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Choosing your wedding videographer

When properly produced, wedding videography is an art and not simply a home movie.   When choosing your videographer you should consider a few things.  Hiring a professional videographer is a must.   Videographers do not participate in the activities. They must remain focused on what to videotape, how to get the shot, camera settings, sound, lighting and so on. That’s why it is important that a family member or friend not be selected as the videographer. They will not be able to celebrate with the couple at the reception. The videographer will not be able to relax and chat with family and friends. If they do, they could miss valuable shots if their attention is drawn away.  
Your videographer must be experienced in wedding videography.  Ten years as a videographer for a TV station is nice, but it doesn’t qualify one to produce a wedding DVD. Your videographer and video editor (sometimes it’s the same person) must be trained in wedding productions and what shots to capture, how to capture those shots and artistic video editing.   Just as with photography, there are angles to set up, positioning of the couple for certain scenes like the cake cutting, garter and bouquet toss.   After doing hundreds of weddings, the experienced videographer develops a sense of the flow of the day’s events.
 It’s nice if the photographer, videographer and DJ all have an itinerary of the events during the reception but rarely do receptions start on time, event schedules can change so being prepared for the unexpected is typical. If the videographer has stepped away for just one minute, he (or she) could miss something special that’s not on the itinerary. The groomsmen (or even special family members) could get together to do a special dance dedicated to the bride and groom. It’s a surprise to the couple and so it’s not on the itinerary.   Another important aspect is that your videographer should make an effort to become familiar with the immediate family members and recognize them. The couple will want shots of family members in the video. For example, the bride’s elderly grandmother has decided to dance with her grandson for just a minute. Your videographer should be aware of what’s going on and prepared to get that shot. There’s a lot going on during the wedding day and the videographer obviously can’t capture every single moment else the wedding DVD will be almost 8 hours in length.   However, capturing the important shots is what makes a treasured wedding DVD.  Another must have is good equipment. Some videocameras shoot better in low light.  Event videography, especially weddings have more issues with low light than other video productions.   Extra lighting helps but maintaining an intimate setting is easier without blasting the scene with too much additional lighting.   Check out the videographer’s demo. Are the scenes properly lit or has the image taken on a grainy or darker look? Are the colors crisp? Is the audio clear? Ask them for referrals. That’s your safest bet.