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Read my ramblings about life as a Wedding Videographer

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I sat these two crack ups down one wintery afternoon to learn all about how they met and how they got to where they are now.

Stef and Ella met each other in 2015 at an Arts Camp in Elmer, New Jersey. Ella was in charge of coordinating the programs’ staff and Stef flew over to the states from Australia to teach a drum class. The travel involved was something Stef was not quite expecting and she arrived a couple of days later than initially intended — where Ella found her collapsed on a couch in the staff area completely exhausted but ready to tackle the experience.

It took a few months (and a drunken text message from Stef suggesting they go to a drive-in movie together, although somewhat unclear as to her intentions) to kindle the fire but their love eventually blossomed over beerfests and epic road trips to Alaska.

The pair love pointing out dogs on the street in the middle of important conversations and plan to realise their Sims dream of owning a five bedroom mansion with six fur babies. They also share a love for plants, frequently buying exuberant amounts to add to their collection.

Ella loves country music; Stef loves ska; and although their taste in music slightly differs (causing issues on those long drives between New Jersey and Alaska) they both agree that each one helps the other to see the lighter side of life and there is always a reason to laugh when they’re together.

Stef surprised Ella with a trip to Cleland Wildlife Park for Ella’s first visit to Australia — causing her to literally burst into tears of excitement upon learning that she’d finally get to see AND hold a Koala.

Despite the ensuing trials of long distance, Stef and Ella’s relationship grew stronger as the months passed thanks to Skype, WhatsApp and of course tagging each other in memes. Stef eventually made the decision to move over to the states to be with her soulmate.

When distance came between them again and Stef needed to move back to Australia, Ella made up her mind that she wanted to seal the deal, flying into Melbourne where Stef was waiting to pick her up. They spent a couple of days exploring the city with Stef’s brother Gav and his partner John before Stef took them all to the Shrine of Remembrance.

With a beautiful view of the city before them, Ella gave her camera to Gav, simply saying “take some nice pictures of us” neglecting to mention that she was about to propose. Joining Stef at the lookout, Ella summed up all her composure but alas forgot everything she wanted to say to her beloved as so often happens to us in those poignant moments. Instead, Ella simply pulled a very special ring from her pocket and uttered the words “old and gross?” to Stef which was an allusion to something she had said to Ella that very morning.

Stef was of course maddened by the whole thing when she had finally figured out what was happening as she wanted to be the one to pop the question to Ella. She graciously accepted Ella’s proposal however, with Ella placing a ring with a simple green jewel on her finger. Throughout this whole moment, Stef’s brother Gav was apparently caught right off guard and only managed to get the camera fired up for the aftermath: two beaming lovers who had just begun to take the next exciting step in their lives together.

Ella and Stef spoke together about this entire story for a good hour on the couch that day. We jumped in our cars after that and went to take some plant shopping footage at Bunnings where we were promptly kicked out by a man with a lovely temperament I will call ‘Dave'. I took them instead up to Lofty to get some awesome shots of the two horsing around in the leafy surrounds; we stopped by a little nursery at the bottom of the hill which welcomed us with open arms; and we finished the shoot that evening at the Gepps Cross drive-in theatre — which seemed fitting seeing as apparently the pair never actually ended up going to one in the first place.

#engagementvideo #engagment

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  • CBJ Films

It’s only been two years since I decided to ‘take the leap’, leaving my job and going full-time with my Wedding Videography business, and I have to say that the response I’ve received from everyone over that time has been unexpectedly positive and truly humbling.

2018 has been nothing short of a non-stop thrill ride. Somehow I managed to get myself invited to over 30 weddings; spent time in breath-taking locations with incredible people — several of them taking me out to some of the most amazing corners of South Australia — and I was even lucky enough to be flown up to my hometown of Darwin to enjoy a couple of dry season nuptials.

There were so many memorable moments amongst all that love that it’s absurd of me to even attempt to recall it all but as I rack my brain these are the things that stood out for me.

The year kicked off for me at Agapanthus Farm with Jenna and Sam who did an outstanding job of putting on the venue’s first wedding with little Harrison by their side. Jenna locked down the BEST DRESS award early in the year with her incredible golden cinderella number.

Kate and Ryan’s big day at Glenbarr Homestead was love and laughter central with one of the bride’s friends taking out the award for BEST SPEECH with a hilarious rhyming recount of their raunchy escapades.

Despite a windy start to the day I had an absolute blast traipsing through Kuitpo Forest ducking the wind and the rain with Poppy and Ben who couldn’t keep their hands or eyes off of each other.

Luke and Jessica hosted a beautiful wedding at Paxton Wines — Luke winning BEST GROOM REACTION by a mile this year.

Hannah and Brad had me up at the crack of dawn on Easter Monday to document their wedding up at Sunset Rock Uniting Church. A music and prayer-filled ceremony was followed by a gorgeous outdoor reception at Stangate House & Garden.

Hands down the BEST KISSING award goes to my beautiful neighbours Roland and Anne who had no issue macking on for minutes at a time while I got the most incredible sunset shots of them at Ukaria Cultural Centre.

Jenna and Aaron win BEST MUSIC when their funk band Funk Throne took to the stage of their gorgeous reception at Golding Wines and laid down music.

The feelings were real for me when my Primary School friend Joseph married his beautiful wife Julia in May with a two-hour acoustic music filled service at The Monastery and a glamorous reception at Adelaide Town Hall.

I joined Lizzie and Joel at East Point in Darwin for a cracker of a wedding day. Contenders in my books for multiple awards, these guys surrounded themselves with the best people who all flew up to the top end to join them for a fun-filled outdoor shindig by the sea, taking out BEST ENTERTAINMENT with the baby crocodiles who came to say hello at their reception.

The CUTEST KID award goes to my cousin Nick and his wife Jess. Little Evelyn stole the show that wintry day at Glanville Hall and that’s a completely unbiased decision…

Daniel and Melina flew me back up north to film their big day, their fourteen-strong entourage winning them the BIGGEST BRIDAL PARTY for the year.

Aside from being the most photogenic people ever, Charlotte and Petar wowed their reception guests with delicious Mexican food and a salsa dancing class that got everyone up and having the night of the lives.

Jessica and Brendan spent their special day driving around in a fleet of Rolls Royces and London Cabs — not to mention a motorcade of Harley Davidsons. The COOLEST CARS award goes to you my friends.

Charlie and Riley had a fun day of wedding celebrations out in Clare. I'd never heard of their DJs before before but my gosh did they bring the beats, turning that sheep sheering shed in Clare into a thumping rave with multiple subs, a wall of FX lighting and smoke machines.

I spent Grand Final Day with Christine and Lingyao who held their wedding reception at the State Library. Such an awesome venue with guests wining and dining in between walls of historical trinkets and several stories of books.

In October I took a trip up to the Novotel Barossa Valley Resort for Andrew and Katrina’s big day where I was treated to a celebration full of great tunes and friendly faces.

Alex and Turon put on a fantastic day at The Lane Vineyard where their delicious Turon Rose was on display for all to sample and enjoy.

Niki and Darryl had a grand ceremony on the lawns of Carrick Hill and an evening of Greek dancing and great food at the Adelaide Pavilion, kicked off with a creative dance routine which their bridal party helped them put on.

Hailey and Tristan win the award for BEST DIY WEDDING. They hosted us all at the family home in West Bundaleer with an epic reception in a giant shed purpose-built for the occasion.

Justin and Cheryl’s origin story of bumping into each other at Zhivagos one fateful night gets the nomination for BEST BACKSTORY, which led to their incredible wedding day at Marble Hill followed by an epic reception at The Sanctuary.

Alex and Keith were up there with the most adorable people I met this year. They tied the knot at Longview Vineyard with their gorgeous golden retriever Chloe by their side.

Cassie and Craig were simply picture perfect and partied like their was no tomorrow at Maximilian’s.

Sarah and Adam got married on a cloudy day at Mount Osmond Golf Course and take the award for CUTEST FAMILY. Adam also wins an honorary award for best smile.

Erica and Frankie flew themselves and their nearest and dearest to SA from NYC to host a ripper wedding in teepees under an oak tree at Tomich Vineyard. The BEST DANCE MOVES award goes to them and the groom’s brother Billy for ‘the helicopter’.

Sarah and Aaron tied the knot on a bridge in Undalya and the broke the internet with a whopping 6-minute choreographed first dance, taking out the coveted BEST FIRST DANCE award.

Kristynn and Andrew take the cake for CUTEST COUPLE. These two lovebirds gave me some of my favourite shots to date as they frolicked in slow motion together with a stunning adelaide backdrop.

And finally Gerald and Grace capped off the year for me with a stunning wedding up at Al Ru Farm with their gorgeous husky Misty looking on.

As I look back at all these wonderful unions I can’t help but feel like the luckiest person around getting to witness them. If you’re one of these amazing couples who took the courageous step into marriage this year, thank you for inviting me to film your day and all the very best for your lives together. Remember to cherish the words you spoke to one another that day and always be kind and honest with each other.

Much love and gratitude,

CBJ

#weddingvideography #weddingvideographer

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One of the most essential parts of my job as a Wedding Videographer is ensuring that all the audio from your special day is captured clearly. This means things like your celebrant; readings from loved ones; your vows to each other; music from your entertainment; speeches at your reception...the list can be even longer than that for some weddings and it's my job to be get it all as this audio will serve as a backbone for your wedding videos — especially if you're getting a Full-Day Edit.

So...how do I do it?? With great difficulty at times I'll admit. In order to be prepared for any number of audio sources on a wedding day I have a whole case filled with a variety of professional audio recording devices ranging from a Zoom H6 (which I could record an entire band with) to a tiny little device called an Instamic Pro which is perfect for hassle-free celebrant recording (simple as clipping the little bug to their collar and away she goes). Depending on the situation and the source of the audio I will use whichever device I feel is best suited for the job to capture that audio.

One of my favourite recording devices, believe it or not, is my iPhone. Or at least one of my old iPhone 5's which were a lot smaller than the current models making them difficult to text on but perfect for slipping discretely into a groom's jacket pocket with a lapel microphone attached. I use the Rode Smartlav plus the Rode 'invisilav' mounts for this particular job which is an awesomely simple, clean and professional method of capturing speech. I plug in the lapel, open the Rode Rec app on the iPhone and hit record, lock it, attach the invisilav mount to the inside of the groom's jacket with a Rycote sticky mount and we're in business.

Now, the reason I ALWAYS put a microphone on one of you is so that even if your celebrant stands off to the side during the ceremony I am still recording everything that is going on between the two of you — or three in this case! Jess and Nick held their beautiful daughter Eve in their arms whilst exchanging rings and thanks to the lapel microphone on Nick's jacket you can hear not only their words to each other crystal clear (their celebrant stood off to the side for this) but you can hear little Evelyn's giggles as she makes the most of her big moment in the spotlight. Such a gorgeous moment and I thought a perfect example to explain the importance of being mic'd up.

— CBJ

#behindthescenes #weddingvideo #weddingvideography #audio

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Curtis Brownjohn Films

16a Neville Road Thebarton SA 5031

hello@curtisbrownjohnfilms.com

+61 (0) 437 294 941

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Cinematic Wedding Videography & Love Stories by CBJ Films

Adelaide Wedding Videographer | Wedding Videography South Australia

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