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


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Old July 31st, 2006, 09:05 AM   #1
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Need some Advice

I was wondering if some of you more experience sorts out there would share the process you go through when constructing your client DVD. Particularly, do you create the entire day from prep through leaving the reception as one big movie, with chapter markers, or do you create multiple movies and then stitch them together as one long movie if the viewer wants to sit through the entire thing.

I use Vegas 6 and DVD Architect 3, and I know that you have the ability to include sub projects on the timeline, creating the opportunity to edit sections independently, like one for the arrival/prep, then one for the ceremony, one for the post ceremony... etc.

Also, do you guys have a formula for "required" chapter listings.... like
Prep, Ceremony, Photos, Wedding Party intros, toasts, cake cutting, first dance.... etc.

Thanks in advance for any advice....

Chris
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Old July 31st, 2006, 10:22 AM   #2
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First let me say that I have been doing condensed edits of weding for a number of years so we might be on different pages BUT I DO break the event out into chapters that make sense. I also use Vegas 6 and DVDA 3 so I'll give you my work flow and then you can use or not use what fits for you.
After I load ALL of the footage in I always start with the ceremony. For me everything is based off of that. After cutting it and doing what ever else I need to I render it as an AVI. I then do the same for prep, opening, post ceremony and reception. Each is an AVI when finished. I then stitch them together set chapter markers to the beginning of each piece and render to MPEG/AC3 for my DVDs. I do this because then I also give them an uncut version of the ceremony (my edited versions are about 10 to 12 minutes) and an uncut version of the reception. Nothing fancy pretty much raw footage with floor and ceiling shots removed ;-) Thats the FAMILY ARCHIEVE footage. I don't chapter out the cake cutting or the toasts or the first dances as the edited reception is about 20 to 25 minutes in time so there's really no need to plus I do some time compression so there really is no way to mark chapters.
Generally my finished product which runs about 40 to 55 minutes depending on the event has 6 chapters; Opening, Prep, Ceremony, Post Ceremony, Reception, Recap. I've pretty much been doing this for about 6 years (4 since doing DVDs only) and for ME it works. Since about 70% of my wedding business is referral from others I've done work for the client has a pretty good idea of what to expect and of course when we talk (meet) I tell them and show them what a TYPICAL wedding looks like.
Anyway it works for me,
Good luck and have fun,

Don B.
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Old August 2nd, 2006, 12:34 AM   #3
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My Typical Productions...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Sigmon
I was wondering if some of you more experience sorts out there would share the process you go through when constructing your client DVD. Particularly, do you create the entire day from prep through leaving the reception as one big movie, with chapter markers, or do you create multiple movies and then stitch them together as one long movie if the viewer wants to sit through the entire thing.
...
Chris
I have been cutting wedding videos for only a year so take this however you like...

On every video package (entry level or the big one) the following:
-Prep
-Photos
-Ceremony
-Reception
--Cake
--Toasts
--Tossing things
-Leaving

The difference between packages is how much of each the client gets. The lowest package only gets a 20 minute video; I hit the highlights of everything except the ceremony, which in include in full (if possible). The higher up packages get more finished product of the day, including fancy video ending credits (as opposed to just text credits).

I provide the entire video as a single movie with chapter breakpoints at the above mentioned sections.

On the higher end packages, I provide any bloopers or video greetings as special features under their own sub menu on the DVD.

I might start producing a quick 5 minute Preview movie that is seperated with its own menu on the DVD, but that would only be on the high end packages because it takes more time to edit down to that quick and tight of a story.

Hope that helps some.

jason
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Old August 2nd, 2006, 08:16 AM   #4
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Thanks much... any more want to comment.....

Thanks Dan and Jason..... Any others want to chime in and share your workflows??? Might be a good thread to have around to refer to the next newbie!!!

Gratefully,

Chris
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Old August 2nd, 2006, 08:52 AM   #5
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We cram as much as possible into our higher end packages. I'm of the belief that if you just chapter most everthing, then the client can scan around as they want. If everything is really long, then I'll do ceremony/reception/limo ride/ into thier own section.

We will however put a short version of everthing in 5 to 10 minuter so that can be shown to friends. Obviously we edit out the stale footage, camer bumps etc.

But a lot of how you edit comes from the conversation with the client. I've read somewhere on this forum where the client asked that visual representations of the nlaws be edited out. That's extreme, but hey, the client is footing the bill and we advertise, personal service.
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Old August 2nd, 2006, 10:37 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steven Davis
.... I'm of the belief that if you just chapter most everthing, then the client can scan around as they want....
That's my procedure, too. I shoot & edit documentary style -- get as much in as possible. The dvd spec allows for up to 99 chapters. I haven't gone that high yet, but close.

The real challenge is coming up with just the right 4 or 5 words to describe each scene selection. I used to print the scene selection menu on a card insert for inside the dvd case. But, after a few calls requesting another card because they lost it, or, it was used as a coaster then got coffee spilled on it, or, etc.. I now print the scene selection menu on the back of the dvd case jacket. No more reports of missing or destroyed scene selection menus since I've been doing that.

And, I'll add that I haven't had any complaints about including too much stuff on the disk. In fact, I even get a few, "I so glad you included .............."
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Old August 2nd, 2006, 11:03 AM   #7
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I edited my first wedding on a linear tape system. Theat meant starting at the beginning, a habit I continue to use. I always start every project with a plan and the intention to collect footage in a very organized and methodical manner. I am on site with a sequential shot list in my pocket which invariably gets thrown away after the first 45 minutes or so.

I really do like organizing footage by category as it gets loaded into the computer. The footage is organized loosely in folders titled the way I believe the final video will be chaptered. It makes my workflow much easier.

As I indicated, I start editing at the beginning and steadily work through to the end. Working in separate sequences shatters my sense of continuity as I progress through the stages of the project. Titles and chapters are the final tasks.

Most of my wedding videos are single movies with extensive chaptering. I've just begun to experiment with adding additional short videos to a DVD.

Ceremonies get very limited editing. Unless there is a huge pause in the flow of the event the audio tracks are left alone. Only switches of camera angle are edited. All other aspects of the video are extensively edited.
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Old August 3rd, 2006, 01:28 PM   #8
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You Reminded me...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Waldemar Winkler
I really do like organizing footage by category as it gets loaded into the computer. The footage is organized loosely in folders titled the way I believe the final video will be chaptered. It makes my workflow much easier.
I think this is a must. After I record all footage to the PC, I spend a long time going through it and organizing the clips into logical sections based on what they cover. I usually have a fair amount of B roll so that gets a dedicated folder and the divided up by what type of B roll footage (either by subject or time of the event or both).

jason
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