Panasonic Better Photography Wedding Video Awards 2019: Runner Up of Each Categories
The Panasonic Better Photography Wedding Video Awards 2019 has received astounding entries from across the country. Here is a recap of everything that happened over the course of two and a half months, from the gruelling judging process to the felicitation of the winners.
The Wedding Video Awards was initiated and annually instated this year, with the intent to recognise, laud and promote wedding filmmaking, at a time when wedding videography is gradually gaining momentum and appreciation around the world. The contest received 2224 entries from 98 cities and towns, with most of them coming in until the very last minute.
The Rounds of Judging
After the first round of eliminations, three additional selections narrowed down the entries from the top 50, to the top 15, to the top six, within each category, for a total of 36 nominations across six categories.
A panel of extremely senior, carefully chosen judges then had the responsibility of selecting the final winners. Totally, there were 12 judges, two to a category. Our judges had the task of looking at the submissions with a discerning and critical eye. The judging criteria for each category was extremely different, and very specific to each theme. Some of the criteria included storyline, character building, technical details, compositions, style, consistency, aesthetics etc.
The panel of jurists for the six categories are Rithesh Rai, VFX Supervisor, After Studios and Kshitij Sheetak, Director of Photography and Founder, Shoot Guru, for the Best Short Wedding Highlights Video category; PK Suri, Wedding Photographer and Filmmaker and Meghna Sen, Film Editor, for the Best Storytelling in a Wedding Video category; Milind Ketkar, Wedding Photographer and Filmmaker and Deepshikha Bhatnagar, Creative Director, Band Baajaa Bride, for the Best Long Form Wedding Video category; Vijay Benegal, Mixing Engineer and Dara Singh, Sound Designer, for the Best Ambient/Recorded Audio in a Wedding Video category; Shantanu Sheorey, Director, The One School Goa and Neha Parti Matiyani, Director of Photography, for the Best Cinematography in a Wedding Video category; Keshav Naidu and Geet Singh, Film Editors, for the Best Edited Wedding Video category.
The first three categories look at wedding films wholistically, whereas the last three categories recognise the art of the craft.
The judges spent hours on end, watching and rewatching the top six nominated films. For all the duos, the discussions and debates lasted for similar amount of time, before the winners and runners up were chosen.
The Team Effort
To document an Indian wedding, where each nuptial has a unique set of traditions and rituals spanning over the course of a few days, is a strenuous task and can’t possibly be done by one person alone. This is the reason why the job of production teams, videographers, editors, specialists and artists is of extreme significance. Their responsibility is to ensure that the story is chronicled and beautifully narrated.
Taking this into account, the Panasonic Better Photography Wedding Video Awards 2019 has recognised and awarded all the team members who were a crucial part in the creation of the winning films.
Here is a look at the runner up in each of the six categories:
Best Short Wedding Highlights Video category
The Memory Film of a Rural Wedding at Ilkal | Wedding Scripts, Bengaluru
Varun Vijayaprasad and his team of 15 members have specialised in conceptualised storytelling The company has scripted 1256 stories across the world, over the course of three and a half years. You can find them on www.weddingscripts.myportfolio.com
Story and Conceptualisation: Varun Vijayaprasad Cinematography: Nitesh K
Editing and Grading: Arun Vishnu
The minute-long film begins with the portrayal of the city and its people, before introducing the bride and groom, as well as the rituals and traditions. The editing is extremely crisp and the transitions are flawless, with snippets of scenes changing quickly at an energetic, upbeat pace. For instance, the bride is holding a small round mirror, which she brings closer to the camera. As she does this, the image in the mirror of herself covered in haldi, enlarges rapidly to fill the frame, and she is seen enjoying the haldi ceremony. The colour tones are warm, with deep reds and yellows, giving it a distinctively stylised look.
“We used some linear shots, expressions, a few glimpses of Ilkal with yellowish tone, to depicted the haldi and the vibrant rural colours of the city.”
Best Storytelling in a Wedding Video category
Between the Suns | Studio F3, Chennai
Based in Chennai, Studio F3 is a passionate team of filmmakers and photographers, who have specialised in crafting cinematic videos for weddings and events. In the past 15 years, they have documented over 100 wedding films across the globe. You can find them on www.astudiof3.com.
Direction and Editing: Balaji Raghunathan Cinematography: Balaji Raghunathan, Dharanikumar, Sugumar, and Gopi Muthukrishnan
Editing Assistant: Balaji Ravikumar
Divided into four chapters, the film encapsulates the story of the couple’s arranged cum love marriage, with a pinch of heart-warming humour and emotions. Between the Suns has a captivating portrayal of the couple’s chemistry and understanding, as they describe as well as reminisce their meeting and journey. The movie beautifully narrates how one feels for the other. The visual narration involves documentary-style scenes, as well as a few stylised, recreated footages, which creates a strong impact on viewers.
“It’s not just a wedding film. It’s the story of their journey together—their discovery, respect, acceptance, love, trust, promise, expectation, and hope.”
Best Long Form Wedding Video category
Union by the Ganges | Memory Sauce, New Delhi
The company is the brainchild of Priyam Malhotra. The name brings his love for two things—memories and food. A sauce ties different ingredients together in coherence and symphony, to make a delicious dish. The company aims to bring similar symphony to weddings, by creating visuals that enables one to relive their day forever. You can find them on Instagram @memory.sauce.
Direction: Priyam Malhotra Cinematography: Ankit Aggarwal
Drone Footage: Ravi Kumar Editing: Vikas Lodhi Editing Assistant: Ved Prakash
An intimate destination wedding, Union by the Ganges took place at the Parmarth Niketan Ashram, in Rishikesh. The film illustrates the beauty and the simplicity of the place by incorporating stunning drone footage of the vast mountains, the tranquil river, and the cosy town. The background score was Indian instrumental music, overlapping with recitation of mantras during the rituals. The composition played a pivotal role in the narration of the story, and each of the rituals have been captured extensively and meticulously.
“The couple is from the USA, and they specifically wanted to pay their respects to the Indian culture, especially the rich traditions and rituals.”
Best Ambient/Recorded Audio in a Wedding Video category
A South + North Indian Wedding in Bengaluru | Dreamcolor Photography, Bengaluru
Founded by Harish Coorg, a self-taught commercial and editorial photographer based in Bengaluru, the company was established as a means to showcase his photography portfolio. Gradually, it became a well-known commercial photography brand. Today, Dreamcolors Photography’s team is about 12 members, each specialised in different genres of photography. You can find them on www.dreamcolors photography.com
Sound Recording and Cinematography: Harish Coorg and Rahul Kannur
The minute-long film focuses on behind the scenes of the wedding. It begins with a musician testing his nadaswaram, playing a few notes. Soon, the scene changes to show the preparations of the dishes and the decoration of the venue. Here, the audio of the sizzling jalebis and the chopping of onions is brilliantly overlayed with the classical Indian background score. The music towards the end matches with the nadaswaram at the beginning, and the film also goes on to unveil the identity of the couple, as their name appears on the screen.
“For the teaser, I realised that the inclusion of the ambient sound of the hustle and bustle was imperative. Without it, the video would have been incomplete.”
— Harish Coorg
Best Cinematography in a Wedding Video category
Trouvaille | The Wedding Crashers, Kolkata
Having the experience of freelancing for seven years in the wedding industry, Anurag Bose and Rajat Mitra collaborated and started The Wedding Crashers back in 2015, in Kolkata. They have covered over 100 weddings till date, from a variety of different backgrounds, societies, and cultures. Their creative best is reflected and captured in the narrative, ambience, happiness, and even grief. You can find them on Instagram @theweddingcrashersindia.
Lead Cinematographers: Anurag Bose and Anirban Datta
Additional Cinematographers: Shrayan Saha, Anirban Mandal, and Shilajit Das Mahapatra
The film rhythmically moves back and forth between Kolkata and Mumbai. The latter scenes were shot at iconic locations such as Marine Drive and Bandra Fort. Throughout the movie, there are alluring blurs and shallow depth of field, which creates a dreamy effect. The compositions for the interview of the bride and groom uses rule of thirds and side angles, which seems like they are having a conversation with another person. The team has captured the delicate nuances of the wedding, and the intimate moments between the bride and her mother perfectly.
“The couple hails from Kolkata but their story began in Mumbai. That’s why it was essential to recreate certain moments they had shared in the city.”
Best Edited Wedding Video category
A Surprise Awaits | Mere Shadows, Bengaluru
Based out of Bengaluru, Mere Shadows is the brainchild of Akshay N Rao and Janhavi Jagadish. The team of filmmakers, photographers, writers and musicians, are driven by the spirit to document harmony and diversity of weddings, as well as be responsive to the characters, stories and emotions that unfold during these celebrations. You can find them on www.mereshadows.in or on Instagram @mereshadows_weddings.
Editing: Akshay N Rao
The engagement film has been shot and edited in a documentary style. The title encapsulates the gist of the film, where the groom surprises the bride and her family, by suddenly appearing at the engagement ceremony from Finland, where he is employed. Besides the ceremony itself, where each emotion was captured precisely, there are shots that explain their traditions, as well as the surroundings. The transition between scenes was intuitively done. For instance, when the bride tries to hide herself by covering the camera, which gives a small jerk, the next scene quickly changes to ripples in a small puddle coming in focus with similar jerk effect.
“I wanted to reveal the nature of both the bride and groom, which is cheerful and lively. At the same time, it was essential to show the intricacies of the rituals.”
—Akshay N Rao
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