Helpful Tips & Tutorials For Wedding Filmmakers

Wedding Film School

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Wedding Audio Equipment Infographic

Wedding Audio Guide SMALL

This is an infographic showing my current setup for recording audio during weddings.  It’s not the best system and I’m always constantly improving it so keep that in mind.  This setup may not work for your style of shooting.  In the future I’m hoping to move towards being in-dependent from the DJ/Band mixer by buying Whirlwind XLR splitters.  I also want to upgrade my Zoom H1s to better pocket recorders with better preamps.  I’d like to move away from using wireless devices.  I’d like to upgrade my Tascam DR-60 to something like a Roland R44.  I’d also like to have the same lav microphone across all recorders so that my audio sounds more similar.  I’m thinking about getting all countryman lavs.  Let me know what you think about this setup and if you have any questions on how I use these pieces of audio equipment.  Below are the links to buy this gear:

Duel 1/4 to duel 1/4 cable: http://amzn.to/1whYnAk

Stereo 1/4 to duel 1/4 cable: http://amzn.to/1whYtYJ

Duel RCA to duel 1/4 cable: http://amzn.to/1whYMmv

Sennheiser Wireless G3 System: http://amzn.to/1whYZpB

Tram TR-50 Lav Microphone: http://amzn.to/1whZ24W

Zoom H1: http://amzn.to/1whZ6BJ

Tascam DR-60: http://amzn.to/1whZakR

Stereo XLR to duel XLR cable: http://amzn.to/1whZb8u

Shure Attenuator: http://amzn.to/1whZeB5

Rode Video Mic Pro: http://amzn.to/1whZgci

 

Download the high-res version of the infographic: http://bit.ly/1wi1h86

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Canon 6D Magic Lantern RAW Guide & Install Tutorial

A guide on what type of shots you can achieve, how to shoot and how to edit/process footage with the Magic Lantern RAW DNG Feature.  I’ve used ML Raw video on a couple of different shoots now and have been really impressed with the result.  The last wedding I shot, which was in Ithaca, NY I used Magic Lantern Raw video for all of the exterior shots.  The quality of the sharpness and the added ability to pull up the shadows and down the highlights makes it perfect for day time exteriors with lots of contrast.  Most people don’t realize that the wider your shot, the more contrast you’ll have in your image.  I’m going to be renting a Canon 5Dmkiii this weekend to shoot much more ML Raw.

I used a Canon 6D with a Canon 100mm f/2.8L IS Macro lens at mostly f/8 outside.  I recorded onto a Sandisk 95mb/s SD card.

Raw Magic Lite: https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/rawmagic-lite/id658860973?mt=12

Davinci Resolve 11: https://www.blackmagicdesign.com/products/davinciresolve

Hunter’s LUT Tutorial Video: https://vimeo.com/67970827

Canon 6D ML Install Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J26Qg5in81c&list=UU5QuUjtd80FkGRSLYP_052Q

Instagram Video Previews for Wedding Films

You may have started to notice that more and more people are using Instagram over Facebook to view videos and photos from friends, families and businesses.  As wedding cinematographers, we should absolutely be using this wonderful platform in the way uses its unique features.  With the ability to upload videos directly from your mobile device comes the chance to create polished videos for wedding promotion.  In this blog you’ll learn why you should be marketing your wedding films with Instagram’s video feature and how to do it yourself a couple different ways.  We also take some examples from some wedding cinema filmmakers using the features creatively.

Watch this video to learn how to create simple square videos and advanced custom motion animation video wrappers:

Here are two samples of videos that I created with this tutorial method:

How to create your own advanced Instagram video preview with text/images/motion:

1. Edit together your 14 second sequence on a custom 640×640 timeline.

2. Add text, photos or a video wrapper to your timeline.

3. Export the video at 640×640 resolution, .MOV file format and H.264 compression.

4. Place the video file in your dropbox folder or email yourself the file.

5. Save the video file inside dropbox or your Mail app to your camera roll.

6. Upload video to Instagram.

 

How to create your own basic Instagram video preview with simple white/black bars:

1. Edit together your 14 second sequence on a 16×9 aspect ratio timeline.

2. Export the video at native resolution, .MOV file format and H.264 compression.

3. Place the video file in your dropbox folder or email yourself the file.

4. Save the video file inside dropbox or your Mail app to your camera roll.

5. Edit video within SquareadyV app (iOS) or Video Squarer (Android)

 

Tagging and Sharing:

A lot of couples are starting to use custom hashtags for their individual wedding events like #johnandkate2014 or #takybeyoncewedding. You can tag your video with it and the couple, their friends and family will find it on instagram. You can also put common wedding hashtags but you don’t want to spam people too much. Ones like #wedding#weddingfilm #weddingcinema#weddingvideo. You can also @ tag them directly, which is the best thing to do.  You can also tag them directly on the content.

 

Inspiration:

Garrette and Amber Baird over at Eyenamics have been using Instagram video previews extremely successfully.  Their style involves having their logo below the video and a little design above with a clean white background.  The end of the video always pauses on a great freeze frame of the bride and groom and acts like a photo preview after the video finishes playing.  They try to tag the couple and use hashtags to help with getting people to see the video.  They’re also very constant with posting video previews to correspond with their wedding film uploads which is important.  Check out their awesome work!

Website: http://www.eyenamics.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Eyenamics

Instagram: http://instagram.com/eyenamics

 

Rob Adams is another filmmaker in the event cinematography industry that is starting to use Instagram video previews in a creative way.  Check out his instagram profile to see one such example that uses a cool splitscreen effect.  Very different from the standard single video idea, this really catches your eye and is something that separates you from other companies.  Going along this line and creating a style different from others is a great idea.  He also decided to put his watermark over his video and leave a clean white/black bar on top and bottom of the video.  Check out Rob’s work, it’s pretty great.

Website: http://www.robadamsfilms.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Rob-Adams-Films/312786093943

Instagram: http://instagram.com/robadamsfilms

Wedding Cinema Shooting Schedule

The last thing that I send to a couple before their wedding is a shooting schedule.  This google docs file makes sure that our team and the couple understand when, where and what we will be doing the day of the wedding.  I like using the google docs app because I can copy and paste to google maps and use links.  It ensures that we will be on time and will arrive at the correct locations.  Most importantly though, it will illustrate and solidify an expectations of the day.  It helps to keep you from hearing these kinds of things:

“You barely got any of my guests arriving to the ceremony location.  Where were you?”

“The reception location isn’t in that town, you must have gotten your GPS address wrong.”

“Why are you leaving so early?  My cake is going to be cut in a couple minutes?”

“We wanted you to shoot the reception being set up, why didn’t you shoot any of that?”

“The guys aren’t even going to be getting ready for another hour, you don’t need to be up here.”

“You should have had your second shooter with my fiancé as he was getting ready, I don’t need two people filming me getting ready.”

“You should have stayed at the photo session longer, we had an awesome last location that you didn’t film at.”

“If you had one of the bridesmaid’s cell numbers you could have gotten a hold of us.”

Different companies use methods that work best for them.  I’m not saying this version is the best way to serve the function of a shooting schedule but rather an example of one such method.  If you have a different way of communicating the schedule and expectations of a wedding shoot to your clients, please feel free to discuss and share.  We’d love to hear what you think.  Thank you for taking the time to check out this post and our website!

Here is an example schedule that we use:

Google Docs Link: http://bit.ly/1xGeXVS

Kadams Media Wedding Cinema Shooting Schedule

Client Names: Carrie Perlet & Timothy Barth

Date of wedding: Saturday, August 5th, 2014

Map Route: https://goo.gl/maps/u1Ou4

8:45am

Bride prep at Carrie’s parent’s house

39 Heather Dale Chase

Henrietta, NY 14467

Contact: Jim/Jean Perlet (Bride’s Parents) at 585.359.1543

9:00am

Bride receives gift/note

9:15am (TENTATIVE)

Bride Q&A Interview

9:30am

Carrie puts on wedding dress

(13 Minutes of Travel)

9:30am

Groom prep at Tom Moore’s house (Groomsmen)

6303 East River Road

West Henrietta, NY 14586

Contact: Tim (Groom) 575.537.7981

9:45am (TENTATIVE)

Groom Q&A Interview

10:00am (TENTATIVE)

Groom receives gift/note

10:00am

Carrie and Father’s first look

(14 Minutes of Travel)

10:30-11:00am

Bride and Groom first look in Honeoye Falls

16 West Main Street

Honeoye Falls, NY 14472

1:00-2:00pm

Ceremony at First Presbyterian Church of Honeoye Falls

27 North Main Street

Honeoye Falls, NY 14472

2:00-2:45pm

Family Photography Session

(10 Minutes of Travel)

4:00-11:00pm

Reception at The Avon Century Barn

1177 West Henrietta Road

Avon, NY 14414

Contact: Melissa Stanton (Manager) 585.435.1279

5:40pm

Toasts

Taylor Barth (Best man) and Lesley Perlet (Maid of Honor)

6:45pm

End of scheduled service

Details:

There are twenty people in the bridal party.

Carrie & Tim are awesome.

One filmmaker is schedule to work but an additional might be added to the cinema team.

The photographer’s name is Jenny Berliner.

The DJ’s name is Adams Main.

The Planner’s name is Bradley James.

Watch out for Taylor (Best man) and Tim’s (Groom) mysteriously synchronized dance moves.

 

3 Reasons To Make A Wedding Cinema Workflow

Workflow

I recently purchased a subscription to use Tave, an online studio manager for creative professionals.  There was a small learning curve but once I powered through their helpful tutorials and screencasts, I was well on my way to fully adopting the program into my workflow.  One of the most helpful features that I didn’t even think about before using this program was the “workflow”, which made me itemize each part of the process of a wedding job.  It made me break down the entire process into groups and then make steps in order to accomplish these “phases”.  The program is cloud based and is costing me about $25/m which is totally reasonable compared to ShootQ‘s $40/m subscription cost.

The image above is my current workflow for Kadams Media.  It’s what is working for me know and I’m sure it’s going to change as I learn better ways to meet my client’s needs.  Here are some reasons this is helpful to me:

1. Organizes the Entire Process:

Breaking the entire life of a wedding from client sales to completion made me think about every little step that goes into these different phases.  You’d be amazed at how many steps there actually are in the entire process.

2. Communicates to your Team:

If you operate your business with a team and need to delegate tasks to editors, studio managers or interns, this is a great tool to help them stay organized.  This is a helpful tool for them to check back with to make sure they are on track.  Make sure you go over it with them and let them make any suggestions.  This is a document that will evolve over time so make sure it’s possible to make good amendments.

3. Keeps you on Schedule:

Along with each task you can add a schedule for when it should be completed.  This helps you keep on track as far as when things need to be done.  One thing that I found to be a great addition is to make red, yellow or green colors next to each task.  I make the more relaxed green items, tasks that don’t need to be completed right away.  More editing type tasks are colored red which means I need to focus on them and make sure they hit deadlines.  Some people make colors into categories for items but I found that to be not as helpful.

Rode Videomic Pro Review + $30 Discount

A video review of the Rode Videomic Pro Shotgun Microphone. This review consists of a list of pros and cons, application for shooting wedding films and a noise floor and overall sound quality comparison.  Shot and editted by Kraig Adams of www.kadamsmedia.net

Taky also has this helpful advice:

1. You didn’t mention the high pass switch. That’s the third position on the on/off switch. It is very useful particular recording in windy situation. It also eliminates any.bumping boom sound recorded.

2. One good characteristic of any shotgun mic is, it rejects side noise and rear noise. It picks up sound in one direction. Thus it is good for recording dialog. it is mono. Compared to any stereo mic, shotgun mic has lower sound fidelity. If recording ambience sound or concert, stereo mic is better.

3. I use these rechargeable batteries. http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0045WGWCE/ref=wms_ohs_product?ie=UTF8&psc=1

PROMOTION: $30 off a New Rode Videomic Pro – http://bit.ly/1md4Fs3

$10 off a dead cat for the Rode Videomic Pro as well –  http://lacolorpros.com/product/?DCVMP-Rode-DeadCat-VMP-Wind-Muff-for-VideoMic-Pro

Get a new Rode Videomic Pro for $200.00.  To get your discount through refund just email Taky at info@lacolorpros.com. Mention that you got this information from “wedfilmschool.com” and that’s it! Just make sure you like us on facebook and subscribe to us on youtube.  Thank you for subscribing!

LAColorProsWhite

Wedding Cinema Q&A // 4.23.14

I posted that I would do a general Q&A about wedding cinema and here are my answers. Thank you to everyone who posted a comment on instagram, facebook or twitter. If this should be a weekly video series, let me know by commenting below. Thanks!

Wedding Cinema Information Packet Guide

 

 

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This article is meant for you to check out what I do when trying to send out some information to interested couples.  I must mention that to keep up with changes and different plans of packaging, I fix my packet quite frequently.  Make sure to set up a process or use the tools at your disposal in the way that makes sense to you, every business and way of shooting/managing is different.

I like using this five-page PDF because it lets me show my style in a visually organized way.  This packet helps to educate the couple on not only my style of shooting but wedding cinematography in general.  It’s best to assume that the couple doesn’t know exactly what they should be looking for in a wedding cinema company, this is usually the first time they’re shopping around.  I’m not saying that the couple is stupid in any way but just to make sure that you supply all of the information that they might need.  Make the info easily available and fun to look through.

Here is a link to download the wedding cinema information packet PDF

What $40,000 Worth of Wedding Cinema Gear Looks Like

gear
If this looks too good to be true, it’s because it probably is.  This is a collection of gear that totals at around $40,000, which is hardly in an filmmaker’s budget let alone the average shooter.  The fact is that you don’t need this gear to shoot a “good” wedding film.  What does a “good” wedding film even mean?  This post is not meant to tell you to get this gear.

Camera:

(2) Canon C100 – $5000 http://bhpho.to/1hJ11qx

(1) Canon 5Dmkiii – $3000 http://bhpho.to/1coljRR

Lenses:
(1) Canon 24-70mm f/2.8L II – $2300 http://bhpho.to/JLPlEB

(3) Canon 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II – $2400 http://bhpho.to/ISfrp1

(1) Canon 16-35mm f/2.8L II – $1700 http://bhpho.to/1gTZtHu

(1) Canon 100mm f/2.8L IS Macro – $1000 http://bhpho.to/1gDAZ7U

(1) Canon 85mm f/1.2L – $2200 http://bhpho.to/1e1QKVK

(2) Canon 50mm f/1.2L – $1700 http://bhpho.to/1a6DfNe

Support:
(3) Manfrotto MVH500AH Tripod – $400 http://bhpho.to/1k9i573

(3) Manfrotto Monopod – $300 http://bhpho.to/1n3eDRg

(1) Kessler Stealth Slider – $800 http://bit.ly/1iqVu9c

(1) Glidecam HD4000 – $600 http://bhpho.to/1hF8D8z

(1) Manfrotto Tripod Head – $150 http://bhpho.to/1hF8D8z

Storage:
(3) Incase Backpack – $150 http://bhpho.to/1lXGYbk

(2) Porta Brace Tripod Bag – $300 http://bhpho.to/1pEyjfv

(2) Pelican Roller – $180 http://bhpho.to/QMHY4a

Audio:
(1) Zoom H6n Recorder – $400 http://bhpho.to/19ieJsb

(5) Sony SX1000 Recorder – $200 http://bhpho.to/QMCpCP

(5) Countryman Lav – $180 http://bhpho.to/1gH5EOo

(3) Rode Videomic Pro – $220 http://bhpho.to/ILGxhz

Light:
(1) Dedolight – $650 http://bhpho.to/QSBfp1

Accessories:
(1) Manfrotto Base Plate – $20 http://bhpho.to/1lXDW6X

(1) Manfrotto Quick Release Plate – $50 http://bhpho.to/1qfzE9t

(3) Pearstone Onyx 10 – $12 http://bhpho.to/1jYEoed

(2) XLR Y-Cable Female – $10 http://bhpho.to/1h4fAR7

(1) XLR Y-Cable Male – $10 http://bhpho.to/1h4fAR7

(1) SD Card Case – $20 http://bhpho.to/1g2Xmio

(4) Canon BP-970G Battery – $140 http://bhpho.to/1lXIIRL

(5) Canon LP-E6 Battery – $60 http://bhpho.to/1lXIIRL

(8) Sandisk 32GB SD Card – $50 http://bhpho.to/1adnrIS