Four Differences Between Wedding Photography and Wedding Videography

So I have done both videography and photography for weddings. Many people put them in the same category. In this blog post I hope to share with you some insight on a few differences I have noticed and why you should think about these things when selecting people to document your day.


1 - Director vs. Documenter
When I photograph weddings I must be a director in some sort of fashion. Put this arm there, look at me, scoot over this way, I can't see you in the back, laugh at each other, tilt your head this way. These are all things that you must do and say as a photographer. 

My work style is usually hands off, and I try to let the bride and the groom do as much on their own as possible, but you still have to direct everyone (at least during the first part of the wedding). Family photos are usually the most stressful part of an entire wedding. That is why it is important to have your photographer be a director.

When I video weddings I take a hands off approach. 99% of the shots in my videos are candid non-posed actions. I have to document and find when people laugh, think about where they are headed and get there before they do.

I have to find the action in the stationary. This works well because since photographers pose people, I capture them breaking those poses with smiles and laughter. I document their journey as opposed to directing their destinations.

2 - Frames vs. Experience
Photographs are displayed prominently throughout your home. They are pieces of art that your ancestors will look at. These photographs can be some of the only things that your great great great grandchildren will know of you.

Video of your wedding is an experience. You hear the song you played at your first dance, the words that your dad said for his toast. Wedding videography quite literally brings people to tears in the best way possible. This is a way to re-live your wedding day and to remember the people involved.

3 - Still vs. Motion
This is an obvious one, but it is so crucial to understanding how a photographer works as opposed to a videographer. Photographers shoot still images. 

When I photograph weddings I wait until the exact second to capture the exact shot that I am looking for. I wait for her to smile, I wait for someone to whisper some advice. You have to be aware and ready to take a shot at any time.

Videographers shoot motion images. If you wait for the exact moment to press record on a video camera, you will miss the moment. This is why video is so much more intensive than photography with post work.
At the end of the day I will have over four hours of raw footage. Most of it is shaky until I steady my hand long enough and wait for that laugh. So when 75% is unusable footage, the process takes a lot longer.

Side note: I shoot handheld because it gives personality to the camera. It adds a human element to something that should not be smoothed or shot on drones. I don't shoot with stabilizers or drones because it doesn't look natural. 

The camera should feel like a person watching these moment unfold, not a video company trying their hardest to get a weird slider shot of a flower arrangement. I definitely have opinions. But also know that some people like that style so it doesn't bother me when people want that, I just have my own niche.

4 - Instant Gratification vs. Patience
When editing photos you get immediate results. You adjust the saturation, the blue highlights, the contrast levels, the sharpness, the clarity, and whatever else needs to happen, and you have a beautiful photo. 

Obviously not all images are as simple as that, someone may have a blemish and this area of the image may be very dark and so you need to take it into Photoshop etc. But for the most part, editing a photo is a limited process.

Video is completely different. You can all the things above on a clip, and then you still have to cut it at the right time, add a transition, add it to music, put it in the spot that makes the most sense for that clip. 

There is so much patience learned through editing weddings. A difficult part of editing is that you have to wait for clips to render when you put filters or effects on them. 

You really must think if you want a clip here or there for very specific reasons because it could cause the entire video to be shifted or audio to get off track with the cuts and you have to wait for it to re-render if you don't like it. Video editing = Patience.

I hope you've learned maybe a thing or two about the differences between photography and videography for weddings. If not, now you know a bit more about me and my work style.

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