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First Time Wedding Videographer Advice
  • So up until now, my friends and I have only shot videos for fun, more of a hobby than anything else. Recently my cousin asked if we'd do her wedding as she didn't budget for a videographer but thought since we have experience filming, we could give it a try. I'd like to do the best possible job for her, not only because shes my cousin, but also becaus it could pen up a lot of doors for us. I was wondering if any of you who have experience with wedding videography wouldn't mind giving any tips/advice you have. We have two GH2s which we will be using. Any advice is apprciated

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  • Myself and my business partner have a very simple formula.

    1. Have enough card space for about 2 hrs per camera. Have a laptop to dump if need be. Run a GOP6 hack with the 64gb Sandisk cards. Have batteries charged.

    2. One cameraman with bride prepping, one with the groom prepping. The two meet back up for the ceremony and follow through with the reception. Mic up the groom and minister. Shoot all of the important events: toss, garter, cake dances.

  • Hope you have a nice zoom, or you'll be running around during ceremony getting good shots. Zoom on one, primes on the other.
    Ceremony is the main importance, and a good 2 op setup is one up front and one in the back. Depending on the ceremony, the bride and groom may be facing either the officiant most of the time (which case you'll need to move up more to get their faces), or each other at some point (at which back center is best position). When they kiss, keep it tight on them, and zoom out and walk out with them. If possible, shoot continuously throughout ceremony on at least one camera. Good audio is also key. Any way to get audio from the church/ceremony venue/DJ would be great. If you have access to microphones, wireless mics would be ideal. With shotguns you'll have to be relatively close to them to pickup good sound. Bring a USB and blank CD if the church/DJ can use it to copy audio files for you. Work with the DJ, contact them prior to wedding day to ask about their audio setup if any, so you can get an idea about acquiring audio from them.
    Important reception audio would be mainly the toasts and introductions. Ask your cousin to make a CD of their preferred music to use in the final cut.

  • Murphy's law loves weddings. Check continuously that your camera is actually recording; cameras have an evil habit of not recording (either 'cuz of operator error or some equipment malfuntion, hacks increase this probability). Practice changing batteries and memory cards fast while standing. Bring at least 2 batteries w/ chargers for each camera. If you use a separate battery-powered mic, use a fresh alkaline or lithium battery and have a spare (have a spare for everything if you can!). Don't screw up and don't piss off the official still photographer by getting in his shot. Have fun, but don't drink at the reception until after the last major event of the night (only allowable since you are shooting for a relative, otherwise maintain strict professionalism).

  • Thanks for the advice everyone. I'll make sure to keep that in mind and make sure to have plenty of batteries and plenty of memory cards.

  • Plan the whole day from start to finish. Think about where you will be and what you will need to move to the next location. Pack your bags thoughtfully, and always carry spares of everything if you can. Lights, microphones, even tripods and cameras if you can.

  • O and get a monopod