Top 5 Things, Videographer

Today’s Top 5 Things blog comes from Jason and Heather of Signature Video, LLC. They are professional special event and wedding videographers.

Here are their Top 5 Things to consider when choosing a videographer!

“As wedding videographers, we see a lot of common mistakes and problems that brides may fall into when booking their vendors. While we can’t speak for every service provider at your wedding, here are our top 5 pointers we’d like to share:

1)      In the sea of wedding videographers that makes up our little “wedding community”, it’s sometimes difficult deciphering those that do good work from those that are good at selling themselves. Make sure you meet with your videographer well in advance. Call them up and talk to them if you have any questions before you book. Look at their work and make sure their style is what you are looking for in a video. If it is important to you that your video is in HD, make sure you discuss that with them in advance to ensure they have that capability. But, above all make sure everything that is important to you is reflected either in the contract or in some form of written document. This will help to protect both you and videographer!

2)       It’s worth it to hire a professional, and not Uncle Bob
In our line of work, too often we see brides trying to save a little money turning to family members for their videography and photography. While that may make your bottom line look good, it rarely translates into a beautiful video or stunning camera work that you would get from a professional. What you usually get is shaky camera movements, not just once or twice, but throughout the entire video, bad or no audio, blurry shots, etc. Sometimes entire moments are missed because your family member was busy dancing or eating cake. This can be nearly impossible to fix even if you give it to a professional editor.
A professional is always a wiser choice. They are trained to anticipate what will happen next and be able to capture every moment clearly and beautifully. Bad weather, poor lighting or acoustics can be tough hurdles to overcome, and hiring a professional can make the difference between getting the shot, or not. A professional has the proper equipment, technology and training, and can also offer a professional finished product. Just as you would not ask a friend to DJ for you just because they have access to iTunes and a laptop, you should not entrust your wedding video to anyone but a professional.

3)       Find a professional that truly WANTS to give you the video of your dreams and not someone who promises the moon to get your business and doesn’t deliver.
As a small, family company, this is something that always makes us sad when we hear horror stories from brides who had bad experiences with their videography company. Too often we’ve heard, “They PROMISED the owner would be there, but instead they sent some guy who had no idea what he was doing”. Or, “They showed us all these great videos of people dancing at the reception, but what we got was just a long continuous shot from a camera they set up in the corner”.
In our minds, your wedding day is one of the most important days of your life, and you DESERVE to have a company working for you that cares about your finished product just as much as you do. You should get the people you were promised. You should get the product you were promised.
A good videographer must walk a fine line between getting the shots they need, and being as discreet as possible. We tend to stay out of the way and not take the focus off your day. We also take requests and accommodate to the client if they prefer one style to another.

4)      Photos are beautiful to look back on and remember your day, but a video OF that day is truly priceless.  When debating between booking a videographer or not, we hear many brides use the logic of: “Well I have a photographer, that should be enough right?” Aside from the obvious- still images vs. live motion, there are many advantages to having video in addition to still photography. On an important day such as a wedding, there is so much going on that photography alone cannot capture. With video you not only can relive the scenes, moments and people, but you can hear the vows, the speeches, and any other critical words and sounds throughout that special day. Video captures emotions and the personalities of loved ones in a way that still photography simply cannot.

5)       Package deals are great for convenience, but often bad in the final product.
When hiring one company that handles your music, your photography, and your videography… be wary. We certainly don’t want to make blanket statements and say that all “package deal” companies are inherently bad, but in our experience, these types of companies often have at least one product or service that falls short of the quality level you may have been expecting.
We strongly believe in the phrase “jack of all trades, master of none” and how it applies to the wedding community. A separate DJ company, a separate Photography company and a separate Videography company can not only focus on their individual services better, but you as the person hiring them can make certain that each of their personalities and their service styles, match what you are looking for. “Package” companies on the other hand, while they say they handle everything, in actuality they usually only specialize in a single area (like DJ) and then have a list of freelance people they will call to photograph or videotape your wedding for them. When you meet with this company, they will undoubtedly do their best to dazzle and impress you with the quality of all of their service areas, but when you stop and think, how can they really guarantee you anything when (very often) they themselves don’t even know who will be handling the actual services they are selling to you?

At the end of the day your relationship with your videography company will make or break your wedding video, so make sure it’s a good one right from the start, and you WILL NOT REGRET making the decision to hire one!

Jason Kichline is the co-owner of Signature Video, LLC. Along with his wife Heather Freudenthal, this family owned wedding and special events videography company serves the greater Pennsylvania, New Jersey and New York areas with passion for exceptional client service. To learn more about Signature Video, check out http://www.signaturevideo.net/, email Jason and Heather at info@signaturevideo.net or call 347-663-5442. Make sure you check out their Facebook, too!

Mention ProVolve Entertainment and receive 15% off any full-day videography package you book with Signature Video through 2012!

Comments ( 1 )
  • Megan Bunty says:

    Jason & Heather were the videographers for our wedding, and they did a fantastic job! We are so grateful we picked them! I second his recommendation about being sure to hire a professional. Being a wedding musician, I once wrote a piece specifically for a bride & groom. I found out afterwards that no one got that part of the ceremony (the Unity Ceremony!) on camera – they were relying on family members. Now they will never hear that song, written just for them, again. A professional would make sure that that would never happen!

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