We’re sitting together enjoying our coffees, having a chat and getting to know each other a bit better. You’ve told me all about your journey – how you met, where you went for your first date, how you got engaged – and we’ve discussed your wedding day at length. Then, finally, you ask me the big question: how do you work with the photographer?
It seems that EVERY couple is worried that their photographer and videographer will get in each other’s way or clash on the day somehow. And you know what, you’re right to be worried, because this is a real possibility. Maybe we shoot very differently. Maybe we both want to be in the same spot (or worse, maybe we want to be in different spots so that we’re both in each other’s shot). But honestly, these problems are so easily avoided that it rarely happens. So let’s put those concerns to rest and talk about how videographers and photographers can work together to make your wedding day perfect.
This is absolutely crucial. A wedding day consists of one event after another, all of which need capturing by both of us. Whether it’s the walk down the aisle, your confetti moment, or your first dance, every single moment has potential for the photographer and I to be on different wavelengths and impede each other’s work. This is why it’s so important for us to communicate as much as possible.
As an example, whilst everyone’s getting ready in the morning, I’ll usually find a quiet moment to ask photographers what their plan is for the ceremony – where they’re going to be, whether they’ll be moving around, etc. – and I’ll also let them know where my cameras will be. This means we can figure out if there are going to be any issues or clashes, and have plenty of time to come up with a compromise if there is. Either way, there’s usually plenty of room to move and shoot around each other during your ceremony, so there’s very rarely a problem.
Another example is your confetti moment; if you’re planning to walk through a corridor of people throwing confetti over you, is the photographer going to walk backwards in front of you? Or will they stand stationary at the end of the corridor and shoot from there? We can’t both do different things or we’ll be in each other’s shots, so we need to discuss this and figure out a common plan so we’re both ready to capture that moment when grandma throws confetti in your eye.
The next most important thing I’ve found that helps videographers and photographers work well together is awareness. The photographers I’ve found easiest to work with are those that have been aware of where I am, where I’m pointing my camera, and what lens I’m using, so they know what field of view my camera is seeing. This is a quality that’s really hard to measure, so I have no idea if I’m any good at this. All I can tell you is that I try my best to keep an eye out for where the photographer is throughout the day, and I’ll duck, dive and commando-roll to avoid getting in the way of their shot. This is a two-way street, of course, and there’s nothing worse than a video of the back of your photographer’s head instead of your first kiss (although it’s not the end of the world – this is why we have backups), but I’ve generally found that consideration and respect is often reciprocated. Either way, if one of us does end up inadvertently in the way, all it takes is a tap on the shoulder or a swift kick in the shin to let us know!
Photography and videography are worlds apart – they are completely different disciplines. But an appreciation and respect for the other really helps us jam well together. I’m fortunate enough that I get to work with some amazing photographers, and I’m genuinely in awe of their work. Before every wedding, I’ll always check out the photographer’s website and their instagram so that I can see their style. That way, I have a better idea of what they’re trying to capture. So when we take you out for your couple shoot, I’m not only wanting to get my shots, but I’m actually invested in the photographer’s shots too – I want to see what they do with this beautiful golden light, or I want to see the shot they got of your dad’s tears as you came down the aisle.
I’ll usually tell them this too; before a wedding, I’ll always get in touch with a photographer just to introduce myself (so that we’re not complete strangers on the day) and comment on an aspect of their work that caught my eye. That usually leads to a conversation where we’re both openly appreciating each other’s work and signalling a certain level of respect as a starting point before we’ve even arrived at your wedding.
At the end of the day, the photographer and videographer are both there to capture your day in the best way possible. We’re on the same team, so it makes sense for us to do everything in our power to make each other’s job as easy as possible so that you end up with the best possible mementos from your wedding day.