my blood boil. In a pinch I might use "Cinematographer" to sound more sophisticated, but that's not necessary or informative for laypersons.

A videographer is someone who creates videos, just like a photographer is someone who creates photographs. What connotation that implies is up to us: everyone knows there are both good and bad photographers and should understand the same applies to videographers.

As far as what a videographer actually does is concerned, I like to observe that we do everything listed in the credits of a typical movie. So maybe I should say I'm a camera operator and a sound engineer and an editor and a DVD menu author and a graphic artist/packaging person. For one person or small company to do all of this should be something which inspires awe, not derision. So yeah, I'm a videographer and proud of it!!!
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Old July 31st, 2006, 12:48 PM   #6
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Yeah, I have no problem with being a VIDEOGRAPHER but what makes me mad are the people who can't say it. VIDEO-O-GRAPHER.
I feel like get a T shirt that has is phonetically spelled; VIDEO-AHH-GRAPHER.

When I was in the still photo business no one ever had a problem saying PHOTOGRAPHER. Oh well, who cares as long as the check is good :-O

Don B.
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Old July 31st, 2006, 01:25 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Don Bloom
.....phonetically spelled; VIDEO-AHH-GRAPHER..
Hmmm, the way I pronounce it would be spelled: VID-EE-AHH-GRAPHER. Wrong?
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Old July 31st, 2006, 01:55 PM   #8
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If we all are videographers can I see some of your videographs? :-)

Here's a definition. If you hit the speaker key you can hear the word pronounced.

http://education.yahoo.com/reference...ry/videography

Tom is correct.

Another term for a videographer is an Audio & Video Engineer.
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Old July 31st, 2006, 02:01 PM   #9
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Old July 31st, 2006, 02:16 PM   #10
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Steven,
you're right. I hit the "O" key out of habit. My bad ;-(

I think of 'videographer' as someone who does 30 pictures a second (ntsc) as opposed to a 'photographer' who does 1 picture every 30 seconds unless of course they're shotting film and have a motor drive on their camera and are shooting sports and such. (I used to burn thru a film pak of 250 images pretty quick many many years ago-but man was it fun especially at the top pro levels-just to hear the old Nikon shutter bang bang bang bang was music to my ears. :-)
Now of course please bear in mind I'm being a bit sarcastic and frankly I really don't care what they call me as I said before, as long as the check is good I don't even care if they spell my name wrong or call me a VIDEO-AH-GRAPHER instead of a VIDEEAHHGRAPHER. Call me Ishmal, call me late to dinner just make sure the green is good. :-)
Don
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Old July 31st, 2006, 03:31 PM   #11
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I have similar problems locally, even though there's a healthy market of videographers here. I've even called clients and said "Hi, I'm Mike Oveson, the videographer." They'll even have met me and set up the wedding shoot and everything and they'll say "Who?" So I explain that I'm doing their wedding video and the light goes right on. I think people just aren't as familiar with the term. I still say videographer, just because I think that's the most accurate way to describe myself. That's generally just for my production business though. If I'm helping someone locally with a short film I'll say that I'm a cinematographer, because that makes more sense to them and that is the type of role I'll be doing for them. I guess I don't really mind what I'm called as long as my clients/colleagues understand what my job is for them.
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Old July 31st, 2006, 07:26 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brandon Wood
What does everyone else say, assuming you run into this common issue (for me)?
This doesn't happen too often for us as most of our business is either through referrals or from our website which has plenty of our work. If it does come up, I just pop on a highlights clip and let that answer the question. Everybody seems to understand pretty well within the first 30 seconds.
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Old July 31st, 2006, 11:41 PM   #13
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I tell folks I'm a film maker...or filmmaker...or however the heck it is spelled. True, probably less than 4% of my business ever involves 'real' traditional film....but that doesn't matter to me...the industry barely differientates anymore as everything moves more and more into the pure digital domain. This hasn't stopped Lucas and Rodriguez among others as being regarding as filmmakers.

And many professional photographers I work with do photography projects that never utilizes film, never get tradtionally processed, or even printed in the way that most people think of in terms of photographs....Many of them are pure digital imagery from capture to final end presentation.

Your average schmoe doesn't understand any of that. I just say I'm a filmmaker...they just get it.

(side note: yeah, I still prefer real film for many things, but I just can't afford to work with it. Film purists can just bite me. I'm a filmmaker)

-Jon
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Old August 1st, 2006, 06:21 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jonathan Jones
And many professional photographers I work with do photography projects that never utilizes film, never get tradtionally processed, or even printed in the way that most people think of in terms of photographs....
FYI, Wester now defines photography as follows:

'the art or process of producing images by the action of radiant energy and especially light on a sensitive surface (as film or a CCD chip) '

I think most people think of the image rather than the process when talking about photographs. Ironically, most people also understand that a "film" is a movie, even when it's not shot on film.
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Old August 1st, 2006, 12:13 PM   #15
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Photographer came from the words photo and graph
photo meaning Light
and
graph meaing to write or draw
Thus
to draw or write with light.

Videographer came for the words video and graph
Video meaning see
graph meaning to write or draw
thus
to draw or write with seeing.

I wonder what the Greek or Latin is for capture.
Capture of light would be nice.

Bill
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