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Budget Busting Video

Recording Your Event

It is fair to say that Videography is as important as Photography at any wedding or event these days but with the recent economic downturn some couples may be forced to make the ‘tough’ decision on which one they would rather have. Choosing carefully means that you may not have to make that choice at all!

Photography, capturing still images on film or Videography, creating a recording of the day in full colour motion pictures, as it actually happened, it’s a difficult if not impossible choice to make.

Most couples would be ‘hard pressed’ to remember what ‘auntie Beryl’ was wearing,
the colour of her outfit or indeed, what happened when ‘uncle Fred’ fell asleep during the groom’s speech! Video is the only way to capture unique moments like the fits of ‘giggles’ the bridesmaids had or the ‘raw emotion’ of the day like the private moments shared between mum, dad and daughter, which are all hard to capture on a photograph.

Most good Videography companies will be able to offer you ‘stills’ from your film to transpose into photographs but the quality may not be as good as the results obtained from a professional photographer and you would not get the composition of shots to choose from like the traditional grouping of relatives and the traditional bridal shots. If you are happy to have an informal record of the day, then photograph images taken from video stills may be a good choice; you would at least have the best of both worlds. Ask your video company to see some examples of stills before you make your decision if you want both professional video and professional photography, then go for lower budget packages so that you can afford both!

You can of course, use a well meaning friend to ‘shoot’ your wedding video there are lots of good video cameras on the market now but if he’s never filmed a wedding before, it will show so don’t be too expectant about the quality or content of your finished film. If he is not skilled in the editing process either, then you may well have people ‘bobbing’ up and down in front of the camera, blurred film, varying volume levels and background noise at the very least. Are you sure you want your friend to film the biggest day of your life, he may not stay a friend for very long!!

Professional V Semi Professional Videography:

Do not think that by considering a professional service you will have to pay out a small fortune!

Videographers range from part time professionals offering a very ‘high quality’ service using top grade equipment and producing a professional film production to full time professionals offering the same but using outside television broadcast equipment, more cameras and more staff. It could be argued that the results from the latter should be far superior but this is not always the case, experience plays an important part, as do editing and lighting skills. The only difference in the two is the prices they charge.

Part time professionals will charge anything from £500-£1000 for a full days filming with some offering budget packages for the filming of the ceremony only. In theory you could have the most important part of your day filmed from as little as £400.00

Full time professionals may charge you between £1000-£4000 so shop around and talk to 2-3 companies in depth to make sure that you get exactly what you want. Consider what style of filming you would like; some may prefer a traditional wedding film whilst others prefer the look of a documentary style production. Do you want an overall ‘romantic’ feel to the film or a fun film with a ‘smattering’ of romance in the middle, maybe during the actual ceremony. What music would you like?
Do you want a photograph montage added to your film, maybe of the two of you growing up?

Communicate to them what you would like your finished production look like, after all you wouldn’t go to the hairdresser and tell them to do whatever they liked, would you?
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Full time professionals may charge you between £1000-£4000 so shop around and talk to 2-3 companies in depth to make sure that you get exactly what you want. Consider what style of filming you would like; some may prefer a traditional wedding film whilst others prefer the look of a documentary style production. Do you want an overall ‘romantic’ feel to the film or a fun film with a ‘smattering’ of romance in the middle, maybe during the actual ceremony. What music would you like?
Do you want a photograph montage added to your film, maybe of the two of you growing up?

Communicate to them what you would like your finished production look like, after all you wouldn’t go to the hairdresser and tell them to do whatever they liked, would you??

Questions to ask:

Ask to see an example of work.
Look for sound distortion, picture wobble, focus. If you do not like what you see then it is probable that you won’t like your own production when it is completed.

Ask to meet the person who will be filming your wedding.
This is important, as you will feel much more at ease with them around if you have already met and get on well. Most good cameramen do not get in the way and you should hardly notice that they are there!

How many cameras will be used in the filming of your event?
Any more than two or three (which is a far cheaper option anyway) and your wedding or event could be turned into a film set with wires and obstacles everywhere!

What equipment is being used?
Professional or semi professional?
What format will it be filmed in, HD, Blue Ray etc…
What is included in the price?
What is the cost of copies, music, editing, licence fees, etc….

Will you be liasing with my photographer (If you have one)?
This is important to ensure the smooth running of the day and to stop them getting under each other’s feet! Professional companies will always introduce themselves prior to your event if they have not worked together before.

When should I book my date?
Most good videographers can be booked up months in advance and May-September is the busiest time. To be sure of securing your date and avoid disappointment, it would be wise to book between 9-12 months in advance. You will be required to pay a booking deposit; these vary from around £150-200 and are usually non-refundable so make sure that you have wedding insurance in place, this does not cost much and will usually cover you for the return of deposits if anything un-toward does go wrong and you have to cancel your arrangements. If you need to alter your date, make sure that you talk to your videographers straight away as if they are already booked on the date you need, you will have to start the whole process of finding a new company all over again and you may still not get your booking deposit back.

Do you have adequate business insurance?

Your chosen company should be covered for any eventuality that may occur whilst filming your event if it is their fault or if a dispute arises, ask to see their cover certificate. Make sure that you know what happens if they are unable to film your event for any reason and whether there is backup for such an occurrence.

Do you belong to a professional organisation?

Belonging to an organisation such as the IOV (Institute Of Videographers) or the APV (Association of Professional Videomakers) is not a requirement to running a Videography company. They can be useful for information if a dispute regarding your film arises and a level of competence has to be attained before full membership is offered to film companies although this is not the case for associate members where work does not have to be submitted

Author: Lorraine Sheehan  Chocolate Box Films