May 18, 2023 | Blog

DIY Wedding Video Ideas to unleash your creativity

When it comes to your wedding video, you want something that captures your special day. You don’t want a video that will make you want to cry every time you watch it because it’s boring and unoriginal. You also don’t want a video that’s so cheesy and overproduced that it makes your guests laugh at what they see. Use your good taste and discernment to find a balance and produce a beautiful home-made wedding video! Check out these fun and heartfelt ideas from a California Wedding Videographer!

Bride smiling with other ladies

DIY Wedding Video Ideas

DIY wedding videos can be created with a smartphone or a professional camera, and editing software like iMovie, Adobe Premiere or Final Cut Pro, and a tripod or monopod. Lessen your worries about the wedding videographer cost because you can do all these simple ideas.

If you’re going to be shooting your own footage of the event, make sure the lighting is good and try to capture as many different angles as possible so that there’s enough material for editing later on. If possible, ask someone else who knows how it works or a wedding videographer (like me!) to help out with this part of things.

When it comes time for editing all of your footage together into one cohesive movie-style video for sharing online or burning to DVD/BluRay discs (which I highly recommend), here are some tips:  * Use transitions at important times to create emphasis on special video clips, rather than cutting directly from one scene into another–this will make everything flow more smoothly without jarring jumps in time periods between scenes, and a smoother experience for your viewers.

#1: Feature Your Guests

It’s easy to think that the best part of a wedding video is when you and your partner walk down the aisle, but it’s also important to remember that there are plenty of times during a wedding when people can shine. As a California wedding videographer, I see to it that there are plenty of opportunities to feature the guests in the video making it more inclusive.  So don’t forget about them! The wedding videographer should have some footage from their time with everyone at the reception, but if you want something really special for the video, consider asking your guests (or even better yet, those who couldn’t make it) to record themselves telling a story or sending a blessing to the wedding couple.

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#2: Record the Kiss

If you’re going for a more intimate look on the wedding day, consider shooting with a long telephoto lens. The long lens will give you a close view of the couple, allowing you to zoom in on all of the important moments–including their first kiss!

A wide angle lens will capture more of everything around them, but it’s not ideal for capturing intimate moments. A California wedding videographer like myself knows that capturing the right moment with the right lens is crucial to delivering a great wedding video.

If you want to easily capture a broad breadth of detail, a good zoom lens may be the right tool, since you can quickly move between wide, mid and telephoto.

You may also want to ask them if they have any specific requests for the music that you use in their video. If not, then you can choose whatever songs best capture the mood of the ceremony and showcase the couple’s personalities. If there are certain songs that are especially important to them (i.e., their first dance song), then make sure to include those as well!

#3: Tell a Story with Your Highlights Video

Use music, sound effects and voice overs. You can add music to your highlights video to make it more engaging for the viewer. If you’re not sure what kind of songs might work well with your footage, ask friends or family members if they have any suggestions–they’ll likely be able to suggest some great tunes that fit the mood of your wedding day!

Choose the right length for your video: The length of time that people spend watching a video depends on several factors including their relationship to the couple (e.g., your parents may be willing to watch a longer video than a friend you don’t see very often) and how much information needs to be conveyed within that time frame (e.g., if the wedding was a multi-day event, or a shorter event like an elopement). But generally speaking most people prefer videos between 5-8 minutes long because anything longer becomes tedious and boring as opposed to informative/entertaining/enjoyable; however, for social media, shorter clips are best, since people tend to have shorter attention spans on those platforms. Take this advice from a California Wedding Videographer and you can have the best highlight video on your wedding day.

#4: Use a Breathtaking Background

This is a great idea if you have a beautiful location in mind that is meaningful to you and your partner. Try to find a place that is unique to your wedding, such as an outdoor ceremony site, a garden, or a grove of beautiful trees. If all of these options aren’t available, try looking for something unique in its own right–for example, the top floor of an old hotel with wonderful views of downtown, or even just outside on the beach!

#5: Include the Details of Your Rehearsal Dinner

Rehearsal dinners are a great time to get to know your family and friends. You can include the details of your rehearsal dinner in your video, such as who was there and what was served, and clips from the speeches.

A DIY wedding video doesn’t have to be hard.

DIY wedding videos don’t have to be hard. You don’t have to worry about a wedding videographer cost because you can easily create a beautiful video with your phone or a camera, and add music and sound effects if you want, or just use the audio from your ceremony as is. You can also add titles and transitions if you’re feeling fancy.

Once you’ve finished editing, share it online! Your closest friends will love seeing the footage of your big day–and sharing it makes them feel like they were there too, or gives them a chance to relive all the magic!


If you’re looking to create your own wedding video, there are plenty of ideas out there! We hope these five tips will help you get started on your own project. Remember to keep it simple and use the resources you have access to. If all else fails, don’t worry– a California Wedding Videographer can help with that too!


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Nile Sprague Portrait
Nile Sprague
Proprietor & Cinematographer
Photo by Michelle Feileacan

We offer specialty wedding and event film services in Northern California and globally.

Nile Sprague is the proprietor and primary cinematographer and director at Mendocino Photo & Video. With a lifelong career in documentary filmmaking and photojournalism working for non-profit organizations around the globe, Nile brings with him immense experience in working with families of different cultures and backgrounds. Nile’s passion to tell the organic stories in life led him to sharing with couples their most exceptional day: a wedding, marriage, or celebration of love. He has been showcasing the joy and candid nature of these occasions since 2008, presenting photographs and films that embody the beauty and wonder of lives coming together.

Learn more about Nile and Mendocino Photo & Video

Leah Y 6/24/2023

Nile was very professional and responsive—always willing to answer any questions and even meets with you before your wedding day to get to know you as a couple. He was very creative and “on-it” on the day of our wedding, capturing incredible content that I wasn’t even aware of! Our highlights video captured the day perfectly—I can’t stop watching it and reliving the moment!

– Leah Y

Dan S 09/30/2022

“Nile at Mendocino Photo was amazing! The videos we received were perfect and something my wife and I will cherish for a lifetime. The artistry of the angles and shots are second to none. He was able to capture words for our friends and family to interlace them with the video which was very special. Nile was very accommodating and understanding to our crazy schedule and requests we made both before and after the wedding. I would very highly recommend using Mendocino Photo & Video. You will not regret it.”

– Dan S.

Kimberley S 8/13/2023

From our very first call, Nile was keenly interested in our vision and started figuring out how to make it come alive. He communicated clearly and consistently with us throughout the process, demonstrated his breadth of experience, answered our many questions, and was generous, flexible, and good-humored.

When reviewing other videographers, we watched example wedding videos that felt rather strung together and less connected. We chose Mendocino Photo & Video as our wedding videographer because their portfolio displays well-crafted videos that have more of a narrative.

We’re very happy with our decision and we love the videos that Nile and his team produced. His skill with piloting drones is also quite impressive. We highly recommend Mendocino Photo & Video.

– Kimberley S

Robyn + Chris – 5/20/2023

“We can’t thank you enough for this beautiful video! We’ve already watched it so many times and cried every single time (in a good way). You captured us and all the people we love so well, and we are TRULY so grateful for this. It’s perfect.

Thank you, again! We are just so happy we had you both there to help us celebrate and capture the best day ever :)”

– Robyn + Chris

Evan A 10/07/2022

“Nile made our special day a fairy tale. He met with us prior to the wedding to get to know us, who we are as individuals and who we are as a couple. He did that so he could get a glimpse of what we would like and see our day through our eyes and I believe that is one of the reasons he did such a great job. He did a phenomenal job at our wedding and after. He is very professional but also kind and it shows through his work. I couldn’t have asked for a better photographer/videographer. I will be seeking him out for future photo/video ideas.”

– Evan A.

Vanessa D. & Kristina O. 7/27/2022

“We are positively over the moon for this incredible video. We both just cried non-stop watching it. You captured everything so beautifully. The speech tie-ins are so moving. Thank you for this incredible work and we can’t wait to see more. You are a very special person and have a very special talent. We are so lucky to have found you! Thank you from the bottom of our hearts!”

– Vanessa D.

“Laughter, tears, joy. Thank you, thank you, thank you. That was hours ago. I’ve now watched it two times in a row. So happy. So grateful to be connected back to that day through words, images, your art.”

– Kristina O.

Alexander F 6/17/2023

Mendocino Photo and Video was such a pleasure to work with throughout the entire wedding planning process. Nile took the time to get to know us as a couple, gave us great feedback along the way, and helped us come up with a game plan to capture our wedding where we could fully enjoy our day worry-free. We had so much going on at our wedding, and Nile was able to capture it all so beautifully and put together an incredible teaser and highlights video. He has an immense talent for cinematography and video editing and his work wonderfully brought out all the rich emotions during our wedding and told such a captivating story. Can’t recommend enough!!!

– Alexander F

Erica A 10/07/2022

“Nile was really thorough and a joy to work with for our wedding in September. He met with us beforehand and went over every detail and gave his advice based on what we were considering. He then also arrived at our venue early to scout the best places and went above and beyond to help us with everything and prepare with us all the timeline and photo details beforehand. We also really appreciated how calm and unrushed everything felt while getting our photos done, he made it a really enjoyable and stress-free experience. The pictures came out beautifully – our venue was heavily shaded in the redwoods forest so not necessarily the easiest to capture, but he did so great! We are so happy we had him document our wedding and capture a piece of our magical day.”

– Erica A.

Breanna 5/6/2023

Nile knows what he is doing behind the camera! He genuinely cares, he creates special moments in his videos with special messages and captures all the meaningful moments. He is a great communicator. I can’t recommend him enough!!!

– Breanna B

Arjun R – 12/03/2022

“Nile was our videographer for our Mendocino wedding and did an amazing job capturing the event. Nile met with us early on in the process and walked us through his style and vision for capturing the event while also incorporating all of our feedback and goals for the video footage. We really enjoyed Nile’s vibe and he made us feel at ease throughout the whole process. The end result was beautiful – we felt like we were right back there on our magical wedding day and also got to see many extra details that we didn’t get to fully experience during the chaos of the day, especially the heartfelt video messages from our best friends. We would highly recommend working with Nile for any event!!”

– Arjun R.