Finding the Right One

Well, not necessarily the right person to marry — hopefully you can figure that without the help of a blog — but finding the right videographer, that is.

Just as with anything else in planning out a wedding, choosing a right videographer is as an important decision as say choosing your photographer or dress.

Below is an article we penned for the Brazos Valley Bridal magazine, which gives lots of good tips on choosing the right videographer.   Yes, it’s similar to our last post, but also different in many ways.  Hopefully you’ll get good information out of one of them!

“From the Spring 2010 edition of Brazos Valley bridal Magazine”

Well, not necessarily the right person to marry — hopefully you can figure that without the help of a blog — but finding the right videographer, that is.

Just as with anything else in planning out a wedding, choosing a right videographer is as an important decision as say choosing your photographer or dress.

Below is an article we penned for the Brazos Valley Bridal magazine, which gives lots of good tips on choosing the right videographer.   Yes, it’s similar to our last post, but also different in many ways.  Hopefully you’ll get good information out of one of them!

“From the Spring 2010 edition of Brazos Valley bridal Magazine”

Ask any person that was married more than 10 years ago to recall what the best man’s toast said, or what the train on the dress looked like as it flowed down the aisle, and most people could only give you bits or pieces.

However, what they will probably tell you is that all those days, weeks, and months of planning or fretting about the smallest details fly by in what feels like only a few moments.

While photographers are still near the top of most brides’ checklists – and will be for many years – videographers are becoming just as commonplace at weddings as their picture-taking counterparts.

While a photograph may capture a magnificent moment during the ceremony, a picture will never be able to play back your vows exactly as they were spoken.

The view from behind the camera at one of Rock Cottage Media's weddings.

But how do you choose the right videographer?

Just as with any other aspect of planning for your wedding, doing homework is the most important step.  Research, look at lots of samples, and conduct in-person meetings.

The first thing to do is to watch samples.  Most videographers have short demo videos on their websites, and if not, you should be able to request that they send you a copy on DVD or through an email.  Cook some popcorn, and give yourself time to watch at least 10 different videos.  You should be able to find a few that you like, even if you can’t explain why.  It’s similar to the same reasons you like certain movies; a Steven Spielberg directed movie is going to look much different than a Quentin Tarrantino movie.  You could ask two different videographers to film a wedding, and you’d probably get two different wedding videos.  So if you find a videographer that is really expensive, but you aren’t impressed with the samples you see, you’re most likely not going to be impressed with your final product.

Also, when watching the samples look to see how often they use video effects.  A videographer may have some really neat tricks they added while editing, but ask yourself if that’s what you want to watch in 10 years.  A good example might be a special effects movie from the mid-1980’s – it probably blew audiences away back then, but watching it now looks really cheesy.

Once you’ve narrowed down a few choices, compare their packages and pricing.  Most videographers offer pre-packaged deals, but almost all should be willing to work with you to create a package that fits your needs.  In other words, don’t consider the packages you see to be the final price or the only options you can purchase.

And don’t be scared away by pricing shock – most videographers will cost you between $500 and $4,000.  Many factors will affect this price, from how many videographers they use, to the type of equipment they use, to how much post-editing work will be required.  Again, determine what you want out of your wedding video as well as what you like from the samples you watch.  If you just want the audio of the vows, the $500 option may be your choice; if you want it to look like a movie, you may have to spend a little more.

Next, you should request an in-person meeting.  Just the same with any other vendor or service you’re buying, you should feel comfortable with your videographer.  In fact, the relationship you have with them may be more important than others – a videographer will be around you for close to an entire day.  An important question to ask is how many cameras they use and how many videographers they use.  While a company may say they use four cameras, they may only have one operator; a static camera setup on a tripod will look much different from a camera manned by a videographer.  Also ask to see an actual example of their work.  The samples you watched before arriving are going to be the best of the best of the videographer’s work, and often times are only a few minutes long.  A videographer should have no problem pulling a DVD or file out to show you clips from a ceremony they shot recently.  Other important topics to discuss include attire, how much shooting time each package provides, travel fees, payment options, and timeline for delivery of the final product.  Don’t be surprised if a videographer quotes delivery three months after the wedding; in fact, some videographers may require more than eight months to return the final product.

Once you’ve selected your videographer and the big day arrives, don’t forget why you’ve hired them.  The day will feel stressful at times, and having both a photographer and videographer in the same room might not help the situation.  Don’t be shy to ask them to give you a little breathing room, but don’t send them away; the less the videographer is around to capture those small details that makes your big day so special, the less impressed you will be with your final product.  And don’t feel the need to smile, do something phenomenal, or stop acting silly with your bridesmaids every time the camera is rolling – sometimes those small, candid moments will end up being your favorite part of the entire video.

Adding a videographer to your wedding checklist may not seem like a top priority, but don’t underestimate the value of that video once the big day has come and gone.  Many years into your marriage, you’ll always enjoy the opportunity to see grandpa doing the “macarena” one more time, or to show your children how you looked as you marched down the aisle.  Because as any married couple can attest, remembering all the details from your wedding becomes much tougher as time passes.

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About jordanmeserole

Don't you hate these? I never know where to start. So I start with a rhetorical question! ;) And describe myself in 140 words or less? Ha!
This entry was posted in Advice as good as your parent's and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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