A professional video editor knows that there’s a lot more to creating a great wedding video than just setting up a camera and recording the vows. An outstanding wedding video is a combination of many factors and careful planning, all of which contribute to the work a video editor does in the editing suite to create the finished product.
At the heart of all their work is the video editing. But the video editing itself is just the tip of the pyramid. A video editor is committed to laying all the blocks of the foundation to create this pyramid, while always keeping in mind how each of these foundational blocks will contribute to the success of the final editing work they do.
It starts with the story (and the style)
The first stage of the process in building the video is determining the story that will be told and the style in which it will be presented. Your video editor will work in close conjunction with you to determine the story you want to tell. The story may be a simple one, including just the events of the wedding. It can also be more complex, incorporating interviews and segments of backstory that tell you more about who the principles of the wedding are, and why you’ve come together to make their vows.
Likewise, the style of a wedding video can vary widely. It could be lush and romantic, or fast-paced, fun, and even a little irreverent. The eventual shape of the editing will depend to a large degree upon the decisions made well before any footage is shot.
Planning the shots
Your video editor won’t begin planning the shots and camera setups they’ll use until they’ve decided upon the story and had a chance to check out the venue where the wedding will be held. This is when they’ll begin the process of storyboarding the overall layout of the video – a vital precursor to actually beginning the video editing process.
He or she won’t come to the wedding without a predetermined shot list to remind them of what footage they’ve planned on getting on the day of the event. This will ensure that they’ll enter the editing suite with everything they need to create the wedding video they’ve planned.
The importance of “B-roll” footage
B-roll footage is just as important in telling the story of the wedding, and of no less importance than the main footage in creating an amazing wedding video. B-roll can be defined as shots that complement the main action, but aren’t specifically about it. Things like audience reaction shots and shots of the venue can be thought of as B-roll footage.
B-roll footage plays an important role in video editing. It serves the vital purpose of adding human interest, drama, and a sense of place to the main action. For example, a long shot of the bride walking down the aisle is made more interesting by cutting to audience reaction shots. The beauty of an outdoor wedding venue is emphasized by inserting B-roll shots of the landscape or architectural details on the venue’s buildings. B-roll simply makes the story more complete.
The role of sound
Video editors understand that sound helps tell the story of the video they’re producing. Smart editors will pay attention to more than just clearly picking up the sounds of the wedding ceremony and festivities. Extra audio tracks of the ambient sounds at the venue, particularly in outdoor weddings, can add an entire layer of auditory interest. Video editors will also pay careful attention to capturing the music used that day. This goes both for the ceremony and the reception, utilizing it to create interest and drive the narrative.
Transitions and special effects
When editors take the video and audio tracks into the editing suite, they’ll begin assembling the footage according to plan. One of the important decisions they’ll make when assembling the footage is the use of transitions and special effects.
The type of transitions they’ll utilize depends on to a large extent on the style of video presentation they’ve chosen. A video being presented in a lush, romantic style will use more leisurely transitions, such as cross dissolves and fades. A faster-paced video will up the tempo and energy level with quick transitions, such as jump cuts. Of course, there’s no rule that says that more than one style can’t be used. It all depends on the overall structure of the video.
Special effects can be overused, particularly by less experienced video editors. But when used in a logical way to delineate particular portions of the video they can be very effective. Shooting “backstage” wedding preparations in a sepia tone is a good example of an effective use of special effects.
A video editor is simply worth it
It’s important to do your research and put aside a portion of your photography budget into good videography. Quality video can help you relive all the greatest moments from your special day — a perfect, and often underestimated, investment toward your future memories.
Author bio: Helen Clark has over 5 years of experience in writing and creating films. She works with a host of sites related to videography and has the expertise to work both on an editorial and advisory level. She intends to educate and keep audience abreast of the latest trends in the world of videography and filmmaking. Presently, she is associated with Video Caddy – a video editing service company that is engaged in video editing and animation. You can check them out on Facebook and Twitter.
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