Let’s Meet: Jason Chevatewa, Director of Videography
Why He’s Awesome:
- Audio and video geek to the Nth degree. He’s the smartest guy we know!
- Graduate of Specs Howard School of Media Arts
- (we won’t mention the year, Jason!)
- Collector of all things Superman & Star Wars
- Favorite Movie of All Time: Star Wars Episode IV
- (surprise, surprise!)
- Proud father, dedicated husband, loyal friend.
Jason in 60 seconds:
Get to know Jason 1 on 1:
What do you love about working with couples on their wedding day?
Jason: In the beginning of my career, I was very attracted to the bright lights of cool movies and films in an industrial, commercial setting. But when I started producing wedding videos the one thing that I really loved about it was that I was able to capture something for a couple that they’d watch over and over again. You may only watch a movie a few times, but , your wedding video is something much more personal. It’s an historic part of the family archive that will be passed on from generation to generation and something the couple (and their children and grandchildren) will be able to enjoy as long as they’re on this earth.
Director of Videography is a fancy title, what do you do at MSP?
Jason: Honestly, much of my job consists of collaborating with an amazing team of artists. I oversee all the shooters and the editors, which includes the entire production process. We have 35 super talented videographers and a staff of 10 hyper-creative editors that all work together to bring a couple’s wedding day to life on video. We have one of the most rewarding jobs on the planet.
Let’s go back to YOUR wedding day — what was the most memorable moment?
Jason: Two things keep popping into my mind (one of them is how thin I was) but in all seriousness, what I remember from my own wedding video in particular, is seeing my reaction to watching my wife walk down the aisle. I love that I can play that over and over again and relive it and feel what I was feeling in that very moment. The second thing, I guess would have to be when I was dancing like Michael Jackson to a Jackson 5 song and I had my groomsmen doing a choreographed dance behind me. I wish I could still dance like that. Haha.
There are so many beautiful places to say ‘I do’ in Michigan – what are some of your favorite landmarks or venues?
Jason: I love the architecture of Detroit. The Detroit Institute of Arts, Hart Plaza – when a couple suggests those types of environments you can get a true sense of their personality and a true sense of where you’re at. Detroit has a unique charm unlike any other city. The older churches are my favorite – especially The Old St. Mary’s Church in Greektown – the long aisle way is spectacular – they just don’t build churches like that anymore.
A wedding film is a personal love story told through video, what’s the strategy when creating one? Where do you start?
Jason: A wedding video starts with the couple’s unique plan for their day. We’re simply interpreting their day. We’re inspired by the locations of their ceremony, reception and everything in between. We’re inspired by the guests, the music that’s being played and the different family cultures and personalities. Every weekend is such a different experience. When it’s time to edit the raw footage, we look for the special moments of the day that provoke emotion, happiness and excitement. The power of editing truly brings the day to life.. Not only is it very common for couples to cry tears of joy while watching their wedding video, but to also notice how much of the day they had already forgot or never even knew happened in the first place.
What is your favorite part of a wedding video to work on in post production?
Jason: I would definitely say when the bride is getting ready with her bridesmaids. There’s a lot of anticipation and excitement in those moments leading up to the ceremony that you can just feel. There’s a sense when a bride sees herself in her dress that — this is real — this is happening! It could take an hour to shoot all of those special moments from the dress hanging, the ladies getting ready, dad seeing the bride for the first time but when we edit them all together, we can tell a pretty amazing story in 3 to 4 minutes.
What’s a cool new trend you’re seeing in wedding videography?
Jason: The quality available for wedding videos is now off-the-charts. They look like professionally shot films. For example, at Mike Staff Productions we’re shooting in 24 frames per second, the same frame rate that they make Hollywood movies with. A lot of wedding videos people have been exposed to in the past have looked a little cheesy, but what we’re producing at Mike Staff Productions is as high of a quality as anything on TV or in the theaters. It’s just awesome.
What makes having a wedding video so priceless?
Jason: Overall, your wedding is a unique environment where you have all of your friends and family in the same place, at the same time, all celebrating you — that’s something really beautiful. Video captures a persons voice, their laugh, their personality …. their dance moves (haha). We tend to think that that our loved ones will be here forever, but the older you get, you begin to realize that’s not necessarily true. That’s when you realize how priceless your wedding video will be.
If you could tell couples one thing before they get married what would it be?
Jason: Don’t stress-out over every little detail of your wedding day. The most important thing is that you’re getting married to the person of your dreams. Hire the very best team of wedding professionals that you can and let them do their job … and then you can do yours … and that’s to enjoy the best day of your life! The most important part of the day is that you’re getting married.
Come back next time! You’ll meet:
Erik Hodge, Sales Consultant, Wedding DJ Extraordinaire
Our company started with a few DJs in a basement, meeting over pizza & beer. That grew into a few more DJs, throw in some creative photographers, add a couple passionate videographers — and Mike Staff Productions — an award winning wedding company — was born.