Lights, Camera, Action: A Guide to Wedding Cinematography
Wedding videography has had a bad rap over the past few decades. It evokes the image of shaky handheld camcorders with poor audio, sharp scene changes and zooming in on the couple at the most inelegant times. Why would we pay to have the film from hell? Fear not, the industry has come leaps and bounds in recent years and we have a new wave of wedding cinematographers. I had the pleasure of meeting one such professional, Stuart Kinghorn from Confetti & Silk, to get the low down on choosing the right wedding cinematographer for you.
Let’s get to it!
Why is a wedding cinematographer so important?
‘Your wedding is such a busy day, you’ll spend most of it with your other half and probably not experience everything you paid for and planned really long and hard to make happen on the day. You need a video/cinematographer you can rely on to go off and capture these parts of the day so you can see them back, how your guests reacted and get a different view of the day than being the main most in demand part of it that you are as the bride.
Wedding films have real longevity. Imagine being able to watch your own grandparents wedding film, that would be such an amazing thing to see – seeing them in their pomp, hearing their words to one another, how they danced, all the other members of the family and their friends- that’s going to feel incredible. It really is such a great keepsake and why, when it’s dismissed at the time, is the biggest regret brides have days, weeks, months and years down the line.’
Aren’t wedding videos really old fashioned?
‘No, not at all! I suppose this is why in the industry we try to distinguish between wedding videos and wedding films. When I first heard the term ‘wedding cinematography’ I thought it was the most pretentious thing in the world but actually, it may be a better term for us. Just from the new ways of capturing a wedding on film, from the composition to the camera movement feels much more like a real film. Modern day wedding films are far more polished, creative and timeless.’
When should you start looking for a wedding cinematographer?
‘I would say a year in advance of your wedding date; as early as possible. This allows for us to plan ahead a bit more, perhaps visit the venue a few times and get to know you better so we can create the wedding film you want.’
Are there different wedding cinematography styles?
‘Yes you can break them down as:
Documentary – very fly on the wall style that’s unobstrusive on the day and has a journalistic end result
Fine art – more emphasis on compositions and more of an artsy flar than documentary
Vintage – these films will have a certain wash or tint on them to make them look like 60s or 70s film.
Misc – it’s difficult to define certain styles as wedding films are unique as the couples in them. There are quirky cinematographers, Rock ‘n’ Roll cinematographers, French films style cinematographers and all sorts!’
How do you know if a wedding cinematographer is right for you?
‘First you’ll need to look at the portfolio and ask yourself ‘do I see myself in that film?’. Do you resonate with the style? Does it move you? Do you feel it tells the story of the day?
Next you need to arrange a consultation either over skype or face to face so you can get to know each other a bit more. Complimentary personalities are really important! You need to get on because you’re together for a long time on the day and it is worth having a cinematographer you like being around and can have a laugh with!’
Many thanks to Stuart from Confetti & Silk for his help with this article. Confetti & Silk is a wedding cinematography service that offers beautifully polished and romantic wedding films for the modern wedding couple. Their service is high quality with a range of flexible options so you can have a bespoke package that is right for you! Check them out on the links below.
Ta ta for now!