Hollywood production protocol for weddings 

"Give me a cutaway, a reversal, and don’t cross the line.”  Language that makes complete sense to you?  How about “Roll sound?” Yes, I’m sure you’re familiar with that one, you know, where the sound guy is told to start the recorder ann he/she says “speed.” Then the AD says “Slate.” The slate person places the open slate in front of the camera and the AD says “Mark it! “ allowing the director to yell “Action!”  But you’ve never it at a wedding, right? Of course not. Film production protocol doesn’t exist at a wedding. So you might find it a bit weird to know that I strive to follow film these media production protocols that are engrained into the minds of TV and film professionals worldwide. These protocols were taught to me many years ago, when I was a supernumerary/ apprentice at Pinewood Film Studios in England. I was seventeen and I’d quit school early because I hated school. My initial training at Pinewood and Thames TV lasted ten years, during which I worked my way up the ladder, becoming a film and TV editor, a director of independent art films, before I decided to DP and write. After three decades in the film and TV business i decided that I wanted to be a writer of fiction; in order to facilitate my dream I segued into wedding cinematography, wedding videography and wedding photography, the new craft allowing me time to write and make living money simultaneously, although I did not know at first how much I would come to love my new adventure. To this day, I get really excited to go out and shoot. For photography,  I typically use 2 cameras, one strapped over each shoulder, so that I can easily switch focal lengths without changing lenses.  For video, I mostly shoot with 3 cameras, sometimes four of five.  You might be surprised to know that complex video shoots require fewer cameras because complex shoots typically are crafted with production tools, rails, video cranes, camera stabilizers, an aerial camera, for the creation of designer motion shots.    My 3-camera shoot is a master camera setup and two matching side by side angles. If I’m at a wedding without a second or assistant (for simple elopements) I keep the set-up easy, 2 or 3 cameras on tripods, wireless microphone on the officiant, back up mic on the groom.   For more adventurous shoots, my third camera is set up for mobility, tracking shots, slides, etc. 


 

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