Wedding Videography

by The Wedding Professor

in Selecting Wedding Vendors,Wedding Planning Advice,Wedding Videographers

Wedding videography has come so far since the days of grainy, spot lit VHS tapes featuring in-your-face interviews of guests and shaky footage of the cake cutting. Today’s wedding videography is as polished and as beautiful as a professional documentary, with expert special effects and music that is seamlessly integrated into the events of the day. Though you can certainly ask your wedding videographer for a copy of the raw footage, most brides prefer to see their big day captured through the lens of creativity. The best wedding videographers tell a story through the editing process, distilling the essence of you and your spouse’s bond and the excitement your loved ones feel on your wedding day.

Finding a wedding videographer takes a certain degree of imagination on your part because there is more than one way to shoot a wedding, and it is up to you to decide how you ultimately want to remember your day. Would you prefer a documentary style wedding video that captures your ceremony and reception candidly creating a moving emotional narrative? Or perhaps you are intrigued by the ideas of a faster-paced MTV style wedding video with quick cuts and montages? Some wedding videographers will fade into the background, documenting your wedding stealthily from the sidelines, while others will step in and ask the wedding party to do or say certain things. It is up to you when choosing a videographer to select one who shoots and edits in your preferred style and will be as unobtrusive as you need him or her to be.

While most wedding videographers will happily give you a demo video to watch when you are shopping around, ask for a full-length video. A demo reel will include the videographer’s best shots and is edited for maximum emotional impact, so as you watch it you may find you concentrate more on the drama of the couples rather than things like how shots are framed (are guests’ heads cut off, for example) and whether those shots look grainy (which suggests that the videographer used ambient light in low-lighting conditions).

It is vital to remember that unlike wedding photographs, which may not be processed at all, your wedding video will undergo significant editing before you ever see it. In your wedding videographer contract, be sure that your expectations are outlined in no uncertain terms. You and the wedding videographer you ultimately choose should discuss elements of style such as titles, music, still photo montages, images of invitations and programs; as well as specifics like how many camera operators will shoot for how long, whether footage of the rehearsal dinner is included in the package price, and how long it will take to finalize your wedding video.

Be prepared to pay at least as much for your wedding videographer as you are paying for your wedding photographer. For many couples, a videographer is seen as a secondary photographer, but a videographer’s talents are unique, and the finished product she or he provides is worth every penny.

For the bride and groom who want a little something extra, same day editing can give wedding guests a chance to relive the highlights of the ceremony during the reception. With up-to-date equipment, wedding videographers can quickly edit footage of the pre-ceremony happenings and the vows themselves into a vignette that can be played on a projection screen during the reception banquet.

While most wedding videographers will use inconspicuous supplemental lighting at the reception – especially at evening weddings – many will not use additional lighting when shooting the ceremony. This is because some wedding officiants forbid the use of supplemental lighting in the ceremony venue. It never hurts to ask if your videographer can use additional lighting, and this can mean the difference between a great wedding video and no ceremony footage at all.

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