This is an important question that brides face when trying to choose someone for wedding videography. There are some wedding videographers that will provide all your RAW, unedited footage to you on the DVD, while many others would not.
There are two main schools of thought on whether you should be given unedited footage or not. They stem mainly from the wedding videographer themselves, and the style that they like to film.
A wedding videographer filming ‘documentary’ style may provide you with all their unedited footage. Their style of filming is based on filming everything from Point A in time to the end, Point B. They may not do much editing for your video and instead choose to provide you with the many hours of footage as their final product.
The videographer who films cinematic style wedding films (‘wedding cinematography’) may choose not to give you the unedited RAW footage. They opt to take a creative, story-telling approach when filming your wedding day. The main goal is to produce a fully-edited, short film that will show off your wedding day to the viewer and evoke powerful emotions such as joy and happiness. Much like a Hollywood producer filming a drama movie, in wedding cinematography there are certain details throughout the day that are captured onto film to help tell your story and to build up the ‘plot’.
In cinematic wedding videography, the little moments are thoughtfully filmed with an intent to be edited at certain points in your wedding video to tell the story to the viewer. These moments may include scenes such as all the workers diligently setting up your reception hall, or a close up scene of the groom nervously tapping his feet while he awaits his bride, or your mother taking a second to adjust your veil before you walk the aisle.
Without any editing, these scenes, which could be up to over 10 hours of ‘unedited’ footage, would just appear to be an assortment of random events that carry very little meaning. If you were to see the unedited footage without seeing the final, edited wedding video, you may even be disappointed and think you wasted your money on a wedding videographer that spent so much time on seemingly unimportant footage!
But the beauty truly lies after the editing process, when the collection of the scenes are interwoven with each other to become your final wedding video. The wedding cinematographer often will spend up to 40 hours carefully choosing the scenes and fitting them, like pieces of a puzzle, into your wedding video. In the end, the assortment of footage becomes connected to tell a beautiful story – one that you would watch not just once, but over and over – much like your favourite movie.
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