Wedding Videos: Don't Forget the B-Roll

Creating wedding videos is not as easy as you might think. More than simply capturing the different moments during the day, videographers will also have to capture the mood and feel of the whole event. In essence, wedding videographers are actually more like documentary filmmakers.

To make sure that you come up with a professional wedding video, there are is one important thing that you have to keep in mind, and that is preparing your B-Roll.

What Is a B-Roll?

Before the advent of digital editing, manual editing involved two different tape decks - one containing the main footage or the A-Roll, and the other containing relevant inserts and back-up footage, or the B-Roll. This term has been carried over to digital filmmaking, but the essence of the B-Roll remains. If you're capturing an event, editing it down means you'll have to avoid jump cuts, and create a seamless narration. In order to do this, you also have to pile up on possible insert shots, or your B-Roll.

Where You'll Need the B-Roll

When you have all your footage from the wedding and you finally sit down to edit, you'll discover that there are some scenes you'll need to cut down on in order to keep your wedding video interesting. You can't very well tape the whole entourage's walk from one angle. If you have only one camera to work with, you'll need to be very resourceful with taping footage for your B-Roll. For instance, the flower girl may be walking down the aisle, and your next shot might be the bridesmaids approaching the altar. If you make a simple cut, the result will be jarring. You will need to pick out a scene from your B-Roll to splice in between these two clips.

Sometimes your wedding videos will consist of interviews and testimonials. You will want to cut out all those unnecessary phrases, and remove the "ums" and "ahs" from your audio track. To cover up these cuts, and to make the scene more interesting, you will need your B-Roll.

What's In Wedding B-Roll?

Plan out when you think you'll need a lot of these inserts from the B-Roll. Often, you will find yourself wanting to trim down the wedding ceremony and also the reception. For the ceremony, the best way to gather materials for your B-Roll is by observing around you. You may take shots of the venue's exterior, take footage of the décor details, and most importantly, take close-ups of the guests and the facilitators. All these are going to prove useful once you sit down for post-production, and you need to snip out some clips.

Pictures and images can also be part of your B-Roll. For instance, if you're interviewing family members and they're talking about the couple's childhood, you may use old photos as inserts in order to make the interview more interesting.

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