Video, Why It’s Worth It!

As a Video Producer for over 20 years, I have always been amazed that video is last on the list for the Big Day! If it even makes the list! Why? Not sure, maybe people are just uneducated of the value of video. Maybe they feel they can’t afford both a photographer and videographer! I have asked many brides that have hired us for photography only why they won’t do video, mind you I am not a pushy person, and they always say they don’t think they will watch the video that much!

Even if you watch it once every two years, isn’t that something? I do remember one bride telling me her father passed away and her biggest regret was not having her wedding filmed. She told me the toast he made is now only a faded memory.

Being a professional videographer I have decided to not be biased in favor of  my profession, but to make some valid points on why you should DO video on your wedding day and Yes, you should do photography! One should never replace the other, these are tangible moments that will never be redone! Moments that will be there for you when you need to smile, when you need to laugh and when you need to be reminded why you married in the first place! Moments of remembrance of a loved one that passed, moments of style and culture as time passes, and it does pass and passes fast!

“People recognize emotions from small movements and facial expressions, which can’t be displayed in a single frame. Video allows you to capture a series of images to convey those emotions accurately.” – Jewel Savadelis

“Being able to re-listen, 20 years down the road, to an intimate conversation that you had on your wedding day automatically makes a wedding video priceless.”

Brides and Grooms need to be educated that wedding films today are not what they use to be! (Although you truly need to look at the work because the profession still has those that are amateur and really need to just go back to Walmart to work and leave the editing and shooting to the ones who have the eye for it).

There were many things in this article that I didn’t agree with. For example better cameras means better filmmaking! I for one feel that if you are good at what you do you can work with anything and make it great! What I did like is this: Editing is where the magic happens, if you are not a good editor then the couple will end up with a cut up piece of crap that they will never watch. Editing is key! A good editor will draw in the audience and keep them to the end, the viewer will go through many emotions. Tears, laughter, embarrassment, Joy…LOVE!!!

Video is personal and when you find the right videographer you will have a treasure that will be with you for always! It is important! My desire is to bring more awareness to the world of video at weddings! We are in a video world..Youtube, Facebook, and on and on!

Seriously…how can you NOT do video! And one more thing, if u think you are paying to much, you probably are! Many professionals charge for their egos, don’t pay for that!  They will charge an outrageous amount just to show up and then you better know what you are getting after words. Good honest professionals are out there that do amazing work! It won’t make you feel that it’s an investment!

Have fun and please whatever you do, don’t do it without video!





Sarah and Brian

  This morning I woke up to an email that defines why I do what I do. One year ago I did video for this couple Jeff and Kim, and this is their anniversary week! Kim sent me this email:  A concert, hot air balloon ride, a sand ceremony continued and cake…We started today off by watching our Wedding Video…Thanks Schelli for such a great memory! It was nice to see all of you and remember what a fabulous day it was. It’s been quite a year…on to another new chapter.

This is why I love what I do! My reward comes from the client loving their production for years and years!

Sarah and Brian were married at Rancho Los Lagos. It was a beautiful day, considering the day before we had heavy rain and wind and the day after the same. The sun broke through just for this couple and it really was a perfect day. Anthony Flesh of  Weddings In Sedona did the officiating.  Weddings In Sedona actually did all the planning and coordination for this wedding. During the ceremony they had the musical talent of Oman Ken and at the reception they had Bobby Russell DJ. This couple brought in White Tie transportation with buses to take the guests to the ceremony site and back, and they also had a Rolls Royce shipped up to Sedona for special transportation of the Bride and Groom. Donna Joy from Sedona Sweet Arts did the cake and Events by showstoppers did the floral. Liz Margin did makeup! I thought the Brides makeup was beautiful, her eyes popped. She was a bit nervous and had a small breakout, but with such a great makeup job, you would never know.

Anyway, this clip pretty much shows you all that so I will keep the reading to a minimum and let you enjoy the production!

I’m sorry I thought you were a Shaman!

Recently I shot video for this couple at Red Rock Crossing in Sedona Arizona. Shaman weddings are very popular in the west. I was told this was a shaman wedding and knew that I needed to put a mic on the groom and the shaman since the shaman tends to move around more than the typical officiants do. When I first approached the shaman, he did’nt  seem to excited  for me put the mic on him and insisted I wait till we get to the ceremony spot. Once we got to the ceremony site I again approached him and he again wasn’t to thrilled about the mic, not to mention I had no place to put it and spent 10 minutes digging around in his pants for a place to attach the mic. It’s different with every shaman, some like to blow smoke on the equipment to bless it, some just bless it in general, some don’t want their photos taken and some won’t allow the microphone at all!

I finally found a place I could stuff the mic, and while I was doing that I asked him if he was going to be beating on the drum. This matters to me on the placement of the mic. He then proceeded to tell me he didn’t do the drums, that drums call in bad spirits. I said “Oh, most shamans I have worked with do the drums”.  He then proceeded to tell me that he was not a shaman, he was a medicine man. I appologized for my ignorance and carried on with my job.

When I got home I decided to look up Shaman and Medicine Men in the dictionary. This is what I found.

Shaman – a person regarded as having access to, and influence in, the world of good and evil spirits, esp. among some peoples of northern  Asia and North America. Typically such people enter a trance state during a ritual, and practice divination and healing.

Medicine Men – (among North American Indians and some other peoples) a person believed to have magical powers of healing and of seeing into the future; A SHAMAN.

Ok, so it wasn’t CAPPED in the dictionary. It sounds the same to me?  So I did a google and everything came up the same, that the shaman and the medicine man are the same. Here is something else I found. ” It is then possible to defferentiate between the shaman as primarily the mediator between the supernatural powers and the man, and the medicine man as primarily the curer of diseases through traditional techiniques. The shaman may also be medically active when his expert knowledge of the supernatual disease agents is called for. This means that some shamans are medicine men. Conversely, some medicine men are shamans! AHHHHH

Enough of the tech terms here! It’s just a belief isn’t it? What I did read makes me wonder why a medicine  man is conducting a ceremony? This couple here actually came from the UK for their ceremony and I honestly don’t blame them, it is beautiful here, stunning! After all the travels, they showed up sick  so I guess the medicine man was a blessing, but were they healed after? And after all the fuss with the microphone, he accidentally turned it off right when the ceremony began. He said it was pinching  his skin and he wiggled just enough where it turned off! hmmm. Maybe he does have magical powers.

What I do know is that the couple were very much in love and I truly enjoyed being there and for them it was a moment they will never forget! I guess that’s all that matters, shaman, medicine man, guru, officiant, minister, reverend, it’s all a matter of what you believe.

Get Wed In The Red

Times have been tough for a lot of people. The wedding business here in Sedona has taken a hit as well. I have been in Business for almost 20 years now and I find when the going get’s tough, I get tougher! I’m not the type of person to give up or give in so the creation of  “Get Wed In The Red” I come up with different ideas all the time, some take off and some hit rock bottom. This concept came to me mainly because I think there are a lot of couples out there that have never heard of Sedona. Sedona is an amazing beautiful place, surrounded by beautiful red rocks. Most of the weddings we do are from couples that are not local and I thought what a great idea! Create a “Real Sedona Wedding Show” Not just the fluff! A reality show that takes you through what couples go through finding vendors from a place they only read about! What it’s like to trust people and their recommendations. Is it possible to have a Sedona wedding without it being a lifetime investment? My idea is to search out unique couples, the different personalities that will make this show a hit! Not one wedding story will be the same! This will give more exposure to Sedona and bring in more couples that are intrigued by the beauty and spirtuality of Sedona!

My goal would be for a network to pick this show up! After doing weddings here for 7 years I can say that this place most surely has the potential for a wedding reality show!  Mike and I are now launching this, we have a facebook page, youtube page and I am doing all I can to get the word out! Right now we have one part of a three piece show up on the site (Mike and Jennifer) we have another couple that we will begin shooting later this month. I hope to build the shows and not only that but visit the couple later in life to see how they are doing! I have a great feeling about this and I hope you all join in and watch and support this new and upcoming realtiy show! Maybe, just maybe it will inpire you to get wed in the red!!


monopolize, monopolise [məˈnɒpəˌlaɪz]vb (tr)

1. to have, control, or make use of fully, excluding others
2. (Economics) to obtain, maintain, or exploit a monopoly of (a market, commodity, etc.)

15 Years ago I started my business “Taltos Productions” In Grand Rapids Michigan. It didn’t take long before I quit my job in radio to run the business full time. Word of mouth and local support is the reason I did so well with the business. After nine years of running a successful business in Michigan I ended up befriending this guy that ran a DJ company. He had the idea to have me move my company into his store front and I would pay him so much money for the space. In return he would refer the work (videos) to me and I of course would refer him. He wanted to bring in 2 vendors for each category for weddings. Like 2 photographers, 2 cake people, 2 florist..oh wait he didn’t bring in a florist because his wife did flowers. Everything pointed back to him and we could only refer the people in the store. I had always run my business out of my house and that worked out great, but at this point I was leaving a bad relationship and I had no place to live so I felt this would be a good idea for a couple months. Things didn’t work out too well.

I should share that I have been in the Wedding business on many levels for many years. I worked in a bridal store as a bridal consultant. I ran my own DJ business while working in radio and television so needless to say I knew a ton of people in this profession and we all worked together to help each other out. So, when I was told I couldn’t refer anyone else but who was in the store, I decided it was time to go. I left and put my business back into my home and well, things really got interesting. That is when I pulled up my business and moved to Sedona. I don’t want to go on and on about what took place in Michigan with this guy that tried to manipulate and monopolize the wedding business but I will say he pissed a lot of people off. The ones that didn’t get it were the clients, they had no clue about all this drama but many very good, very professional and reputable companies went under because of this greed and need to have it all.

Sedona was a different world for weddings and the first 5 years went very well. It didn’t take us long with our experience and expertise to get the work. We worked hard at “showing” that we were good at what we do and  built some great relationships which led to repeated work. Most weddings here are destination weddings, so word of mouth is tough with the brides but the word of mouth did come from the wedding planners which is where 90% of our work comes from. When we first moved here it was a great community of people that lived here who wanted to support locally. All the talent came from here but in the past year and a half, things have changed. Back to certain people who want to control and manipulate the market for themselves. My intention of this post is not to be negative and by no means to bring up some not so pleasant experiences with certain “wedding professionals”, it is to bring some kind of understanding, if not to the reader but also to myself on how I feel about what is happening.

Business is tough enough as it is right now and when we don’t support one another locally then that is just a shame! There are plenty of great wedding professionals in Sedona and there is no need for bringing in talent from other areas (mainly Phoenix). There is a part of me that does take this personal! Being in business this long, struggling to make ends meet and find out someone brought in a Phoenix videographer! Videography isn’t as competitive as photography so I can only imagine how tough it is to get photo work locally, let alone have to compete with Phoenix photographers! In truth the wedding business is competitive in general, but I feel there is enough work for all of us if we work together and not try to horde everything for ourselves.

The same kind of monopolization is happening here that happened it Michigan. It is a result of certain people that want it all for themselves and for the “select few” that follow along like sheep. I feel so helpless with this, all I know is that I love what I do and I’m not going to give up. I will continue to support locally and do all I can to bring this monopolization to an end! We all deserve to work, to make a living and no one has the right to interfere with that! I would love to get a conversation going with this topic. Feel free to post comments, I would love to hear from others.

A Cowboy Style Wedding

Rain or Shine you will have your wedding! A back up plan when planning an outdoor wedding is a great idea. Jamie and Dean were married at the Verde Valley Train Station and they did not have a back up plan. With over 140 guests the ceremony ended up taking place in a cramped area with cover. It rained like crazy up until the ceremony ended (of course) Everything went fine, but it did limit my abilities for video and it was really cramped and cold.

The rest of the wedding day went off without a hitch! I loved the cowboy style wedding, it was fun and loose, no one got to upset about anything, they just let loose and had a great time!

The reception was held at the Cliff Castle Casino. Bobby Russell of Sedona Sounds did the music. I just find that having a back up plan when planning a wedding in Arizona is a great idea. You may not need it but it’s there just in case it does rain.

Jennifer and Brian

Jennifer and Brian were married by Laura Lane of Sacred Unions at the Sedona Golf Resort. The flowers were designed by Bliss Floral. Sedona Sweet Arts did the gorgeous cake and Mike of Taltos Productions did photography. Mike and I met Brian and Jennifer and had a great connection from the moment we met. I think it is vital to good productions that you click with the people you meet with.

It shows..the love..and I can only capture what is really present! I can only produce a piece that works when there is a connection! This couple makes me smile, makes me love what I do and that weddings are not just a business, but a real true feeling of what makes us real! 

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