Do you remember that scene in “Father of the Bride” where Annie Banks surprises her parents and says that she’s engaged? I grew with a cousin who was obsessed with FOB 1 and 2 – so there were many sleepovers together watching this movie.
I bring up this scene because John and I recently video taped a surprise wedding. The bride is a coworker of John’s and we’ve hung out a few times with the couple outside of work. They invited us to their engagement party and had asked John to take some video of the party at a local restaurant. But it wasn’t really their engagement party – it was actually their wedding.
We of course knew about the surprise, but it was a little tricky to shoot and get footage without giving it away to the rest of the guests. We wanted to blend in as much as we could since the crowd was a mix of coworkers, family and friends. We knew we needed to act as guests taking photos – but secretly taking footage for a wedding. We shoot our weddings with a Canon T3i and to the average eye it’s a picture camera – so this fancy piece of equipment helped us “go under cover”.
This bride and groom asked us to record video of their wedding because they weren’t going to be in the room when the maid of honor announced the surpise wedding. They wanted to see everyone’s reaction. They wanted to experience the event as their guests experienced it. They wanted to see the raw emotion and raw surpise and joy from their friends, and family.
John and I were very honored to be part of their wedding and a part of their special surprise.
One question I always get asked about video: “How long should my video should be?” In the past 10 years of creating videos, I have shot and edited videos ranging from live 1-hour events, to 30 second commercials. The most popular videos are under three minutes. Saying everything you want to say under three minutes can take be hard. But these five tips will help you Cut. It. Down.
5 questions to ask before creating a video.
Why do you want to do a video? Ask if video is the platform or tool for what they want to accomplish. Often times I have coworkers requesting a video, but once I start asking clarifying questions, I realized I was asking them to define why they want video. “Tell mewhy you need it, not what you need“.
Who will be watching this video? Again, another question for definition and to provide specifics of the overall voice and tone of the video.The overall tone for a video will differ greatly based on the demographic, for instance: creating a video for a millennial is very different than creating one for Baby Boomers. The pace of the video is different, the music you choose will be different, and animation will depend on your audience. You’d be surprised at how hard this question can be for people to answer.
What are 1-2 things you want the audience to know after watching the video? This question gives you the bullet points of what makes this video a success in their minds. If you cover these two things in the video – they will be happy. I learned if I don’t ask this question, I had more revisions in post-production, because the goal of the video wasn’t accomplished. The more answers you get before shooting the less editing you have.
How and Where is this video being shown? Will this video be shown at an event? or sent via email? or shared on social media? You need to know if the video is a ‘stand alone’ video. Or will there be some context provided before its shown? Knowing the context of how the video will be shown will help you better frame the video – how much information you need to provide….and what you can leave out.
If you haven’t figured it out yet, the last question is When. This question is pretty self-explanatory. What’s the timeframe and deadline. This gives me a timeframe to work with and lets me know how much time I have to shoot and edit. I work backwards from the date given, and send the video two weeks before this date just in case there are any changes. I will let the client know this too, so they can expect a date to get the video. That why they aren’t sending you emails asking where it is.
If you ask these five questions, you won’t have many changes to the video. And that’s a good feeling. It’s very rewarding to get it done right the first time.
I’m writing this post as our 4 month old chocolate lab puppy is laying in my lap on the couch. Isn’t she ADORABLE!?!
This little lady is another member of our family and will contribute to the business blog on occassion.
John and I are working on a lot of behind the scenes stuff this weekend on our business. I am working on most of the ‘business side’ (aka non-fun things) and John is working on all things creative and ‘techy’. I couldn’t explain the difference between Canon and Nikon cameras but he would give you a spreadsheet full of similairities and differences, cost comparisons and product reviews etc. I read this section to him – and he said “It’s true”. So folks, I’m not just making this up.
We ordered our business cards this weekend and are working on finalizing a payment plan. We are also determining a turnaround schedule and will set up social media accounts here shortly. We’re getting excited to have everything up and running, but for now it’s a working title production.