Good gear can never fully compensate for bad filmmaking. But man, when you put a high quality camera in the hands of an expert, amazing things can happen. It’s easy to tell from this footage that some of these shots were under some pretty harsh light. And yet (like I said, in the hands of experts) nothing is ever overexposed. There is so much detail in these vibrant shots. Just watch it and enjoy.
My internet access is a little up in the air over this next week so we’ll see how posting goes. If you don’t hear from me, keep the submissions coming and I’ll see you guys in August!
Video courtesy of Untitled Images
Music licensed via Audio NetworkRead More »
I’m getting ready to be out of the country for a few days so I don’t have a ton of time to write much, but honestly, this film speaks for itself. A few quick things jumped out at me though: 1) I love the dreamy tone the opening dance footage gives this film. (Quick sound design side note: higher frequencies tend to not travel as far as low frequencies. So if you take an audio clip and pull down the higher frequencies in your EQ, it will sound further away.) Of course normally you wouldn’t want your audio to sound like it’s far away, but in those opening shots that effect totally enhances the dream-like setting. 2) I love the playfulness of the camera. There is so much energy in some of those b-roll shots that is the perfect balance to the established vow angles. It’s never sloppy or lazy, but rather it’s as if the camera is constantly looking for the next exciting thing to see. At times it had a very Terrance Malick feel to me. Thanks Riccardo for the submission. Fantastic as always.
Video courtesy of Kreativ Wedding
Music: “Borealis” by Jo Blankenburg licensed via MusicbedRead More »
Filmmaking. Funny how “film” is right there at the beginning of that word and yet we hardly ever actually touch the stuff. Sure it’s seen a resurgence in wedding filmmaking in the last few years in a hip, vintage kind of way, but most of the time the film footage is sprinkled throughout the video like an aesthetic seasoning. The “real” shots of the video are always digital. And of course they should be. Put your nostalgia aside for a moment and admit with me that the images digital cinema cameras capture today are of a higher quality than film (especially the 8 and 16 mm varieties used by the large majority of wedding filmmakers who shoot on film). That being said, the folks at Living Cinema are doing it right. They are not simply participating in a fad. This is true, honest-to-goodness filmmaking. The exposure, the synced sound, it’s all executed to perfection. Not to mention the Rainbow Room is absolutely the perfect setting for this medium. The 16 mm Kodak brings out that glamorous, time-gone-by tone so well. Enjoy it.
Video courtesy of Living Cinema
Music: That’s right, folks. “When I’m With You” by Ben Rector licensed via MusicbedRead More »
I shot a wedding out-of-state this weekend so I’ll have to keep today’s post short and sweet as I’ve got some catching up to do. The folks at Story of Eve did a fantastic job at capturing a ton of smiles and giggles in this highlight. Every couple (heck, every person) expressed happiness and joy in their own way, but there’s just something about seeing another person laughing that helps you connect with them on a deep level. These filmmakers did a great job of both capturing those moments and utilizing them well in their edit.
Video courtesy of Story of Eve
Music: “Closer to You” by Christian Carcamo licensed via MusicbedRead More »
Hope all our American followers had a safe fourth of July weekend! Mine was ruined by my favorite athlete’s betrayal, but so far I’m handling the grieving process well. Today’s post definitely lifted my spirits. You’ve got to love the When Harry Met Sally interview style to open. The couple’s personality is front and center, and you can’t help but smile at their newlywed excitement (also I’m definitely going to start incorporating the word “snugs” into my everyday vocabulary). From there the camera points us toward tight closeup after tight closeup allowing us to take in the beautiful intricacy of the details. Sikh weddings have so many elements that are so rich with detail that, if you cut away too fast, can become a blur. Here the filmmakers give us plenty of chances to study the lines and colors and that is much appreciated. One problem I had was looping the chorus at the end so many times. The human brain has an incredible knack for recognizing patterns. Sound designers know that if you’re trying to create ambient noise like a walla track, you can’t just find a few seconds of content and loop it. The second a pattern is repeated the audience’s ears will detect an artificiality. In this film it distracted me from what was otherwise an incredibly sweet ending. On that note, I do appreciate the focus given to the couple saying goodbye to their families. That can be a really sweet moment at a lot of weddings. The reality of this new life the couple is embarking on kind of hits everyone at once. It’s nice to see that moment featured in a highlight film. Not wanting to point out a problem without giving a solution; I would have perhaps licensed the instrumental version of the song as well and used that final chorus without lyrics first and then brought back the lyrics for the end. Over all this is a fantastic film that shows off beautiful details while still keeping the couple and their love in the spotlight.
Video by Jashn Films
Music “Make You Mine” by Robert Shirey Kelly licensed via MusicbedRead More »
I realized something as I watched this video. There were several moments that looked so familiar to me, but not because I’ve seen them in many videos before. Rather they were familiar because many weddings I’ve shot have included similar moments. I realized that, while there’s nothing wrong with hitting the big moments (first look, the vows, the kiss, dance floor craziness) and relying on key audio (reading letters, vows, toasts), wedding days are more than just the marquee moments. They are long days full of little looks, hugs, gifts, and smiles. The folks at Hampton Road Studios did a fantastic job of cramming so much into this highlight and you really get to know the couple better because of it. That being said, including so many informal moments adds a casual feel that I think works especially well in this video’s rustic/farm tone. If you were going for something more cinematic or dramatic, fitting all of those in might not be as appropriate.
Video courtesy of Hampton Road Studios
Music: “Though Streams Flow Down Their Faces, They Are Amazing” by Davis Harwell licensed via Musicbed
We’ve had a few people ask about listing the gear used for the videos we post. We’re happy to provide that info if we’ve got it so keep that in mind, future submitters.
Canon C100 Mark II (main camera)
Panasonic GH4 (ceremony angle)
Canon 5D Mark III (ceremony angle)
Canon 24 mm 1.4 L
Canon 35 mm 1.4 L
Canon 50 mm 1.2 L
Canon 100 mm 2.8L
Canon 135 mm 2.0L
Canon 24-105 mm 4.0L
Canon 70-200 2.8 L IS I
Canon 70-200 4.0 L IS
DJI Phantom 4
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Editing is a universal language. I don’t speak a lick of French, but I was engaged the whole time in this quick highlight because multiple times there would be a natural build up followed by an energetic payoff. If you give your cutting a rhythm (not just cutting on the downbeat of each measure, but giving your film a dynamic pace), anyone anywhere will be able to visually connect with your story. In general this style pushed the cinematic envelope more than I prefer, but that’s just my personal taste. For instance I would lose the second graphic of the couples’ names and I’m not sure what the motivation was for reversing those shots at the end. However, this film also featured some really fresh new takes on the wedding film. I love opening the video with a conversation with the planner about reception details. Many brides put a lot of work into planning the details of a wedding day. It’s nice to see that featured in the film.
Video courtesy of Gordon Wedding Films
Music: Epic Inspiration by Audiophile-Trax licensed via AudioJungleRead More »
I’ve got a rehearsal dinner+wedding this weekend so I’ve been taking the morning off to spend it with the wifey. If you don’t already take off a weekday on weeks you have weddings, I highly recommend it. That said, I don’t have a ton to say about this video from Revel Weddings, but it speaks for itself. Gorgeous cinematography, perfect pacing, it’s the total package (also stick around to the end for one of the best exit shots I’ve seen in a while).
Video by Revel Weddings
Music: “Pieces” by Amanda Cook used by permissionRead More »
You gotta love a couple that wants to elope, but still places a premium on capturing that union in a beautiful, artistic way. In good elopement films, you can just sense how much more control the filmmaker was able to have over their circumstances. In this instance the filmmakers create this fantastic, dreamlike setting by skipping the establishing location shots and instead focusing on all those gorgeous details. The camera movement keeps you engaged by slowly revealing more and more information. But really the biggest thing that stood out to me was how the filmmakers were always in control of their exposure. Even if you’re looking at a waveform, it can be tough to judge exactly where things should be peaking when you’ve got so many whites in the frame. Watching this video made me want to get in a white room with a camera and a bunch of white objects just for the practice. Fantastic job David & Kathrin.
Video courtesy of David & Kathrin
Music: “Oh My Soul” by A. Taylor licensed by MusicbedRead More »
I really like how this films controls the energy. It starts off with some cool-but-relatively-low-key music. Notice how the shots with movement are slowly introduced. Then at 00:56 comes a really great close up shot of the bride in some really dramatic lighting. Lighting is always one of those things that can be a deal breaker. I am constantly reminding myself to “find the light.” I think 9 times out of 10 I’m successful. In the situations where I am not successful then I’m forced to create it. It can be something as simple as closing the shades or turning off the lights or taking a walk outside. Without good lighting you have nothing. Here the filmmaker used the light to push this film to the next level. Ok let’s get back on track. The energy. After the close up shot with the bride the groom audio comes in and the groom is introduced. This continues the building of energy, working toward an eventual climax. They take you on these rolling hills of exited dancing and adventure during the ceremony, a tense first look, some intimate shots of the bride walking alone before coming back down into the brides speech. The end brings you back to the subjects and the meaning behind what you are watching. It reminds you that this is a film about 2 people’s love for each other and their life long commitment, and in doing so makes an impact and connection with you. Thanks Happy Wedding Films.
Video courtesy of Happy Wedding FilmsRead More »