How do you shoot wedding videos in churches?

Churches and places of worship can be dark. You will also have to deal with echo or limited space for the placement of your equipment.

Even if you use top video editing software, you can’t accomplish a lot in the absence of quality footage. Certain rules have to be followed to shoot a religious wedding ceremony in the best possible way. Here are some of the essentials.


Visit the House of Worship in Advance


chairs in church
Experienced videographers know the importance of researching the church / location.. Once you find out the name of the wedding ceremony venue, you should definitely pay a visit.

Talk to the priest or a worker there about examining the interior of the church.

Inquire about where equipment could be placed, whether it would be possible to deal with your setup before the wedding takes place and if there are certain restrictions to keep in mind.

If you need to use additional lights, you’ll also have to keep that essential in mind. Take a look at the interior and ask whether it would be possible to put a few flashes or projectors in the front, where the ceremony is going to be taking place.

This is also your chance to see where cables are going to pass and whether you’ll need to come up with an alternative setup because your equipment is getting in the way of people walking in the church.


Use a Tripod!


Even the best editing software can’t compensate for shaky or poorly shot footage. The fact that houses of worship tend to be relatively dark will contribute to the deterioration of the final outcome, especially if the videographer decides to hold the camera.

A tripod is a must when you’re shooting a video in a house of worship. You don’t need to spend a lot of money on a tripod. Tripods that have flexible legs are affordable and a pretty good choice.

The legs can be wrapped around anything (a column in a church, an elevated platform), giving a good view of the place where the ceremony is going to take place. At the same time, even the cheapest of tripods will ensure the stability of the footage when they’re set up correctly.


Pay Special Attention to the Audio


After you address the light, you’ll have to deal with the next big challenge in the world of church video creation – sound quality.

Once again – even if you outsource to professionals or use the top video editing software, you’ll be incapable of fixing high levels of background noise.

Churches and places of worship tend to have high ceilings that ensure acoustics. As a result, there will be echoes and amplified noises that will be especially audible when a professional microphone is being used. Using a unidirectional microphone could help.

Place your microphone as close to the source as possible. You could also ask the priest who will be performing the ceremony whether it’s ok to put a microphone on them. Talking to the guests in advance is also a good idea. Ask them politely to be quiet during the ceremony and don’t forget the kids.

Background speech, whispers and noises will be very annoying and these will be amplified by the church acoustics. Hence, a bit of cooperation on behalf of the guests can really contribute to much better audio.

Finally, consider closing windows to eliminate background noises or having a few rugs placed on the floor to deal with creaks and another really, really annoying noises you will be capturing otherwise.


Have a List of the Shots You Need


orthodox wedding
Have a plan in your mind right from the start. What are the main types of shots you want to create during the ceremony? If you have a list of everything you need to do, you’ll find it much easier to film in a focused way.

What are some of the shots that will contribute to the beauty and emotional appeal of the film? Close-ups of the faces of the bride and groom are obviously important. You could also try to capture the reactions of their parents during the ceremony.

A few other great shots to create at a place of worship include a wider shot including the couple and the priest, the guests, filming the choir or musicians (if there are such), interior shots that show the ambiance and a few artistic shots.

If there are lit candles, for example, you could try to capture the face of the bride behind them. The fiery light will cast some really nice and soft glow that will make the shots extra-special.

Once you’re done (or before the ceremony takes place), you should also capture a few architectural details of the exterior. Places of worship tend to be quite ornate and intriguing. Having some details scattered in the video will give the viewer a good idea about the place’s majestic presence.


Use Top Video Editing Software or Professional Assistance


The work isn’t over once all of the footage is created. You will next have to put the wedding film together. Footage created inside a place of worship will usually require more editing and a higher level of post-production work than an outdoor wedding that’s filmed in good light.

Make sure you have good focus, good audio and a diversity of shots (close-ups, ceremony documentation, detail shots, wide shots, exterior shots, etc.). If necessary, ad subtitles. The ceremony could be difficult to hear due to music or background noise.

Subtitles are an especially good idea for emotional or memorable moments – the wedding vows, the things that the priest says. If you don’t have the knowledge and the skills to handle the post-production, consider outsourcing the process.

Outsourcing wedding video editing will give you a good outcome, if it’s done by professionals. In addition, you’ll free up more time that you could dedicate to other aspects of the wedding video creation.

Professional post-production teams understand the biggest challenges of filming in places of worship and they know what it takes to improve the quality of the video and the audio.


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