Jason Magbanua
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Things I Learned Filming Weddings during a Pandemic

Things I Learned Filming Weddings during a Pandemic


It’s been more than a year since my beloved wedding industry came to a screeching halt because of the global health crisis.

I was not the most cheerful person those months but hey, things are looking up and I’m feeling optimistic today.  That’s why I’m writing now and not tomorrow, I woke up hopeful today.  The timeline is filling up with colleagues humble bragging about their work schedules (nature is healing) and the vaccinations are rolling out. For the first time in a long time, really think we might pull out of this.

Fk yeah!  Humankind is defeating the veerus!  Yeah boy.  Let’s not mess up our second chances ok brothers and sisters?

In that period, I’ve learned how to adapt and pivot to other things (hello travel vlogging!) but my one true love is weddings.  I’ve learned to adapt and really, it ain’t THAT bad.

We’ve filmed quite a few over the months so the TLDR version of this post is – It’s ok to plan for your wedding and get married.

It's ok to plan for your wedding and get married.  

Like any happy marriage it comes with compromise, you get some, you give some.   Forget about the 400 guest count, relish the presence of who’s there.  Tuscany out the window?  Consider Cebu or Aman.  There is always a silver lining.

TRUST ME.  The faces of the people I film these days are AS HAPPY as the faces I filmed pre-pandemic.

The past few months have taught me a thing or two about weddings in the time of Covid.  Let me enumerate!


1.  Intimate weddings are the bomb and they’re right up my alley.  I’ve always maintained, it’s always about the people, the accoutrements always take a back seat.  Intimacy is not just a number, it’s an invisible web around all the people in attendance vibing to the same frequency.  These are people who would rather be nowhere else but your wedding, not because they’re asked to, but because they want to.

2.  Destination weddings are IT.   It must have been being locked up in our respective homes for a year, but there is definite joy in being able to breathe freely in a garden or on a beach.  It’s exhilarating.

3.  Weddings can be rescheduled but you can’t celebrate a tenth anniversary on the 11th year.  It’s curious that I was able to film a handful of anniversary celebrations in a span of a few months. We had one recently where the attendees were just immediate family for a total of five persons.  It was amazing.  Read up more about that here.

4.  Now that you’ve saved on that five course meal and million peso styling, you can splurge on other things. Umm like, video perhaps?

5.  Streaming your wedding for people who can’t come is an excellent idea. Imma be honest with you.  I came up with with the idea to increase the bottomline.  But I saw how invaluable it was for people who cannot physically be there at the wedding.  With streaming, they are there in spirit as well as in technology.

6.  Practical Tip:  Jazz up those face masks.  Nothing takes me away than filming a crying bridesmaid in a blue Heng-de mask.  Double up if you must.

7. Consider having just a ceremony and just figure out a big party in the future.  This actually took me by surprise.  Filipinos love their dinner parties and I didn’t think this would catch on but here we are.  More and more couples are having just the preps and the ceremony filmed.  And we’re fine with that.  It’s win-win.  They don’t get to stress over what new rules the IATF will lay down regarding wedding receptions and we get to go home in time for a very early dinner.

8.  There’s fun to be had in a small celebration.  Look at it this way – you’re not forced to shake 300 hands like in a bigger wedding, half of which you don’t know why they’re there. PLUS, only a select few can see you dance your awkward Silk Sonic dance.

9.  I would be remiss if I didn’t remind you to NOT let your guard down.  A wedding does not provide a magical field of protection over those who attend. Lay down proper protocols or guests and suppliers. We would be happy to oblige.

10.  It’s the best time to focus on what counts.  Eyes on the prize my dahlins.  It’s about the marriage not the wedding, says the wedding videographer who peddles romance for a living.  Truthfully,  everything else is gravy.   If you feel you’re ready to start this new chapter in life.  GO JUMP!

After all, tomorrow is never promised, today is the only thing we have.

Time to be shameless:

Email us for inquiries hello@jasonmagbanua.com. Out mobiel/Whatsapp/Viber number is +639178432535.