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The Complete Wedding Video Guide: Ideas, Tips, and More

Moira West

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There’s so much going on during your wedding that you don’t want to miss. The engagement, the invitations, the reception, and the vows themselves—to preserve those memories as they happened or share them with others, video is a must.

The Complete Wedding Video Guide: Ideas, Tips, and More

That’s why we put together our comprehensive guide to all things wedding video. Whether you’re looking for a DIY video for you budget wedding or want to hire a professional wedding videographer, we’ve got tips to help make sure you end up with a beautiful video celebrating your wedding day.

Click through the table of contents to jump directly to a specific section or read our entire guide to get an in-depth look into the world of wedding videos.

Table of Contents:

Wedding Video Ideas

Video can be a part of your entire wedding process, letting you create a beautiful way to document your journey towards marriage. And because video is so easy to share, it offers you a way to involve loved ones who live far away. Take a look at a few of the ways you can incorporate video into your wedding, then visit our post on wedding video ideas for even more inspiration.

Before the wedding

Proposal video

About to pop the question? If you’re looking for a proposal idea that’ll take their breath away, propose with a video. Even if you don’t go with a video proposal, you can still turn to video to document the moment. Ask a friend or a photographer to capture your proposal. Then share an engagement slideshow or proposal recap to announce your engagement. If you’re using Animoto, you can start with our Engagement Slideshow video template and then customize your video however you like.

Wedding invitation video

Video invitations are gaining popularity, and it’s easy to see why. They’re versatile, paperfree, and wedding guests can’t lose them! To get started on your video wedding invitations, try our Save the Date video template, shown below. Then customize your video to match your wedding colors and theme. Check out our post on wedding video invitation ideas to find a video that works with your wedding theme.

Story of us video

Before the wedding, you may want to tell friends and family a little bit about your relationship. Out-of-town relatives and old high school buddies might not know you both or have details about how you fell in love. A video that tells your story is a great addition to a wedding website or Facebook group. It’s also a fun way to get loved ones excited at a rehearsal dinner or engagement party. If you are planning to share your video at an event, look over our wedding rehearsal video checklist to find out how you can create and prep your video for your venue.

During the wedding

Wedding ceremony slideshow

It only takes a few minutes to grab ceremony photos and turn them into a slideshow for your reception. Make sure you have a screen and projector or large TV ready. Then upload your photos onto a laptop. Add them to Animoto and in a few minutes you can have a beautiful slideshow ready for your reception. You can get more detail into how to watch your video on a screen in this blog post.

Video booth

Make the wedding photo booth even more fun by adding a video component. Let guests share their well wishes for the new couple or just get silly with props. You can even create a DIY video booth with a mounted tablet.

Even if you’re sticking to a photo booth, you can share your favorites in a quick video you can share on social media after the wedding.

Wedding favors

Video can make a sweet wedding favor or thank you gift for bridesmaids and groomsmen. Take a look at a few of the ways you can package a wedding video as a gift. Give a general thank you to attendees or a personalized message, letting them know how much their love and support means to you. Then share your video in an elegant way. For instance, you could gift your video in a USB box like the one below from Same Day Flash.

Package a video as a gift. Pictured: Same Day Flash Box for USB Drive.

After the wedding

Honeymoon video recap

Turn your honeymoon photos and video clips into a video album you can come back to for years to come. Or just give loved ones a post-wedding update on your honeymoon with a video you share on social media. Either way, get our tips for recapping your honeymoon with video.

Anniversary slideshow

Whether it’s your first anniversary or your 25th, a video is a thoughtful way to show you’re still head over heels in love. Check out our post on making an anniversary video gift to get tips for creating your own anniversary video. A video slideshow can also be a way to celebrate a big anniversary milestone, say if you’re throwing a party for a couple’s 50th anniversary. If you are presenting your video at a party, take a look at a few ways you can show your video on a TV or through a projector.

DIY Wedding Video Tips

Need a budget-friendly alternative to hiring a videographer? An inexpensive wedding video doesn’t have to look cheap. Check out a few ways you can make a reasonable, DIY wedding video that looks great and helps you preserve all the big moments on your special day.

Selecting an amateur videographer

You’ll be busy getting married on your wedding day, so if you go for a DIY wedding video, make sure you plan out who’ll be in charge. Designate one or more attendees as the videographer and get them any equipment they might need on your wedding day. Here are some options to consider when deciding on how your video will be shot:

  • Designate a guest as your videographer.
  • Hire a student to take care of your video. It’ll reduce video costs and free up guests to enjoy the festivities.
  • Let guests take video clips and photos during the day of your wedding and retrieve everything after the event. Take a look at this blog post to discover different ways you can collect footage and photos from guests.
  • Give a few guests mobile cameras, like a GoPro, to capture the action. You can even get creative and add a camera to a bouquet or other wedding-day items to get a unique view of events.

Wedding video equipment

Before the wedding, make sure you have everything you need to get all the footage you want for your wedding videos.

The camera

One of the most important considerations is how you’ll shoot your video. Here are a few options. You can choose just one, or mix and match to get a variety of footage.

  • Mobile device: A smartphone can take beautiful photos and video clips. It can also give video clips a more realistic, in-the-moment feeling.
  • Action camera: A small, mobile camera, like a GoPro, can travel anywhere and is a good choice if you want devices that can be used by beginners and moved around easily. There are businesses that will let you rent these by the day.
  • Video camera: Even if you don’t have your own video camera, look into renting. Try to find a simpler camera that your videographer will be able to use easily.
  • Drone: For dramatic overhead shots of your venue and wedding party, see if you can find a friend with a drone. Before you go this route, check your local laws to make sure drones are permitted where you plan to shoot.

Other equipment

Besides the camera, there are only a few must-have items. We’ve put together a list of some of the biggest ones:

  • Tripod: For the shooting itself, make sure you have a way to keep the camera still. Consider investing in or renting a tripod. Even if you’re using a cell phone to shoot your wedding, get a mount designed for mobile devices. We like the Joby Griptight shown below.

Remember to bring a tripod to the wedding. Pictured: Joby Griptight phone mount.

  • Backup batteries and memory: Any device you use has to last the whole wedding. Backups make sure you don’t miss out on any important moments.

  • Microphone: This fits under the nice-to-have column. You’ll want to catch the audio of all your important moments. If you can’t use a microphone to capture vows or reception speeches, try to move the camera close enough to pick up what’s being said. If you do use a microphone, test it out during the rehearsal to see if it’s picking up what it should. Take a look at our tips for recording audio to learn more.

  • Lighting: Before the day of your event, scout out the lighting for your location. Read up on our video lighting hacks to make sure your video looks its best.

Editing your own wedding video

Once you’ve got all your wedding footage, it’s time to put it together. Look for an easy wedding video editor that will still let your wedding video look its best. Of course we prefer Animoto, which is easy to learn and lets you drag and drop photos and video clips right into your video. We also like that it lets you trim and mute video footage in just a few clicks and customize colors, fonts, music, and more.

Wedding Day Video Shot List

Regardless of whether your Aunt Gertrude is shooting your footage or you’ve hired the best videographer in the biz, it’s important to put together a shot list of moments you’d like your video person to capture. Here are a few basic shots to remember:

  • The bride and groom getting ready
  • The walk down the aisle
  • The ceremony
  • The first dance
  • The bride and groom dancing with their parents
  • Speeches from the wedding party
  • The cake cutting

Hiring a videographer

Professional wedding videography can ensure that every movement on your wedding day gets preserved in a beautiful, well-crafted video. But if you’re looking to hire a pro, there are a few things to consider.

Shop around

There are a lot of videographers, and when it comes to selecting one for your wedding, it pays to do research before you decide on one.

  • Get recommendations: Talk to friends and family and read online reviews to find good potential videographers.

  • Ask the pros: Find out who your photographer or wedding coordinator would recommend. If you have a videographer in mind, ask if they’ve worked with them in the past, and what they thought about their work.

  • Meet them in person: When you’re picking someone who’s going to play such an important role on your wedding day, it’s important that you trust them. An in-person meet can help you get a feel for their personality and trustworthiness.

  • Consider their style: Ask for a portfolio or for a sample wedding video so you can see the sort of product you can expect from them. You should also check their website and YouTube channel to see if their work matches your personal style. Reputable videographers, like Rob Adams Films, whose work is featured below, will have lots of samples for you to consider.

Questions to ask your videographer

When you’re interviewing potential wedding videographers, make sure you know exactly what they offer. Here are a few questions you can ask before saying “I do” to your videographer.

  • Are you available on the date of our wedding?
  • Do you offer any packages? What’s included in your packages?
  • Have you worked with our photographer before?
  • How long will you be filming?
  • How many videographers will be there on the day of the wedding?
  • How long will the video be?
  • Will our video include audio?
  • How do you choose music for a wedding video?
  • When can we expect the video to be ready?

Wedding video prices

Like many aspects of a wedding, there is a lot of variety in wedding videography pricing. Before you settle on a videographer, here are a few cost-related things to think about:

  • Set a budget: Before you start talking to a videographer, think about how much you can set aside for your wedding videography.

  • Ask about packages: Some videographers will give you a la carte pricing and others will have packages that can bring down costs.

  • Read over your contract: Make sure everything you want is included. Be very clear on what you’re getting. If it’s not in the contract, you can’t expect it on your wedding day.

  • Sign your contract quickly: Though you should take time to read it over, don’t wait too long to sign a great videographer! They might get snapped up by another couple.

Wedding photography tips

If you’re not creating a video, but instead looking to make a beautiful wedding slideshow, we’ve still got you covered. Read over a few ways to ensure you have great photos for your DIY wedding slideshow video.

How to look great in your wedding photos

Little changes can have a huge impact on how you look in your wedding-day photos. Here are a few things to keep in mind. For more tips, read our post featuring posing advice from professional wedding photographers.

  • Standing up straight—it’ll help you look slim.
  • Avoid spray tan, which can leave you looking orange on camera.
  • For a bride, do a makeup trial to ensure you your wedding day look.
  • For a groom, make sure your suit fits well so that you look your best.
  • Relax and just enjoy each other. Genuine emotion will win out over poses any day.

Relax and enjoy your wedding day. Image by Ifeoluwadayo Ogunderu

Guest wedding photos

Unless you’re hosting a no-phone wedding, guests are going to be snapping away on your big day. To help them take the best photos they can, check out photographer Raymond Hatfield’s tips for taking better wedding photos with your phone.

And once they’ve taken all those photos and video clips, be sure to collect them! Take a look at all the different ways you can collect content from your guests. For instance, the video below was created using images saved in an app called Eversnap.

Amateur wedding photography tips

If you’re photographing a wedding for the first time, there’s a lot to keep in mind. Here are a few tips to help you keep calm and shoot on.

  • Know your camera: If you’re using a DSLR camera, make sure you’re comfortable with it and know how to change your settings. Take a look at our DSLR 101 series to learn the basics.

If you’re using your smartphone to record all the action, see if your camera app has features that can help elevate your photography. Your existing camera app letting you down? Download a camera app or a photo editing app to up your game.

  • Bring extra everything: Make sure to back additional batteries, memory cards… even extra cameras, if you can!

  • Be prepared: Get a wedding-day itinerary as soon as you can, and try to scope out the wedding venue before the wedding day. It’ll let you see what you may need in terms of lighting or where you might be able to get a good shot of the ceremony. And remember to make a backup plan for bad weather.

Be ready for bad weather on the wedding day. Image by Gabriel Crismariu

  • Stay close to the bride: The bride is usually where the action is, so stay close! It’ll let you keep up with delays or changes in plans. Can’t get to the bride? It’s always a good idea to know the maid of honor, so you can ask her for help in a pinch.

  • Have a shot list: Talk to the bride and groom about what photos they want you to shoot. Even if they don’t ask, take some time to get photos of wedding details like flowers or wedding favors. Get a list of people you ought to photograph and discuss when you’ll be able to photograph them.

  • Take candid shots: Some of the loveliest wedding photos are completely unplanned. So don’t forget to take some unposed photographs in addition to the images on your shot list.

Take candid wedding photos. Image by Genessa Panainte.

  • Don’t delete during the wedding: Even if you’re used to culling your photos as you go, leave them alone until after the wedding. You may only get one or two shots of an important moment. Or you may find a photo that’ll look great once it’s been cropped.

Music for your wedding video

When you’re choosing wedding video music, there keep in mind where you plan to share it. If you’re just watching it at home, that’s one thing. But if you plan to share all or part of your video online, you’ll need licensed music. A wedding video song that has a music license won’t get muted or taken down by social sites.

If you’ve never used licensed wedding songs before, you can find dozens in our music library. But to narrow down your choices even further, check out our posts on songs for wedding videos and songs for anniversary videos.

Getting started with wedding video

We hope this guide has helped take some of the stress out of planning video for your wedding Now, it's time to start making videos—and we're here to make it easy.

An Animoto subscription gives you everything you need to drag and drop your way to powerful and professional social videos. With customizable video templates, designed with success in mind, you can create your own videos in minutes. With over a decade in the industry and partnerships with YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn, Animoto is used by millions of people worldwide to preserve and share life’s important moments.

Try it for free today or learn more about using Animoto to make wedding videos. Happy video making!