Can your friends film it? How to Shoot a Wedding on a Tiny Budget

A wedding video is one of the biggest costs of a wedding, so if you’re working to a tight budget and want to cut costs, one option is to have your friends film it.

How would your friends film the wedding?

The easiest way for your friends to film your wedding is to have them use their phones. There are virtually no costs involved in this, as everyone already has a phone! What’s more, pretty much every phone on the market since 2015 can film in 4K at 60fps (frames per second). Essentially this means phones can now film great quality video!

Once you’ve established that you want your friends to film it, you need to decide which friends you want to film it!

Which friends should I choose to film my wedding?

We would always recommend you choose a range of friends to film your wedding, rather than just going with one person. Firstly, it’s a lot of pressure to put on one person! There’s plenty of things that can go wrong:

  • what if they miss a key moment because they’re getting a drink from the bar?
  • what if their phone dies, just before the first dance?
  • what if their phone runs out of memory half way through a speech?
  • what if they get too drunk and forget completely?

We’re not trying to stress you out – but just to highlight that as with many things in life, it’s best to put your eggs in a few baskets! We suggest choosing at least 2 people to film all the really important bits.

What are the important bits?

The ‘important bits’ will be different for every wedding. Try writing down all the things that you’d really like to have on camera. Here’s a non-exhaustive list: arriving at the church, walking down the aisle, the vows, the first kiss, the confetti trail, the speeches, cutting the cake, the first dance… we could go on!

So, for each of these, make sure you have at least 2 people in mind. You can group a lot of them together, for example everything happening at the ceremony.

Who should you actually choose?

As long as they have a half-decent phone – anything from the last 5 years is probably fine – they could be a person to choose. Ideally you want people that are quite tech-savvy and you can be confident they want have difficulty getting their camera up, setting it to video, and pointing it in the right direction!

It’s also a good idea to choose people from different friend groups and different sides of the family. Otherwise you might find that your footage ends up with a lot of bias to a certain group of people.

How will you collect all the video together?

This can be a little bit tricky. If you have 10+ people that have footage you want to collate, you’ll need to get it all together somehow. WhatsApp will be very tempting – just asking everyone to send what they have to you.

However, act with caution! By default, WhatsApp will compress the videos. They’ll still be watchable, but the quality really is significantly reduced. One way around this, is to ask your friends to send the videos as Documents on WhatsApp. However, there is a file size limit to doing this, so you may not be able to send really big files this way.

Instead, try using a filesharing service, such as Google Drive, Dropbox or OneDrive.

How will you edit the video if your friends are filming the wedding?

Almost anyone can take a video, but not many can edit one! It may be that you’re not that bothered about having an edited video with music and so on, and just having the individual video files is enough.

If you do want an edit though, you may need some help. You could try using an app like CapCut on your phone, or edit it directly in Instagram Reels or TikTok.

However if you’re after a full length video edit, you’re probably going to want to get everything on your PC or laptop and edit it with some proper software, such as Adobe Premiere Pro.

If you know how to edit then you could do this yourself. Otherwise, you probably have a friend that does! You could offer to pay them a mates rate for editing all the files together for you in a basic way.

An alternative option – use cameras

Another option to consider, would be to have your friends film it, but actually use proper video cameras. Chances are you, or one of your friends will have a half-decent video camera lying around. The benefit of doing it this way would be that you don’t have such a headache collating all the footage.

However, we’d still recommend you have at least 2 people in charge of filming, and that will be difficult if you only have one camera!

Also, with just one or two videocameras, you lose the opportunity to collect video from lots of different angles and areas of your wedding at the same time. For example, imagine how cool it would be if you had your first dance captured from 4 or 5 different places around the circle, and you could then switch between the different angles in the edit?

Or… just find a cheap videographer!

Finally, you could just hire a videographer still, but find a cheap one. They’ll often be videographers that are just starting out offering videos for free or at cost. This could be a good option if you can find one – but be warned their offers will likely be snapped up quickly, so you’ll have to act fast.

Also, if they’re trying to build their portfolio up they likely won’t have much or anything in it yet. So you’ll have to take a bit of a gamble on them as you may not be able to see the quality of their work in advance.

Other ways to save money at your wedding

If you’re looking for other ways to save money at your wedding and operate on a tiny budget, we have a list that might be of interest to you. Take a look at it to find out how you can cut costs in different areas and still have the wedding of your dreams.

How can FIY help with filming your own wedding?

In case you didn’t realise, this is actually our speciality. We make friends filming your wedding on their phones easy. We provide QR cards for your friends to scan, and upload their footage. This collects it all together in one place really easily, so that we can then take this and edit a video for you.

What’s more, you also get all the raw footage too, so it’s also a great way of just making sure you collect everything together than people capture.

On top of all this, we provide a bunch of guidance and tips for you and your friends, to make sure they capture everything you want on your wedding day. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to get in touch!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *