Tidal Videographer Guidelines

​Welcome to Tidal Wedding Films!  We’re excited to have you working with our team.   Whether you are new to filming weddings or an experienced professional, please take the time to read these guidelines all the way through to the bottom.  We update these from time to time so keep the link for reference down the road.

Elopements

Elopements are the smallest events we film.  They can be as small as a bride, a groom an officiant on the beach!  Often the couple will bring along a friend or two to witness and celebrate afterwards.  These shoots are small, but they can be tricky!  Particularly since they're not usually taking place at a wedding venue - where parking, restrooms, power outlets and sound systems are available.  Still, Elopements are a ton of fun and with the right strategy, you'll find these are much easier to film than a full-sized wedding day.  Most Elopements are booked for 3 hours or less.  In that time, you'll need to capture:

  1. Drone footage of the location

  2. B-Roll of the location

  3. Detail shots of the arch and ceremony setup (If any)

  4. The Ceremony with clean sound (Film this in one continuous clip, do not cut)

  5. B-Roll of the couple together

  6. B-Roll of the couple separately

 

Since it may not always be convenient to get back to your car from the ceremony site at Elopements, we suggest carrying as little equipment as possible.  You will need:

  • Camera (Or 2, if the Elopement consists of more than 20 people)

  • 24-70mm Zoom Lens

  • Gimbal

  • (2) Lavalier Microphones

  • Drone

  • Tripod (Only if using 2 cameras)
     

Every elopement is different, but below are some tips and tricks that will help you capture everything we need to make an amazing Elopement Highlight Video.

  • For Elopements consisting of 20 or fewer total people, only 1 camera is needed (In addition to the equipment listed above) For bigger celebrations, bring along a 2nd camera to back you up on a tripod.
     

  • Always fly the drone to set the scene prior to video start.  The location is very important to our Elopement couples.
     

  • Place lavalier microphones on the groom and the officiant.
     

  • Set your camera to record 4k @ 24fps, 1/50th shutter for the entire ceremony.
     

  • Capture the majority of the wedding at full-body width (Don't cut off feet!)
     

  • Film the groom and officiant walking toward you into their places at the front of the ceremony - stay on the groom until he can see his bride coming down the "Aisle" (We want his expression when he sees her for the first time!)
     

  • Slowly turn to the bride as she meets the groom (Remember we have no 2nd camera to cut with, so move smooth and steady)
     

  • Back away slowly and get in position to film the entire ceremony from the center of the "Aisle"
     

  • Film all of the b-roll shots at a minimum of 1080p @ 60fps (4k 60fps preferred)
     

  • Stage a closeup of the couple's hands as they put the rings on each other (Try to capture this in the same location they were in for the actual ceremony)
     

  • Be sure to get a shot of the couple celebrating (Running together on the beach, laughing and spinning each other around, kissing at sunset, etc.)

Instructions: This should be a very easy shoot. Only 1 camera on a gimbal is necessary.Enter

EnterFLY THE DRONE TO SET THE SCENE PRIOR TO OFFICIAL STARTEnter

Enter

Mic up the groom and the officiant (Preferably you have a mic that transmits to camera so you can put headphones on and monitor the audio) Enter

Enter

Film 90% of the ceremony full-body width in 4k 24fps Enter

Enter

Capture the groom and officiant walking into place - stay on the groom until he can see his bride coming down the "aisle"Enter

Enter

Slowly turn to the bride as she meets the groom (remember we have no 2nd camera to cut away to, so be smooth)Enter

Enter

Back away slowly and get in position to film the entire ceremony from the center of the "aisle"Enter

Enter

Zoom-in to 3/4 length (Just above the knee) for the kiss Enter

Enter

Shoot 1080p 60fps for the remaining b-roll shots after the ceremony (Or 4k 60fps if capable)Enter

Enter

Stage a closeup of their hands as they put the rings on (Try to be in the same location they were in for the actual ceremony)Enter

Enter

Be sure to get a shot of them celebrating (Running together on the beach, jumping up and down, kissing at sunset, etc.)

  
 

FLY THE DRONE TO SET THE SCENE PRIOR TO OFFICIAL START

 
 

Shoot 1080p 60fps for the remaining b-roll shots after the ceremony  (Or 4k 60fps if capable)

Stage a closeup of their hands as they put the rings on (Try to be in the same location they were in for the actual ceremony)

Be sure to get a shot of them celebrating (Running together on the beach, jumping up and down, kissing at sunset, etc.)

Mic up the groom and the officiant (Preferably you have a mic that transmits to camera so you can put headphones on and monitor the audio) 

Film 90% of the ceremony full-body width in 4k 24fps 

Capture the groom and officiant walking into place - stay on the groom until he can see his bride coming down the "aisle"

Slowly turn to the bride as she meets the groom (remember we have no 2nd camera to cut away to, so be smooth)

Back away slowly and get in position to film the entire ceremony from the center of the "aisle"

Zoom-in to 3/4 length (Just above the knee) for the kiss 

Shot Lists

We never work directly off of shot lists as we film events, because we think that slows down the creative process and takes all the fun out of being spontaneous.  With that said, please review these lists every once in a while to brush up on shots you may have forgotten about. 

Lead Filmmaker

 

Set the scene
 

  • Creative gimbal shot showing off the venue

  • Gimbal shot coming from behind something to reveal the ceremony site

  • Rack-focus of flowers at ceremony site

  • Gimbal walk-through down the aisle of ceremony site

  • Gimbal push-through of archway at ceremony site

  • Gimbal walk-under of treetops with light streaming through the leaves

  • 10 quick details shots (Cake, flowers, centerpieces, table settings, etc)
     

Bride Getting Ready
 

  • Closeup shot of bride getting makeup done

  • Silhouette of bride getting hair/makeup finished

  • Gimbal walking away and towards hanging dress

  • Bride petting / admiring her dress

  • Closeup of bride’s ring hand brushing down the dress

  • Bridesmaids toasting drinks

  • Bridesmaids in matching robes having a good time

  • Mother or MOH helping bride into her dress

  • Bridesmaids lined up admiring bride in her dress

  • All bridesmaids working together to adjust bride in her dress

  • Bride walking with bridesmaids towards the camera

  • Bride spinning or twirling solo in her dress

  • Closeup of bride looking out window

  • Full-body silhouette of bride looking out the window

  • Gimbal orbit of bride smiling at the camera

  • Closeup of brides eyelashes / earrings / necklace when she’s in the dress

  • Bride reading card from Groom
     

First Look (If applicable)
 

  • Gimbal reveal of bride walking up behind the groom

  • Closeup of her hand on his shoulder

  • Mid-shot of groom’s reaction with bride in frame

  • Orbit of bride and groom kissing

  • Follow shot of bride and groom walking

  • Mid shot of bride looking back at the camera while walking

  • Closeup of bride and groom joining hands (just the hands)
     

Ceremony
 

  • Gimbal reveal of bride walking down the aisle from front (use the guests)

  • Grooms reaction when seeing bride

  • Mid shot of dad handing bride to groom

  • Mid shot of officiant smiling

  • Gimbal shot walking down the aisle with bride and groom at alter

  • Orbit shot from behind the seated guests while ceremony is in progress

  • Mid shot of the kiss

  • Wide shot of bride and groom coming back down the aisle

  • Stop them for another kiss shot mid aisle*

  • Bride and groom kissing with flower petals / bubbles raining down
     

Portraits (During cocktail hour)
 

  • Gimbal shot of bride and groom embraced, smiling at the camera

  • Orbit of bride and groom forehead to forehead

  • Bride and groom with wedding party celebrating

  • Tilt down from the sky (or trees) to bride and groom moving in for a kiss

  • Brides hands clasping around the groom

  • Closeup of ring exchange
     

Grand Entrance
 

  • Gimbal shot of everyone walking in
     

First Dance
 

  • Orbit of bride and groom on dance floor

  • Closeup of couple smiling at each other

  • Closeup of brides hands on groom
     

Toasts
 

  • Bride, Groom and Toaster in the same frame (Tripod)
     

Cake Cut
 

  • Orbit of cake

  • Closeup of couples hands with knife

  • Closeup of cake being cut

  • Closeup of couple feeding each other
     

Bouquet / Garter Toss
 

  • Gimbal shot of bride holding her bouquet, smiling

  • Gimbal reveal of girls catching the bouquet

  • Bride with girl who catches bouquet

  • Mid-shot of groom dancing up to bride

  • Over the shoulder shot of groom getting the garter

  • Mid-shot of groom holding garter up

  • Gimbal reveal of guys fighting to catch the garter

  • Groom with guy who caught the garter
     

Open Dance
 

  • Gimbal orbit of full dance floor

  • Gimbal shot moving through the dance floor

  • Orbit of the DJ or band

  • Tilted angle closeups of people dancing
     

Grand Exit
 

  • Gimbal shot walking backwards with bride and groom through sparkler tunnel

  • Night shot of bride and groom coming together backlit by LED

  • Night shot of bride and groom slow-dancing backlit by LED

Assistant Filmmaker

 

Set the Scene
 

  • Wide angle pan of the venue

  • Establishing shot of the venue sign

  • Closeup pan of flowers or water

  • Slow pan of sunlight coming through the trees
     

Groom Getting Ready
 

  • Details (Shoes, Drinks, Cards, etc)

  • Groom tying shoes

  • Groom putting on jacket

  • Groom adjusting tie / collar

  • Groom looking out window (silhouette)

  • Groom looking out window (side lit)

  • Orbit shot of smiling at camera

  • Groom reading card from bride

  • Groomsmen walking together towards camera

  • Groomsmen toasting / goofing around

  • Closeup of each groomsman
     

First Look (If applicable)
 

  • Full-body shot of the entire first look from the side

  • Couple smiling and walking away hand in hand
     

Ceremony
 

  • Wide angle overall shot of the entire ceremony


Cocktail Hour
 

  • Guests smiling and talking

  • Closeup of drinks being poured

  • Wide angle pan of the entire cocktail hour area

  • Important family members or bridal party having a good time


Grand Entrance
 

  • Reaction shots of both sets of parents

  • Guests clapping / laughing


First Dance
 

  • Wide angle of the entire dance


Toasts
 

  • Reaction shots of both sets of parents

  • Guests clapping / laughing


Cake Cut
 

  • Wide shot of the entire cake cutting


Bouquet / Garter Toss
 

  • Wide angle from the side of both tosses


Open Dance
 

  • Mid-shot of people dancing / having fun

  • Low angle of feet on the dance floor


Grand Exit
 

  • Guests lighting sparklers / blowing bubbles

We use a variety of mirrorless cameras, lenses and sound equipment to film our weddings.  It's not necessary to have the latest and greatest camera gear, but we have. moved on from DSLRs to Mirrorless platforms.  We are truly living in the golden age of camera tech!  Here are the minimum gear requirements to be a solo lead filmmaker for Tidal Wedding Films:

 

  • (2) Full-frame 4k-capable mirrorless camera bodies 
     

  • (3) Zoom lenses (16-35, 24-70, 70-200 preferred)  Prime lenses are fine as long as they collectively cover this overall focal range.
     

  • Gimbal Stabilizer - DJI Ronin or equivalent - no Glidecams please.
     

  • Tripod
     

  • (2) Lavalier microphones
     

  • External audio recorder (to plug in to sound boards at the ceremony and during toasts)

  • (2) LED lights 
     

  • (2) Light stands

Preferred Gear

  • Sony a7sIII, Canon R5, Nikon Z6 II, Panasonic S1H

  • DJI Ronin RS2

  • Rode Wireless Go II Lav Mic System

  • Zoom F6 External Recorder

  • Core SWX Torch LED Bolt 300 Lights
     

 

These are our favorite pieces of gear.  These items can be expensive, but we think they're the best.  We prefer cameras that can film 4k at 60fps and pretty much all of the newest professional mirrorless cameras are capable.  We like DJI gimbals because we've used them for years and they rarely fail.  The Rode Wireless Go II system because it transmits audio to your camera while simultaneously recording locally with a safety track.  The Zoom F6 External Recorder is amazing because it records audio in 32-bit float audio.  That is the audio equivalent to a RAW photo file - the dynamic range of 32-bit float is so high your audio will almost always be recoverable - regardless of the level it's set at when recording.  The Core SWX Torch LEDs are fantastic little workhorse lights.  They're small and lightweight, but they pack a punch!  Remember, these items are not specifically required, they are just our current favorites because they make our lives easier as filmmakers.
 

Gear