Is Hiring a Wedding Videographer a Must or a Maybe?

In short—it's definitely a must.

You may think that having both wedding photos and a video are overkill, or may not want to prioritize videography in your budget, but trust us—you'll want to hire a wedding videographer. For one, the day literally flies by and there are things you'll miss that your videographer will capture beautifully, like seeing your grandmother's emotional reaction as you say your vows. Also, you have to think of the sounds that can't be captured in a photo, like your "I dos," the reception music and meaningful toasts. But don't just take our word for it—listen to feedback from these real brides from our message boards.

"The only regret I have about our wedding is not having a videographer. The day goes by so quickly—you really miss so much of it. I look back now and wish I would have spent the money for it." —Vikki2pay

"I was really worried that I might regret not having a videographer—not only to capture my fiancé and me, but mostly our family members. I know it's kind of morbid, but I know they won't be around forever and I wanted to capture their voices and mannerisms." —rmfriedman

"While we're very pleased with our photographer, I'm now starting to have second thoughts about not having a videographer. I guess there's nothing like having a video to capture the details, people's faces/expressions, our vows—things that I might miss during the day as a busy bride and that don't necessarily get captured in even the best quality photos." —caramels03

"DO IT!!!!! I promise you will not regret spending the money. You may not think you want to relive every minute, but after the day you have been meticulously planning for months flies by in what feels like seconds, you will be desperate for a way to remember it!" —rachaelj99

"I just got married in June, and we had both a photographer and a videographer. I am so, so, so thankful that we ended up going with the video. It was something we almost cut to save money, but it was so worth it! When we got the pictures back, there were many guests and moments that were missed—and thankfully were caught by the video. I hate being filmed, but I never even noticed him throughout the day." —megc2

"You can replay the most special moments in your life if you have a videographer." —susannalvovsky

"Our videography was some of the best money we ever spent. It's true that [your wedding] goes by so fast, and you do see things you didn't notice when you see the video. Absolutely zero regrets. Our reasoning was that if we're going to spend so much money on one day, don't you want to be able to relive it through video? Plus, we can show it to our kids." —ExpatPumpkin

"I regret not having one. I thought that I'd never watch it and I'd have my pictures, but there's a lot of your wedding that, as the bride, you don't get to see. For example, I wish I could see what was going on inside my ceremony tent before I got there. I wish I could see my bridesmaids walk in. The whole thing went by so fast—I'd kill to have more memories of it." —starrbuk13

"I'm definitely planning on hiring a videographer. I want to be able to see fiancé's and my expressions when we say our vows. I want to be able to hear how we say them—and I just want to see everyone have a ball at our reception. And come 40 years from now when DVDs and Blu-Rays are old-school, I still want to be able to watch us on our big day." —jenandcris

"I did not think I would be so excited to watch our wedding video, but the day went by so quickly! I want to see our ceremony and cocktail hour, which I missed. Though I may only watch it a few times, I think it was worth the money." —foozzle

"I think that the video will capture things that the photos won't. I know it gets really expensive, but if you just want a documentary-style video (no love stories and all the extras), it will be much cheaper." —christikao

"We barely even considered hiring a videographer and were confident in the decision not to have one. But after the wedding, I really wish we'd had one. We really underestimated how much we would want to relive the day and see things we missed. Our photos are wonderful but video still captures something photos don't." —rel830

"I was anti-video, but I bit the bullet and got one anyway. We don't watch it very often, but I love having it there for me to watch. We had both the ceremony and reception filmed, and I love being able to see everything that I missed the night of my wedding." —emimayor

"I had my wedding last month and I regret not getting a videographer. I thought pictures would be enough and most people don't watch their videos anyway, but your wedding goes by so fast and you miss a lot of things. Plus, I feel like I was in a blissful daze for a lot of it and would love to have the important things captured in video. Pictures just don't capture everything." —JDechen

5 Reasons Two Wedding Videographers Are Better Than One

So you’re planning on booking a wedding videographer. You have offers for solo and two videographer teams. Which do you pick? Which will suit you better? We want to answer your questions. Over the years, most couples we have met haven’t been aware of the value that a two wedding videographer team can bring to their videos or their wedding day. In fact it’s the most valuable thing we offer at Onphilm Productions that regularly gets overlooked. Here I’ll tell you why two is better than one.

It’s well known that the majority of wedding videographers are solo shooters, the quintessential one man band. But at Onphilm Productions , we aren’t most wedding videographers. Since the start, we have always filmed each of our weddings with two top-class wedding videographers, usually myself and Sue. On occasion, when one of us hasn’t been available (which has been rare thankfully), we’ve hired in another top videographer we know and trust as a replacement. But the principle has been that we always want to have two videographers at every Onphilm Productions wedding. For us two videographers isn’t an option, it’s a necessity and here are the reasons why we think you should also want to have a two shooter team, instead of one.

1. Two Different Locations

The most obvious reason is that we can be in two different locations at the same time. On any given wedding day, there is so much going on, that usually one shooter cannot physically capture it all. The bride might be getting ready at home and the groom in the hotel a couple of kilometres away. With two shooters we can split up and cover both. After the wedding, all of our couples have enjoyed being able to see what the other was up to that morning; the fun, the nerves, the build up. Being a two shooter team has also meant we’ve been able to stay longer during preparations than a single shooter. A lot of single shooters need to leave well before the bride puts on her dress, so they have enough time to set up properly at the ceremony location. However, as a two shooter team we can capture the bride getting into her dress and even the reveal to parents, as our second shooter has gone to the ceremony venue with the groom and has been able to begin the setup process early. But two locations isn’t just important for preparations, it’s important for ceremony, drinks reception, photo shoot and reception - pretty much the entire day. While I’m filming detail shots of the room, Sue is out capturing cocktail hour. While Sue records the priest giving a reflection after mass, I’m filming the beautiful exterior and interior of the venue. While I film the bride walking down the aisle, my second videographer is filming the groom's reaction. Who wouldn’t want both of these shots in their film?

2. More Cameras, More Angles, More Creativity

Two videographers means there is more latitude to employ more camera’s and get better angles throughout the day. Particularly for things like ceremony and speeches, where we can achieve much better results as a two person team than a single shooter typically can. We can also be more flexible around your photographers and officiants on the day, as we don’t rely so much on our static camera or even our own camera. If one of us ends up in a bad angle or gets blocked somehow, we always have a great alternative angle with the second shooter that we can use instead. And it’s not just quantity of camera’s or angles that two shooter teams help with. With two shooters we can can balance the number of ‘must get’ shots, with the more creative yet risky shots. It gives us a greater quality selection when we get back to editing, and that ultimately means a better finished product for you and your loved ones to enjoy for decades and generations to come. Two shooters also means when we do shoot together, for example during the couple portrait session, we can get our shots in half the time, leaving you and your partner more time for mingling with guests before dinner.

3. Extra Pair of Hands

There are a lot of moving parts in wedding videography, particularly when compared to photography. There are generally more camera settings to think about while recording, there is also audio (which could be a job by itself) and there can be additional support gear to think about (lights, tripods, static cameras, etc.). Having an extra pair of hands means that these extra functions of filming are easier to deal with, particularly when a problem occurs. It means that one shooter can look after the issue, while the other keeps recording. For us, an extra pair of hands extends even beyond filming. I can’t count the number of times Sue has been able to clean a groom's jacket of makeup because I’ve been there to cover her, or how many times I’ve helped a bride fix her veil and dress in the middle of a shot while my second shooter kept recording. Having two shooters results in an extra pair of hands on the day to help you and partner with whatever help you need, without impacting on the level or quality of moments captured on film.

4. Backup

Every professional wedding videographer should have a backup system in place, not only for their footage after the wedding, but also on the day. Camera’s fail. Memory Cards fail. Videographers get sick. A two shooter team means that you have full redundancy in place on the day should something happen to one of the shooters or their gear bag. And while it’s not shouted from the roof tops by professionals, bad things can and do unfortunately happen on wedding days. Videographers have fallen into water, ruining their gear. They’ve ended up in car crashes on the way to the ceremony. I’ve known of videographers where their only camera stopped working for unexplained reasons during speeches. By booking a two shooter team you are giving yourself extra protection in the event of an unforeseen issue which could impede a solo shooter from continuing. The two shooter team will be more likely to be able to continue to record your special day.

5. Creates a Better Overall Atmosphere

Single shooting wedding videography is stressful. Ask any wedding videographer which they’d prefer, single or two shooter, and nearly all will say they’d love to have a second shooter. Why? Because besides the increased quality of the video they are going to be able to deliver to you, having two shooters will mean that the hidden workload will be shared between two. What do I mean by hidden workload? Gear loading/unloading, finding parking, liaising with the venue coordinators, charging batteries, getting tripods set; are all examples of what I would call hidden workload. While one shooter is capturing you greeting guests after the ceremony, the other is packing up gear from inside the ceremony room. While one is filming you arriving at the reception, the other is parking up and unloading gear for the evening ahead. This hidden workload consists of tasks that every videographer must do, but for one person that can add up to a time-constrained, stressful aspect of the day. And when your videographer or photographer (who are with you most of the day) is stressed - it’s more likely that some of that stress will rub off onto you and your guests, not something we want. Two shooters reduces the workload stress on one individual, and as a two shooter team here at Hitched Films we’re confident we can handle any scenario thrown at us while still being positive, cheerful and adding to your day.

Summary

It’s important to be aware that not all two shooters teams are the same. On occasion I’ve come across packages where a second shooter is only $100 or $200 more expensive than the solo shooter option. If you see this, alarm bells should start ringing. After tax, travel and business costs are deducted, that is leaving very little to actually pay the second shooter who at that rate is in all likelihood going to be inexperienced and maybe even a liability to the day, instead of an asset. I want to emphasize that the points I’ve made above are only valid if the second shooter is a genuinely talented, motivated and professional videographer (not a student who is learning or someone who has never/rarely shot weddings before).

Booking a two shooter team seems the right choice then, right? So why don’t all videographers have two shooter teams? Well there is the obvious one. A single shooter is always going to be cheaper than a two shooter team. But cheaper is rarely better. As you have read above, a good two shooter team should pay for itself multiple times over, both on and after the day. There is also the fact that it’s actually quite hard for a lot of single shooters to find good second shooters. It took us a long time to find reliable and talented wedding videographers we could trust to perform at the level expected for Hitched Films. There just aren’t many out there, and for a lot of single shooters it’s simply too much extra work to find, book and maintain consistent second shooter relationships. A good, consistent two shooter team is a rare thing to find.

So the next time you are comparing videographers, make sure you take time in understanding whether you are being offered a single shooter or a two shooter team as part of the package. And if they claim to offer a second shooter as an add-on, don’t be afraid to ask to see some of the second shooters previous wedding work/profile, so you can be sure you are paying for a good quality shooter and a personality that will match your day.