Wedding Video Guide
YOUR GUIDE TO GETTING A GREAT WEDDING VIDEO
A wedding video should not break your bank but they can be pretty expensive. The cost will of course depend upon what you would like in your wedding video. Most wedding video companies will offer pricing packages similar to what photographers do. The cost of your wedding video will depend upon what package you choose. Depending on where you live a very basic video should cost between $700 and $1000. If you live on the east or west coast you may pay up to twice as much for similar packages. A basic wedding video package should include a short photo montage, ceremony coverage up to an hour, and one to two hours of reception coverage. Some companies will let you mix and match options but don’t be surprised if you are told you have to stick to the options that are offered, and choose additional options if you want something different.
You should definitely sign a contract. A contract is important for both parties as it will ensure you are getting what you want and the videographer will get paid. A contract for services can be very complex or very simple. Either of the two will work as long as what you want is clearly stated in writing. A contract should include dates, prices, number of product, and any special instructions. The wedding industry for the most part is a very friendly and courteous business, but don’t let this lull you into handshakes and verbal agreements. For your protection as well as the videographer, sign a contract.
Music is an important aspect of any wedding video and should be selected carefully. Most videographers will let you choose the music you would like to include in your wedding video. There are however a few things you should consider when selecting music for your wedding video. The music chosen should be something that both the bride and groom will enjoy. You should choose a variety of music types to give your video editor some options to work with. You should include some classics like Frank Sinatra or James Taylor, as well as some modern songs you like. Don’t be afraid to throw in a few up beat fun songs and even country can work well. Be sure to listen to the lyrics of each song closely. A great sounding song may contain some not so great lyrics. Be sure to give your editor a good selection of songs to choose from incase there are some that cannot be used due to bad tempo or rhythm.
Great wedding videos can be made using only one camera however, the more camera’s you use the better it could be. A second camera will help insure you don’t miss a single moment. With one camera a videographer will of course spend most of their time focused on the bride and groom. Having a second camera will allow for more coverage of your friends and family. Most wedding videographers will charge extra to have additional cameras on location. If you can afford it and your videographer can provide it, it is certainly worth having more than one camera. Your actual wedding ceremony should definitely be filmed with more than one camera for good cinematic variety as well as un-interrutped wireless audio recording.
Most professional photographers and videographers should understand the importance of staying out of the way. There are however a few that tend to forget just who’s day this is. You should remember that this is your wedding day and you are paying for the videographer to be there. If the videographer is interrupting or getting in the way you should have someone politely suggest to them that they need to come up with an alternative way of getting that particular shot. Having said that, it is also important to remember that the video being filmed is something that you will have forever and you are spending a lot of money on it. Talk to your videographer prior to your wedding day and go over some of your do’s and don’ts. Having a videographer standing over the bride and groom while they are exchanging rings can be very annoying especially for friends and relatives that are taking pictures. One of the best things you can do is to assign a friend or family member to work with the videographer. This will help them know what it is you want as well as let them know which friends and family members you would like to have in your video Having said that, it is also important to remember that the video being filmed is something that you will have forever and you are spending a lot of money on it. Talk to your videographer prior to your wedding day and go over some of your do’s and don’ts. Having a videographer standing over the bride and groom while they are exchanging rings can be very annoying especially for friends and relatives that are taking pictures. One of the best things you can do is to assign a friend or family member to work with the videographer. This will help them know what it is you want as well as let them know which friends and family members you would like to have in your video
The length of a wedding video will depend upon what type of options you choose. If you choose a basic package your video will not be that long. If you have chosen several options with a lot of film time you will get a much longer video. A very basic video package should produce a 5 to 10 minute video. If you have selected options such as more film time, interviews, or any other additional options your wedding video could be up to 30 minutes long. Even if you choose every additional option available, a longer video does not necessarily mean a better video. A good editor will in fact try to get as much good quality video into a shorter amount of time. The final length of your video should not be a determining factor in what you choose to have done. Even you will get tired of watching your own wedding video if it is two hours long!
Unfortunately the wedding video industry is crowded with amateur videographers. If you end up with a bad video due to a shaky camera, poor angles, poor light, or just poor filming in general, there is not much you can do. What has been filmed is what you’ve got. However, if the portions of your video that you are not happy with are due to poor editing such as annoying amateur transitions, shots that are too long or too short, over done special effects, or poor audio, most of these things can be fixed. Try to work with your videographer to fix the things you are not happy with. If all else fails simply ask for all the original footage that was shot (this should be an option available to you although it may cost a little more to get it). Once you have the original footage you can have someone else completely redo it for you. This is of course a last resort option. Most videographers will try to correct any problems with the videos they produce. The best thing you can do is to go over exactly what you would like in your video prior to your wedding day. And of course, ask to see some of your videographers work before you hire them. If possible ask for some actual finished product not just their demo DVD.
Most wedding video companies will give you 1 to 3 DVDs with any package. If you want more you will most likely have to pay a little extra for additional copies. Look for companies that are willing to give you at least 3 copies, this will give you a copy to keep and two additional copies for the parents of both the bride and groom. If you hire a professional videographer they will more than likely put a lot of time and effort into designing an elegant and classic looking case and label for your DVDs. Be sure to ask if you can see a copy of one of their finished DVD cases as well as DVD label. Not all video producers have graphic design experience and software knowledge. Try to avoid companies that are still using stick on labels as these can peel off over time and cause severe damage to your computer or DVD player. A professional DVD should also come with custom interactive DVD menus with video selection options and preset chapter settings. Of course if you want additional copies of your wedding video you could just burn them however, if they are being given as gifts it may be worth the extra few dollars to get the professionally created DVD case and label that comes with the additional copies you can get from your wedding video producer.
Once all aspects of your wedding video have been gathered and filmed the editing begins. Most the work that goes into a good wedding video is done in the editing room. How long it takes to finish your wedding video will depend upon how much film there is to edit and partly on your editors skill and experience. If your editor is very busy with other projects this will of course add to how long it takes to finish your video. How long it takes to finish a wedding video varies greatly from one company to another. You may find that the best video production companies may actually take longer than others since they are so busy. It may take anywhere from 2 weeks to 6 months to get your finished wedding video. Most wedding video companies can tell you when to expect your finished video based upon how busy their schedule is.
If you find a videographer that you are comfortable with and think they might be the one that you would like to have film your wedding – reserve your date as soon as possible! Generally if you have found this person or company to be a good one, so will others. Just like everything else in the wedding planning process there is a lot of preparation and planning that goes into producing a good wedding video. Don’t wait until the last minute to get started on your wedding video or hiring a good videographer. Videographers try to book there calenders 6 months to a year in advance so don’t lose the opportunity to hire the videographer you really want.