Interview With: Dan Orrells
Company Name: Copper Tree Media
Location / Coverage: Nationwide
How did you first get into video production?
Producing videos and short films has been a passion of mine from a very early age. My grandad was film mad and it was him that introduced me to my first camera. I quickly developed a love for filmmaking and decided to follow it up and study at Sixth form and University. I studied Digital Video Production at the University of Gloucestershire and achieved a 1st BA Hons. The course was completely hands on, letting us experiment with equipment, make mistakes and learn in the real world and not stuck behind a desk.
How did Copper Tree Media get started and how long has the business been going?
I founded Copper Tree Media in 2007 after graduating from University. Using my background in live event and short film production we made the step into wedding films, creating a cinematic style with smooth tracking shots and exciting edits, steering clear of the old style 1980’s wedding films with horrible slow zooms and shaky camera work.
Which areas of the UK do you cover? Do you travel abroad?
We cover weddings nationwide and will travel abroad if required. Our main areas of coverage tend to be London/South East and the South West.
Is there a team at Copper Tree Media or do you work on your own?
At Copper Tree Media we have a handful of industry professionals from camera operators, editors and full time video producers. Currently we have 4 camera operators, soon to be 6 as we are growing at a very fast rate. You can find out a little more about our team on our new website that is coming soon under the ‘Meet the Team’ section.
What would you say are Copper Tree Media’s unique selling points?
At Copper Tree Media we are a group of young, vibrant individuals with a strong passion for film making. We use the latest DSLR HD cameras to give your film a truly cinematic look that will tell a story. We will provide you with an entertaining and emotional film of your day that not only you will want to watch but your friends and family also. We are also quite nice guys, so get in touch for a chat and see what we can do.
What is the funniest thing you have captured on video at a wedding?
The funniest thing we have captured at a wedding has to be the Silent disco. With two DJ’s, individual headphones and two different types of music to listen to; the atmosphere it creates is incredible. As we were filming we got involved listening to the songs ourselves, but when you take off your headphones you realise there is no music whatsoever and all that can be heard is the sound of people singing, wailing and ruining a Cheryl Cole or Kings of Leon Song. Here’s a clip from the Silent Disco we shot…
Which is the best wedding you have filmed and why is it so memorable?
We have filmed many great weddings with some great couples, superb venues and entertaining guests, but the most memorable one for us has to be Nathaniel and Vanessa’s back in August 2010. Nathaniel and Vanessa booked with us extremely late, with just 3 weeks to go before their big day. Luckily we had a free date and quickly met them for a chat about their film. From the outset we had a feeling this was going to be a superb wedding. Nathaniel and Vanessa’s enthusiasm for their big day and their love for each other was incredibly strong. Complete with a Harry Potter themed reception and a Silent Disco, despite some nasty rain in August and it being Friday the 13th, the day was truly fantastic.
“…the footage is exquisite! Having worked in TV for quite a few years I have to say I am quite fussy but it’s all beyond perfect and totally exceeded any wedding video I have EVER seen. Everyone who has seen it just smiles the whole way through, it captures the mood of every part of the day so it genuinely feels like you are there again. The editing to ‘Don’t Stop Believing’ is incredible; all the cuts to the beat of the music and build up – just love it!
We literally are up on our feet jumping around the room when it gets to the chorus….
Normally wedding videos are let’s be honest… a bit boring! You guys have this incredible skill of blending the action in perfect unison with the music and creating a work of art that is entertaining for anyone to watch, not just wedding guests. We are telling everyone to use you for any upcoming events and woe betide them if they do not!
Besides the DVDs, you guys were a joy to have around. We had great fun with you and you were always so calm, in control and knew exactly what you were doing…
The whole experience was just a pleasure; you guys have a great thing going there. Keep doing what you’re doing!”
Why should couples have a video of their wedding?
Couples should consider having a wedding film as we feel it is truly the only way to capture the true atmosphere of your big day. A professionally produced film will evoke emotion, capture parts of the day you may have completely missed and will remain as a precious memory and the closest way of going back and re-living your big day.
How do you present a wedding video?
All of our films are presented in a DVD case, with personalised covers and disc face – using stills from your film, designed by our Photoshop designer.
Does Copper Tree Media offer a bespoke service or do you have packages for couples to choose from?
At Copper Tree Media we understand that every couple and every wedding is going to be different, that’s why we have several packages couples can choose from. These vary in length and price, from our ‘Ceremony Only’ package through to our ‘Full Day’, ‘Multi Camera’ and ‘Dream Package’ options. We can also tailor a package to your exact requirements, so get in touch for a chat.
What’s the best thing about the job?
The best things about this job are you are always learning, you get to meet a variety of fantastic people from different backgrounds and producing a bespoke wedding film that can evoke emotion and tell a story is truly rewarding. Every wedding and every couple is different, you can’t turn up with a set shot list, you have to adapt to the day’s events and that gives the team at Copper Tree Media a great buzz!
What are your top tips for choosing a wedding videographer?
Our top tip for choosing a videographer is look closely at what you are getting. Many companies include hidden extras, or only plaster their good shots in their show-reel. Request to see full films to see how they stand up to their show-reels and how they present your full film. Make sure their style suits you and your needs. Don’t be won over by technical jargon about equipment, let their films do the talking and remember, just because a company has 10-15 years experience doesn’t mean their films are necessarily any good or right for you.
Most importantly really get to know them, you will be spending quite a long time with them on the most important day of your life, so make sure you get along with them and you both understand what you want out of your film.
Where can I find out more about Copper Tree Media?
You can find out more about Copper Tree Media on our website www.coppertreemedia.co.uk.