What is a Wedding Videographer?

Your uncle grows a beautiful garden, but you wouldn't ask him to make your wedding bouquets. Your friend from work has a fine taste in wine, but you wouldn't ask her to bartend. Your cousin makes a delicious steak dinner, but you wouldn't ask him to cater from his home kitchen. Your niece listens to all the newest songs on her iPod, but you wouldn't ask her to DJ. Your friend has a new camera, but you wouldn't ask him to take your wedding photos. Your other friend has a DSLR, but you wouldn't ask her to take your wedding video... Would you? Before you decided to hire your friend, here are a couple things you need to know about wedding videographers. 

What is a Wedding Videographer?

1. A Wedding Videographer is a Professional

When you want a job done right, you hire a professional. Established wedding videographers operate on a professional basis. This means that they'll have contracts which will ensure you are delivered a product you'll love, which ensure you are protected against accidental loss of footage, which ensure that additional media is used fairly and legally. Professional wedding videographers have a background of knowledge with which they are able to educate you into making wise, well thought out decisions, ultimately resulting in a beautiful video memory of your wedding day which you will cherish forever. 

2. A Wedding Videographer Has Valuable Experience 

Having shot a plethora of weddings, we know one thing to be true: expect the unexpected. While often planned out throughly, it is not uncommon for wedding plans to change on the morning, or afternoon, of the big day. Life happens, and we need to account for that. Wedding videographers are used to adapting to new situations and scenarios. They are resilient, educated and aware, ready to react to the situation while providing top notch video coverage. Professional videographers know how many batteries are necessary, how many camera angles are ideal for a specific event, when to change SD cards to ensure constant coverage. With experience comes the peace of mind that your video will be everything you've dreamed it to be, and more. 

On a side note, it is shocking how many people have never tied a tie, or properly fastened a boutonnière. Odds are your wedding videographer has the experience to lend a hand in even the most obscure circumstances. 

3. A Wedding Videographer is an Investment

While wedding planning often comes down to managing a very specific budget, there are ways to save money without sacrificing important elements of your day. Your wedding day will come and go in the blink of an eye, trust us, we've lived it. Consider investing in the things which will provide you with concrete memories of the happiest day of your life. Video offers you a chance to relive your day in a way which no other form of media can. We've seen a dramatic increase in the number of clients booking videographers before photographers. We believe that both video and photo are important and that you should seek out the help of professional wedding videographers to ensure that you'll have a product you'll value for life. 

3 Reasons Your Brand Needs a Video

We were recently at an educational meeting of Manitoba Wedding Professionals where the goal was to equip vendors from all industries with practical marketing tools. A theme which regularly emerged was the need for individual brands to have a 'brand' video. Essentially, a short 1-3 minute film, highlighted on your website which prospective customers could watch to learn more about your brand. Here are a few reasons why you should consider a brand video for your company or organization.

Prairie Film Co. on a recent brand video shoot for food blogger, the Recipe Rebel. 

Prairie Film Co. on a recent brand video shoot for food blogger, the Recipe Rebel. 

#3. Client Perception

We've all heard the stats. If your website looks bad, your prospective clients won't stay long. Clean web design is vitally important to the success of your business and video plays a critical role. By hiring a professional videographer to craft you a brand video you are presenting a polished, calculated and professional image to your clients. If your video is well thought out and crafted, it will embed a subconscious degree of trust in your client's mind. 


#2. SEO Powerhouse 

The power of SEO (search engine optimization) is overlooked by far too many small businesses. In the last three months Prairie Film Co. was able to reach the number one Google listing for multiple sets of desired keywords, all without paying a cent to any SEO firms. A direct result of our SEO journey has been 7 times more bookings through Google search and business expansion that we could have only dreamed of in years past. The fact is simple, if you're not actively involved in SEO, you're missing out. 

A brand video plays perfectly into increasing search traffic as engines like Google prioritize video highly in their rankings. By uploading, tagging, and describing your video properly on sites like YouTube, you'll score huge points with Google, especially since Google priorities their own sites, like YouTube, over content uploaded to other video hosting sites. 

SEO is incredibly intricate and there is no clear cut formula to follow. However, if you do the research and hard work, you'll find a return that is well worth the investment. 

 
Prairie Film Co. Seo Chart
 

#1. Instant Relationship 

Brand videos build instant relationship between you and your clients. When a client can establish a human connection while on your website your likelihood of generating business soars. Trust is a major factor in business decisions, especially in the wedding industry where clients are investing significant amounts of money. To have a client that trusts your work, and you as a person, heading into a consultation will situate you miles ahead of your competition. 

Here is a recent brand video we crafted for a private Winnipeg high school. This video is now displayed on the front page of their website, specifically targeting new visitors. 


We have a wealth of experience with both SEO and brand video creation. If you need a tip or trick, or perhaps are looking for a videographer to create your video, drop us a line at hello@prairiefilmco.com and let us know. 

Prairie Film Co. 2015 Highlights

#5. 2016 Weddings

We've been incredibly lucky to have booked a record number of weddings over a year in advance! We've had the chance to meet so many new clients, many of whom have already become our friends! We're incredibly excited to work alongside with them all this year!

PrairieFilmCoWinnipegWeddingVideographers

#4. A Week Long Vacation 

In the middle of our summer wedding videography craziness, we took a week off and headed out to spend seven days at our family cottages. The lake has always been important to both of us and we knew we needed to spend a couple days out there to relax and rejuvenate! Having time to kick back in the middle of wedding season is exactly what we need. This year we're doing it again, but instead we're headed off for our honeymoon! 

Lauren catching a Black Crappie out at Brereton Lake in the Whiteshell.

Lauren catching a Black Crappie out at Brereton Lake in the Whiteshell.

Jordan and Lauren seadooing out a Pelican Lake, Ninette Manitoba. 

Jordan and Lauren seadooing out a Pelican Lake, Ninette Manitoba. 

#3. Wedding Vendors

The wedding industry in Winnipeg is filled with many passionate vendors who are incredible at their respective trades. This summer we had the chance to make a host of new friends who we look forward to working with again in the future. Below are two people we met this summer, who we've decided to hire for our own wedding in July of 2016! We encourage you to look into their services for your future wedding!

A new friend! Lauren from Stonehouse Creative! (click to see her work). 

A new friend! Lauren from Stonehouse Creative! (click to see her work). 

Another new friend! Monique from Pantel Photography! (click to see her work). 

Another new friend! Monique from Pantel Photography! (click to see her work). 

#2. Our Wedding Clients

One of our top highlights from 2015 was the fact that we had the opportunity to hang out with beautiful couples every weekend and to celebrate their love! We truly value relationship at Prairie Film Co. and to be able to joke around with our clients, to take selfies from the sky with them, all the while telling a beautiful story through film makes it an incredible day for us! Feel free to click through all the below videos to see a sample of our work. 

Meghan & Chet's beautiful Lake of the Woods wedding (click to see their video). 

Meghan & Chet's beautiful Lake of the Woods wedding (click to see their video). 

Julie and Tyler's farm wedding out in Morden Manitoba (click to see their video). 

Julie and Tyler's farm wedding out in Morden Manitoba (click to see their video). 

Bryan and Lyna's Laos wedding Ceremony (click to see their video). 

Bryan and Lyna's Laos wedding Ceremony (click to see their video). 

Melissa and Ian's Downtown Winnipeg wedding (click to see their video). 

Melissa and Ian's Downtown Winnipeg wedding (click to see their video). 

#1. Our Own Engagement

No surprise, our biggest highlight of 2015 was our own engagement! We've already written extensively about our engagement which you can read here. Just like our brides, we get to experience the joys of wedding planning as we look forward to our 2016 wedding! 

Our engagement was photographed live by our friends at WJB Photography.

Our engagement was photographed live by our friends at WJB Photography.

A photo moments after Lauren said "yes!"

A photo moments after Lauren said "yes!"

What were your 2015 highlights?! 

The Biggest Wedding Regret of 2015

The 2015 wedding season was an absolute blast! Here in Winnipeg, Manitoba, wedding season spans from late spring to early fall, with a couple outliers filling in the blanks. June, July, August and September are peak months where we are consistently shooting weddings. As we rang in 2016 nearly two weeks ago, a series of new surveys have been published which shed light on what 2015 bride's wish they would have done leading up to their wedding. 

Brett and Mallory, kissing in the sunset at Bridges Golf Course. Prairie Film Co. November 2015. 

Brett and Mallory, kissing in the sunset at Bridges Golf Course. Prairie Film Co. November 2015. 

A bride's beautiful ring and bouquet. Prairie Film Co, September 2015. 

A bride's beautiful ring and bouquet. Prairie Film Co, September 2015. 

According to Brides.com, arguably the biggest wedding planning resource on the internet, the number one regret of brides married in 2014 and 2015 was the failure to hire a wedding videographer. Wedding videography was considered an additional expense that was unnecessary, or too costly, thus relegated to the back burner. Here at Prairie Film Co. we can't imagine a wedding happening without a team of videographers! We are convinced that you shouldn't cut wedding videography, rather you should look for a videographer who can tell your story with precision and creativity. 

Max and Dal, sharing a candid moment during formal pictures. Prairie Film Co. September 2015. 

Max and Dal, sharing a candid moment during formal pictures. Prairie Film Co. September 2015. 

Michelle posing for a sequence of shots in Carman Manitoba. Prairie Film Co. July 2014. 

Michelle posing for a sequence of shots in Carman Manitoba. Prairie Film Co. July 2014. 

Apart from Brides.com, both the Knot and Wedding Ideas Magazine recognize the failure to hire a videographer as the primary regret for 2015 brides. If you've yet to be sold on the prospect of hiring a videographer, allow us to give you our perspective as to why videography is so important, and why we decided to hire a team of videographers for our 2016 wedding. 

Save the Date Videos

Christmas time has come and gone and we hope you had a marvellous season! As per usual, our Facebook feeds filled up with brand new engagements! And with some many people planning their weddings for next summer, it's time to set a date and let people now so that they can put it into their busy summer calendars! We've recently come across a series of adorable save the date videos which you may want to consider for you wedding. While you can hire a professional videographer to compose your video, you can also create a DIY video if you're feeling inspired. Here are some recent examples of Save the Date videos which you may want to look through! 

Professional Save the Date Video

DIY Save the Date Video

If you're looking for help with your video feel free to reach out to us and let us know

Vendor Spotlight: Stone House Creative

One of the many joys of our job is the incredible people we get to meet. Apart from our clients, we get to know other wedding vendors very well. When it comes down to it, we like to work with good people. Over the next series of posts we will be highlighting some of our favourite Winnipeg wedding professionals, people we've worked with and met along our journey. Hopefully, these profiles can help you connect with people who do amazing work and have great hearts. 

Lauren Wiebe | Stone House Creative

We first "ran into" Lauren at a wedding where she provided the florals and we filmed. While we may have been at the same place at the same time, we never met each other that day. The connection was only made after we sat down with Lauren to do the florals for our wedding day. While I could go on and on about how hospitable, personal and professional Lauren is, we'll let her do the talking. 

What's your story? 

I've always loved flowers. My Mom and both of my grandmothers are excellent gardeners, and I grew up on a farm where there were lots of flower beds and lots of space to run around and play. I didn't know that I would end up in flowers, though. When I was in my last year of university, I started working for a local bridal magazine and this is when my love for weddings started. I quickly fell in love with the industry and though I didn't stay at the magazine long-term, I knew that I would stay in the industry and dreamed of being my own boss - I just wasn't sure how. I thought about being a wedding planner - I have some of the right personality traits for it, but after assisting a few weddings for a planner friend of mine, I knew that it wasn't the right fit for me (so much stress! Girls, thank your planners!). I stumbled into a position as the wedding coordinator for a local florist, and there it was: the perfect fit. I realized that I knew a lot more about flowers than the average person, and remembering my childhood, it seemed like all the signs were pointing in the same direction. I started SHC mid-way through 2014 and in my first wedding season, designed the flowers for over 30 weddings. It was exhausting, but absolutely wonderful. 

What's the best part of your job?

Honestly, aside from scrubbing buckets after the weddings are over, I love every part of my job. Meeting with brides is always so much fun, and I love choosing the combinations of flowers I'll use. I really value organization, so checklists and processes, putting together quotes and ordering flowers, are all fun to me. But, the absolute best part of my job is designing the bridal bouquet. I love watching the flowers come together and I always put the best blooms into the bride's bouquet. It should be special.

What are you passionate about?

I love running my own business, and I spend a lot of time researching, connecting with other small business owners, and investing in my craft. I also love to sing. Throat issues a few years ago have held me back from singing a lot lately, but chances are very good that you'll almost always hear me singing or whistling show tunes. 

What are you currently reading / watching / listening to?

I have been a Harry Potter fanatic for years, and this summer, I decided to listen to all the audiobooks while I worked on wedding flowers. It was so wonderful! I like to think that the excitement and magic of Howarts makes its way into my bouquets. 

What's your Winnipeg gem?

I always tell people that Winnipeg is way cooler than they think. We have an awesome town! Jenna Rae Cakes is one of my favourites, partly because of the banana walnut bars with browned butter icing and partly because the girls are really good friends of mine. My husband and I always love Pizzeria Gusto for a dinner out, and I also can't resist the restaurant (and shops) at Pineridge Hollow. And finally, my favourite place to go is to the Centennial Concert Hall. I've performed there a few times and love going to see shows, and I think it's just the most beautiful, magical place and I always love to look up at the chandelier in the lobby. I try to bring a little bit of that magic to all of my weddings. My husband and I actually had our wedding photos taken inside the Concert Hall a few years ago!

Our interactions with Lauren have been great. If you're looking for a top notch floral designer for your wedding, you know who to go to.

What is a Same Day Edit?

After each consultation with a potential client we learn a new lesson. There is always a way in which we can communicate better, whether being more articulate, or explaining a concept more thoroughly. Our goal is to educate brides so that they can make the best decision when choosing their wedding videographer. We've recently had a lot of interest in our same day edit films, so here is a detailed explanation of exactly what they are, and why you may need one. 

Here is Lyna & Brian's same day edit, mentioned above, from this summer at Upper Fort Garry Provincial Park.

Video Recap: 

1. What is a Same Day Edit?

A video of your wedding preparations, ceremony and pictures which is shot and edited to be played at your wedding reception. 

2. How Do They Get Played?

Our same day edit film usually take the place of a traditional photo slideshow during the reception. In some cases, clients have asked to have old family footage or pictures incorporated into the Same Day Edit. This is a possibility should you desire it. Most wedding venues have a projector and speakers, if not, they can be rented. Once the video is complete, we plug it in and play! 

3. How Many People Work on it?

We use two videographers, unless more are requested, and we bring along one editor. Lauren and I are constantly filming while we pass off our SD cards for the editor to process. 

4. Why Are They Popular?

There is usually a taboo around video production that filming, editing and crafting a final product takes months. While this may have historically been the case, digital technologies have changed everything. Your guests will be amazed at the efficiency and quality of the video work. 

 

 

To Drone or Not to Drone

First of all, watch this video. 

Videos like this one have become synonymous with the use of drones in wedding videography. However, we can't let one clip decide whether or not we should be using a drone. We have broken down a couple reasons why you may choose to drone, or why you may want to avoid droning at your next wedding. 

Wedding Videography: Drone Pros

 

Winnipeg Wedding Videography Drone

The perks of using a drone at a wedding are obvious. A drone allows the user to capture images that one could never capture without the power of flight. To be high up in the sky, or 100 feet out over a body of water. These are shots which would not be possible without a flying camera. These shots can define a video. They have the potential to set that video apart from the rest. The novelty of cameras in the sky is still mesmerizing, even in the twenty first century. For these reasons, a drone is a great help mate for a wedding videographer. 

Wedding Videography: Drone Cons

While the use of a drone is exciting and holds limitless creative potential, the operator must be aware of the flying regulations in their respective province, state or territory. The government of Canada is very strict, yet informative when it comes to drone operation. It is important to know the rules and regulations so that you can avoid getting yourself in trouble. Other potential issues may include, weather conditions, initial investment, and product knowledge. 

Over all, we love the use of drones for wedding videography. Watch this film by Riccardo Fasoli which incorporates beautiful drone footage. 



Our Gear (Fall 2015)

We get a lot of people who ask about the gear that we use. Sometimes it's clients, but usually it is young videographers who want to know where to invest their first freelance dollars. As a result, we've decided to dedicate a blog post to our gear. The important thing to note is that we are planning a massive overhaul to our inventory... But perhaps that'll have to wait until our Spring 2016 post! We've separated our gear into three sections, visuals, audio and stabilization. 

Our Gear: Visuals

Professional Winnipeg Videography Canon 6D

Our primary camera body is the Canon 6D. Both Lauren and I have one in our kits. We appreciate the 6D as it's been a rugged work horse for us over the past few years. We choose to go with the 6D over the 5DMiii for a variety of reasons. When our business first started out, the 6D carried a drastically lower price tag than the 5DMiii, which was fantastic for our line of credit. Aside from the financial out look, the 6D has great low light performance in video mode, an absolute must have in the wedding videography industry. Aside from the Canon 6D we also use a Canon 60D, which is another great camera that we use to capture a third angle from the back of a ceremony space. Our lens collection is primarily Canon as well. We use a variety of lenses, all with different strengths. Our workhorses are the 24-70mm f2.8, the 24-105 f4 IS, the 70-200 f2.8 and the 50mm f1.4. Toss into the mix a Tokina 11-16 and we've covered plenty of focal length. Each lens has it's strengths and drawbacks, but we will save those for a future post. 

Our Gear: Audio

Professional Winnipeg Videography - Zoom H5 Audio Recorder

Audio is arguably the most important part of videography. While anyone can record video on their phone, good clean audio sets you apart from the rest. We use a series of professional microphones to do the job. Our workhorse is the ZOOM H6. Being able to capture audio straight from the soundboard is ideal for us. Unfortunately many venues still operate off archaic sound systems, which makes our job harder. In that case we turn to the Rode Video Mic Pro and the ZOOM H1 with Rode Lav mic. Another option is the Rode NTG2 condenser microphone. These versatile options allow us to capture great audio, even in tough circumstances. 

Our Gear: Stabilization

Perhaps the biggest aspect of video recording that is often over looked is stablilization. No one wants shaky video. There is only so much you can do to correct shaky video, and it's not a fun process. To stabilize we use Manfrotto monopods and tripods, with MVH400 fluid heads. These allow for clean, smooth movements without any jitter. We also use a Kamar SD-1 slider with a fluid head on the top and bottom. Finally, we use a Glidecam HD-4000 for movement shots, it's an amazing tool which produces great results. 


Have questions about the gear we use? Or about the gear that we are transitioning to? Let us know by contacting us! We wish you the best in your videographic adventures!