Recently a new style of filming has come to pass for documenting weddings. The days of picking up a camcorder and shooting a single standard shot of the entire wedding are long gone. Getting shots of friends and family "saying something nice for the new couple", at receptions has become a thing of the past. We are now moving into an era of what is known as, "Wedding Films." A wedding film is generally 8 to 10 minute highlight video of the wedding and reception, but shot in the style to look like a short film. Recently I had the opportunity to create one.
The wedding was shot on a couple of Canon T3i DSLRs. A good friend of mine, who happens to be a freelance cinematographer, came on board to help. I definitely knew that two cameras were needed, seeing how this was LIVE and being shot in one take, so to speak. With one camera I would have been limited in coverage. I mean it's not like we could ask them to do the vows over or to ask them to kiss again just so we could shoot it from a different angle.
The wedding was outdoors and took place where the sun was nearing sunset. Luckily we had trees to help block most of the hard light giving a simulated magic hour feel. Also with the help of a pair of indie lens filters, we were able to get some great shots with plenty of depth.
All of this was shot in natural light, we didn't take a light set, shields, or anything that would diffuse or alter the light. Luckily the indoor scenes were shot in rooms that were well lit. Plenty of windows to go around. We didn't have to make much changes on the ISO or aperture.
I found that I had to do very little color correcting or grading, the raw footage came out very clean. At times it felt like it was shot on an old 35mm camera.
In the end the couple was very happy with the finished product and so was I. It felt like the end to an indie romance film, or maybe the beginning of one. Who knows, wedding films might be a fun side gig to get into.
- Manuel Montanez
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