After capturing your special day, I usually upload all the media to my computer the night of. This allows me the opportunity to jump on the film the next day if need be. I tend to like editing the next day because the visuals, audio and other aspects of the day are still very fresh in my head.
Once all the footage is uploaded I sync the sound to the video. After the sync is completed I gather all the footage and categorize it so that it is neatly organized. Having your video organized from the very beginning helps tremendously in the long run.
Now to the fun stuff. I say fun because it is very much like putting a puzzle together. However, this puzzle, your wedding film can be put together in so many ways, that’s the beauty of creating a story. You have the freedom to pick and choose what shots look best, what speeches from the toast stands out, and how all of it should come together to tell your wedding story. I tend to pick sound from the toast to begin with. During the actual reception I make mental note on what sounded best and who gave the best speeches. The speeches that are heart felt always make me pay attention and I make note of what was said. This gives me the ability to go straight to the guest who spoke and pick out what they said. After I have picked the sound, I arrange the soundbites in such a way that makes the most sense.
Picking music is the next step. I can’t use copyright material and must buy a music song license. So for this task I go to www.premiumbeats.com or www.themusicbed.com. If I have several speeches and great audio from the ceremony I usually tend to gravitate to instrumentals. The words that were spoken about the bride and groom are much better than words from a song. The words that were spoken about you at your own wedding are much more meaningful than lyrics in any song. While choosing a song for your film I listen for the mood and how the music relates to what your guest said about you. Choosing music can take a while. There are times though, that you listen to 2 or 3 songs and can decide right away.
For me, the next step is the best part: choosing the visuals, the video! I use many shots of the bride getting ready as well as camera shots that have movement. The movement shots are usually from the glidecam or a slider. These moving shots are what help give the video a more cinematic feel. Like anything, less is better. I do not want every shot to be moving from left to right or right to left. Using these tools at a minimal makes the shots stand out more.
After choosing the video I watch it over and over and over again. I am looking at every frame. I am looking at what works and what doesn’t work. I am also listening to the audio. Is the audio from the music too loud? Does the audio from the speeches need to come up or down in volume? After watching the film a dozen or so times and making changes that are needed, I than add a little extra color so the images stand out. Once this is done, I upload and share it with you. I hope this helps you understand what steps I go through into making a wedding film. There are a few more steps that I could talk about but they are minimal. If you would like to see a sample of my work click here or visit my site at www.jeffreycookvideography.com. I look forward to capturing your story through filmmaking.
I have been working in television and media for over 18 years. My experience includes news photojournalist, editor, producer and storyteller.