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


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Old November 16th, 2006, 01:16 PM   #16
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Weddings are not money makers

In general, with a few exceptions, weddings are not big money makers. Consider this; even on a one camera basic shoot for ceremony and reception means that day is out for anything else. Also editing even a simple wedding takes 1 to 3 days. I am not sure about anyone else but I only expect 2 to 3 years life from a camera ($2k-$3k) and about the same from my edit suite ($3k-$5k). If you take in to account overhead, equipment costs and paying yourself, I would need to get minimum of $1000/day.
If I am editing footage shot by another videographer on my equipment then $1000/day would be the rate. The more experienced the videographer the quicker I can cut the project together. Bad shooting makes for longer edit sessions. Short answer is, you pay for what you get. Or the eternal video triangle ... Good, Fast, Cheap .... pick two.
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Old November 17th, 2006, 01:32 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jason Robinson
Interesting... how do you handle music licensing? Does the client provide access to their music library? Is the production managed by intermediate meetings and reviews or mostly a hands off approach because they are familiar with your style?

jason

Yes, the client provide for the music content. Since we are far from each other I usually send an evaluation video file through the internet. Once it passed their quality standard I then send the finished video. Its that simple process.
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Old November 23rd, 2006, 04:18 PM   #18
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Charge what you think you are worth.
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Old December 13th, 2006, 01:26 AM   #19
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Thats more like it.
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Old December 13th, 2006, 02:15 AM   #20
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im down with that rate, in need to roll on some new 20's for my bmw, i mean....after a week of editing at that rate, id get me new rolex submariner with ice of course while im at it.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Devlyn Hukowich
In general, with a few exceptions, weddings are not big money makers. Consider this; even on a one camera basic shoot for ceremony and reception means that day is out for anything else. Also editing even a simple wedding takes 1 to 3 days. I am not sure about anyone else but I only expect 2 to 3 years life from a camera ($2k-$3k) and about the same from my edit suite ($3k-$5k). If you take in to account overhead, equipment costs and paying yourself, I would need to get minimum of $1000/day.
If I am editing footage shot by another videographer on my equipment then $1000/day would be the rate. The more experienced the videographer the quicker I can cut the project together. Bad shooting makes for longer edit sessions. Short answer is, you pay for what you get. Or the eternal video triangle ... Good, Fast, Cheap .... pick two.
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Old January 7th, 2007, 08:32 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ben Mahoney
Hi guys,

Thanks for the feedback. The footage is about three hours. As well as those days are not full days of editing. If I sat down and got after it, I could finish in a day. It's also not in depth editing. Just cleaning up, adding some music, transitions, nothing really to major.

I am also doing this as supplemental income. I do make somewhat of a living off of my own weddings. I have yet to really dive head first into the industry because I am still in school. However, I am graduating in December from the University of Iowa and am looking to do this as well as other freelance work for a living. So, I was just curious as what was good to charge for freelance work as well as editing freelance weddings. I was also curious of if any of you got into wedding videography right out of college and how that is working out for you? Thanks guys, and I will definitely obtain permission if I post any weddings.

3 hours should equate to about 15 hrs of work for a full edit, but if you're doing "cleaning up" then should take a lot less. But I always find the 5 times the raw footage time = editing time, so you can just use that formula and divide it from the budget to figure a rough hourly rate.

Roughly, the standard rates in my area ...

$10-$15 - sleezball garbage companies - try to avoid, especially since you can make more in most restaurants LOL.
$15 - very low
$20 - average/most common, and even though you're still in school, you should be able to get this if you're reliable and goodn' all.
$25 - also common
$30-$35 - usually is the best case scenario for a high end videographer.

In any event, $250 is way too low - you should comfortably make that in a day. But you are a student with a life to balance, so spread over three days ain't too bad, but just keep the rates above in mind when you get out. Also yeah, rates will vary by location - I'm in Philly, which is arguably the strongest wedding video area in the world, not to brag LOL.
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Old January 7th, 2007, 08:39 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Julius Tan
I am from the Philippines and I do editing job for a wedding video production company based in LA. They have outsourced their editing process because of the backlog they have. So it is a good business decision to have it done outside for efficiency and economic reason.

We usually charge between 160 to 170 dollars for a full wedding video. The rate maybe too small for US based editors but it is good enough here in our country. I guess editing rates are relative to the economy where you are in.


Some of our wedding video samples are here.

http://www.weddings.neerod.com/clips.html
Do you know Mazzystar, Jason Magunas i believe his name - not sure if he posts here, but he's in the phillipines...I believe he said he sells his for not even a thousand (I'm not sure, but it's very low) and everyone was shocked since his work is on par with companies in the US charging 5-10K
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Old January 20th, 2007, 09:30 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jason Robinson
Interesting... how do you handle music licensing?
jason
While you're on the subject, perhaps you can share with us how you handle music licensing.
Allen W
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Old January 21st, 2007, 08:47 AM   #24
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Editor Rates

I have recently been quoted at $500 for my basic package and $1000 for my top package for editing by a post company.
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Old January 21st, 2007, 10:09 AM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Devlyn Hukowich
In general, with a few exceptions, weddings are not big money makers. Consider this; even on a one camera basic shoot for ceremony and reception means that day is out for anything else. Also editing even a simple wedding takes 1 to 3 days. I am not sure about anyone else but I only expect 2 to 3 years life from a camera ($2k-$3k) and about the same from my edit suite ($3k-$5k). If you take in to account overhead, equipment costs and paying yourself, I would need to get minimum of $1000/day.
If I am editing footage shot by another videographer on my equipment then $1000/day would be the rate. The more experienced the videographer the quicker I can cut the project together. Bad shooting makes for longer edit sessions. Short answer is, you pay for what you get. Or the eternal video triangle ... Good, Fast, Cheap .... pick two.

I think most home businesses are going to have some overhead that they need to consider. While all the numbers will vary between industries, I don't see how you come up with $1000 a day as what you need to make to do well. Working five days a week (shooting one and editing four) would mean you would need $260k to be 'a money maker'. When you average the cost of the cameras, audio, and computer equip over 2-4 years, it is not that huge of an expensive if your keeping busy, producing a good product and charging accordingly. Perhaps you could clarify your math.
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Old January 26th, 2007, 01:37 PM   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike F Smith
Ben,

I don't like to see guys work cheap unless they need a reel. It wrecks the industry. If you want a hobby tie flies, or play golf. If you are editing try to get $50 per hour atleast.

Mike
I wonder how many $50-$100 per hour editors it took for the industry to start outsourcing to the Philippines?

Who really wrecked the industry?
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Old January 26th, 2007, 06:38 PM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ben Mahoney
Hi guys,

I recently was hired by another videographer to edit his weddings. I was wondering if any of you guys have done this and if so what you charged. Currently, he is paying me $250.00 per wedding. However, it isn't really any heavy duty editing and everything is pretty straightforward. I usually finish in about three days. Also, still gathering up the nerve to post some of my work finally on this site. Maybe this next wedding. Thanks guys, as always appreciate all your help.
There are two ways to charge for editing services.
By the hour or by the project.
You won't see to many wedding editing jobs if you charge by the hour.
I suggest that you charge by the project, taking into account the cost of living in your area.
Also take into account the amount of cameras used. More than one camera used for a wedding can be a daunting task if the tapes are not time coded or at least if they are not running continiously together while recording.

If you are willing to put in the hours, freelance wedding editing can be financially rewarding.
Umm, let's see. You aggressively go after the local professional and amateur wedding videographer market and get two to three wedding edits per week at $250/wedding.
You could then freelance other editing jobs and add DVD duplication and transfers to your list. That might bring in another $200 - $1000/week.

You could offer different levels of editing with prices to match.

It might be a good idea to find out how much the videographer charges for his weddings. Then you can negotiate a fairer price, up to 1/3 of their total.

In direct answer to your question, I do this on a regular basis and average $450/wedding. This is in addition to my own weddings and editing services.
Allen W
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Old February 10th, 2007, 12:00 PM   #28
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I tend to agree strongly with Allen here. While I have no wedding or event experience, I do have a good editing and compositing background. And one thing I have always stuck to is charging by the project.

I once heard a story about a man taking his auto in for service. The mechanic opened the hood and after a quick look replaced a small wire. The car started and ran perfectly. When the customer was charged $100 he objected saying $100 for a wire was crazy!! The mechanic said the charge for the wire was actually $5 but knowing which wire to replace costs $95.

You shouldn't ding your revenue if you are very good and efficient at editing. Also, you shouldn't charge excessively (by the hour) if you are not that efficient. The only problem with charging by the project is when I do work for someone I have not worked with before. If I'm not familiar with their skills then charging by the project will almost always end up being unfair to the PD or to me. In this case I set very clear expectations, review the raw footage several times, charge a flat project fee for a first edit and then charge by the hour for any additional work the PD wants done.

As for the original question about charging rates - as previously mentioned, charge what you think you are worth. Another story (I'll keep it short)...I know a guy that used to "dabble" in wedding photography as a sideline to his day job. He was charging rates that were slightly below market average for the area but he was very, very talented. Initially he only wanted to do a few weddings per year and when he started booking more jobs then he wanted (had a problem saying no) he decided to drastically raise his rates - almost double! The result? He ended up booking so many weddings that he quit his day job (as did his wife) and now only does wedding photos.

I know that's an extreme example, but it goes to the idea that price is often associated with quality (linear). If you're worth it, charge for it.
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