Raw Footage: Quantity or Quality?

It is common for wedding videographers to get asked the question “How many minutes of Raw Footage will I be receiving with my package?” We want to help clear this question up and help brides and grooms know which questions they should be asking instead.

The amount of actual Raw-Footage will depend on the number of hours of video coverage.  At Chris Fig Productions, it is typical that a package with 6 hours of coverage will have 90 minutes of raw-footage and 10 hours of video coverage will typically have 150 minutes of raw footage.  Hearing these numbers is often surprising to many clients. “Why am I not getting 10 hours of Raw-Footage if I had 10 hours of coverage?” Here are a few examples of why you may not have the amount of raw-footage you are expecting:

• There are many times during the day that the videographer is unable to shoot. One example of this is driving between the ceremony and reception venues. This time is included in the total coverage time.

• The cocktail hour typically will be 5-7 minutes of the raw-footage. This is ample enough time to video all the guests and the atmosphere.  To shoot the entire 60 minutes of the cocktail hour would not add anything video but would simply add length to the video and annoy guests with our continual recording.

• The reception is where the bulk of the raw-footage will be captured for most videographers. This where all the main events other than the ceremony will take place: the first dances, cake cutting, tossing the bouquet, etc. Even though the majority of the footage will be taken from the reception this does not mean that videographer will be constantly shooting. During the time the videographer is not shooting he/she will be actively searching for the next shot or setting up for the next event of the evening.

Many couples often get caught up with “ How much raw-footage will be captured?” We believe this question isn’t the best to ask. Instead, ask questions such as, “Do I like the previous work of the videographer?” “Am I comfortable with my videographer?” And after you receive your video package, “Did my videographer capture all the special moments of my wedding day, scripted and unscripted, and help me relive the emotions of the day?”What are your thoughts? Do you have any other questions about wedding videography?