The Wedding of Ru Sun and Trevor at Coombe Abbey

Ru Sun and Trevor were married in the Walnut Suite at Coombe Abbey on the 16th August 2014, their wedding was a fusion of East and West with Ru Sun getting changed into 3 stunning outfits during the day and Trevor changing into traditional Chinese attire for the Wedding breakfast.

The Wedding of Ru Sun & Trevor

Ru Sun & Trevor in traditional Chinese attire

Ru Sun and Trevor were able to get out into the gardens at Coombe Abbey which were in full bloom, the portrait session of their day was a lovely walk in the Country Park.

 

Wedding Films at Wethele Manor in Warwickshire

I must admit I had never heard of this venue before, even though I live no more than 5 miles from Weston under Wetherley and have done so most of my life, I thought I had cycled around all of the area so was quite shocked when I was asked to capture Gemma & Matt’s wedding at Wethele Manor.

I quickly googled it, and before the wedding, visited to take a look, I was amazed at this exclusive wedding venue. I read that the farm was originally built in the 16th century but had only recently been refurbished and redeveloped into a wedding venue and what a top job the owners have done. The courtyard, where ceremonies can take place all through the summer, is stunning; as is the barn which offers a wet weather option. The marquee can be fully opened on 3 sides so it does not get too warm and you get the festival English countryside feel to your wedding breakfast.

From a videographers point of view it has everything I would need, the farm is set in 250 acres so there are lots of places to use for those intimate shots of the Bride & Groom as well as the house offering a great backdrop to both photos and film. There is plenty of light and space in the inside areas so even in wet weather it is an idyllic setting.

I was definitely impressed and loved the way the footage I took of Gemma & Matt’s wedding turned out. Why don’t you take a look below!

Wedding Videos at Mallory Court, Leamington Spa

Picture of Mallory Court

The Ivy-Clad Manor House

Mallory Court is one of Warwickshire’s premium wedding venues and a favorite with the majority of local photographers and videographers. The Ivy-Clad Country House, although looking very old, was only built in the early 20th century, and has recently been renovated to a very high standard. The house is set in 10 acres of stunningly picturesque gardens, which offer the perfect location for those all-important portrait shots, whilst the front of the house is a perfect backdrop for your group photos.

Wedding Ceremonies and Receptions take place in the Knights Suite, a purpose built venue separate from the house which offers a beautiful, modern, light room which is completely self contained. The room lends itself to a number of different layouts which cater for smaller intimate weddings as well as larger affairs. One of the most popular features is the Grand Piano which sits in the corner of the room and has been modified to play on its own without need for a pianist.

Mallory Court Hotel

The Knights Suite ready for a Wedding Breakfast

The service and food are second to none as you would expect from a hotel which has an award winning Brasserie attached. At a recent wedding I was lucky enough to be offered the same food as the guests which was roast beef, and I must say it was one of the best I have tasted. The wedding coordinator is very friendly and has an eye for detail: the brides I have spoken to have found her excellent and nothing has been too much trouble.

From a wedding videographer’s point of view it has it all: picturesque gardens, outside space for your drinks reception and a wet weather alternative. In short it is certainly a hotel you should be adding to your list if you are looking for venues in Warwickshire!

Please see below the wedding of Esther & Ben which took place at Mallory Court on the 4th April 2014

The Wedding of Esther & Ben at Mallory Court 4th April 2014 from Ben Salisbury on Vimeo.

 

Wedding videos at Warwick House, Southam

Trees from Warwick House

Warwick House Ceremony Venue

Warwick House is another fantastic wedding venue in Warwickshire, offering that mix of period features and décor but also a very light modern feel. The house which was only converted from a guest house into an exclusive wedding venue in 2010 is located on the outskirts of Southam within 20 minutes of Rugby, Leamington Spa and Stratford-Upon-Avon.

Warwick House also has a license to conduct outdoor weddings ceremonies, so if the weather is good you may be able to have your ceremony under the pagoda in the gardens with all your guests watching on. The path to the pagoda does make a fantastic central isle for the bride to walk down and due to the elevation of the terrace (where the bride enters from) and the backdrop of the house it gives the wow factor to the beginning of your ceremony.

Room setting at Warwick House

Room setting at Warwick House

As a Wedding Videographer I probably look at venues in a slightly different way to most people, I see the features of the house and I definitely see why couples are drawn to this venue but I also see what goes on behind the scenes, meet the staff, see the set–up and the thought that goes into every wedding. The staff and management at Warwick House really go that extra mile to make both Bride & Groom and all of their guests feel comfortable.  I am yet to speak to a couple married at Warwick House who have anything but great things to say.

In fact there is very little not to like about this venue, especially from a videographers viewpoint. I have done a few weddings at Warwick House were we have been unable to get outside due to the weather, however the big windows and numerous feature rooms have allowed us to get great shots around the house without the need to bring in extra lighting.

If you are looking for a venue in Warwickshire it should defiantly be on your list to take a look around!

Nick & Kate’s Wedding at Warwick House, Southam from Ben Salisbury on Vimeo.

Wedding Videos in a Winter Wonderland!!

As a Wedding Videographer I seem to be getting busier and busier in the winter months! It seems that the unpredictability of the UK weather has made a lot of couples decide that perhaps they would be better taking the weather out of the equation and think about getting married in the winter months. This time of year also give couples (I mean brides but I want to be fair!) that extra bit of choice when it comes to table decorations, colours, themes and flowers.

Warming Winter Weddings

Warming Winter Weddings

I have had weddings later on this year where the guests have still been able to stand outside for drinks and basked in the glorious winter sun. There are also some truly gorgeous shots to be had using the low sun, crisp morning frosts and Christmas decorations/lights. It is more of a challenge but the results can be amazing. I find photographers now do amazing things at this time of year. They need to carry a bit more kit (lights, flashguns, etc.) and they have to be a bit more precise as they do not have 10 hours of sunlight to get those perfect shots, but the results can look fantastic!

Videographers can get some amazing shots too with the venues taking on that winter glow and the contrast between that and the dark, gloom outside can give some spectacular shots. The roaring fires and Christmas lights look great and allow us to set the feel of the day and tell the story. Winter weddings used to be difficult to capture but as the latest equipment can pretty much see in the dark, the footage is no longer grainy but of a super high standard.

Best of all your guests are in the mood to party as it is either in the lead up to Christmas and the party season is in full swing or it is early in the New Year and they are in need of some cheering up.

Have you had a winter wedding? Do you wish you had? Share your stories, ideas and thoughts below, go on!

 

Dunchurch Park Hotel Wedding Video

Being local to Rugby I often take bookings for Wedding Videos at Dunchurch Park Hotel. I love this venue, but it is not for the reasons that a bride and groom will have booked the venue. The bride and groom will have seen the stately elegance of the long driveway or the amazing grounds and terrace that will wow their guests on their special day, or the great hall and the huge super-deluxe marquee that will house their Ceremony or Wedding Breakfast.

Dunchurch Park Hotel Wedding Video

In the Gardens of Dunchurch Park Hotel

I love all of these aspects but it is not why I have a fondness for this venue, I have a bit of a history with the building long before it became a hotel and wedding venue. I used to visit this venue about 20 years ago when it was a management college and I was a young engineering apprentice in Rugby. Every year we would have a week of development training on site and we would stay in one of the many rooms which have now been upgraded into high quality hotel rooms. The gym, as it is now, used to be the only bar on site, however even though it was a management college I remember it being open very late every night. The building since then has stayed pretty much the same and I remember having my picture taken on the steps of the terrace and it being in the local papers.

Therefore it always seems strange going back and even though I am probably a little biased I do think it one of the best wedding venues in Warwickshire, I do not think there is a better location for photos than around the lily pond at the end of the gardens, it is simply stunning at any time of the year.

 

Wedding Videographer v’s ‘Shoot your Own’ Wedding Video

There is a growing trend for couples to opt for the ‘shoot your own’ wedding packages; these are offered by editing companies who will loan video cameras for your guests to capture your wedding day for you. This obviously is a lot cheaper than having a videographer at your wedding for the day, and allows you to have the footage professionally edited. I am often asked to give my opinion on this, so I thought I would put down my thoughts once and for all. I guess this might sound a little biased, but I will try to be as balanced as I can, and if anyone wants to argue for the ‘shoot it yourself’ industry then I am happy to publish the reply.

Bridal Preparaions

Cinematic shots of the Bride preparing for her wedding day

Video Quality
Guest – The great thing about having your guests film your wedding is that they will be with you every step of the way, they’ll know you and your guests really well and can get shots that a videographer would not even consider. You’ll also probably have numerous cameras so will get 3-4 points of view. The camera’s are also with you all night, so you will get a lot of Evening Reception shots.

Videographer – Your videographer will have filmed lots of weddings, so will know what will look good in the final wedding film. He’ll know how to take cinematic shots and have the equipment to get them (sliders, steadycam, etc.) His camera will also be of considerably higher standard than those your guests have been given so shots with blurred background (shallow depth of field) are captured. Also, if your venue is dark, his camera will capture footage which is clear and not grainy or dark. He will also have a high powered zoom to get those close up shots.

Sound
Guest – The guest video camera will be closer to the action and will capture your guests in a very natural way. Guests will know the person operating the camera, so will often do spontaneous and unexpected things that are quirky and fun.

Videographer – Most modern professional video cameras use shotgun microphones, so will have much better sound quality. I also use remote microphones (lapel microphones etc.) in order to get the best possible audio which can be heard clearly on your final DVD. Poor video can be watched, but poor audio will frustrate an audience very quickly.

Rolls Royce badge

Details of your wedding that might otherwise get missed

Content
Guest – This is very dependent on your guests, but the cameras will come into their own at the Evening Reception. Your videographer will probably leave about twenty minutes after your First Dance, so won’t get Jimmy’s famous rendition of ‘My Way’, John’s ‘caterpillar’ across the dance floor, or a toilet viewing of Auntie Sam’s new tattoo.

Videographer – He will get all of the shots he needs to make a cinematic film of your day: establishing shots of the venue, Ceremony and Wedding Breakfast venue, cake, etc. All the footage he captures will be useable, and he’ll get special dispensation from the Registrars or your Vicar, to get the best position to film your Ceremony.

Reliability
Guest – You will have four people with cameras, so hopefully you will capture everything, from different angles.

Videographer – Will shoot with two cameras to ensure he captures everything, He is also a professional, therefore it is unlikely that he has forgotten to press record. His camera will also be on a tripod, so his arm won’t ache half way through your vows or speeches.

In Summary
If I were to sum up the choice between a ‘shoot your own’ and hiring a professional videographer, it would be this: if you want something that records the day and what happens, consider getting your guests to film it, however if you want a cinematic film that tells the story of your wedding, and captures every detail with audio which is clear, then consider getting a professional wedding videographer. I guess you have the same decision to make about your photographer too!

If you’ve had a ‘shoot your own’ wedding video, or a professional videographer, and want to argue for or against it, I am happy to publish your reply.

 

Wedding Videos Ashorne Hill

I was asked to exhibit as a wedding videographer at Ashorne Hill a few weeks ago at their wedding fayre, I must admit I had only heard of it as a management college before and not as a wedding venue. I asked about the venue and they said that they are still doing a relatively low number of weddings but interest is building. I spoke to a friend who had been on a management training course at Ashorne Hill and he raved about how amazing the building and grounds are, so I was decided I would give it a go and booked some space to exhibit.

Ashorne Hill Weddings

Ashorne Hill Wedding Venue

I arrived in good time and left my pop ups and screen in the car, I thought I would have a look around before I set up. Ashorne Hill is a management college serving some of the countries biggest companies, the building is used exclusively for this purpose from Monday to Friday, however they have recently begun taking wedding bookings for the weekends. The great thing about this set of circumstances is it is not a hotel so you get exclusive use of the building, however they have rooms on site for your guests, and no other guests means everyone is there just for you!

You enter the grounds along stately drive which opens up into a car park in front of the main house, the old frontage of the property certainly gives this venue the wow factor. When you enter the building, the mix of modern and old have been bought together perfectly to make this a light airy building with plenty of character.

The grounds are large with views right across Warwickshire allowing for some stunning shots, the other great thing is the glass stairways and light reception room which can be used for group photos in case of rainy day. If you are looking for somewhere to get married in Warwickshire you really should take a look. I was amazed and really look forward to producing wedding videos at Ashorne Hill in the future.

Why should you have a wedding DVD?

As a wedding videographer I exhibit at a number of wedding fayre’s and I find that the majority of the couples I meet have not even thought about having their wedding recorded  and so the most of my time is spent explaining why it is a good idea to have your wedding captured on film. So I thought I would go into a little detail about what you get from film that you cannot get in any other way!

  1. The Bridal Preparations – The groom can never know what goes on whilst the bridal
    Wedding Fund

    A wedding DVD could be the best money you spend!

    party are getting ready (and some might say this is a good thing!) but having film of practicing the walk down the aisle in your slippers and rollers or the reactions of receiving a gift from the groom are truly priceless to keep.

  2. Guests Arriving – This can obviously be captured by the photographer but all you will get is a picture and it is very unlikely it will make your final album, so having film of guests arriving which will be in the final version of your DVD means you can see so much more of the people you invited to share your special day.
  3. The Ceremony – The only way to capture the promises that you make to each other during the ceremony is with a video, the moment that the groom first sets eyes on the bride as she walks down the aisle and the pride in the fathers face are very difficult to capture in any other way.
  4. Photoshoot and Pre-dinner drinks – This is normally the photographers domain, however a good wedding DVD can complement this perfectly. Showing off the venue in a different light or your guests enjoying the entertainment. It is probably the only time you will have film footage taken of you so enjoy it, I know you’ll love the results!
  5. The Speeches – How many wedding have you been to where the best man’s speech has been amazing, he’s told some amazing stories (embellished of course!) but when you sit down to breakfast the next morning you can’t remember any of them. At your wedding those stories will be about you so it is a great thing to have them filmed to watch again and again.
  6. The People – A wedding video is a snapshot in time, 1 day of your life where all of your friends and family are in one place. What better time to get someone to video them enjoying your wedding day. I’m sure in years to come you will sit down with others who won’t believe that Uncle James was so slim or that hair really was in fashion.

    Capturing the details of your wedding

    The devil is in the detail!!

  7. The Details –   You will have booked the most amazing venue and spent months or even years putting together your wedding day, down to the finest detail. The table decorations, the favors, the flowers and the cake. Yet on the day of your wedding you probably won’t get time to enjoy any of it. So why not sit down with a glass of wine around 6 weeks after your wedding and watch it over again from the perspective of one of your guests. And then watch it again, and again and again…..

I’ve probably missed a lot out but I hope you start to see why I get to speak to so few people at wedding fayres, it seems there is a lot to get across. I hope this has been useful and if you think of any other reasons why you had your wedding recorded I would be delighted if you would post them below.

What should you look if you’re booking a videographer

I recorded a wonderful wedding this weekend in Weeford, a small village on the outskirts of Lichfield. The reception took place at the Old School House and the ceremony took place in the church just across the road called St Mary’s. As always I arrived in plenty of time and was lucky enough to be able to watch the wedding prior to the one I was filming unfold as the couple left the church. This was a rare treat for me as the couple had also booked a videographer to capture their day. Now, being a videorapher is like any trade, you very rarely get to observe how others work, so it is nice once in a while to see what others are doing, the kit they carry for the job and the types of shots they are getting. I also got to speak to them (there were 2 of them) and discuss their issues with the location and the position they were allowed to take up within the church which really helped me later in the day.

Wedding Videographer

Do you like your videographers style?

It also got me thinking I wonder what percentage of couples now have either a friend or professional, video their wedding. Later on in the day during the wedding breakfast I sat with the photographer and we discussed this. He thought about 50% of the weddings he did now had a videographer. I thought this was a little high but we agreed that we thought the popularity of the wedding video is definitely increasing. Video is becoming easier and easier to share, only 5-6 years ago the only way to share a video with your friends was to take a DVD round to their house and watch it on the TV, however now Vimeo, Youtube and even Facebook allow videos to be shared almost as easily as photographs and this trend will continue as ‘clouds’ allow bigger files to be shared between friends.I for one am really excited about the future of the industry and love to embrace the new technologies, I think it’s only a matter of time before we’re broadcasting weddings live onto the web for relatives to watch in far away countries.

So as demand increases for the services of a videographer and obviously new people come into the business how do you make sure the one you book is reputable, what should you be looking for and what questions should you ask? Well, I thought I’d give a few pointers however be warned I know the answers so there’s no point in using them on me!!

Obviously the best tool for finding the right person for the job is the internet, there are lots of wedding videos online from loads of videographers, find one that suits your budget and offer a style you like and get in contact. My advice for what to look for is to stay clear of anything that looks quirky as it will date very quickly (using strange transitions between clips is a good example of something that will date quickly). Always ask your videographer how they capture sound, the difference between the audio captured by a lapel microphone and a shotgun microphone is immense (the lapel mic is far superior and will give a cinematic feel). Finally I would ask how many cameras they use to capture your wedding day. If only one camera is used you will have to sit through pans and zooms made by the videographer during the service and speeches which will make the DVD seem very amateur. At least 2 cameras should be used, 1 will capture everything and the other will be operated by your videographer and will capture close ups, reactions etc.

I really hope that you do choose to go ahead with booking a wedding videographer even if it’s not me! I would say that around 50% of the 50% of couples who do have their wedding filmed say that the wedding video is the best money they spent on their wedding day and you can’t argue with stats!!

Are you having a wedding videographer? (why isn’t it me?) Do you have any questions you asked you want to share or what made you choose the company you did?

Love to hear from you… is there anybody there?