maya_michael

Most couples have never planned a wedding let alone hired a cinematographer. Most have no idea what to expect or what to plan for. So we have created a tips list to help you plan for our services and know what we need to create for you the very best wedding film possible. Here’s what we have come up with!!

Tips To Get A Fabulous Wedding Film

  These are tips to keep in mind while you are planning your wedding day timeline

 

Time For Interviews

Couple interviews are what couples love about Serendipity wedding films. Build 15 minutes into your timeline at the start of our cinematography time to complete them – preferably before you get dressed. If we don’t do them right away they are impossible to get done later in the day.

 

Location, Location, Location

The Getting Ready footage is some of the best footage in your film. Think about your Getting Ready location: Is it well lit with lots of natural light? Visually appealing? Clean? Roomy enough for your bridal party, Photographer and Cinematographer? These are all important things to consider when choosing a location.

 

Creating Beautiful Lighting

Cameras don’t operate well in low lighting. It is important to consider lighting in every aspect of your day to get the most flattering footage possible. Think about the light at your Getting Ready location, the Ceremony site and the Reception. If there is not enough lighting, think about bringing some in. (Oh and uplighting is not considered “light” in our book!)

 

Cinema Time

Gone are the days of hours alone with your Photographer on your Wedding Day. To create the most beautiful wedding film possible, we need some shots with you too, and we don’t want to ruin your Photographers mojo by encroaching on their time or shouting out poses we need from you. Block out about 15 minutes of time for your cinematographer separate of your Photographer so that we can get the shots that we need for your wedding film, ideally at the beginning of the shoot.

 

Doing a First Look

98% of couples do a First Look these days, and we highly recommend it. It allows us to get some spectacular footage of a hugely meaningful moment that you will be able to look back at and remember forever. It allows your Photographer and Cinematographer time to be more creative throughout the day, instead of racing against the clock trying to get all shooting done after the Ceremony.

 

Consider an “Unplugged Wedding”

You are paying a lot of money for us to capture your day, so ask your guests to be present in the moment and put away the phones and and cameras. When they are busy with their iphones and ipads they get in our way and ruin the very shots you are paying us to get.

 

Eating Time

Talk with your catering manager about feeding your vendors when the bridal party eats. If we are fed after the guests, we don’t get enough time to hydrate and nourish ourselves and we could miss the start of your reception.

Reply...

Comments

I think I need to stop calling it a Wednesday Wedding Film tip because it never seems to be posted on Wednesdays these days….

Today’s tip revolves around the location of your Ceremony. I know it is natural to gravitate toward a waterfall or water fountain or other water feature as the backdrop of your wedding ceremony because of its beauty. I know the thought is “Won’t that backdrop make for the best pictures?”. Absolutely….  It would be a great backdrop for PICTURES… But a wedding film… Not so much… Much of what we do revolves around audio and if you are standing in front of a babbling brook or a waterfall or water feature of any kind guess what suffers…. The audio of your wedding film and most importantly your wedding vows. There is nothing we can do to remove or minimize that sound. So if a wedding cinematographer and a wedding film is important to you consider that when selecting your ceremony location.

Reply...

Comments

I love the holidays but I always enjoy coming back and diving right back into work. I love the excitement that a new year brings. It’s a blank canvas full of possibilities and ideas. I am refreshed and ready to rock. Here is my first Wedding Film Tip of 2013 and it is coming to you from the future… Couples are focused on their wedding day. As far as they are concerned the world stops that day and ceases to exist after that. They spend hours, weeks, months planning this one event. There is no time to think of the future… They’ll worry about that later. Knowing what I know because I am in the wedding biz and having planned a wedding myself and now years later having children who are 7 and 5 the number one recommendation that I will make is to invest in your memories. When all of the food has been eaten and the champagne drunk the ONLY thing you have to show for this blessed event is your photos and your wedding film. That’s it. It’s the only record of those divine table linens and your fabulous decor. Your memories will show you people dancing and laughing and hugging and having the time of their life. They will give you your dads toast back and your mom zipping up your dress and your grooms look when he sees you for the first time. And a few years later you will be able to pass this gift along to your children and show them the day that you created your family. If I were getting married tomorrow I would put a solid chunk of my budget to my Photographer and Cinematographer to preserve these moments and memories that can never be recreated. Here’s to an awesome 2013 full of lots of new memories!!!

Reply...

Comments

Grand Exits are rad. Do one. They make for an awesome ending to an incredible day which means an awesome ending to your wedding film and photos. Check it out the impact that it makes on the end of your film…

Reply...

Comments

Another Wednesday Wedding Film tip posted on Friday. We’ve been busy over here…. Editing fools to be more specific… Get it? I was playing off of the title of the Wednesday Wedding Film tip.

This weeks tip is to be specific about your vision. About 6 weeks before your wedding at Serendipity we send you a Wedding Questionaire. This asks you everything under the sun about your wedding day. I realize that you are getting these types of questionaires from all of your vendors and they can be monotonous to fill out and cumbersome but these questionnaires play a vital role in the look of your wedding film and contribute significantly to the satisfaction of the finished film. Every couple is so different and what parts of the day each couple values the most is different. So when you receive that questionaire be specific. Give us the “deets” of your event. Of course all moments of the day are special but maybe there are “must haves” that we need to know about. Share them! We are pretty great at getting comprehensive coverage of the event but we aren’t mind readers. If there are specific details you want covered tell us. This helps us know what to look for and know what’s important to you. That way we make sure that it is in your film. When you get your finished film we want you to look at it and say “This is so us!! How did they capture “us” so perfectly?” I’d like to think we are so awesome but really we just know how to read. You told us everything you wanted, you were specific and we just executed that vision.

 


Reply...

Comments

It’s the Wednesday Wedding Film Tip posted on Friday….

Part of what a lot of cinematographers offer are something called Documentary Style Edits. I want to explain to you what a Documentary Style Edit is to Serendipity. A Documentary Style Edit is a specific part of the wedding day that is edited in its entirety. So let’s take the Wedding Ceremony for instance… If you  get a Documentary Style Edit of your Ceremony that means we edit from beginning to end your ENTIRE wedding ceremony. So if your Ceremony is 30 minutes long the Documentary Style Edit of your Ceremony is 30 minutes long. Take a look at a Documentary Style Edit of a Ceremony below.

Reply...

Comments

A lot of our couples have terrible memories of being at weddings and being attacked by a dude with a video camera and a big bright light shining in their faces and told to “Say something to the happy couple!”. I can see why couples opt out of Guest Well Wishes if this is their perception of them. At Serendipity we do things different. We are not a fan of drunk, bone headed answers and when you grab someone in the middle of a reception after the booze has been flowing chances are that an articulate answer is not what you are going to get. So our approach is totally different. You give us a list of people that you would like to hear from and we ask them specific questions. By asking questions instead of having them go off the cuff you get much better responses. I always encourage my couples to allow for Guest Well Wishes. You have to look at 10 years from now. Wouldn’t it be awesome to hear an interview from your parents, grandparents, siblings or friends about how they felt on your wedding day? These are moments you can’t put a price on. If done well Guest Well Wishes can be an awesome addition to your wedding film.

Reply...

Comments

Understanding the editing process of your wedding film is a key element to managing your expectations on when you will receive your finished film. An industry standard for completion of a wedding film is roughly 6 months. A couples first thought is 6 months seriously??? Are we working on your wedding film for the entire 6 months? The answer is no. But there is an extensive process to complete your film. Once your footage comes in after your wedding we import it into our editing system and go through a process called “logging”. This is where we label and organize every clip that we shot. Once it is logged we then work on your Wedding Movie Trailer which is a 2-3 minute mini Highlight Film. Once that is completed you go into the lineup of films to be completed. Most cinematographers have a few months of backlog of couples whose projects are ahead of yours to be completed. Once it is time for your film to be completed at Serendipity 2 Editors are working simultaneously to complete it. One Editor is editing your Highlight Film and the other is working on editing your Documentary Style Edits like your Ceremony being edited in full or your Toasts being edited in full. So now you are thinking “Ok cool so they are editing my wedding film… How long could that possibly take? A few days? What’s so hard? Pick some shots and throw down some music and call it good.” This couldn’t be further from the truth. Editing is a very extensive process and takes sooooo much time. For every edited minute of footage it takes an hour to lay down that one minute. And that is before you color correct, add any special effects, any titles or any audio. At Serendipity our films are very audio based so the time it takes to edit a film doubles. What I mean by audio based is that our films have a lot of “sound” in them meaning parts of the interviews, toasts and ceremony audio are in your film. All of that takes a significant time to lay down. At Serendipity all of our films are handcrafted for who you are as a couple so we are weaving together a story of your wedding day. Once your film is finished you get a link emailed to you to approve it. Once we send you the link to the film things move super fast and you generally have your film within a week. So that’s the skinny. So the take away from this post… Editing takes a really longggggg time.

Reply...

Comments

When researching a Cinematographer make sure that what your vision is for your finished wedding film lines up perfectly with who you end up hiring. We as creative professionals are never a fan of emails with links to other Cinematographers work that says “Can our wedding film look like this?”. We know that you are just trying to send samples so we get an idea of what you want but to a Cinematographer we think “If they like their work so much then they should just hire them.” If you as a couple find yourself trying to change the style of the Cinematographer that you hired then they are probably not the best fit for you. If what you see on their website and blog you absolutely love then hire them. We are happy to customize a film to who you are as a couple but if you find yourself asking your Cinematographer if they can do this and that and it is a total deviation from what you see in their “normal” style you might want to keep looking. If you are not on the same page about what the finished product should and will look like it will only lead to a headache for the couple and the Cinematographer in the end and that is not good for anyone.

Reply...

Comments

I am known to be a pretty direct girl… Let’s just say that my mouth has gotten me in trouble maybe one or two times in my lifetime… I am honest though and I put it out there. You can always count on me to tell you what I think. I am working on how I deliver it… It’s an evolving process… I say this because this Wednesday Wedding Film Tip may come off as a little abrasive. But here goes….

We are professionals. Emmy Award winning and uber talented Cinematographers and Editors. Let us do what you hired us to do. Nothing is more frustrating to a creative professional than for the client to try and direct the creative process. Especially when the client knows nothing about editing or cinematography. There is a method to our madness. A reason why we choose the shots that we do or put some things in and leave others out of a film. 9 times out of 10 when a client gives us a list of revisions for their wedding film and we do them they always like the original version better and have us change it back. Trust needs to be basis of the relationship. If you know your cinematographers work and love the cinematographers work there is no reason to believe that your wedding film is going to be a massive deviation from what you love about your cinematographers style. So trust that we will deliver it, that we know what we are doing and that we know whats best about what will work or not work for your wedding film.

Now believe me I get it. This is your wedding film and you are paying good money for it so you want to be able to have a say in how it turns out. Absolutely! At Serendipity we have systems in place for you to determine exactly what your vision is and what you want focused on. Here is your chance, tell us everything you want us to know!! But once that process is complete let us work our magic. And it is in fact magic how we hand craft and weave together the perfect story of your wedding.

Take your job for instance… Let’s say you are a teacher… And you have your classroom in order and your lesson plans organized and your system in place for how you teach and a parent came in and started giving you guidance on how to do your job and wanting to change things and basically disrupt a system you have had in place for 6 years that you know works. You would be annoyed right???? My point exactly…

Bottom line…. Trust in the professionals that you hired to do the amazing job that you hired them to do and you will leave a satisfied customer.

Reply...

Comments

Keep up with our latest shenanigans on Instagram