Unlike past videos where we have a bit more structure sectioning off parts of the day, we tried to throw those ideas out and section his video out in themes; from playful to charming to romantic. Ironically, some segmenting of the day started happening organically.
The opening minute and half is meant to feel playful. They both like to have fun; play games, do karaoke, she likes to dance, he likes to joke around. I felt like showcasing this element right off the bat, kind of like when a movie opens with a big action sequence or cold open. It builds up as it goes on, getting more energetic, peaking with the night time dancing at reception.
Next I wanted to create a genuine and charming feeling. I start off slowing down the pace and transitioning away from the playful section with a slightly playful element of actual camcorder style footage that we had captured (plus some effects to feel vintage). There’s something about the non-polished, hand-held, unprofessional camera quality of an old camcorder that results in a mix of candidness and nostalgia. This also ended up being the part of the video that showcases the most ceremony clips. After looking at this “old footage”, we find ourselves taking a step back to the beginning of the day as we begin our journey back to the couple. This section ends with some shots that not only wrap it up, but ease the transition to the next part.
For the final act, we enter a more deeply romantic phase; affectionate, intimate and euphoric are words that come to mind. Up until this point we haven’t really seen a lot of intimate moments with Ez & Jeff. They clinked some wine glasses, shared a couple laughs, and the ceremony shots were shaky, distorted and from a distance. I love having motifs like this, because it the payoffs are worth it, and you’ll feel it even if you don’t notice it. The first look provided one of the most intimate moments on the day that would be surrounded by cameras. I decided to keep this almost entirely raw, from one camera, only adding black & white. Why make it black & white? As you’ll see, the next shot after this will be of Ezgi walking down the exact same area for her ceremony entrance, and the visual similarities were taking away of the moments feeling separate from each other. I rarely use black & white and I don’t like to ever use it unless it serves purpose to the story. In this case I felt that by doing so, it would separate the moment from all the others. Stripping the moment of colour focused it more on the emotion between them and elevated the importance to the viewer.
Now to send it home. First we build things up again (pacing, it’s always about pacing!). I don’t even want to show them kissing just yet (the first look had kissing, but not a clean two shot with both their faces). I avoid any “hero shots” – it’s all tight or out of focus. I waited until the last minute of the video to really show off the big moments between them and have some clear kissing shots.
That’s filmmaking. That’s the power of the art to me. Visual choices that are subtle enough that the audience won’t even notice, but powerful enough that it can elicit an emotional reaction from a stranger. The privilege of practicing this craft is being able to produce it for your friends. In this case I was the best man at the wedding and it definitely created a heck of a lot of pressure to produce something I felt was worthy of the title, but we have a great crew and I knew we could pull it off.