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

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Old July 25th, 2011, 07:28 AM   #16
Inner Circle
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Belgium
Posts: 9,426
re: What do you do when you take ill

Yes, I have it covered in my contract that the couple can't sue me if I"m not able to do their wedding for whatever reason. They get a complete refund of what they already paid. Until now I have done whatever possible to do my job, like I said, if I can stand I will work but I have given it much thought how to have it covered better in the future, it's not easy to find good videographers as they are usually fully booked.

My father (68 years old) films as well but he doesn't like to travel more then 30kms and certainly not to bigger cities like Antwerp and Brussels and I usually work around those parts. For some weddings close to his home I can ask him but for other cases I only can call some videogs and hope someone is available. The problem is that clients usually book you for your style of work and might end up with a video they don't like but I think that's still better then no video at all. Especially for weddings you see more and more DSLR, steadicam, slider etc used but certainly not that much videographers are doing that here, so it's difficult to find a videographer with the same filming style.

I also have been thinking with all these possibilities with social media like twitter, facebook, linkedin and so on it should be possible to connect to many videographers in my area and post these kind of urgent requests for a replacement videographer. In that way you can reach many people in a very short time and list the requirements to see if someone could take over. In that case you can still do the editing part but might end up doing it for free if the videog you hire has a high rate. I also think if the film work is of lower quality that what you normally would deliver you have to give the client a discount as well.
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Old July 25th, 2011, 09:10 AM   #17
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Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Midlands UK
Posts: 699
Re: What do u do when u take ill

Fortunately I've never had to pull out of a job (grasping at wood) due to illness or accident, though it is something that does occasionally cross my mind at times as I get older (and clumsier). However I have had to step into the breach on four occasions for others who for various reasons were unable to attend a booking. One who was taken ill at a wedding on a Saturday evening but had another the following day: I got a call from his wife at 6.30 am on the Sunday morning to ask if I could cover it. Another from someone I'd met a couple of times at news events doing similar coverage, he had a call into hospital for an operation which caused him to be out of action for a wedding, though there was a few weeks notice. It was during a quieter period and I was available so could meet with the couple. Another short notice one was someone who was stranded abroad after a flight cancellation the day before a wedding and the fourth was someone who had decided to give up weddings after his car was stolen with his equipment inside it the week before.

All but one of those were from people that I've had an informal alliance with for many years. We formed this partly for these sort of occurrences as well as job sharing.

For many years I was wary of consorting with the competition but I changed my mind after having to pass a wedding to an unknown videographer when I was asked to cover a wedding for a very close friend but I'd already got a booking for their date. At that time I didn't know anyone personally so took someone at their word that they had covered weddings but what they presented me with was shocking, so bad that I couldn't charge the couple and even refunded their deposit (as well as having paid the person I asked to cover it). After that I made a point of contacting nearby videographers and exchanging work samples (with those who would). Over the years we have made good alliances.
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