One thing I have learned shooting wedding videos is that you need to get ‘establishing shots.’ Establishing shots help set the scene of the video. For example many couples getting married often get the ‘all in one venue package’- that is, The Bridal party, the ceremony and reception are all in the same place. This has it’s benefits and challenges for the wedding filmmaker. The benefit is that you don’t have to travel from the brides home to the ceremony venue then onto the reception venue all of which takes time, and more worryingly you can run into hiccups like traffic jams, loosing the wedding party or car breakdown issues, all of which could be a nightmare situation because on the wedding day it’s all about time and schedules and as a wedding videographer you basically have ONE SHOT to get those takes- the bride getting ready, the brides maids, the first look of the father of the bride etc etc.
Then you have the ceremony- the walk down the aisle, the look on the grooms face as his bride approaches- the look of the mother of the bride and other close family members. The videographer has once chance to get those never to be repeated moments.
So all in one wedding packages where the bride gets ready, gets married and celebrates that marriage during the reception in the same place can make the job of the wedding videographer a lot easier and a lot less stressful. The challenge however, of the all in one package weddings is getting those beautiful and interesting shots. For example the wedding I filmed at Victoria warehouse in Manchester, everything happened all under one roof which was great in one sense but as the bridal party didn’t go to a beautiful park or gardens to have their photo’s taken we had the challenge of finding those beautiful and interesting shots in the venue itself.
Getting to the Venue Early
What I did was to get to the venue early- in this case Victoria Warehouse in Manchester Stretford and to go around the venue looking for interesting things to shoot. In my case when I was wondering around around Victoria Warehouse I noticed a few things- a shipping container with the words ‘Box Office’ above it. I thought that would make a great 2 second shot in their wedding film- which it did of course. Then there was a beautiful wooden sculpture just by the entrance to the reception which was illuminated by red and green spot lights- that appeared in the wedding film. Then as i wondered round some more I noticed one feature that stood out about the venue was it industrial past still preserved in the iron work in the venue- hence I took Kris and sat him on a chair facing backwards and interviewed him in front of the camera talking about how him and Jenna first met.
The Manchester Vibe
This worked really well because one we had very little natural light coming in through the window to Kris’s right which created a mood in the film- perfect for the wedding film we were looking to create. Also the sound we got worked really well because this was a large factory like environment it had an echo and that again added to the whole ambience of the wedding video and the whole Manchester suburban vibe. So in short, my advice to anyone shooting wedding films is this; look around you, get a feel for the environment the wedding is taking place in, note why it is that the couple have chose this venue and then work with it.
As a wedding film maker you cannot deliver an off the peg wedding film- rinsing and repeating the same old cheesy formulaic wedding film- in a nutshell; You gotta go with what is! You can check out Victoria Warehouse as a
Wedding Venue here: http://www.victoriawarehouse.com