Thursday, October 26, 2006

Traditional Wedding Videos Suck!

Traditional wedding video production sucks!
There's not one thing a traditional amateur or professional video producer claims that cannot be created or produced by any person who knows how to turn a video camera on and off, keep it in focus and hold it steady.
Anybody can do that!
Anybody attending the wedding can manage to capture what happened. With the trend toward traditional, some call it journalistic, others call it documentary, style coverage there's no reason to pay someone to videotape the event. In fact, why even burden anyone with the responsibility? Just have somebody place the camera on a tripod, feed it a tape, set the angle to capture a medium range framing and press record. Depending on the media used, check every 55 minutes, reload with a new tape, hit record and get back to the party.
Want to take it a step further?
Get a dozen or so friends or family members to bring their various quality, size, brands, format camcorders. Have each of them responsible for acquiring specific elements - the vows; the kiss; the processional; the recessional; the toast; cake cutting; garter/bouquet toss; first dance, mother/son & father/daughter dance(s).
Collect all that stuff when you return from your honeymoon, borrow what cameras you need to get all the footage into your new 24" screen iMac, load your favorite songs, and put it all together with software from iLife '06. Piece of cake!
You'll get all the conversations in their entirety. You'll get various angles of shots on some elements, one angle for others.
You'll get plenty of candid footage to reminisce over for years to come.
In fact, let's go back to step one, sort of...
...instead of fretting for 40 or more hours to put all that footage together, since you're not really gonna watch it again, if you even bother to watch all of it once, just burn it to a DVD with auto chapters say every 10 minutes and watch it, move around in it to your heart's content.
This is all your wedding video is really about - preserving it for future generations. Keep the reality of what happened intact, and playing it for laughs occasionally when the old gang gets together. Or, for that occasion when grandma and grandpa, mom and dad, or other family members who were there come over for dinner.
Somebody mentions "the wedding video" and you drag it out of the back of the drawer (You do remember where it is, don't you?)
Wait a minute, grandma and grandpa aren't coming over because they're no longer alive. Mom's divorced, and dad never takes the time to call, much less come by. But remember that little number dad and grandpa did together at the DJ's station, singing a couple of wacky tunes? It's worth pulling that video out and watching just to revisit a few of those moments so many years ago. You've got a couple of photos in the album, but it'd be a treat to hear that again. And the words dad shared during his heart-felt toast. Grandpa added something and gave you that...
Oops, that's where one of the cameras ran out of tape. No, wait! Remember! The guy who was in charge of shooting the fun stuff wanted to get in on the act so he set the camera down for a few minutes - missed that take.
Well, what do you expect for free, huh?
Especially when you consider the probability that even self-professed professional wedding and event video service providers will miss the mark occasionally. At least you got something, and it didn't cost you a dime.
You have a video that documents, more or less, your wedding day - none of that cute, creative stuff with all the slow motion (Nobody moves in slow motion in real life, do they?) That's only in the movies - went out with "The Right Stuff." Or, the black and white where only the blue car or red bouquet are in color - what does that have to do with reality?
Or the soft, dreamy segments that focus on you, your eyes, face, veil, hands, rings, lips (really sensuous lips), that expensive dress, your beautiful hair styling, earrings and more...
That wasn't really a part of your wedding, or what happened when you were getting ready for the ceremony. The girls were mostly talking about shopping for stuff, getting a speeding ticket on the drive down, there was that slight, sort of, argument with mom, then everybody yelled something incomprehensible when some guy stuck his head in the door.
You need the reality of it!
Why would you want some creative elements that might interpret what you felt in your heart, some romantic moment that passed through your mind as you were putting on the necklace he gave you as a special present. Why depend on something visually that might reflect poignant moments during the day? You can remember those things, how you felt inside...'s all that loud, mixed up conversation that mixes together on the video like vegetable soup - you know there's celery, carrots, peas but they're all mixed together. Anarchy in conversation, nothing discernible.
When you hire a video producer who does this for a living, you hire someone who depends on the quality of her product and her reputation to survive in a highly competitive business.
When you hire a video producer to come to your event, she comes with one thing in mind - covering every aspect of a very important day.
When you hire a video producer to come to your wedding, she is not your guest! She focuses on having the right equipment, getting the right angles, capturing the things that are said and done, and putting them all together in a way that not only documents your wedding day, but reflects the essence of you, the poignancy of your many moments, the smiles, the tears and the comments. The creative stylization of her special sequences, featuring special moments between you and your husband, you and your parents, grandparents, friends goes beyond simply setting to video what happened - it reflects how you felt.
Get past the thought that all you need is a videotape documenting the day. Hire a professional, and get an artist who knows how to paint a moving canvas with scenes and moments colored with your emotions, your smiles, the romance, and the beginning of your married life. Life can be strewn with disappointments, but for a reasonable price and extraordinary value, your wedding day video doesn't have to be one of them.

1 comment:

Tracey said...

I totally agree that the traditional style wedding video sucks. I am trying all the time to get something different for my clients. Something that nobody else does. It's actually a big challenge. (just in case you care to comment on my stuff).