What Wedding Videographers Really Want Wedding Photographers To Know
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It’s no secret that there’s unspoken words between wedding photographers and videographers. Some stem from unpleasant experiences while others come from a place a poor communication and expectations. Being that I am a wedding photographer and cinematographer I can relate to both positions and felt like it was time to really express a few things to foster a better bond between wedding photographers and videographers.
1.“We’re all in this together…”
On a wedding day it’s not about the wedding photographers and videographers, it’s about the couple and the expectations set for their wedding day experience with the vendor team they hired. To foster this, wedding photographers and videographers need to operate in the mindset of “WE” and not “MINE”. Both parties have a goal and want to capture the wedding day in it’s best light for the couple.
I’ll never forget the day I shot a wedding in Miami and the wedding photographer took the couple outside without informing me. Some may say that it’s not their duty to let me know, but the reality is that neither the wedding photographer or videographer “own” the couple on a wedding day, so it doesn’t hurt to say, “Hey, we’re going outside to do a sunset shot…” At the very least give your fellow vendor the opportunity to make a decision regarding whether or not they want or need to capture a moment or a specific shoot location.
(Before I continue, I want to also share that some of the points expressed here are from talking with other wedding Videographers with the main goal of fostering better communication and workmanship. I also reached out to some other wedding videographers, so I’m also happy to say that this isn’t just my person experience being shared here.)
2. Environmental Surroundings: Being aware of the Field of Views of Cameras for Video
This is a common (for lack of better terms) “complaint” from wedding videographers. Trust, we understand that we are not the only one’s there to capture the moment, but when it comes to video having a photographers “just standing there” can really ruin a precious moment being captured. Regardless to whether or not that videographers is using a prime or zoom lens, it still can ruin a great shot. We not only have to be on the prey for smartphones and iPads, but we also have to look out for bodies; yours included.
3. Not informing videographers of random schedule changes that they know of
Schedule changes affect everyone, not just the wedding videographer. For this reason alone I do create a wedding videography timeline for my couples, but when doing so I also mirror the Coordinators timeline. Most of the time Coordinators don’t reach out to wedding videographers as opposed to photographers. How do I know? Because since I shoot both I’m sharing my experience. I know it’s not done maliciously, but most Coordinators just tend to link with the wedding photographer for the timeline.
If you’re a wedding photographer you can help by communicating any schedule changes with the wedding videographer which not only benefits the couple, but the entire wedding team as a whole.
4. Position: The Ring Exchange & Kiss
This one is a touchy subject because at the end of the day we really want you to get your shots just as much as we want to capture ours (but as shared in this piece a few times), it’s harder for us to make a ring shot or their first kiss as a couple visually appealing if the wedding photographer is standing over the Officiant’s shoulder. At the very least, the couple knows that Officiant may or may not move, but having a wedding photographer or videographer in that shot really takes the attention away from the couple.
For this reason, I have certain lens that I use throughout the ceremony. For the most part, when I’m shooting photography I don’t want to be intrusive, so I will use a zoom lens. I actually take this same approach with video as well, but sometimes depending on the set up I may need to be closer. With different lens options it allows the photographer to be more flexible. In the event that you don’t have multiple lens options, the best advice for this type of scenario is to not stay in one spot.
5. Time Is Ticking: Respect the Videographers Time-Block With Formal Pictures
This is another touchy subject because once again, we understand that formal pictures are important. What tends to happen is that the wedding videographer has certain shots that they would like to get at this time, that can’t be “posed”. Discussing your plan with the wedding videographer and/or respecting that the wedding videographer may need some time during this slot works wonders. If you have a 30-minute slot to take formals, try shooting within 15-20 minutes. This will at least give the videographer at the very least 15-minutes to do their thing with the wedding party and family as they need to creatively.
If you think 15-20 minutes for family formals is unrealistic, think again. I don’t recommend this, but I have had delayed timelines where I only had 7-10 minutes for family formals (photography wise) and I was able to capture everything I needed. How was I able to accomplish this? First, I have a plan and I made sure I communicated with the couple in advance who needed to be present for the family formals.
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