Video: Please Don’t Do This the Next Time You Shoot a Wedding… or Ever

This is certainly not the first time we’ve shared a video uploaded to YouTube by a frustrated videographer whose shots were consistently ruined by the photographers at the wedding, but this might be the most extreme example we’ve seen.

It’s actually an older video, uploaded by wedding videographer Brett Hardeman back in June of 2012 alongside a job offer for any editor who believed him or herself good enough to edit the two photographers out of some of the key shots. But while the video might be a bit dated, the lesson is just as pertinent today as it ever was.

The footage goes beyond convincing you to be aware of your surroundings and work together with the videographer so that everybody can do their job and capture this couple’s special day. It does double duty, because both of the photographers in question are committing several other faux pas.


As Reddit user f22 points out, “The bride and groom should be treated like hot lava while at the ceremony. Get too close, you get burned. You can get kind of close without getting burned, but stay there too long and the heat will get to you.”

By that logic, both photographers are leaving this place with metaphorical third degree burns… But what do you think? What did they do wrong here? And how would you have handled the situation differently?

(via Reddit)

  • Raluca Diana

    At every wedding I’ve done I’ve been given a list a photos to get by the couple and got told by the registrars if they are happy with me to move around or if they want me to stay in one place. Sorry if that’s not normal, I must have done all the weird weddings. Anyway, I really could not care less about this whole little argument anymore, I really don’t have time for this, so bye bye all you pros :)

  • JM

    Because I see how they are doing it. That is not how to do it.

  • Carsten Schlipf

    This video is less than 4 minutes long and I am pretty sure that the ceremony was longer than 6 minutes.

    Please – I am not saying that their behavior wasn’t reckless. But we see a short video with outtakes from the whole ceremony and we can assume that the videographer had more than one camera set up. So don’t act as these photographers ruined all the video material from the whole ceremony.

  • Carsten Schlipf

    Absolutely. I also think they acted a bit over the top. But let’s try to view it from their perspective for a second. How are they supposed to take pictures without ever appearing in the video – even more when there are two video cameras being setup. And the outtakes we can see here are most probably the worst scenes in less than 4 minutes from the whole ceremony that probably lasted for an hour.

    We also do not know what kind of pictures the couple demanded. Did they explicitly demand close ups of the ring exchange?

    Is it just black and white?

  • Jason Connel

    I’ve shot at this venue separate occasions. It is a stunning place but it can be a little tight. The pews go all the way to the walls and the center isle is almost the only way to get around. There is a landing off to the right of the from of the church that goes out doors, and you can use that to move.

    I have a little sympathy for the shooters, especially if they are inexperienced, but I feel they were a little over the top.

  • Frodo

    Does anyone beside myself want to see more video of these two photographers at another wedding? They’re awesome.

  • Chris Pickrell

    So do I.

  • Chris Pickrell

    I think you missed my point. I never said they were doing it right. I simply said sometimes the couples want you to go out of your way. I’ve had couples tell me they do not care if I block people for a photo.

  • Guest

    I never said it wasn’t. You seem to confuse my point of how important it is to make the clients happy, with me saying these two did a terrible job.

    My original comment was made to the person I responded to, not these two idiots.

  • Chris Pickrell

    If you’ll notice, my comment was to another comment. Not the video. I was not defending these two. I was simply stating that as a photographer, my job is to do exactly what my clients want, and their satisfaction is my primary concern. Over all other things. Period.

  • Fullstop

    I don’t think anyone was arguing. I’m sure the videographer loved their cameos. I mean look at how much attention his video got all thanks to them. If it wasn’t for their performance he would just be another bloke shooting video at a boring wedding.
    He should thank them with a christmas card complete with a frame grab of the male in the t-shirt holding up the camera for the ring exchange.
    Maybe even have it framed.
    No, too far.

  • Fullstop

    I would like a workshop.

  • Fullstop

    You’re right, if the videographer held his camera up like this then that does excuse their behavior because the photographers are just following his lead.

  • sadtowatch

    As a photographer and a groom who’s had his wedding ruined in part by lousy, demanding photographers, I can say it was all pretty hideous. But when the guy started chimping his LCD on EVERY shot (with flash), while simultaneously blocking the entire view of one of the most important parts of the ceremony, it became obvious we had some rookie shooters on-hand. This is what happens when too may people watch too many workshops on how easy it is to be a brilliant wedding photog. You get unqualified people doing lousy jobs for real money. And the shots he got – however amazing – are in no way an excuse for that behavior. If you need to shoot like that to get good shots, you simply need to practice more.

  • Fullstop

    Where did he learn to shoot like that? Who teaches that workshop?

  • Julie

    These photographers were just horrific. Seriously.. he got ON STAGE IN FRONT of the bride and groom!!! HELLO?! They acted more like annoying paparazzi than wedding photographers.

  • Gavin

    Admit it Chris, you were the photographer in this video ;-)

  • Chris Pickrell

    Psh, I WISH I could afford a second shooter ;)

  • Zion Brown

    This event crew sucks. first of all the photographers working as a cheap crew. second, the video operator lazy. why the video is on the tripod 20 meters from the ceremony. he should be 1 , 2 meters from them shooting from the shoulder. an event crew must be sincronized always . its looks like 3 different persons shooting the wedding.

  • Michelle Haber

    I always work with the videographer. We talk briefly as to what is a safe zone to be in-truth is I love my couples but don’t want my butt in their video(that’s what the video guy is getting). I also don’t want them to get their video and have them be upset that the “photographer” was a jerk and stood in every frame of our video.

    Once we know the safe zone which is pretty good if the videographer is zoomed in, then popping in the frame here and there for a few key shots won’t make anyone upset. That is part of the day!

    Remember, the couple paid the videographer to be there and capture the day too. They can’t move around like photographers can.

  • Michelle Haber

    WOW! I didn’t watch the video. The photographers are NUTS!

  • Rambo Ruiz

    It’s a pain to watch I didn’t finished it. Horrible really!

  • FFPUrbex

    alot of people would do it for free to get experience

  • Tim

    My point I have is when the bride and groom are coming down the isle all you see is
    a photographer not the B&G.Also how many shots do you need of them coming down,
    I counted 4 before it went back>

  • joseph

    I am a wedding photographer… and this video is really bias! I can also make a videographer look like a fool and snap photos while the he/she is in my frame! this video is exactly like that!

    We all know in wedding, STILL PHOTOGRAPHY is more important than VIDEO COVERAGE. I have never seen a wedding with a videographer only and no photographer at all!

    When I shoot a wedding, I always talk to the videographer so we can work together the most productive way. And 99.9% they all say, “Go ahead with your stuff, you are the priority!” Even they, admit… photography is more important!

    I have worked with many great videographers with cinematography style — great and amazing talents — THEY DON’T JUST STAND STILL! They move around like photographers! They do have stand alone camera the will just keep rolling in one spot. But this one angle, one-spot-point-of-view camera will NOT be their “money shot”.

    Talents covering the wedding ceremony MUST talk to each other and to the Minister prior to the actual ceremony — what is allowed or what is not. In the ceremony, the real boss is the Minister! If the Minister is lenient, fantastic! I even worked with a minister who will allow the photographer to literally shoot over the Minister’s shoulder. “It’s all about the bride and groom. I want you to give them the best angles and shots possible and make them happy…” according to the minister. And not because a Minister is lenient, we will just act like fools. We still have to be professional, discreet and quick.

    For instance, the Minister allowed me to step in and take this “FIRST KISS”! I told the videographer I will be doing this… and he said, “Go for it!”

  • Greg Lumley

    Oh my F#*K really???? How unbelievably invasive… what’s more is they are taking shots they already have… over and over and over again…. as mentioned below it doesn’t matter whether you are a videographer or photographer… it is someones special day it it should be left as untouched as humanly possible.

  • IGOR Photography

    I shoot weddings for living and the ceremony is definitely a place where you want to operate low key and unobtrusive. This video is really embarrassing! I can’t believe how unprofessionally the move around the altar. Eventually you might have to walk in front of the video camera, especially if he sets a stationary camera at the back of the isle, but that’s usually not a problem for the video guy as long as you don’t stay there all the time. What’s really bad is how close the photographers are to the altar and how they move in front of the couple. It’s completely unacceptable!

  • Mikle Bloomberg

    Why videographer so lazy? The camera never moved..And no second camera..

  • abc

    cheap photographer problems, i wanna see the photos they took

  • Chris

    I work as a videographer and photographer and i totally disagree with you. Photographers tend to take lead so their shots are the most important. The problem with that is that SOME photographers will totally ignore the video. They get angry when a camera is set up down the isle (like only THEY have the right to use the isle).

    When i work with our own team of photographers they are conscious about where my cameras are just like i am to where they are. of corse every now and then they get into a shot but usually not before making sure i have a second camera set up already getting the shot. Its very easy to stay out of eachothers way with communication. When i get questioned by photographers about how they are suppose to get their shots around my camera i always respond the same “our photographers get it with no problem. we both work for the bride today.”

  • Chris

    usually we discuss with our clients what they care about more when we are working with photographers from another company. it lets me decide when to stand my ground against rude photographers and when to back down. I understand getting the shot but there is a difference between getting your perfered shot and ruining the video (maybe a CU of the ring exchange) and getting a decent shot working with the video (MS of ring exchange). The thing photographers forget is that while the bride may be happy with you when she sees your photos, she will be furious when the videographer tells the bride that its your fault the first kiss isnt in the video. And that he has the evidence

  • Chris Pickrell

    Again, you’ll notice I’m not defending the video. I think my argument was skewed and taken to mean something i wasn’t actually saying. I don’t really care anymore.

  • Beyond Belief Productions

    As a videographer I always work with the photographer to create a game plan in order to avoid issues like this, however if they do arise I would not take it up with the Bride and Groom on the day of. Mother of the bride though would hear about it and they can be very good ally to have on your side. Other than their actions the one thing that stands out to me that shows the photographers are amatures is the guy’s shirt. Be professional dude and tuck your damn shirt in, you are working a wedding for christ sake.

  • James Hoang

    Ok, these two photographers are outrageous. I do my best to work with all vendors including videographer, however, unless the couple says otherwise, the photography comes first.

  • Belinda

    I am a totally amateur photographer but my instant thought of the video footage was that it wasn’t done by a professional videographer. If it was, the camera would not have stayed in the one place waaay back up the aisle away from the bride and groom. This videographer was lazy, there is no intimacy captured at all in the video. He/she made the job of the photographer impossible if it was expected that the photographer wasn’t allowed to get up close to take photos.

  • Belinda

    Let alone the backs of all the guests’ heads as they sit watching the ceremony. Totally dud videography, I would be really pissed if I was the one paying for his services.

  • Robert D Diffenderfer

    This is the oldest argument in the book….This is why you hire one company that does both and are used to working together…..Photographers…if you don’t like working with videographers then learn to do it yourselves so you can have an absolute seamless workflow. It wouldn’t hurt your business I can guarantee that. Also, who photographs or videos a wedding these days without a second camera and don’t say you can’t afford one…..charge more!!!!….