Maureen Woodman, a wedding planner at The Essex Room, discusses the recent trend of having a drone take pictures and videos at your wedding, and some of the pros and cons of this unique form of wedding photography.
John: Hi, I’m John Maher. I’m here today with Maureen Woodmen, a wedding planner for on and off-site catered events at the Essex room in Essex Massachusetts. Today we’re talking about drone wedding photography. Welcome, Maureen.
Maureen: Hi John, thanks for having me.
John: Sure. Maureen, are you seeing more people hiring drone videographers for their wedding?
Maureen: Yes. We actually saw one or two in 2016 but last year we saw maybe five or six. It’s definitely something that’s adding to the whole photo gallery for your wedding, be it video, or still, or cell phone or whatever people are doing. I’m not really sure, actually, on the pricing or how you’re going to go about it. It seems the people that we’ve had, there’s been a guest in the crowd that offered to do the drone video. There is one professional drone [videographer] in Gloucester right now that I know about. I would say, going forward, you’re going to see a lot more of them.
John: Why do you think that drone wedding photography is getting so popular?
Maureen: I think it has kind of an eerie, voyeur sense of the wedding. You see them at the ceremony, it’s a whole different perspective. The world around the ceremony looks so much larger, and the people look really small. I think it puts the whole moment in perspective. Even though you’re getting married, it’s your special day, there’s just a whole world around this atmosphere around this wedding that you’re having.
John: When and where do couples use drones to film their weddings? You just mentioned the wedding ceremony, if you have an outdoor wedding ceremony are people doing it for that, or they’re doing it mostly for a cocktail hour or reception that’s outside, or even just a special photography session that’s sort of separate from the wedding or reception?
Maureen: I think obviously the drone has to be outside. If it’s going to be good weather, probably in the summer months you’re going to be able to see a lot more things, whether it’s your reception, or your cocktail hour or your ceremony. I’m sure we’re going to start to see these at “first looks”. You might see someone driving to someone, if they can really catch the beginning when the bride is driving with her father to the church.
There’s going to be all different ways to use these in small communities. You do have to go along with some aviation rules, so I’m sure it’s not going to be such a city thing, but I think you’re going to see it a lot in the small countryside venue.
John: Are there any risks that people should be aware of?
Maureen: Well, I think the biggest one is your head cranking up. I think it’s really funny when the drone comes over and everybody looks up at it. You can’t really be walking and looking at the drone; you might fall off the edge.
John: I suppose it could be distracting from the reception maybe. You’re saying your vows, “I do”, and then all of a sudden the drone flies overhead and everybody looks at that instead of at the bride and groom.
Maureen: Yes, exactly. When we’ve had it done at the Essex room outside of the ceremony, there was a moment when the JP said, “okay, everyone, there is going to be a drone going over but don’t really react to it, we’re just trying to capture the moment for the bride and groom when they get married.” Afterward, when it’s over, the JP will say, “Okay, everybody, give a cheer to the drone up there.”
You really get to see them but, like I said, unless you’ve really looked at a small ceremony with a drone, it’s just an amazing moment. It’s another thing, it’s just a different perspective. That’s all I can say, they’re really fun.
John: What types of locations may be best for aerial wedding photography like that?
Maureen: Well, of course in Essex you have the marsh and you have all the fingers of the river. A drone video works really great where we are, but I’m sure if you’re on a lake, if you’re up at Lake Winnipesaukee or Newfound, or if you’re in a large field. I mean, can you just imagine if you got married at Fenway or Foxboro or something, how much fun that would be?
I think a field is good. I think the water is good. I think if you can catch the sunset in one, that’s going to be good, but you do need a large area of quiet in order to make it work, because the beauty of the drone is it has this feeling, where I think if you had a lot of cars and traffic going on, it wouldn’t give you that moment that you’re looking for.
John: A beach wedding might be a perfect place to do a drone video. Beaches would come out nice.
Maureen: Oh, a beach would be awesome. I think a beach would be just perfect. Any wide open space that doesn’t have a lot of traffic. I think it’d be really the way to go for this. And a lot of color, a lot of green and blue contrast. Flowers in the field or something I think would be great. And not a lot of trees, because the trees, if there’s ton of trees where the drone is, there’s trouble there. That’s something that can cause trouble with the drone, if the trees get in the way.
John: Right. Not only would it be dangerous, maybe, for the drone to get stuck in the tree, but also any overhanging trees over the location where you are, you’re not going to see a whole lot of the ceremony or the reception.
Maureen: Yes. I think it will be really fun to see in the next three years what’s going to happen with this. I think we’re going to see a lot more of it.
John: All right. Well, that’s great information, Maureen. Thanks again for speaking with me today.
Maureen: Thank you, John. Thank you for having me.
John: For more information, you can visit the Essex room website at essexroom.com or call 978-768-7335.