Videography contract? And then something else...

Discussion in 'Video Cameras' started by /Tx2, Sep 13, 2007.

  1. /Tx2

    /Tx2 Guest

    [this post also exists in rec.video.desktop - sorry, forgot to cross-
    post]

    A question geared more to British 'law', but I guess a universal answer
    exists...

    I'm 'slowly' offering my services as a wedding videographer, purely on
    an amateur hobbyist basis for now, but feel I should have some form of
    agreement or contract with the 'happy couple' prior to the event.

    Waiting to hear about membership of the IOV (UK) where i'm sure such
    advice exists, but would like to get slightly ahead of the game, so to
    speak.

    I've had my first official 'commercial' booking after sending a sample
    DVD of other weddings I've filmed for friends/family out to them, and am
    due to meet them in November for a preliminary discussion about the
    event.

    How do other videographers broach the 'official' side of things? I have
    a very light approach and don't like to be too business-like, but at the
    end of the day, I need to protect not only my interests, but that of my
    'clients' too.

    I want to remain flexible and not have an ethos of only filming strict
    things during the day etc, so any rigid agreement will be no good to me.

    I'd appreciate any advice. As I say, i'm only just starting out, and the
    'happy couple' know this, so what they are paying etc is reflected (i
    don't expect folk to pay for my inexperience)

    Just want to make sure everything is above board.

    TIA

    Next question... :)

    I have about 2 x £1500 to spend on camera(s), and have been looking at
    Sony's in particular as i believe they offer a 2 year warranty on such?

    Are Sony a good brand to choose in that price range or would I do better
    to look at another manufacturer.

    What about tripods? Wide angle lenses and so on? What should i be
    budgeting here? Are there different fittings etc?

    And insurance? Both liability and equipment - who uses who, at what
    cost?

    I've a lot to learn, but as i'm going to be investing about £4000 in
    this, I don't want to make expensive mistakes.

    Initially of course, this is going to be a steep learning curve for me,
    and my camera choice needs to reflect this. I want a 'point and shoot'
    camera with learning ability!

    I'd appreciate any buying advice anyone can offer. Thank you so much in
    advance.

    :)
     
    /Tx2, Sep 13, 2007
    #1
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  2. /Tx2

    G Hardy Guest

    Our contract allows us to turn up, wave the camera in the bride's general
    direction, and then bugger off, if you analyse it closely enough.

    We have, for example, a clause that stipulates that we don't guarantee to
    get any particular shot, whether requested or otherwise. This is borne of
    having guests and other suppliers (particularly photographers) get in our
    way at crucial moments such as confetti. It is borne of events that are a
    "surprise" for the B&G, such as fireworks - unfortunately if they are a
    surprise to us as well, we won't be in a position to film them.

    We have a clause allowing us to leave without notice if we feel our
    equipment or ourselves are in any danger. This is borne of one wedding in
    particular where the guests were so drunk the hotel was evacuated twice the
    same night.

    We are beholden to the demands of the vicar. If the demo DVD shows a closeup
    of the exchange of rings, you need to have a proviso in the contract that
    states this is subject to where you get "put" by the vicar, if indeed he
    lets you film at all.

    The contract needs to state what they will get in terms of media (if not
    content) and the price of additional copies. For example, ours states two
    copies are included, one for their own archive and one for viewing. There is
    a nominal fee for additional copies received at the same time as the two
    main copies. Any ordered soon afterwards (within weeks) cost a lot more, and
    any ordered more than a month after delivery will be a ridiculous price
    (this is to encourage purchase while all the files are still on your
    computer).

    You need to stipulate that you do not guarantee a delivery date. Weddings
    are planned down to the last detail, yet I've never done one (in six years)
    where everything has gone to plan, and you need to be adaptable to that both
    when filming and editing. It's not like a scheduled shoot, and you need to
    highlight this.

    Edits due to your own negligence* are done free of charge, but only on the
    return of the discs (you don't do anything until you've got them back).
    Edits resulting from the bride and groom's negligence, such as falling out
    with someone after the wedding and wanting them editing out of their film,
    are chargeable. *Spelling errors are always chargeable, even if they aren't
    on the bride's information sheet. If the bride doesn't want to run the risk
    of a transcription error in the end titles, she needs to provide the names
    herself in electronic format.

    Your contract will state when you will start filming, and when you will end,
    and how flexible that end time is. It will give the hour (or part) charge
    they can expect to pay if (for example) the first dance is delayed. You
    expect to be fed. You hold professional indemnity and public liability
    insurance. For circumstances on your side beyond your control (such as your
    death, theft of equipment) your liability is limited to monies already paid.
    For circumstances on their side (such as the bride saying "no") you offer no
    refunds.

    Your payment plan reflects your chances of re-booking the date should there
    be any decision to cancel the wedding. The initial payment is a "booking
    fee" not a "deposit", as the latter implies that it might be refundable. A
    postponed wedding is dealt with as a cancellation and a new booking (subject
    to availability). Any money carried over from the original booking to the
    new date is at your discretion.

    Your bride WILL sign this contract. None of it is unreasonable. If they
    start arguing about it, they are probably more trouble than they are worth
    and you're better off letting someone else have them.

    I've used both Canon and Sony equipment for weddings, and if I had my time
    over - I'd choose Panasonic.

    HTH



    [this post also exists in rec.video.desktop - sorry, forgot to cross-
    post]

    A question geared more to British 'law', but I guess a universal answer
    exists...

    I'm 'slowly' offering my services as a wedding videographer, purely on
    an amateur hobbyist basis for now, but feel I should have some form of
    agreement or contract with the 'happy couple' prior to the event.

    Waiting to hear about membership of the IOV (UK) where i'm sure such
    advice exists, but would like to get slightly ahead of the game, so to
    speak.

    I've had my first official 'commercial' booking after sending a sample
    DVD of other weddings I've filmed for friends/family out to them, and am
    due to meet them in November for a preliminary discussion about the
    event.

    How do other videographers broach the 'official' side of things? I have
    a very light approach and don't like to be too business-like, but at the
    end of the day, I need to protect not only my interests, but that of my
    'clients' too.

    I want to remain flexible and not have an ethos of only filming strict
    things during the day etc, so any rigid agreement will be no good to me.

    I'd appreciate any advice. As I say, i'm only just starting out, and the
    'happy couple' know this, so what they are paying etc is reflected (i
    don't expect folk to pay for my inexperience)

    Just want to make sure everything is above board.

    TIA

    Next question... :)

    I have about 2 x £1500 to spend on camera(s), and have been looking at
    Sony's in particular as i believe they offer a 2 year warranty on such?

    Are Sony a good brand to choose in that price range or would I do better
    to look at another manufacturer.

    What about tripods? Wide angle lenses and so on? What should i be
    budgeting here? Are there different fittings etc?

    And insurance? Both liability and equipment - who uses who, at what
    cost?

    I've a lot to learn, but as i'm going to be investing about £4000 in
    this, I don't want to make expensive mistakes.

    Initially of course, this is going to be a steep learning curve for me,
    and my camera choice needs to reflect this. I want a 'point and shoot'
    camera with learning ability!

    I'd appreciate any buying advice anyone can offer. Thank you so much in
    advance.

    :)
     
    G Hardy, Sep 13, 2007
    #2
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  3. /Tx2

    :Jerry: Guest

    <quote>
    [this post also exists in rec.video.desktop - sorry, forgot to cross-
    post]
    </quote>

    Good, please don't crosspost, it keeps the S/N ratio well down! PAL &
    NTSC do not always mix well on the hobbyist level...

    <quote>
    A question geared more to British 'law', but I guess a universal
    answer
    exists...

    I'm 'slowly' offering my services as a wedding videographer, purely on
    an amateur hobbyist basis for now, but feel I should have some form of
    agreement or contract with the 'happy couple' prior to the event.
    </quote>

    Paid or unpaid, if paid you are doing it professionally (taxman or
    not...), if unpaid you need to think seriously about your position -
    it's one thing doing it for family but beyond that you are into
    needing insurance etc.


    <quote>
    I've a lot to learn, but as i'm going to be investing about £4000 in
    this, I don't want to make expensive mistakes.

    Initially of course, this is going to be a steep learning curve for
    me,
    and my camera choice needs to reflect this. I want a 'point and shoot'
    camera with learning ability!

    I'd appreciate any buying advice anyone can offer. Thank you so much
    in
    advance.
    </quote>

    Now, this is going to found strange but, might I suggest you wing your
    way over to the DVdoctor forums and their wedding forum in particular,
    lots of friendly people over there who *know* what they are talking
    about. http://forums.dvdoctor.net/, I would suggest joining (free) so
    that you can post rather than just read.
     
    :Jerry:, Sep 13, 2007
    #3
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