5. Have a visual reference of what you want your video to look and feel like.
Bring in a photograph, web-site, movie clip that you love and talk about why you enjoy them. If you have picked your photographer already, I like to look at their work, it helps me get ideas of what you like. I often ask couples what movies they like to watch to get a sense of their personalities and visual styles.
For example: I once met with a couple who loved, Sex and the City (Bride) and Reservoir Dogs (Groom). In the meeting, I pulled up the Sex and the City Intro and the opening for Reservoir dogs on You-Tube and after talking about what we liked about them, we decided to shoot our own version for their wedding video. It turned out so cool!
4. Have photos of important family members and friends that you want captured.
It is so helpful to me to see faces before a wedding. I am a visual person by profession. I am also not a super human mind reader. With over 100 guests, even the best videographer can not guarantee that EVERYONE at your wedding make it to your video or get the same amount of attention that your key players will. I always try to cover all my bases as best I can, getting grandparents, kids and siblings outside the obvious key players that stand up in your ceremony. SO if you have someone who is special to you, that I may not know is that special, bring me a photograph.
3. The brighter the Better.
If you choose an alternative space for your ceremony, take your videographer with you to design the lighting in the space. Dark spaces spell bad news for your video. Video needs lots of light, otherwise you get grainy, dark footage with little color range and depth. Alternative spaces and hotel ballrooms with no windows and ceremonies with chupahs need more attention paid to the lighting. I always try and make contact with the banquet manager at hotels, or your designer to work on the lighting.
My philosophy: mood lighting is romantic for an evening, your video is forever.
Take the extra step and work with your videographer, designer and manager of the space you choose on lighting your space for your video.
(if you are concerned about having a spotlight, stage like feeling…I assure you, there are tasteful ways of lighting that can still get you the feeling you want and have enough light for your video)
2. Talk to the camera and describe what you are going through as the day goes on.
This makes a great story that your editor can use to make something sweet and tailored to the both of you. One of my couples talked to the camera right before she walked down the aisle, later in the edit we used it to tell the story…and the groom had no idea. When they saw it for the first time, it was a very touching moment.
1. (Ok, so this is really 2 things.) Write your own vows and whisper to each other during your ceremony.
I have noticed that couples who write their own vows have a deeper connection with each other, more engaged faces during their ceremony and allow their emotions to flow. Which makes me shed some tears and tells a great story. I will use that audio later in an edit to make something that will pull the both of you closer to each other on the couch when you watch it.
Whispering to each other during the ceremony keeps the both of you alive and focused on the task at hand…even if you are whispering about how hot the room is, it makes a big difference in how you appear on film.
It is so easy to zone out at the alter. Brides often comment later while watching their ceremony video that they never realized how their faces looked.
By Melissa Martens, Cinematographer
Photos by: Brian Carey