It can be really tricky to find the right suppliers for your wedding. You want your dream team to totally ‘get’ your day and turn your vision into reality.
This is why today I am thrilled to introduce you to the work of Emily at SMOOCH Films. Her wedding films are creative and fun whilst capturing all those precious moments and memories.
Be sure to take a look at her gorgeous films in all their glory, they will transport you in an instant.
Hi Emily, could you firstly tell WWW readers a little bit about you?
Hello, Whimsical Wonderland Wedding readers! My name is Emily Packer, I’m a bespoke Wedding and Special Event Cinematographer based in London. I create high-quality, visually exciting, one-of-a-kind videos! So, brides and grooms, if you’re looking for something different, SMOOCH Films is just for you.
A little more about the woman behind the camera: I was born and raised in southern California, and moved to London four years ago with my husband (a “Frenchie”), after living in Paris for two years. We decided to travel around the world for a year before getting married at the lovely Chateau Giscours in Bordeaux. I’ve always felt like a “global citizen,” and love travelling and discovering the world, a part of my life which has brought huge creative inspiration.
What do you love and dislike about your job?
Capturing a couple’s wedding day is so much more than a job, it’s an incredibly special privilege. As someone reminded me when I was getting married, “Your wedding day isn’t the end, it’s the beginning.” My role as a cinematographer is to create a visual memory of that celebration, to creatively record the beginning of their lives as husband and wife. I hope couples will be watching their wedding video on their ten year anniversary, with their children, and one day, with their grandchildren. It’s a beautiful responsibility.
How did you get into the wedding industry?
When I first moved to London and started my career, I was mostly filming NGO and news video. I was then asked by a previous client to film his wedding day: a destination wedding on a beautiful Nicaraguan beach! Not a bad start! That was four years ago … and things just took off from there! I’ve since captured over 35 weddings in the UK and abroad.
Wedding videography combines fast-paced reportage (you only have one chance to film that first kiss as a married couple!) and creative expression (through a bit of direction and post-production), so it’s been a perfect fit for me. As much as there’s a rough framework for how a wedding day is planned out, each one is unique in its own way, which makes them forever exciting and challenging.
Tell us about your typical working day.
Before the wedding day (if possible), I like to meet with couples in person to properly introduce myself, get to know them a bit, and talk about their film style preferences as well as all the exciting things they have prepared for the big day. The more information I can get beforehand, the more prepared I can be to ensure every moment is captured in the best possible way.
I work with a team of excellent SMOOCH videographers who share the same professionalism and creative eye, so on the day, myself and a second videographer will be there together. Usually, I meet the bride in the morning and begin filming her preparation, while the second videographer meets with the groom. This is a great time to do mini-interviews, if this is something of interest. I always love hearing the stories of how couples met and became engaged, and think it adds a lot to the final video.
Having said that, ironically, even though I’m around cameras all the time, I’m personally incredibly camera shy, so I understand that not everyone feels comfortable doing this. This is no problem at all, and I can just as easily use natural sound bites from the day. As an alternative option, I’m always happy to arrange a time to film couples interviews before the wedding, so that everyone feels more relaxed.
Throughout the wedding day, I take on a “documentary-style approach,” remaining as invisible to the couple and guests as possible. Our discreet filming style and incredibly compact cameras allows for the most natural shots. Only during the couple’s “photo session” will I offer a bit of light direction (nothing intimidating: holding hands, a kiss on the cheek, etc.) to take the pressure off the couple while they’re being filmed.
One of my favourite parts of the day is the reception, when everyone can relax and have fun! I always get lots of close-ups of the band rocking out and the guests dancing. After the couple has had their first dance, I’ll stay about an hour or so after to ensure I have enough footage of the “party!”
What do you aim to achieve for your clients?
My goal as a wedding cinematographer is to beautifully capture the events of the day while also creatively conveying the personality of the couple and the ambiance of the celebration. I want to ignite all the senses! I have no set formula of how I film a couple or edit my wedding videos together. Each one is unique. People have asked why I use the description “Cinematographer” instead of “Videographer”, and the answer is, I aim to provide clients with an artistic creation (a film) rather than just documenting the day. Nothing is better than receiving an email from couples who’ve just watched their video and love it! It’s the best feeling!
What style is your work?
I would describe my video style as authentic, personal, and edgy. After I’ve captured the most high-quality footage of your wedding, I begin the post-production process. This is the time when I can be most creative by incorporating animation, special effects, and music.
Music is one of the most important parts of the wedding video, and it literally can take me days to find the perfect song. I almost never re-use the same songs twice, so every couple has their own personal wedding soundtrack that’s unique to them. Sometimes I’ll hear a song from one of my videos when I’m out at a cafe, and it will remind me of that couple! Overall, I try to find music that matches the couple’s personality and is also a bit different – you won’t ever be hearing “Brown Eyed Girl” in one of my films.
Could you tell us some information about your packages and pricing?
My “Classic Wedding Video” package includes a highly edited chapter video (30-40 minutes), a highlight trailer with all of the best moments of the day (3-5 minutes), as well as speeches, vows, and the first dance separately in full. The videos will arrive on a USB and 8 DVDS. I’ve chosen the 30-40 minute length for the chapter video because I believe in quality over quantity. I want couples to remember the absolute best moments of the day, and I’ve found this to be the perfect time frame, without losing out on content. Having said that, every wedding is different, and if you have specific requests or ideas for the film, I’m more than happy to discuss further.
Do you have any advice for couples?
My only advice for couples about to get married is, “Have fun! This is your day! Relax, and enjoy every second of it!”
How can we get in touch with you?
If you’re interested in having me capture your wedding day, or any other special event, I invite you to look at my website (www.smoochfilms.co.uk) or vimeo page for more examples of my work. I would love to hear from you (about anything!), so please get in touch at [email protected]
My Lifestyle Blog, The Smoochies
WOW. Amazing, thank you so much Emily xo Lou
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