I was asked to make a short presentation on indoor wedding videography techniques at the November meeting of the Greater Philadelphia Videographers Association. I chose as my subject, reception audio tips. The presentation was well received and numerous question were asked by the members. I have posted my notes (more extensive then the talk) here. Also included are tips for ceremony audio. While these will be most beneficial to videographers, they are also informative to clients who would like a good understanding of how we work with audio.
As weddings are seasonal here in the Philadelphia area, most of our work comes between April and October (although off-season weddings are becoming more popular). So by November we usually have a fairly good idea of how the year went.
This year was very good for us. For the first time we had to stop taking reservations for the current season due to demand. We also completed the transition to high definition and are now recording, editing, and delivering in HD. Since even Wal-Mart is selling HiDef televisions and Blu-ray players, it was a necessary move. To tell the truth, I love it. The clarity and color definition that we get from HD just can’t be achieved with our old equipment. It really is a pleasure to work with wide screen rather than being constrained by the old 4:3 aspect ratio that television has had for 60 years. Another technique that we use is to record in 24 frames per second progressive scan. What this rather geeky sounding term means, is that we are recording in the same manner as a film camera. The result is that the images are much more film like than we have ever been able to accomplish in the past.
Our editing style continues to evolve. Looking at what we did two or three years ago, I can see that although the basic structure is similar, today’s projects are much stronger emotionally as well as having a much tighter structure. I have actually simplified our editing by remembering the old adage of “less is more”. We don’t use a lot of effects or fancy titles, as we prefer the story to carry the production.
We have also continued to add services. With the Deluxe and Ultimate packages our clients now get their video uploaded to our website. We also provide an Quicktime version of the video that can be played on an iPod, iPhone, or any computer. The other extra is a Blu-ray version of the Wedding Highlights program with these packages. This is of course, in addition to the standard DVDs (which look fantastic on an HDTV).
Looking forward to the 2009 season, we plan the following enhancements to our services:
- Delivery on Blu-ray disc for all video, not just the Wedding Highlights as we currently do. For next year we will continue to deliver on Blu-ray only with our higher priced packages, although we do plan to offer HD delivery as an extra cost item with the Basic Package.
- Increased web presence. We would like to have more video available for our clients sooner on the web. One possibility will be to put a short “trailer” of the wedding on the web within two weeks of the event.
- More add-ons. We would like to introduce a “Video Wedding Invitation”. Another possibility will be to send a short highlights video or trailer to all the guests after the wedding. We can even add a thank you video by the couple.
- Same Day Edits. A video of the getting ready and ceremony portions of the wedding day to be projected at the reception. This is a longer term goal for us, as we will not do an SDE without being prepared and having the resources in place. But it is something that we do want to add at some point.