VANCOUVER WEDDING VIDEOGRAPHY ENGAGEMENTS

I have been doing wedding videos for over 20 years and I can honestly say that the quality of Vancouver wedding videography in Canada has improved greatly since my days as a student at the University of British Columbia. The only thing that hasn’t changed is how much you need to spend on equipment!

In this article, I will give you some tips on what equipment to buy and why. You may be surprised at what you find out!

What Equipment Do We Need?

There are several things we absolutely must have when shooting wedding videos. These include A good camera (preferably with a film or digital back), a tripod, a light meter, an audio recorder, and of course your own music.

Camera Equipment

A good camera is essential for any wedding video. The main reason being that it allows us to capture the special moments of our guests’ weddings. There are many different types of cameras available today but here are a few basic guidelines:

Digital Cameras: Most people these days use digital cameras because they tend to be cheaper than film and take up less space. Today’s cameras are also of very good quality and it is hard to tell the difference between a film and a video taken with them.

Also, when shooting video, we don’t have to worry about reloading the camera as we do with traditional film cameras.

Today’s cameras are also very good quality and it is hard to tell the difference between a film and a video taken with them. Also, when shooting video, we don’t have to worry about reloading the camera as we do with traditional film cameras.

Film Cameras: Most people are surprised to find out that in some cases, a film camera can actually result in better pictures. The reason? Unlike the digital cameras of today, older film cameras used much better film which produced bigger detailed pictures.

Also, when shooting a roll of film (about 36 pictures), we had to pay more attention to what we were doing because we couldn’t just take another picture if we missed one. This resulted in better pictures overall.

Cameras with a “Steady Shot” or any other kind of built-in stabilizer will NOT give you a steady picture. These features may help stabilize the image on the display screen but not the actual film picture.

Tripods: While tripods are not absolutely necessary for a wedding video, they can come in handy if you find yourself in low light situations or want that even smoother, steadier look. For low light situations, you can simply turn up the ISO or use a faster lens on your camera (higher F).

To achieve a smoother, steadier look, you can mount your camera on a tripod or monopod. Monopods are fairly cheap and cost between $100 and $200 and can be carried around much easier than a tripod.

Lenses: Most wedding videographers use prime lenses (fixed focal length) because of their speed (large aperture). While zoom lenses may offer flexibility in framing, they usually offer less quality and are not preferred by most wedding videographers. That said, the most popular lens for weddings is an 85-200mm lens. This sort of lens is good for shooting from a distance and can achieve a nice shallow depth of field when desired.

First and foremost, you should be a people person. Not just with the couple and their families, but the guests as well. Most newbie Vancouver wedding videography have a somewhat uncomfortable time mingling at first, but after a few weddings, you’ll find that it gets much easier. However, you must remember that the goal here is to not be a spotlight-stealing obnoxious jerk. No one likes those people.

The second most important quality is being able to properly record the main points of the wedding. This means listening when you are told to listen and seeing when you are told to see. Most people get so caught up in the whirlwind of emotions and events that they fail to follow instructions and just “wing it.” That won’t work. The couple hired you to do a job, so you need to make sure you do that job well.

Take the cues from the wedding planner and/ or the hired videographer if there is one.


If there isn’t one, then your job will be even more important as you will essentially be the only one doing it. You must be ready at all times to start recording when needed.

At some point, you will be told to “get ready,” which means you should immediately start recording as soon as possible. This is when the bride and groom will be sharing their first moments as a married couple. While this is going on, it’s also good to start slowly panning around the room and getting nice establishing shots of the wedding ceremony area.

Afterwards, you should get some shots of the bride and groom sharing private moments after saying “I do.” This is also the time when it’s good to talk briefly to the couple and get some of those natural, conversational moments on tape. Don’t dwell on this part too much though, as you have many more events to cover. At most, you may cut in a short interview during the montage.

For preparation: You should have a variety of footage

When all is said and done, you should have a variety of footage; from the beginning of preparations to the end of the first dances. It’s okay to get some filler shots of decorations and such to help join the clips together, so long as the quality is

A) Good

B) Related to the wedding and

C) Edited well in post-production.

Whether you were recording the speeches, the toasts or simply dancing among the crowd. There are a few things you should be sure to capture throughout the entire reception. These moments are often missed by many videographers since they feel it is a less important, formal event. But these are some of the most important to get, as they allow for more variety in editing.

Establishing shots is important as a Vancouver wedding videography

Like the wedding itself, you should get some establishing shots of the hall before cutting to guests taking their seats. These will include entrances of the bride’s and groom’s parties as well as any special guests that may be there. At this point you may cut away to some of your interviewee’s for their reactions.

Next, it would be good to get some coverage of the parents’ tables if you haven’t already. These tables should be in the direct line of sight of the bride and groom’s table when they sit down. The best way is to join one or the other (the father’s being the preferable) while the guests are still mingling before taking their seats.

Whether you were recording the speeches, the toasts or simply dancing among the crowd. There are a few things you should be sure to capture throughout the entire reception. These moments are often missed by many videographers since they feel it is a less important, formal event. But these are some of the most important to get, as they allow for more variety in editing.

Also make sure you cut back to the wedding party’s table during this time. An important thing to catch here is the cutting of the cake. This is often missed by other wedding videographers as it happens very quickly. However, the whole point of hiring you is so that you can get every moment in its entirety.

There are a lot more things that go into making a quality video than I have learned in the three years I’ve done this job. And as the technology advances, so too must the methods for capturing events, both big and small.

And it is my hope that I have passed on some of this knowledge to you so that you too may live up to the full potential of your trade.