Marcus Williams from Intellect Media in Hampton Roads, Virginia, will make you cry…happy tears! His wedding movies are truly a thing of beauty. They are emotional videos that make you feel like you were a guest at the wedding you are viewing. As a photographer, I can argue that there is nothing more important than photographs to have as a reminder of your wedding day, but to be honest, if I had a movie about my wedding like Marcus makes, it would be cherished in my home. I was thrilled he answered my questions about what you need to know when hiring a videographer. So sit back and read all about why you should consider hiring someone to document your wedding this way. And make sure to watch one of his beautiful movies at the end!!
What made you decide to become a Videographer?
When I was 15, my Mom really wanted me to go to church. My Uncle and Dad were doing video for the church, so I started working with them and I really liked it. Then I used to watch the movie “Collateral” over and over with my Grandma. After seeing it a few times, I started watching it differently and noticing the way they shot it. When I went to NSU, I was learning graphic design, but I didn’t like drawing. When I switched to Regent, I started doing video, and really loved it. When I got out of college, I found it was hard to get hired doing what I wanted, because they wanted years of experience. So I started my own company. At first, I wasn’t doing weddings, but then I assisted another cinematographer at one, and I was inspired! After that I decided to learn everything I could about shooting weddings!
Planning a wedding is an overwhelming experience, there are SO MANY things that couples do not know about until they actually start planning the big day! What sort of things would you tell couples about searching for their Videographer?
You NEED Videography! Photos are a must have, but photography and videography make for a perfect relievable moment. You can hear the vows, see the first dance, and see things you may have missed during the blur that is a wedding! And it really tells your story in a unique way!
Let’s pretend I am getting married, How far in advance should I start shopping for a videographer?
About 6 months to a year, a year for the busy wedding season months. I like to have some time to meet with you and the Groom, so that I can get to know who you are as a couple. It will help me tell your story.
What sort of questions should I ask to make sure you and I will be a good fit?
I think you should ask if they are a cinematographer or a videographer? There is a difference. A videographer only documents the day as it unfolds. They don’t really tell a story.
A cinematographer documents the day as if they are telling a story. When people watch your video later, they will feel like they were there. They will cry during the Ceremony, they will feel like they were part of the first dance, and that they were there to send you off at the end of your day.
What sort of things or who should I bring to our meeting?
Bring the Groom!! I like to get to know you as a couple, see how you interact with each other, hear your story! It helps me to make your movie personal when I feel like I know you two!
How do you work with my photographer to ensure that everyone gets what he or she need??
Ideally, you should work as a team to be able to document the day together. I feel like it isn’t about the photographer or me. It is about YOU! We can both do our jobs easily as long as we work together!
How long after the wedding can I expect to see my video?
Because I am telling a story, it takes me time to re-watch your wedding, edit clips, find the right combos, tweak it, find the right music and make sure it is perfect! So, it generally takes me 6-8 weeks to edit your story together.
How do you handle lighting?
I bring my own lighting, but I don’t carry it on my camera, essentially making it hard for you and your guests to see. I put my light on light stands, so they are not in the way and not obtrusive to you.
How do you handle sound?
I like to double mic a Groom. And I am mindful of hiding the mic as perfectly as I can. I also put a mic on the officiant. This way I don’t miss anything!
What other services does your company provide?
I also have a slo-motion photo booth. It is cool! Like a moving photo booth!
What do I need to know about video to ensure I am getting a good product?
Make sure whomever you hire can work in low-light situations…without being obtrusive with their video lights. Ask what their style is. If they can’t tell you, then they may not have been doing this long enough. Also ask, how do you stay inconspicuous during the wedding. You don’t want a videographer in your face all night. And lastly, I would ask, what do former Brides say about you!
So, congratulations! You are planning a wedding now, too!! What have you found as an insider that has surprised you or that you would like to tell people about?
LOL! Brides and Grooms don’t agree on anything! And the experience is overwhelming! Do you go all out for the wedding of your dreams, or save money for a down payment on a house? I think for us, being realistic on the budget has been very important. You need to know what things cost and understand that you pay for experience, and this isn’t a bad thing.
Is there anything you would like to tell clients about the process that they don’t know or something they should be asking during the process?
Make sure you do your homework. See a full wedding that the videographer has done. Read reviews. Ask questions! And know what you are looking for when you go into these meetings. Make sure you say what it is and ask if the vendor can do it. And have fun!!