The Truth About Raw Footage in Wedding Videography

Many modern wedding videographers, including Hurricane Productions, offer couples their raw footage as part of their video package.

There are a lot of questions and misconceptions about what raw video footage is and what you can do with it. Whether you've already booked your videography services or are just exploring your options, learn more about this line item and understand what you'll actually be getting from your wedding videographer.

What is raw footage and what do I get from my videographer?

The most common misconception about raw footage is that it's one, long, continuous video of your wedding events, from start to finish. In reality, your raw footage is a collection of all the video files your videographer took throughout the day. Because a new file is created every time the camera stops and starts, each clip is short, usually lasting from a few seconds to a few minutes.

While the files you receive should be in chronological order, you may find some clips that are out of sequence if the videographer had to switch memory cards or if you had a second videographer shooting your wedding. Additionally, the file names will come directly from the camera. So instead of seeing something like, "Ceremony Clip 1" for the first clip from your ceremony, the file names might be, "DCIM_0001."

We deliver our raw footage to every video client, directly from the camera, through our secure cloud server. We can walk you through your clips or sequencing if you have questions, such as which series of files came from which videographer.

Do I need my raw footage?

With a Hurricane Productions video package, your raw footage is already included in the purchase price. However, you may be wondering if you really need that footage if we're already creating a formal edit of your wedding day.

Keep in mind that there are often six to 12 hours worth of raw footage from any given wedding, and feature-length cinematic edits are just 60 to 90 minutes long. When we're editing your video, we'll choose the highlights and best shots of the day, but most of the footage will not make the final cut.

Even if you only watch through your raw footage files once, you'll be able to see every single second that was captured during your wedding. There may be little moments you had forgotten about, like a quiet, private conversation with your new spouse after the ceremony – or things you didn't even see happening, like a hilarious clip of your aunt tearing up the dance floor. Having your raw footage means you'll always have access to these moments.

What can I do with raw footage?

The great thing about raw footage is that it can be arranged in countless different ways to tell the same story from different perspectives. If you're handy with video editing software, there's no limit to what you can do with your raw footage. You and your spouse can each create videos of your favorite individual moments from the wedding. You can make a funny video of outtakes and silly moments from the reception to share with your friends. You can even piece the clips together in chronological order to create your own documentary-style video to accompany the professional cinematic edit you'll receive.

Can I have my raw footage professionally edited if I didn't buy an edit package up front?

Most of our couples choose to purchase a video package that includes editing up front. Others, like Jessica & Joe and Lisa & Jaime, hire us to simply film and deliver raw footage – but after the wedding, they realize they'd like a professional edit. In other cases, a couple may initially opt for our Short Movie Package, which includes a three to five-minute highlight video, and later decide they want a feature-length cinematic edit.

Regardless of what you hired us to do, it's never too late to add editing services if you have your raw footage. We are always happy to accommodate post-event requests for editing services, even if it's months later.

In addition to wedding videography, Hurricane Productions offers photography and entertainment services. Interested in one of our all-inclusive wedding packages? Check out our pricing page or request a quote for your big day.

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