Pro video blog…Produced by Philip Johnston DoP/Editor

How true this is… the amount of times I came up against a balshy photographer with attitude at weddings was becoming intolerable, there is no need for it it’s just damed right un-professionalism.

When it comes to recording someones wedding no one has sole rights over the other no matter how much the photographer thinks they are top dog, bad attitude photographers are the bain of the wedding industry and I have seen it from both angles.

DSLRs do not help as the photographer who is a notably suspicious creature at the best of times will not be happy when you turn up with your HD DSLR.

Weddings are stressful enough without having a fellow professional acting the goat, on the whole I got on really well with photographers and always introduced myself from the minute they arrived.

This video kind of tells the story from both sides but the poignant part for me is the stepping in front of the camera, deliberatly spoiling your shot, I had a female photographer do this to me once and I took her aside and told her in no uncertain terms where her camera would go if she ever tried that trick again, she was frosty after that but we knew where each other stood…not in front of each others shot !

We have a wedding photographer in Glasgow who insisted there was to be no “video-man” at the wedding and gave the couple an incentive of £200 discount from his £2000 package for doing so, this un-beknown to him was doing us a favour as no one wanted to work beside him, his photography was very good but attitude was a joke. If on the occasion he had to suffer the “video scum” he would insist on taking the bride and groom to a park, himself, for 2-3 hours, then on delivery of a very scratchy bride by this time and an even more irritated reception manager things were put on fast forward as we were now well out of time.

A modern solution is to produce a complete package pics and DVD then you get a team of professionals working from the same hymn sheet. You can’t win in the wedding video game I once worked with a photographer who used to film for Sky News and he would also try to dominate the wedding.

You have to put yourself into the way the photographer thinks to understand why they think as they do. It’s about exclusivity, getting the next MPA winning wedding shot and you don’t get such pictures if you have a distraction tagging along (video).

Most of the pains in the ass I came up against and there were only about half a dozen were high flyers, photographers with portfolios and competitions in mind and the video was a distraction no matter how professional you were.

I have not produced a wedding DVD for over 7 years now and I don’t miss it one bit in fact I have taken more photographic weddings since concentrating on corporate video production. I have that inner knowledge that sees it from both angles but in my books there is a place for both disciplines, who cares if the video is filming over your shoulder, he is moving and I am still…what’s the problem !


Having been working in the video business since 1988 I have amassed a great amount of knowledge of both the kit and production values over the last 30 years.

3 thoughts on “Photography versus Video at Weddings

  1. This is a problem that arises from time to time and mainly on the other side. Perhaps photographers are unnerved by the scrutiny of another pro many of whom came from the same background.
    I’ve debated this with photographers who say “I have to take 500 good shots at a wedding” I say at 50fps I’m through that in ten seconds.
    Best solution as you say is to offer photo services as well/

  2. Good article! Last wedding I filmed (on digital tape) was 4 years ago and how true the working practices of some photographers. And having done photography for longer than video, it reeaally annoyed me how much the photographer was getting paid compared to my charges, especially as I was with the couple anything up to 13 to 16 hours on THE DAY and they were home for tea on a Saturday night. As you can see… I’m not bitter at all. I’m lucky now to be gone from all that and now I ENJOY my video and photography work !!!

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