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Monday, July 5, 2010

Why Hiring A Professional Makes A Difference (Part 1)

As an event planner, rarely do I get the opportunity to sit as a guest at a wedding. This year I've been a guest at three different weddings (typically it's one wedding per year that I attend as a guest) and it truly gave me an opportunity to really sit back and observe. I was able to observe the guests, the vendors and the newlyweds. Now mind you, we do that when we're working, however, to sit back and truly observe without minding a timeline and the details really is reassuring to me when I tell my clients: HIRE PROFESSIONALS!

To help you understand why I am saying this, I will post a few blog posts over the next two weeks about hiring professionals. I want to provide you with examples of a few things that occurred. All three weddings were beautiful and the couples were truly endearing.

Disclaimer: For those that follow me on twitter, they were able to read a few of my random tweets. Those tweets kept me from getting up and putting on my planner hat as I was determined to remain a guest. Also, the vendors I will mention below have not and will never work with me!

Professionals know and understand their equipment and resources. I had to start with this point because of the photo below.

Do you see that blob of light in the upper left hand corner of the photo? That is a light that the videographer placed in the ceremony. Sadly my photo is a bit small, but if you look closer you will also see a tripod right in the middle of the altar. Yes, that tripod was left there the entire ceremony. The same videographer, also hopped into the middle of the aisle during the recessional. That is great, he's capturing their exit...with one exception. He was walking backward up the middle of the aisle...IN FRONT of the photographer!

Now while looking at this photo consider the following:
1. All of the photos will have this blaring light that the photographer has to either edit out or compensate for while shooting. How difficult will it be to edit out that tripod?

2. The photographer was not able to capture a great exit shot. Typically a videographer and photographer have a conversation before the ceremony to sort out logistics of where they are shooting and how NOT to get in each others shots, but it appears as though this photogrpaher and videographer did not have that important conversation. So should I think the videographer does not understand the vendor teamwork dynamic? All of the vendors have been paid to provide a service and each vendor should be mindful of the other vendor present and vice versa.

3. All of the guests have their hands on their forehead as though they are saluting the Colonel to see the ceremony because this blinding light blocked their vision.

4. The videographer was using the latest and greatest cameras which more than likely has a great zoom feature in the lens. Why did he not use the zoom? His presence was very distracting and took away from what was otherwise a very beautiful ceremony. This videographer did not understand his role in the vendor dynamic; he took away from the photographer as he's been paid to capture a moment on film just as the videographer is being paid. Both vendors are equally important.

As you sit and begin selecting your Photographer and Videographer, ask important questions to ensure they understand the importance of the vendor dynamic:

  • Questions about how they are communicating with the other vendors. If its a photographer or videographer, ask how the manage to work with the other vendor to ensure they are not messing up the other vendors frames. Do they contact the other video/photographer?
  • Have they worked with the videographer or photographer you are considering?
  • Look at their photos or video to see how they are shooting. Are you able to see a second stationery camera in their video?
  • What kind of equipment will they use? Can their equipment shoot well in low light?
  • How many cameras will be used? Are they manned or stationary?
  • Have they worked at your venue/venues before?

If you are working with an event planner, they will facilitate that communication so that everyone knows what is happening. There are no 'do-overs' on wedding day. Recapturing the moments as they happen is an important detail that can't be left to a video/photographer stepping into the other professionals frame.

Until next time,


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