1. Introduction: What's your story?
Hi, my name is Mitchell Gaston and I am the founder and owner of Mitchell Gaston Films (wouldn't that be terrible if I didn't own the business that has my name). I’ve always loved playing with a video camera, in fact some say that I was fiddling with a camera while I was in my mother's womb (which is ridiculous). I spent the majority of my teenage years making goofy videos with my friends, neglecting important things like homework and chores. When I got the opportunity to film my first wedding out of high school, I fell in love instantly. A love almost as strong as the couple getting married that day. I've been doing this for six years now and continue to be tickled by what I get to do for a living. Getting to spend my time with couples on one of the happiest days of their lives, and giving them the opportunity to re-live that day is something I truly cherish. If I’m not filming a wedding I’m probably watching a movie, or doing something really safe and responsible like knitting.
2. How long have you been filming weddings? How many weddings have you filmed?
I've been filming weddings for six years now. I don't know the exact number but it's over one hundred and fifty. Somewhere between 175-500. Enough that I can say a lot.
3. How would you describe your videography style?
I always love this questions cause I'm never quite sure how to answer. Cinematic with a touch of documentary is what I usually go with. I try to be personal.
4. How well in advance should couples book their wedding videographer?
As early as they can.
5. What are the different packages that you offer and which one is your most popular package?
I eschew the multiple packages and just do one. I don't like nickel-and-diming, or having different packages that offer different video lengths because to me it's about the love and emotions of the day and making something that reflects that, not trying to to force a square peg in a round hole to fit some arbitrary five, ten, fifteen minute mark. I believe the video decides for itself how long it needs to be (sounds silly but I believe it). I put together a Highlight Film of the wedding day (which can vary in length -- five, ten, fifteen minutes. Again, we let the video decide), and then what I call the Full Day video, which is a full documentary style video of the wedding day. This video can be anywhere from one and a half hours to three hours. Just depends on long the wedding day is.
6. Are you the wedding videographer who will be filming on the wedding day? How many camera people and cameras will be operating on the day?
I am the videographer that will be filming on the wedding day. I work with three cameras (and a drone) during the day, sometimes running all three at the same time, like during the ceremony (but not the drone, I have to have my full attention on that when I'm using it).
7. Do you charge a travel fee? For what distance? What does that cover?
I do if the location is far away from me. How far to incur a travel fee just depends (usually anything under two hours is fine). If it's something where I'm going to have to get on a plane then I will probably charge for the ticket and somewhere to stay.
8. How do you back-up your footage to ensure no footage is lost and for how long do you keep the footage after the wedding?
This is very important to me and something I think about a lot. I store the footage on two separate hard drives and on a personal cloud (it can take a while to upload three hundred plus gigabytes of footage but it's worth it for the extra protection). After the wedding I keep the footage on one hard drive, and the videos are stored online. So as long as the internet is around your videos will exist.
9. How long after the wedding will the couple receive the video? And how will the video be delivered?
Typical turnaround time for me is twelve to fourteen weeks, but I'm trying to cut that down to ten to twelve weeks. I deliver the videos online through MediaZilla. It's a really nifty way for couples to watch their videos, with the ability to share and download them to their devices. There's even a scene selection option so they can skip to a specific moment. I can also deliver the videos on a flash drive, DVD or Blu-Ray disc.
10. What is your cancellation and/or refund policy?
Deposits are non-refundable but in instances of an emergency I'm not a jerk about it. During covid a few couples had to cancel their weddings and I gave them their money back. If the couple decides they aren't in love anymore, well...
If the couple cancels their wedding within a month prior to the wedding for non-emergency reasons the couple might be invoiced for any loss of earnings. But again I don't want to be a jerk.