As a wedding planner over the course of the last couple of years, I’ve been seeing a, well, somewhat disturbing trend of couples choosing not to hire a wedding videographer. Now of course, we all know there are far worse things in the world to be concerned with, but in the wonderful universe of weddings, well, this just ain’t good.
The argument to nix the video portion of the wedding tends to go as follows:
- Who cares about a wedding video, I was there. (I chuckle at this one because in all its rational logic, it’s true!)
- I already have a photographer taking wedding pictures
- I hate myself on video
- We didn’t budget for videography
Now look, we all know it’s your wedding and not mine, and as a planner, it’s my responsibility to let you know the error of your ways and then proceed as you have instructed me to. But listen, just hear me out on a) Why you should hire a wedding videographer and b) How to select the best one for you. Let’s address a) first:
Why You Should Hire A Wedding Videographer
Although my client was 100% correct when she said she didn’t need a video to remind her about the day since she had already been there, (sorry, I had to laugh again, she was really funny and a blast to work with!) all jokes aside, here’s the thing: The day moves sooo quickly, and I mean REALLY quickly. A video allows you to relive the moment, (even if you were there). You’ll catch things you didn’t notice before, you’ll be moved by your vows exchange, or touched by
the dance with your father, or just watching your guests really wish you well. As the years go by and you build a family together, your children will also enjoy it (especially the girls, come on, you know how we are!) And here’s the super poignant part– you’ll see beloved family who may have passed over the years, in motion, speaking, laughing, crying– not stills like a photo, and that will bring back a fondness only a video really can depict.
Which is a nice segue into the argument of “I already have a wedding photographer”. Well yeah, we know that, and boy oh boy, if you get the right photographer you can get some outrageously awesome shots, but again, they’re stills, nothing is in motion, so the depth of the emotion they convey can be limited. I’ll give you an example: You can look at the most beautiful wedding photo and smile and remember, right, but watch a moving wedding video and what happens…tears start a-flowing– am I right? Hell I’ve watched sample highlight reels from couples I’ve never even met and have been moved to tears! See what I’m saying? No photo, or very very rarely, can a photo elicit that type of emotional response.Look, I hate myself on video too, but in this day of outrageous technology where everything is taped on a smart phone, uploaded to YouTube, goes viral in seconds and gets a million hits all without the subject’s approval, you (and me) better get over it. There’s no way around it, so embrace it. You’ll be all gussied up anyway with your airbrushed make-up artistry applied to your beautiful face, and your gorgeous wedding gown– trust me, that makes a big difference about how you feel about yourself on film. I’ve also noticed that the more you force yourself to look at yourself on video, the more comfortable you get with seeing yorself. Plus, you won’t be watching your wedding video everyday anyway (unless of course, it’s that good!)
If you didn’t set aside money for a videographer, then go back and adjust your budget accordingly to make room for one. If you are having a NYC wedding, we both know you’re spending well over $50,000 for the day. And although I don’t get on you about the cost like your mother does (because hey I know the deal!) that’s a lot of money for one day. Sooooo, why would you skimp on documenting the most expensive day of your lives? You know how everyone says “Oh my gawd, that’s so much money for one day to be over so quickly” Well…. here’s your eternal evidence as to why it was worth every penny! You get the logic here?
So now that I’ve convinced you to get a wedding videographer (I have, haven’t I?), lets talk about what you’ll need to do to select the best one for your big day:
How to Select the Best Wedding Videographer
Like wedding photographers, each wedding videographer has a style of their own. I’ve seen everything from super old school (cheesy animation, dated fonts and graphics) to cinematographic epics that look like Steven Spielberg shot them. I think the best wedding videos are the ones shot in cinematography style, it’s like having your own mini movie, and it’s really the most modern style today. As with any other wedding vendor, preview the videographer’s samples to see their style, make sure it matches your vision, and be certain you feel comfortable with him or her.
I know these weddings are expensive and you want to cut costs as much as possible, but don’t take it out on the wedding video. Cut other things like a photo booth– no offense to photo booths, they’re fun and all the rage nowadays, but I’d rather see you walk off with a wedding video, then your guests walk off with a couple of fun pics of themselves they could have gotten at Coney Island.
- Hire a Professional – Not a student, or an intern, or your uncle who tapes in his spare time as a hobby, or an amateur U N L E S S this is the only way you are willing to have a wedding video produced. That’s how much I want you to have a wedding video, but please don’t be disappointed when your video don’t look as good as your friend’s who went for the professionals.
- Ask for Recommendations – Again, same as with any other wedding vendor, referrals or recommendations are always key.
- Evaluate package costs. Make sure pricing reflects the costs of taping, editing, the master tape, and a second copy. Special effects or editing an overly long reception may cost extra.
So ends my valiant effort to convince you to hire a wedding videographer. Honestly, everyone whose vote I’ve swung has confessed they were glad I convinced them for all the reasons I posed. So this is my wedding gift to you, sound and solid advice on why you should hire a wedding videographer. And after you and dear hubby watch it on the couch endless times and grab the Kleenex to wipe away the tears, trust me, you’ll thank me for it now and forevermore!! 🙂