Your wedding day should be one of the most unforgettable days of your life. But the celebratory drinks at the afterparty may have other ideas. Thankfully, with the trusty wedding video, couples can now preserve their special day forever.
With Valentine’s Day approaching, you may be one of the many couples who are reliving their special day by converting their wedding tapes to digital formats. This article will dive into the origins of the wedding video and how it has become the home essential for every married couple.
Home Movie Genesis
The introduction of 8mm and 16mm film made shooting videos vastly cheaper, smaller, and more accessible. In addition, camera companies marketed these cameras to amateur filmmakers and began a new phenomenon: the home movie.
During the 1930s, motion pictures were still associated with the theatre. The idea of an established genre of ‘Wedding Video’ was still unknown. Thankfully, as technology improved and cameras became smaller, families began filming special occasions with their 8mm or 16mm film. Although, wedding videos were restricted to 4-minute clips as filmmakers had to reload with more film after this time. Furthermore, the novelty of wedding videos was limited to wealthier families who could afford the camera and film reels.
The Rise of Super-8
The beginning of professional wedding videography came with the introduction of Super 8 film cameras in 1965.
Super 8 set out to remedy the many quality issues present in the existing 8mm film cameras. They utilised pre-loaded film cassettes rather than reels. These cassettes meant that those not gifted with dexterity or finesse (like me) could load new films quickly. Subsequently, wedding videos became longer; the video’s quality was higher in low-light settings, and weddings could later be recorded with sound!
As some budding videographers’ general skill level improved, wedding video productions became a paid service. A more convenient option for some – instead of forcing a family member to stand behind a camera while everyone else enjoys the occasion!
Wedding Videos Become Truly Professional
As the home video market grew exponentially, so did the development of new technology. Wedding videographers continued to use Super 8 until the early 1980s when JVC introduced a compact camcorder recorded onto a VHS-C tape. It could be operated by one person and changed the filming of home videos from Super 8 film to the VHS tape.
Wedding videography was now establishing itself as a genuine market. Various local and national organisations of videographers began to form, and wedding videos became a mainstay in popular culture, with many families possessing documentation of their special day.
However, the videos lacked the fanfare and pizzazz of wedding videos we see today. These plain videos were because analogue media was restricted to a few hours of filming, and videographers did not have post-production technology to edit the films. As a result, the videos were simply a point and shoot of the bride and groom.
The 1990s brought a boom in digital technology, and with it came a swarm of digital cameras and post-editing equipment – fantastic news for wedding videographers. Now, filmmakers could film hours of footage of the wedding day and edit it to a tidy two-hour video.
The DSLR camera development began a new evolution of professional wedding videos as videographers developed their filming and editing style. Bride and grooms also had more of an input in how they would like to preserve their day. In addition, the couple could now decide on the style and budget of their film:
The journalistic style is the most common form of wedding video. The videographer would document the entire day, from the morning preparations to the ceremony and reception. This video style aimed to remain faithful to life and required simple cuts to keep the video concise.
This form was better for those on a smaller budget as the videos were more concise and under an hour of filming once edited. It is essentially a montage of your best bits of the day. This video style is likely to include more complex editing but is very versatile to the couple’s needs.
The name gives this one away. A cinematic style of wedding video is when the videographer can turn their tech dial up to 11 and flaunt their skills. This style can manifest itself in various ways and uses effects like slow motion, transitions, and emotive music.
The production of cinematic wedding videos was especially sought after in the ’90s because industry professionals could edit their videos with kits they owned to create special effects.
The Modern-Day Videographer
In the present, many guests film wedding videos on phone cameras. In addition, guests can use Instagram filters created for the special day and can add their videos to a joint video album documenting the day.
Thus, professional wedding videos use a cinematic style that aims to tell the couple’s story. They tend to be shorter than the traditional VHS wedding tapes and use high-tech equipment (like 4K cameras, Steadicam rigs and drones) to show the location, wedding outfits and decoration.
At Digital Converters, we can preserve your wedding video forever by digitising your wedding tapes and reels.
If you want to gift your wedding tape to your partner for Valentine’s Day but are pressed for time, why not buy them a Gift Voucher from our store?