1st timer needs some suggestions at DVinfo.net

Go Back   DV Info Net > Special Interest Areas > Wedding / Event Videography Techniques

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


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old November 10th, 2006, 05:56 PM   #1
Major Player
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: New Hampshire
Posts: 448
1st timer needs some suggestions

I shot my first wedding with my XL2 about a month ago. I made every attempt to follow tips and suggestions that I read in this forum. Unfortunately, you just can be everywhere with one camera.

Everything up until the actual ceremony has worked out great in post. However, during the ceremony I took some guest reaction shots + a few close-ups of the wedding party. I was smart enough to place an IRiver MP3 recorder in front of the speaker during the ceremony to get a consistent sound recording. But, now I'm stuck with the camera movement and zooms between my various shots. My initial thoughts were that I could just fill in the blanks with guest reactions and head shots of the bridal party from various shots in the ceremony. I have done this before with live bands... it works great. Robbing Peter to pay Paul does not always work. I do not have all kinds of extra wedding video footage from the ceremony.

My next thought was to merge some of the still photos (from the photographer) into the ceremony scene. When the footage came to a part that I moved the camera or zoomed I would just place a photo in the timeline with some clever panning. Needless to say... this approach looks cheesy.

Not sure what to do next. I have great sound of the entire ceremony. However, I'm lacking in footage from the ceremony. I've tried to stretch some out in slow-mo etc...

Any ideas?
__________________
Tim Bickford
Tim Bickford is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 10th, 2006, 06:18 PM   #2
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Chicago, IL
Posts: 6,609
Years ago when I first started doing weddings all I had was one camera but fortunately I learned from my time as a still photog to plan my moves when there was a break in the action so to speak. The time to get cut aways is when the readers (there are generally 2-sometimes 3 and sometimes none depending on the type of ceremony. Catholic, Lutheran, Jewish OR non denominational-important to talk to the B&G when signing up the job) are going to and from the lectern, There is usually 20 to 30 seconds of dead space when they're going to and from so its a good time to get the B footage. Then it's easy (or at least easier) to cut back and forth.
Please don't take this wrong but nothing screams amature as much as lots of pans and zooms in a wedding video. Slow pans are OK if needed, slow zoom to tighten up the shot a bit but fast pans and zooms hurt the eyes.
If possible can you cut those parts completely? or perhaps can you go back to the church and shoot some B roll of say the Stained glass windows or any other interesting details of the church to fill in with if you can't cut the offending parts out.
Even with a 2nd camera rolling (if unmanned) you have to work as if it wasn't working cause you never know when it might crap out on you.
I know right now you're looking at it and are probably ready to shoot yourself, DON'T!!! ;-) It can be fixed, maybe not exactly what you want but it can be fixed.
You said it yourself, you can't be everywhere so all you can do is the best you can under there circumstances.
Look at it again-see if you can go back and get some B roll and I'm sure you will be able to make it right.

Don
Don Bloom is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 10th, 2006, 06:41 PM   #3
Major Player
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: New Hampshire
Posts: 448
Don-

Thanks for the advice. I agree.. "nothing screams amature as much as lots of pans and zooms". I've worked very hard to avoid this when shooting anything.

As for B-roll shots... I shot this wedding outside (sunny day) on October 8th in Massachusetts. The foliage was in full bloom. I could get back to the site and shoot... but the leaves have all fallen.

I did manage to get some childhood photos of the B&G today. I was thinking about weaving those in and out. Man... this stinks....

The good part is that I have total control over the creativity of this project. The wedding was very unconventional and the B&G are expecting an unconventional video. I made one scene look like it is something out of the 1920's (i.e. very old film look etc.) Once I get by this ceremony problem I've got it made.

Thanks for your advice. If you come up with any additional ideas please let me know. Oh yeah... I've posted one of the scenes...

http://video.google.com/videoplay?do...75068750591647

Thanks...
__________________
Tim Bickford
Tim Bickford is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 10th, 2006, 08:17 PM   #4
Inner Circle
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Chicago, IL
Posts: 6,609
Oh outside, yeah that makes it tough. I'm thinking if you have a couple of wide shots of the ceremony maybe with a bit of creative slo-mo (wide shot so no one sees mouths moving) you can cut that in and even use it 2 or 3 times if need be. I'd bet no one would really notice. I'm not really into using the childhood photos in the ceremony, I personally don't think it's the right place to use them but perhaps you can pull a few freeze frames of the closeups you did and use those instead.
just doing some brainstorming right now. It's hard to find an answer without seeing the footage but there's a way out in 99% of the cases so keep lookking and I know the answer will come to you. Maybe walk away from it for a couple of days and go back with a fresh eye. I know that helps me sometimes.

Don B.
Don Bloom is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 10th, 2006, 08:33 PM   #5
Major Player
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: New Hampshire
Posts: 448
Don-

Thanks again. I'll keep picking away at it.

Tim
__________________
Tim Bickford
Tim Bickford is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 10th, 2006, 11:38 PM   #6
Trustee
 
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Montreal, Quebec
Posts: 1,585
Hi Tim,

Good suggestion from Don to go back and shoot B roll at the wedding site. I realize the leaves have fallen as you say, but if you went, you might realize there are things you could shoot. Water in the stream, clouds, looking through tree trunks at the wedding site, squirrels in the grass. Maybe you could get access to some of the ceremonial paraphanalia to shoot. Officient's robe, holy water, communion goblet, whatever...

Also, if you are able to cut any small sections of the ceremony from the final version, that footage could be used as B roll in other sections. I do this all the time with communion footage. During the communion, I take the chance to shoot bits of the church, people in the audience, flower arrangements, etc, then use the footage elsewhere. How much of the ceremony do they really want to keep? In my market (Montreal) most b&g want much of the ceremony cut. They just want the entrance, speakers, vows, blessing, see ya later. That leaves tons of footage I can use somewhere else. Ask them how much they want to keep.

Slow motion is a nice way to cover up small gaps. If it's just a bit slow, you can't even tell. For example, down to perhaps 80% speed, it looks pretty normal. Also, look for little one second bits that weren't even a shot but at 33% become usable.

Reverse motion is a trick I use sometimes to be able to reuse the same shot if there is some camera movement, but no movement in the action that gives it away. Obviously, you can't have people walking backwards, but a pan to the right could be reused as a pan to the left.

I wouldn't use random photos, but perhaps you could use footage from earlier in the day. For example, if you were trying to cover a bad camera move just before the bride and groom put on the rings, perhaps you have a shot of the groom showing the rings earlier in the day. Or maybe you have footage from the rehearsal if you went. Perhaps you could use some shots of them getting ready again where it might make sense.

For the future, if you do more weddings with one camera, try to practice pans and zooms so that they remain usable if need be. Instead of panning from priest to b&g just to change the shot, and you don't care if the pan sucks, take it nice and easy and smooth, so that if you have to leave it in, you can.

Anway, hope it goes well for you.
__________________
.
http://www.nosmallroles.com
Vito DeFilippo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 11th, 2006, 07:17 PM   #7
Still Motion
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Toronto, Canada
Posts: 1,186
Make the ceremony portion a short-form video. It will work much better with less footage and give you more wiggle room plus most couples apprecite that style more these days. In short, I would cut out a fair amount of talking (excep for the couple) and people moving from place to place so that the edited version is about 40-50% of actua length.
Patrick Moreau is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 11th, 2006, 07:41 PM   #8
Major Player
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: New Hampshire
Posts: 448
Thanks again for all the suggestions. You've helped me alot.

The only thing I really can't do is go back to the site and take more footage. It's just not feasible. Not to mention it is 3 hours away.

Here is what I've done so far...

1) Flipped the image on some shots - makes it look like a whole new camera angle.

2) Zoomed in (with the editor) on some shots - looks like a different shot. But you have to live with a little bit if grain... I'll soften it up.

3) Slow motion - used lots of it.

4) Shortened the the scene (advice from Patrick).

I'm almost out of the woods...

Thanks to everyone here.
__________________
Tim Bickford
Tim Bickford is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 21st, 2006, 06:42 PM   #9
Major Player
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: New Hampshire
Posts: 448
Thanks again for all the suggestions. I wanted to give an update.

I've completed the wedding ceremony scene and have moved on. Once and a while I take a second look back at the wedding ceremony. Man... it's my best scene so far. I have hours into it. Boy.. I learned a lot. #1 use more than one camera. #2 if you are using one camera... for god sake focus in and don't move it... at all. #3 If you don't follow #1 or #2 then be prepared to haul out every trick in the book.

Thanks again for the tips and great ideas. I appreciate it.
__________________
Tim Bickford

Last edited by Tim Bickford; November 21st, 2006 at 09:12 PM.
Tim Bickford is offline   Reply
Reply

DV Info Net refers all where-to-buy and where-to-rent questions exclusively to these trusted full line dealers and rental houses...

Professional Video
(800) 833-4801
Portland, OR

B&H Photo Video
(866) 521-7381
New York, NY

Z.G.C.
(973) 335-4460
Mountain Lakes, NJ

Abel Cine Tech
(888) 700-4416
N.Y. NY & L.A. CA

Precision Camera
(800) 677-1023
Austin, TX

DV Info Net also encourages you to support local businesses and buy from an authorized dealer in your neighborhood.
  You are here: DV Info Net > Special Interest Areas > Wedding / Event Videography Techniques

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

 



Google
 

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 09:09 PM.


DV Info Net -- Real Names, Real People, Real Info!
1998-2017 The Digital Video Information Network