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Popular Wedding Video Editing Styles and How They Are Made

Updated: Apr 8, 2023

Once you’ve decided on hiring a videographer to capture your wedding, it’s important to start to understand the types of wedding video editing styles so that you can find the right fit. Partnering with a wedding videographer who understands your vision will be critical to ensure that the finished product meets (or surpasses) your expectations once you hit “play” after the big day.

Here are the most popular wedding video editing styles and how they are made. We’ll also go deeper into the two styles which we feature the most so that you know what to expect if you choose to partner with Joy Photo and Video.

While there are some minor variations in what they are called, here are 5 key types of popular wedding video editing styles and how they are made.

1. Highlight: This is a short video (typically 2-5 minutes) which blends the best of all the videography styles. It’s heavily edited to put the best parts of your big day front and center. It’s often overlayed with beautiful music and is a great way to re-live the highlights from your wedding. The highlight editing style is the one which we leverage the most for Joy couples. Here’s an example of one:

2. Documentary: This one lives up to its name because it is edited just like a documentary and is longer in length (i.e. 30 minutes.) This video style shares how the day just as it happened, in order, without a lot of ‘fluff’ (like special effects.) This style is also commonly referred to as journalistic and is the second type of video edit which we feature the most at Joy Photo and Video.

3. Traditional: A traditional style has a straightforward way of telling the story, from the ceremony to the reception. It doesn’t typically highlight have modern elements (like drone footage or other newer TikTok wedding trends.) This is a common offering from vendors who have both photography and videography because they will use a second shooter to support the videography needs while the photographs are being taken.

4. Cinematic: If you want to feel like your day is as grand as an actual movie, the cinematic video style showcases highlights from the day in a dramatic form. The sequence of events is typically not chronological since it focuses on the highest impact parts of the day. This might also rely more heavily on special additions like drone footage or slow-motion scenes.

5. Storytelling: This video editing style is like cinematic, but it focuses more on how to best tell your love story. For example, a cinematic wedding video might have footage or voice over narration captured through interviews with you or your loved ones overlayed on top of footage. It might also feature text, music, or other photos to elevate different parts of your love story.

Of the popular video editing wedding styles, we focus on highlight and documentary videos. Here’s more about what that means.

What is a highlight video and how is it made?

A highlight video is one of the most popular video editing styles because it will serve as an eloquent summary of your wedding day. While it isn’t the same as a cinematic style, think about this as a commercial from your wedding day.

  • How long is it? A highlight video is usually a few minutes long and features snippets from each of the key elements of your event. If you partner with us, your edited high-definition video will run 3-8 minutes (depending on which Joy package you purchase). You will also receive a 60 second teaser video.

  • How does it get edited? A highlight video compiles all the best parts of the big day, from getting ready until the grand exit. We cross-reference the agreed upon standard shot list and will use these scenarios to help build out the highlight video. (More on that here.) It will feature a romantic song in the background of the video, and there might be some key snippets of audio which get overlayed (like your wedding vows or cheers from the crowd after you say “I do.”) This style is a simple way to capture footage with just the right amount of editing---so that it feels like there’s a glossy sheen on the big day, without being overly produced. Most highlight videos aren’t captured in chronological order because the videographer will choose the footage in the order that makes the most sense to best tell your love story by pairing the right scenes with the right part of the song. (The right background music will really pull at the viewers heart strings and help to bring your video to life!)

In addition to the full highlight video, there’s also typically an accompanying teaser, or sneak peek. Here’s an example of one that we did.

  • Who do you recommend should select a highlight style? This is perfect for couples who want short snippets of their day to be able to share with loved ones (like on social media) or to re-watch and be reminded of the highlights (like an annual tradition on your anniversary.) It’s a great combination of traditional and modern and will ensure that the most important moments are sealed in your memories forever.

  • How much does a highlight video cost with Joy Photo and Video? If you’re interested in a highlight style, we’d recommend our 6-hour or 8-hour video packages. The 6-Hour Video Package will give you the following for $1,000:

    • 1 Certified Videographer for 6 Hours

    • 3 Min. Edited HD Highlight Video

    • 60 Sec. Teaser Video

    • Audio of Vows & Speeches

    • Digital Download & Delivery

    • Private Online Gallery

    • No Watermarks

    • Copyright Release

For an additional $300, you can get an 8-hour video package which will give you a longer video file (a 4-minute edit) in addition to the key features shared above. The additional time with the videographer will allow us to have the chance to capture more footage. We can also combine them with photography so that you can get both. Check out our packages and pricing here.

If you would prefer more depth and longer segments of the footage, keep reading to learn more about the documentary style.

What is a documentary video and how is it made?

If you’re looking for a popular wedding video editing style that feels less cinematic and more like a documentation of the big day, a documentary video might be the right choice for you. This is a more straightforward video outlining your wedding.

  • How long is a documentary video? Most documentary styles run for up to an hour. If you partner with us, your edited high-definition video will run for 30-60 minutes.

  • How does a documentary video get edited? A documentary video follows a chronological timeline and focuses more on your ceremony. This will feel more like a straightforward replay of your big day, without being cut up or heavily edited. At Joy Photo and Video, we will also include audio of the key portions of your ceremony, including your wedding vows and entire speeches. (Since the vows are typically the most meaningful part of a wedding, having the audio captured will help to make sure that you never forget the emotion in your voices as you promise one another on forever.)

  • Who do you recommend should get a documentary style? Unlike the highlight editing style, this will not be the type of video that you would share on social media. A documentary edit will feature the true events that occurred. And while the final file is edited, it will be a more natural unfolding of your wedding. This is the best fit for a couple who wishes to re-live the full sentiment of the big day and have access to longer strings of footage. Unlike watching a commercial with snippets from stand-out moments, this will allow you to re-watch your actual wedding.

  • How much does a highlight video cost with Joy Photo and Video? If you partner with us, we offer documentary video as an add-on to a Joy video package for $300. Here is what you would receive:

    • 30 Min. Edited HD Video

    • Emphasis on the Ceremony

    • Audio of Vows and Speeches

    • Digital Download & Delivery

    • Private Online Gallery

    • No Watermarks

    • Copyright Release

We hope you enjoyed learning about popular wedding video editing styles and how they are made. If you’re still on the fence about whether to invest in video as part of your wedding services, get the answer to this question “Why should I hire a wedding videographer?” here.

Get all the details on Joy offerings and contact us if you’re interested in learning more about our wedding videography. We’re actively booking for 2023 and 2024 weddings and will partner with you to help find the right videography style for you. It would be our joy to come alongside you and your significant other on the road to your big day for your video and photo needs.

Choose Joy,

The Joy Team


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