Wedding day tips and adviceWedding videography 7 Tips for better wedding preparation

February 24, 20220

Weddings are a big deal. 

They’re an event of celebration, and often, they mark the beginning of a year’s worth of memories with your loved ones!

I have seen it all…. as someone in this industry for over eight years. I’ve captured plenty of weddings and over 1000+ films through my lens. Planning a wedding can be overwhelming but taking the time and thinking about what you want is essential. Here are some tips from my experience with morning preparation as a videographer that I hope will help couples plan the perfect start to their video.

These bits of advice come up all the time and are very common.

Tip one Allow yourself more time than you need.

If you are having a large wedding party, make sure you leave yourself plenty of time to enjoy the morning with your bridal party. I’ve seen it all too often where Make-up is running late, and we have to rush to get the dress on; that is not what we want. It can lead to a flow-on effect, making you late for the ceremony. I’ve been to many weddings where that last hour before you put your dress on is absolute chaos. It is the easiest way to raise blood pressure before walking down the aisle.

I suggest the bride goes second from last in the queue to get her hair and Make-up done. At least you’ll be finished beforehand, and you can sit down and relax and enjoy those moments. It will give you time to take a breath, have a drink, chat and enjoy your time with your friends.

When it comes to filming hair and make-up, we have two options. I’m sure every bride will want to look their best on film rather than your Make-up being half done. So, we will only film you when you are almost finished. Or your Make-up is complete so we can film touch-ups at the end.

Tip Two – You will look your absolute best in natural light.

Hair and make-up sometimes have a habit of putting you near a table where they can put their equipment and make-up, so it’s easy for them. Sometimes that is not in the optimal spot. It can have a busy background or be in a dark corner. Rooms can have harsh downlights that can create terrible shadows and weird colours. Photographers and videographers need light. Window light is best either facing a window or having a window sidelight. Hair and make-up may also bring a ring light, which can help illuminate the room, but natural window light is always preferred.

7 tips for getting the best out of your wedding preparations
“Kim getting ready, the videographer has his back to a massive window flooding the room with natural light.”

Tip Three – Allow time for the videographer to get to the ceremony.

(This only applies if we are travelling to the ceremony)

 I need at least 30 minutes at the ceremony before you arrive to get set up. Videographers will film with multiple cameras. So, we have to set those up in their positions. We also have to set up audio. So, we need a little bit of time there before you arrive so we can do that and not be rushed so that when you do get there, everything is ready to go, and there are no interruptions.

You always want to be thinking about where you are getting ready, where the ceremony location is how much time it takes to get there so you can factor this into your run sheet when you finalise it closer to the wedding date. Most times, the photographer can stay with you almost until you leave as they don’t have any equipment to set up at the ceremony. They can arrive and start shooting when you do.

Tip Four – Parking for your vendors (only applies to city weddings)

Parking can be difficult if you’re getting ready in the city; I would always suggest communicating with the photographer or videographer about parking and their plans for the day. I have been to a few weddings where couples have said that they had arranged parking for us, and then we found out there was none and were locked into the car park, which made us late for the ceremony.

It may seem like a small thing, but it can be essential. We want the day to run smoothly and get from A to B without issues. Sometimes we may not need parking. So, all I would say is communication is vital. 

Tip five – no one wants to see clutter in their wedding video.

It’s always good practice to clean up a little on the days leading up until your wedding if you think this could be something that might bother or distract from what’s happening in video and photography. But we can be creative in blocking things out, so you don’t have to go too crazy.

Suppose you’re getting ready in a hotel room. If you have one room that can be kept clean and tidy, great! If that’s not possible, once hair and make-up are over, I will rearrange furniture, clean things up and make sure they’re perfect for when the bride gets dressed. And, of course, this applies to the groomsmen as well. We don’t want to see dirty jocks or fag butts anywhere.

Tip Six – Letters and Gifts

If you have decided to add a letter or interview that you will both read during prep, you can read my other article here about how to capture audio. So, it would help if you allowed some time to do this during morning prep. We can do this just after the bride has finished her hair and make-up. The groom can read his letter before or after he is dressed. The same goes for gifts with the girls in their dressing gowns or when they’re ready; that choice is entirely up to you, and the same goes for the groom.

Tip Seven – It is not just about the bride.

It’s great to cover some of the groom’s preparation to help balance the film. Having the groom’s preparation covered will depend on your chosen package or the distance between you. 

This is the significant difference between the packages. Packages B&C, where we only have 8 hours of coverage, sometimes we cannot cover both locations as a single shooter. If you’re getting ready in the same place or hotel, that is not a problem, but if there is a great distance between them, we may only be able to cover bride prep. Packages D&E are full days where we have more time to cover both locations.

While the groom is busy during this time, it’s nice that he has something to do rather than just twiddling his thumbs. Things I think look good in films are ironing a shirt and having a shave or buffing shoes- playing cards, video games, and drinking spirits.

If you are drinking, maybe have a special bottle of your favourite tipple and glasses that will look good in the video.

And remember every tip about will cover the groom as well.

Getting ready tips and ideas
“The groom is standing in a window enjoying his favourite tipple.”

Bonus tip – Those personal touches

As any bride knows, the wedding day is about the little details. And while the dress, the flowers, and the cake are all essential elements of the day, the wedding video is one of the most important things to consider. After all, this is a recording of one of the most important days of your life, and you want it to be perfect. One way to add a personal touch to your wedding video is to bring a few personal items. For example, if you’re getting ready at a location other than your own home, you might want to bring some framed photos of you and your spouse or wedding cards. This will help to add warmth and personality to your video. And of course, don’t forget to bring along your wedding invitation. This will help set the tone for your video and remind you what this special day is all about.

Preparation is vital for a successful wedding video. These tips will help make sure that you get the best footage during those special moments leading up to your big day. By being organised and taking things one step at a time, you can relax and enjoy your wedding preparations while knowing that your videographer is capturing all critical moments. Cheers Phil

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