Tossing up whether or not to hire a wedding videographer? You’re not the first couple. Here’s the thing – it’s a given that almost everyone generally hires a photographer for their day, but videography often seems like an afterthought. Something that would be nice, but isn’t an essential.
Well, neither are flowers. Or professional hair and makeup. Or even rings (it’s true). Beyond having an authorised marriage celebrant make things official (and of course, two willing participants), nothing is essential at a wedding. But for whatever reason, videography is often questioned.
We here at WedShed HQ are no different. One of the founders didn’t have videography and one of them did. And guess who feels like they came out on top? Not the former. Yes, it would’ve stretched the already broken budget (which is the reason why she didn’t go for it) but long after the day has passed and dress is packed away and the good times are a happy yet increasingly fuzzy set of memories, some footage of it all would be really nice. And it would last the test of time.
So on that note, should I hire a wedding videographer? If you can make room for it in your funds, do it. Nothing captures your day in the same way as film. Not even photos.
But enough from us. We invited you guys to ask us any questions you had related to wedding videography via Instagram so that we could put them to the pros.
We’ve enlisted the help of the fantastic wedding filmmakers from The Story of Us to answer all your burning questions around pricing, drone footage, music etc. and to provide some clarity around the arguments for and against wedding films.
I’d like to just generally know more about videography for my wedding. Why have a wedding film?
Wedding films by no means replace photography but together they enhance each other and have completely different purposes for capturing your memories. It’s the same as any story; think of your favourite movie. Looking at beautiful stills of the movie and watching the movie are very different experiences.
When should they start/finish?
We don’t lock in ‘hourly’ packages as we hate putting you ‘on the clock’ (within reason). However, we don’t recommend having your creatives arrive any earlier than two hours prior to the ceremony as you want that morning time with your besties to be relaxed and intimate (and to have some makeup on before we start taking close ups).
What’s the go with drone footage? Looks amazing but some videographers won’t do it because of the drone laws. Is it illegal to film in public vs. private properties? Is drone footage for your wedding considered commercial or flying for fun?
It depends on the local council and/or CASA approval. Some areas we can fly for fun, some view this as commercial. So it’s a case-by-case on this one. It does look amazing and if you’re getting married on a property or by the ocean it really places the day in its surroundings. It’s also amazing if you’re getting ready in your family home and want to celebrate where you’ve come from on this special day.
How many hours should you hire for?
Whatever makes you feel comfortable but you don’t want to worry that things will be missed or feel like you’re being rushed. Your peace of mind on the day is integral to enjoying everything you’ve planned. People often regret not having a videographer around for the dance floor!
I already paid a lot for a photographer… it will really blow the budget for videography. Is it worth it?
You won’t ever regret having a wedding film and you can’t go back in time and change your mind. The movement of your dress, the laughter of your guests, the way he looks at you, a tear rolling down your dad’s cheek (I mean…) capturing those moments on film can’t be matched with any other medium. Also, the sensory experience of music really enhances your memories of the day and adds to capturing a moment in time like nothing else. Just watch a few and see! Always check that your video team edit with the music to enhance the emotion.
What’s a general price for wedding videography?
Like everything wedding-related there’s a huge range. Cheapest would be a one-man-band set up usually around the $1,200 mark, right up to a three camera production around $10,000. Our films are $3,400 + GST with some optional extras such as ceremony, speech and first dance recording (with sound), raw footage and of course boring stuff like travel if you’re out of town.
I would like to have recordings of speeches/vows but I’m unsure whether to pay the price to have it professionally done.
You could of course have someone film on a phone or set up something yourself. But if someone has had a few drinks, a battery dies, it’s windy and you can’t hear, you could miss it. If you want these memories preserved, best hire someone who’ll be all over it and make sure it’s done right.
I’d like to hear from other brides why their decision was for/against a videographer! I’m so on the fence.
The only “against” would be budget. Also, some couples think it can be a bit showy or too much “production”. There certainly are companies like this, with big lights and microphones and multiple cameras etc. which can make it feel like it’s a reality show. We use a single cinematographer, with no lights, cables or microphones and our philosophy is fly-on-the-wall – you shouldn’t even know we are there. We’ve been told many times we’re like a friendly guest with a great camera!
The “for” argument is mostly that capturing the day, how it unfolded, all the details, the smiles, tears, dancing, hugs and stolen moments captured in moving images is simply like bottling your memories. Films look like memories or dreams (or at least good ones do) and with the creative touch of the right team, your wedding film will be your most treasured purchase from your day.
Do you have any tips for choosing a videographer?
Just like photos, you have to love the style of your video company and make sure it’s the style you want. Again, like photos, films range from big glossy things to chill, intimate stories. So watch lots of their work and if you can, chat on the phone or have a coffee with them to see if there’s simpatico.
Some things to ASK your videography team:
- Can I purchase the raw footage?
- Can I choose the songs or will/can you?
- Can you have the speeches / ceremony any other special moment captured uninterrupted and with sound (if that’s what you want)?
Some things to TELL your videography team:
- Any surprise moments on the day (so they can be ready).
- Any particular people you want captured (or omitted! It happens, we get it).
- If you’re having a special exit like sparklers etc.
Oh hey, and a final word from us here at WedShed: if you’ve got any other questions, hit us up in the comments below. Or get in touch with The Story of Us who’ll be more than happy to clue you up. You can find more of their gorgeous work via their WedShed profile here.
After more, no BS wedding planning advice? Click here for answers to all your burning questions.