How long have you been shooting weddings?
2018 will be my third season of shooting weddings, however I have been in the video field much longer. I work full time for a cool software company doing marketing and culture videos, as well as freelance for small business, artists, and dancers.
What is your background in video?
If you really want to go back, you could look at all our home videos when I was a kid and probably 70% were shot by me, usually coming to a close with "I'm Laura Sukowatey, thanks for watching." (I wanted to be a news anchor.) I studied photography in college while majoring in print and broadcast journalism, which led me into video. While I no longer have any desire to work in the news industry, my training in that field has greatly impacted where I am today: my work definitely has a more journalist and documentary-type feel.
Since 2011 I have worked for Jamf (an Apple software company in Minneapolis) and have been their one-woman video team, responsible for creating 100+ videos a year. I'm currently in the process of branching out to do more freelance work for local business, artists and performers.
Why would we want video at our wedding when we already have a photographer?
In college, I studied photography and that led me to the world of video. I have always been drawn towards moving picture and video, but I also love still imagery. I think they are both incredibly valuable and sentimental, in their own special way. Video is great supplement to your wedding photography because it captures a different set of emotions. A couple seeing each other for the first time, a veil floating in the wind, grandma kickin' it on the dance floor...these are moments that deserve more than 1/160 of a second in time and provide a special perspective as a moving picture.
Can we meet with you before booking?
Absolutely, I'd prefer we meet in person to get to know each other!
How soon should we book?
Most people book around a year in advance, but it's not required. However, I am only able to take on a limited number of weddings per season, so it's best to make a decision sooner rather than later to ensure I am available! I wish I could accept every job that comes my way, but quality is more important than quantity.
What's the payment process?
Payments are due in thirds. A deposit is due at the time of booking; this officially makes the date yours and is non-refundable in a cancellation, unless I am able to book another wedding on the same date. A second payment is due 1 week before the wedding, and final payment is due when you receive the final link to your film on Vimeo. Once I receive final payment, I'll mail all the files out to you on a small flash drive. If three installments is difficult for you financially, I'm happy to discuss payment options.
What gear do you use?
Primarily I shoot on Canon C100 Markii, a C100, and Canon 5D Markiii with a variety of lenses and stabilizing gear. For audio I have Zoom field recorders with lavalier microphones.
Do you have a second shooter?
I currently do not, but some day hope to find the right person. People often ask how I manage to do everything on my own, and then best answer I have is, somehow, I have developed a system for myself that allows me to focus on many details at once. In college I studied journalism and it helped me learn to work under pressure.
Do you have travel fees?
I charge mileage for any travel outside of the main metro area, hotel the night of the wedding for 2+ hours, and hotel the night before and night of the wedding for anything over 2 hours. I want to be functioning at my best, and waking up at the crack of dawn for a long drive can affect that. It's preferred that you handle the hotel booking, but if not, I can invoice you.
Will you require a meal?
Having a meal and a quick break at dinnertime is very much appreciated. I am vegan, so if the venue is unable to accommodate this restriction, I completely understand! However, most venues I've worked with have been able to provide a vegan option. If it's not possible, I can totally live off some pb&j sandwiches for an evening.... :)
How soon can we expect to see our video?
Normal turnaround time is 4-6 months. I do provide a short 60-second teaser a couple weeks after the wedding to tide you over until everything is finished. Editing is the most extensive part of the entire process and I do not like to rush the work. Also, because this is only a small subset of the video work I do, my turnaround time can be longer, but it also depends on where you wedding falls in the season.
The question you didn't ask...
...but I feel like it's important to mention as it is built into ever fiber of my being: my lifelong passion is dance. I grew up dancing, training in everything from ballet to ballroom. I currently direct, choreograph for, and perform in the local contemporary dance company crash.dance.productions. I also teach competition lines at Summit Dance Shoppe, and dance fitness classes at the best gym in the city: The Firm!
Misc. random facts
I have two dogs who are father and son, Oliver and Arthur
I have a big family, the oldest of 5 kids!
My partner Isaac and I have been together for about 7 years, he's pretty great
I danced at the Super Bowl Halftime Show with Justin Timberlake
TV/Movie/Music/Pop Culture loves include: Harry Potter, Twin Peaks, Chris D'elia, Downton Abbey, Arrested Development, 30 Rock, Joanna Newsom, West Side Story, Gaga, MJ...