Frequently Asked Questions
What is your style?
We consider our style to be documentary coverage. We always cringe when we it’s called “reality tv” because typically reality tv footage is very shaky and ours is not. But it is like reality tv in the sense that we see our job as following you along and filming what happens. We aren’t posing you, dipping you, twirling you and asking you to do a lot of unnatural things for our cameras. We like it best when you and your guests don’t even realize that we are there. This style is opposed to a cinematic style which is popular among wedding videographers. Don’t get us wrong, we think the cinematic style is very beautiful and there are videographers out there that do jaw-dropping work, but it comes at a cost. With a cinematic style, a lot of time and attention is given to each artistic shot and that comes at the expense of complete event coverage. The clients that work with us prefer that we focus on not missing a minute of their entire day instead of focusing so much on a few beautiful shots.
How do you handle deposits/final payments?
Many brides are surprised to find that videography is something that can fit within their budget. Not only are our prices very reasonable for what we offer (unlimited hours, two camera operators, 4 HD cameras), but unlike many wedding vendors, we work with you on your deposit schedule and final payment. We only require half of the package price to shoot the wedding – usually broke up into two 25% payments. The final payment is not due until after the wedding when we have the video finished – usually anywhere from a month to three months. We are confident in our work and we trust our clients, so we don’t feel a need to force our clients to pay everything up front before we even show up to the wedding. For us, preserving memories is our main goal and money comes secondary. So if you really like our work and want to work with us, accommodations can always be made.
Why do you charge sales tax?
We’d love it if we didn’t have to charge our customers sales tax. However, the State of California wouldn’t love us if we did that. Even though we are providing a service, since the culmination of our service results in a tangible product (the Blu-ray or DVD disc) then it is something that is taxable by law. Other vendors may tell you that they don’t charge sales tax, but you should be wary of someone willing to break the law in order to obtain your business. It’s always best to select licensed, insured and law-abiding vendors.
What is the difference between the full length video and the highlight video and how long are they typically?
Unlike other videographers that give you just a short form version of your wedding, we provide our customers both a full length version of their wedding and a short form (what we call a highlight video). There is no set amount of time for the full length video; it’s not like we are going to cut things out of the video to fit a certain time frame. The length of the full length video really depends on your event – how long the ceremony is, how many toasts you have, how many events are on the agenda, whether you have us film you getting ready or not. It can be anywhere from 2 to 4 hours long, but the important thing to remember is that everything that is on the agenda you will see in its entirety (ceremony, grand entrance, toasts, first dance, parent dances, cake, tosses, etc.). Other videographers may ask, “Why would you want to watch all of that?” Why – because it’s your wedding and it’s footage of you and all of your family and friends. Who wouldn’t want to be able to sit down and watch their wedding from beginning to end and not miss a moment? And this isn’t your parents’ wedding video with a camera in the back of the room that would bore you to tears. It’s all up close and from a variety of angles that is nicely edited. Sure, you may not have the time to watch the full length video all the time, that’s why in addition to the full length video we provide you with a highlight video. It’s about 15 minutes long and is a nicely edited, condensed version of the day. It’s perfect to share with your friends and family if you don’t want to bore them with the full length version.
Is Blu-ray something that you charge extra for?
No, your video on Blu-ray disc is included with any of our packages. However, some couples elect not to choose Blu-ray and in that case they can get their video on DVD. The only time an extra charge is applied is if you request your video in both formats.
How quickly can I expect my video?
We’ve all heard the horror stories of it taking over a year to get a wedding video. Not with us! One of the reasons we set up our final payment as we do is to ensure that you will get your video in a timely fashion – because we want to get paid! So there’s motivation on our end to get you the video as quickly as possible. Bet you those people who have had to wait years for their video paid their videographer in full before the wedding. It takes about 40-60 hours of editing time to complete your video, so if you have already been paid for that work, it’s hard to get motivated to sit in front of the computer for that long. Don’t get us wrong, we definitely aren’t rushing the video just to get paid, but it is a nice motivator. So back to the original question…you can expect your video anywhere from two weeks til three months after your wedding. It only takes about 2 weeks to finish the video, it just depends how many videos we have ahead of yours. Some clients are lucky and they arrive home from their honeymoon and it’s waiting for them and others have to wait a while.
Why do you use so many cameras when other companies don’t?
We use four cameras at the ceremony and we don’t charge you per camera. That many cameras comes standard with any package. We do this because we feel like in order to adequately cover the event, you need to use that many cameras. Remember, our style is documentary so for us it is crucial that you see every minute of your ceremony. If we were cinematic and just trying to get a few key artistic shots, then it wouldn’t be as necessary. It’s also a bonus to use that many cameras because it makes it easier for your photographer. If he/she or a guest steps in front of one of our cameras, no big deal. We can cut to another angle. Surprisingly, using that many cameras also makes us less disruptive during the ceremony. We position them along the sides and in the back, so we are never buzzing around you up at the altar and distracting your guests (and also ending up in all of your photos!). You might ask, “If there are two of you, how do you operate four cameras?” We quietly float back forth between the cameras to get them framed properly and with our years of experience we know where we need to be at any given time during the ceremony.
Can I make changes to the video?
Yes, we start you off with one copy of the video. From our standpoint it’s finished – it’s completely edited, set to music, has all the graphics and titles, etc. – but we call it a proof because we have left the project open on our system in case you have any changes you want to make. Typical changes include removing something that’s embarrassing, changing out a song that you might not like, or fixing a mistake that we made. We have had rare occasions where we had to charge for proof corrections, usually because a guest at the wedding is no longer a friend and the client wants all instances of them removed from the video. Something of that nature would incur additional charges. Had they informed us before we edited the video, it would have been no problem. So in that case it would have been best had they told us before we finished editing the video that they were going to want that done because we could have easily accommodated that request.
What is your priority at the wedding?
We see our main job as giving you complete coverage of your day. Our job is to capture every moment and do so without being obtrusive. We strive to capture all the little details and all the special moments all while making you feel as comfortable as possible. We love it when after the wedding we hear, “I didn’t even realize you were there for that!” Of course the quality of the video is also of upmost importance. We strive for focused, well-framed shots. We try to be as creative as possible without compromising our number one goal of total event coverage.
How far in advance should I book?
That’s hard to say. We can only book one event per day, so once a date is booked it’s gone. Sometimes people book us a year in advance and sometimes it’s just a few months, it really depends on the time of year and whether it’s a Saturday wedding or not. If you know that you want to work with us, it’s best to get on our calendar as soon as you can and we can work with you on the deposit schedule if needed. It’s always heartbreaking to turn people away because they waited too long.
Why don’t you like to charge hourly?
As we stated, our goal is total event coverage and there’s nothing worse than to have to be on a time limit and have to go up to a bride during the wedding and say, “If you want to get the rest of your wedding, you need to pay us more.” So for that reason we gave up charging hourly years ago. This doesn’t mean we aren’t willing to modify our packages. Often we will forego the coverage of the open dancing and leave after the block of toasts/first dance/cake in order to reduce the package price. We also do keep track of the number of hours for the pre-ceremony getting ready coverage, but for the most part, we don’t want you to be keeping an eye on the clock when you should be having fun.
Will you match another videographer’s price?
We feel that when you really compare apples to apples (number of cameras, number of camera operators, no hourly time limit, HD quality coverage, full length and highlight video, etc.) we are the best deal in town for the money. So for that reason we don’t price match another videographer. Maybe on the surface their price might seem better, but when you break it down, in our eyes there is no comparison.
But I don’t really like to be on camera!
Most people feel the same way. But the beauty of our style of videography is that we aren’t asking you to be unnatural on camera for us. We hang back and just film things as they happen. Our clients tend to forget we are even there after a while. In fact, they are always posed more by their photographers than they are by us.
Reel to Real Video specializes in Sacramento wedding videography. We offer affordable wedding videography packages and we film weddings throughout the Sacramento area, including Stockton, Foresthill, Yuba City, Napa and other surrounding communities.