Archive for Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Picture perfect

The big moment doesn’t have to become a fading memory. Here are some tips to remember when hunting for a photographer and videographer who fits you best.

February 21, 2006


Picture you and your fiance, standing before your nearest and dearest, exchanging heartfelt vows and then your first kiss as husband and wife. It's the perfect moment, but it doesn't have to be merely a memory. With your videographer recording the vows and your photographer snapping the kiss, you're preserving a piece of personal history -- for you, your loved ones and future generations to come.

Here are the hottest trends, tips and techniques that wedding photographers and videographers can use to capture your day:

Combining Styles

Wedding photos and videos have come a long way from the stiff family portraits and awkward pass-the-mic interviews of years past. A mix of candid, documentary-style shots (like the bride having her makeup applied, or the best man giving the groom a pep talk) along with the more traditional scenes (the formal portraits with the bridal party, Dad giving his tearful toast) make for a perfectly balanced album or video.

When you're checking out photographer or videographer's portfolios, make sure they can skillfully capture both the fun and the formal. Also, see if there are any scenes that came out particularly well. And if there's a great shot, say a couple in their car after the ceremony, request that your photographer or videographer go for the same sort of shot when you're about to make your getaway.

Tip: Ask your videographer to film your formal photography session. Getting all your loved ones lined up for the still portrait can lead to some touching -- and hilarious --moments for your video.

Technology and Techniques

With digital video now the norm in wedding videography, it's easier than ever to make copies of your wedding DVD without losing the amazing quality. Not only is the video clearer, but your wedding DVD can keep its resolution for more than 100 years, which wasn't the case when video was limited to VHS. Also gaining steam in the wedding video industry is shooting in high-definition -- the same crystal-clear picture that's driving many people to buy flat-screen televisions. But with high-def also comes a higher cost, since videographers will have to invest in a lot of new equipment.

For a neat twist on traditional photos, ask your photographer if he or she can take a few shots using a fish-eye lens. This wide-angle lens can capture more in a single frame than a normal lens, which leaves the photo with rounded corners and an entirely unique perspective (or like you're looking through a fishbowl but in a really artsy way).

There are bunches of ways your photographer and videographer can add to the finished product after the wedding day. Since video editing techniques have gotten much more affordable in the last several years, cinematic effects (like flowing compositions, wide-screen shots and dramatic music) have given wedding videos a more professional look than ever. Photographers can touch up blemishes and colors can be supersaturated or softened to enhance an already-dramatic image.

Tip: If you're worried about a wedding video set to a cheesy soundtrack, give your videographer a list of songs you'd like to include.

Picture Presentation

Wedding photography these days is all about the presentation. Mini albums, which fit in the palm of your hand and can be carried in your purse for easy sharing, are gaining in popularity, while coffee-table books -- literally a hardcover book of your wedding photos -- are also becoming increasingly popular.

Another convenient way to share is by using online photo albums. On, for example, a couple can set up online photo album that friends and relatives can view with a password and then order their favorite prints directly from the photographer.

Tip: Think about putting together a photo album that spans every aspect of your wedding -- from a wide shot of your reception site to the lace details on your gown.

Flipping the page from a shot of all of your guests seated for the ceremony to a close-up of you and your husband's clasped hands is a perfect way to remember the whole scope of what matters most on your wedding day.

Terrific Tandem

To get the best shots on your wedding day, your photographer and videographer should work as a combo -- not elbowing each other to get the shot they want. If you've booked them to shoot before the ceremony, you might want to split them up. While your photographer shoots the bride and her maids getting gorgeous, the videographer can capture the groom and his guys pacing nervously before making their way to the site.

You can also ask your videographer if they can include scans of some of your wedding photographs in the finished DVD. Or think about setting up a television at your reception to play a video slide show. If your photographer snapped engagement photos, your videographer may be able to use those shots for the slide show.

Tip: When hiring your photographer, ask if he or she likes to work with any videographers in particular (or if there are any they don't like). That's often the best way to make sure they're going to get along. See, getting cutting-edge memories really is a snap.


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