Reel vs. Real: The Realities of a Wedding Day

Our wedding films feature the very best parts of every wedding day.  These videos preserve the happy laughter, the hugs, the dancing, and the ‘I do’s’.

That is not to say that every wedding we film goes perfectly as planned.  We often get asked how we manage to book these fairy tale weddings where everything is so wonderful, and I want to share this to manage expectations.  After all, your wedding day is just a day like most others (with a lot more moving parts) and things can and do happen.

We’re 100% unapologetic about our wedding videos featuring the very best parts of a wedding day.  In fact, we share that disclaimer with the wedding party very first thing.

“You don’t have to worry about censoring yourself or every being in our way!  You can’t possibly be in the way, if you’re here, you’re part of the day, and we only use the very best pieces for the wedding film!”

This simple statement of fact allows us to capture candid, natural moments all day long, and these moments are what make our films amazing.  The other thing that makes our films amazing is that we have NEVER had a couple allow a less than perfect moment to snowball into a less than perfect day. This is the key point I want to share with you today on how you can have an amazing wedding day, no matter what happens!

Managing Wedding Day Expectations

Going into your wedding day with a very realistic expectation that things will go wrong (and having a plan to deal with that) is my top tip on having an amazing day.  Sometimes it rains.  Sometimes the ceremony starts a bit late.  Sometimes a flower girl or ring bearer refuses to talk down the aisle.  Sometimes you start feeling some things and just need to take a moment.  Knowing that these things happen and letting go of that expectation of perfection is the biggest thing you can do to make your wedding day flow smoothly.

laughing during wedding vows, wedding day anxiety

Have a Back-Up Plan

I’ve shared before (and will continue to share) how highly I recommend having a planner on board during your wedding day.  Having a designated person on hand to deal with the things that come up and execute back up plans goes a long way toward creating a stress-free experience for a couple.  If a day-of coordinator is not in your budget, designate a trusted friend or family member to deal with things.  If all else fails, rely on your wedding vendors.  I’ve seen photographers jump in to figure out a complicated dress bustle or safety pin suits back together.  I’ve seen florist rescue an unsightly spot in a room or a sad looking cake with a few extra blooms.  And I’ve taken a bride’s phone and stepped out of the room to help a lost vendor find where they needed to be after they called the bride several times.

I can edit out all of these irritations.  What I can’t edit out is a couple that isn’t enjoying themselves.

It’s cliche (but true): at the end of the day, if you’re married, and you had a great time with friends and family, that is ALL that matters.

Wedding Day Anxiety

This is one that is VERY real for me.  I’ve struggled with anxiety most of my adult life; and *I* still get anxious on *your* wedding day.  It’s something I’ve watched many of our couples struggle with as well.

If you’re a person who struggles with anxiety, you know that you can’t just choose not to feel it on your wedding day.  Even if you have an amazing planner, nothing goes wrong, and everyone around you is super chill, it’s likely that you’re still going to feel some of that anxiety.  The very nature of wedding days, where we will be standing up in front of people, when we’re not often comfortable doing so, can produce anxiety. So I’m not going to tell you not to feel it, because I know it’s not as simple as that.

I am going to ask that you find tools to help with your anxiety before your wedding day.  Whether this is talking to your doctor, a little bit of therapy to tackle some triggers and learn some coping techniques, or establishing some routines (yoga, exercise, etc) that will help you calm down…figuring out what helps before the big day is the best thing you could do for yourself.  Your wedding day is not the time to try something new for the first time, and it’s tempting when you’re feeling so awful to accept the offer from a friend or family member for something that helps them.

I learned a long time ago that the things that relax others have the tendency to send me straight into a panic attack.   While everyone else at the airport is grabbing a pre-flight drink, I’m walking around doing my best to burn off extra adrenaline, because I’ve learned that even one badly timed drink will send me into an anxiety spiral.

I’ve also watched several of our couples manage their anxiety on their wedding day.  The anxiety is present, but it’s not ruining their day.  From sipping their favorite tea, to going for a run or working out before wedding prep, to taking dance breaks when the pressure starts to feel overwhelming, it’s very possible to have a great day even if you struggle with anxiety.

If you don’t struggle with anxiety on a daily basis, don’t be surprised if you experience some anxiety.  Most of us are not used to standing up in front of all of our friends and family, dressed in our very best.  Take care to be sure you’re well hydrated and you’ve eaten before the wedding ceremony.  If you start experiencing anxiety symptoms, recognizing the symptoms as anxiety are an important first step to feeling better.  Take a few deep breaths, a drink of water, and the feeling will likely pass.

Documentary Wedding Video

We’re here to tell your wedding story.  We do this by capturing the real, natural moments.  We only use the very best pieces, the ones that truly tell the story of your wedding day, not the moments that detract for your day or the story it tells.  By hiring a professional photo and video team, you can let go of the worry that any unflattering, detracting moments will be delivered with your final product. MotionWorks wants to be there to create your REAL wedding reel (and we’re happy to recommend one of our talented photographer friends for still images too).

The Real Reel: all of the authentic, very best moments that happen on your wedding day.

When you watch your wedding video next year, or in five or ten years, these are the moments you’re going to want to remember.  The things that stressed you out on (or before) your wedding day are going to look perfect to you.

And if you’re still planning your wedding, you might watch our films and think that the bar is high for an unattainably perfect wedding day.  But here’s the secret: each one of our films was made on a regular day.  A day when two people got married.  There may have been things that didn’t go according to plan, but none of those things mattered.  None of those things are things that you’re likely to notice in a wedding video, because what looks like perfection is actually just the love story of two people, filled with all the imperfectly lovely realities of their wedding day.

Want to talk with us about how we can capture the story of your wedding day?  Contact us today to start the conversation about your wedding video!

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