Merry Christmas!

This is an excerpt from the Winter Festival Concert, a two hour video we produced for the Department of Music at CSULB. We had a blast filming it- and the President had requested that Charles Lauren Films film it, so we we're pretty thrilled about that too. Please enjoy the following presentation of The Winter Festival Concert by the Department of Music at CSULB.

Marketing Video for the College of the Arts CSULB

This is a marketing video we produced for the College of the Arts at California State University Long Beach. They will be using this video to attract top students from around the nation to come to "The Beach" and also to attract donors to give funding that is desperately needed to the College of the Arts. The College is the largest and most comprehensive publicly supported arts college west of the Mississippi. There are 6 departments in the college, Art, Dance, Design, Film and Electronic Arts, Music and Theater Arts. This video focuses on the College itself and the Department of Music. As the year progresses we will be filming all the other 5 departments and showcasing their talents and tributes as well. Being a fellow Alumni of the Department of Film and Electronic Arts- we were totally psyched to be able to bring notoriety and publicity to our Department and the College of Art as well. So with that, enjoy the following clip and Go Beach!

The Test of Marriage

Last week we had the honor of filming at the Trump National Golf Club at Palos Verdes Peninsula...but before all of the fanfare and partying was to take place, the groom- Stephen- had to pass “the test” back at his bride's house to see if he was worthy enough to marry Yenyao. The following is a video clip of what sort of ordeals he had to go through before he could see Yenyao and take place in the tea ceremony at their home with their families. It is quite amusing how far one man will go for the love of his life…


Public Service Message: Don't Smash the Cake

We have seen a few cake smashing incidents. More commonly, the groom knows that his only chance of a great honeymoon is to keep his bride looking good - a tasteful dollop of frosting on the nose or cheek is acceptable. Also, if you are a guest at a wedding, don't throw cake at the groom because he is your ex. Thank you.

Public Service Message: Save Your Invitation

9 times out of 10 when we are with a bride as she is getting her makeup and hair done, multiple people will call her cell phone asking what time the ceremony is, how you get there, what kind of gift to bring - this is distracting and out of place for a bride and she will start to regret inviting you. Please watch this clip.

Palm Springs Blossoms on Thanksgiving Weekend

David and I got to film a wedding in Palm Springs this weekend! We had originally filmed Gabe’s sisters wedding in Santa Barbra- so when Larry (Twilight and Gabe’s Dad) invited us to come back for a weekend at the Hyatt Grand Champions, in Palm Springs we couldn’t refuse.

As always Jessica, the bride looked stunning thanks to make-up artist Keturah, who did everyone’s makeup for the event. Keturah travels, but is based in the Palm Springs area and we hadn’t worked with her before. Let’s just say she made bridal getting ready about as fun as it gets- and she is a dear friend of Jessica’s, they have known each other since high school- so it made it that much better.

Stay tuned for a clip from the event in about a week- we have something special we are working on for Jessica and Gabe…. ;-)


Party With The Koi

David and I couldn't wait to write a blog on Debbie and Mike's wedding! The magic all transpired at the Earl Burns Miller Japanese Garden and as always with the Garden the venue sparkled! We love this venue... Lynette’s team of planners always pay special attention to every detail making sure it’s just perfect for when the couple enter for the reception! And with George at DJ Connection playing the tunes it doesn’t get much better for a swinging party with the Koi of the Garden. Take a look… the music was suggested by Debbie herself whose quite the techno party buff! Congratulations Debbie & Mike!


It’s Best In the West

Possible Spoiler Alert!!! If you haven't seen Wicked yet, I may indeed ramble about something that you might not want to know about yet- so watch out!!!

Perhaps we are a bit on the end tail of this entire phenomenon. Let's just blame it on not getting out much. A friend of ours who was a groomsman in our wedding this year bought us tickets to see the Broadway Musical, Wicked for our wedding present.
As filmmakers we weren't quite like everyone else exiting the Pantageous Theatre on Hollywood Blvd. People kept saying Amazing, Wow, Didn't You Love it? to all of their friends. We did indeed love it, but it was more than just “love”. It is amazing how so much analysis if given the opportunity could be put into these 3 little hours of time. Tackling such issues as social classes, activism for the less fortunate, and how the Good Witch really almost controls her kingdom in a fascist way. This all tells us that there is more to OZ than meets the eye.
It's amazing how some of the post popular things in life are taken from something that has already been invented. Of course this story doesn’t stick to the previous invention of anything that was written in the 1900s story by Frank Baum – perhaps that’s what’s so good about it, I never did like that fake wizard anyway!
Nevertheless- I can’t really do this musical justice unless I write a 10 page analysis on it’s implications in society and so many of the themes that are present. I also know that although you might not get bored, on a blog no one really wants to read that- so I leave it at this… go and see it, it’s probably better that way. And always remember Green Is Good.

A side note-It’s amazing we didn’t see this musical before hand, come to think of it- we were acquisitioned by Brian Gimmillaro the coach of the Volleyball Team at California State University to make a banquet video on the volleyball team using a song from Wicked! This was over 2 years ago, we should get more of a life, I knew I liked the soundtrack then- anyway, here is a video clip that we did for the Volleyball Team before we even knew what it meant to be Wicked!


Bob Foster's Funny Eye Jokes

Last month we filmed the Nuestra Imagen Awards for the Long Beach Community Hispanic Association. This is their 11th year and we have been with them almost from the beginning. This is a fundraising dinner to get grants and scholarships for the Latino Youth. They get internships, education and jobs while in high school and most move on to college. Even though there is a large board, the Executive Director Jessica Quintana and Lupe Velasco pretty much run the entire organization. Every time we stop by to drop things off or pick up pictures for slideshows, there is nothing but a flurry of kids, calls, confused citizens, kind of like our office.

This clip is from the event, Mayor Bob Foster had to leave early because of his eye problems that precluded him from reading our cue cards on a shoot earlier in September. Hopefully he is all back to normal now and can use our telepromter to its fullest potential! Bob Foster is a really funny guy and has gone along with lots of crazy projects that we have done with him. I will post some of those in the future.

Congressional Biography

Since Laura Richardson is now a Congresswoman, we thought we would look at a video we made for her last December. At that point in her career, she had just been elected as Assemblywoman. How times change in 9 months. That is a meteoric rise! This video looked at the projects she took on as a City Council Member in Long Beach. Each councilmember and community groups she worked with were used to structure the story. Her mother and sister, who are rarely seen also appear with comments of love and affection. We used many of the skills we use to fashion Love Stories to make this video. Biographies about political leaders and corporate executives have a story to tell, just like the story of love between our couples! Enjoy!


Love Story

Love Story

Sri Lankan President visits Carpenter Center

What does secret agents, tons of press, and a president have to do with Charles Lauren Films? ....everything! We got to take part in a historic event at California State University Long Beach- where President Alexander of CSULB met the President of Sri Lanka, Mahinda Rajapaksa! We would post a video clip, but the President being from Sri Lanka happens to speak Sri Lankan so we figured a nice picture would do. This was indeed an honor, I mean how many times can a person come home to their wife and say "Guess what honey? I filmed the Sri Lankan President today?" Not much, unless you are a cameraman or camerawoman on NBC.


Soundtrack to a Wedding Banana Slug Style

As you know songs make everything in a video.... it controls the tempo, the editing style and a whole bunch of other cool things that most people don't tend to think about- unless you're a director/editor.
So we have a few favorite songs that we like to include in videos that just make it well, perfect. Our new favorite song is Newts, Salamanders and Frogs from the band called the Banana Slug String Band. You can hear it on iTunes....if you're interested. Any Banana Slug song I think would be just perfect for the bride getting ready during the pre-ceremony- hey it's the official mascot of UC Santa Cruz so I'm not the only one who is excited about them. In fact- I believe their music will soon be off the billboard charts- it might even make platinum ;-)

The Magic Art Bus of Long Beach

Here is a video we made to salute the Long Beach Transit System for the State of the Arts Luncheon in Long Beach. It was a huge success- mind you when you watch it, it is supposed to be a 60’s theme culture trip through Long Beach highlighting all of the ways Long Beach Transits gets people where they need to go and also showcasing the art instillations from various Long Beach artists at each bus stop. So enjoy!

Laura Richardson Makes Congress

Laura Richardson makes congress and we were there to film it! With the setting of King Drew Medical Center in the background, it was a poignant step forward in making a commitment to the state of health care for the 37th District. Someone might think- hmmm… a defunct hospital to make a statement at, not the greatest image. Yet, it was the only image that resonated in the hundreds of people who where there to watch her take her oath. One of her themes was that health care is a right, not a privilege- and for the people in Compton, Watts, Carson and the like the King Drew Medical Center was a life line and a needed necessity. Now I can’t claim I know what it’s like to grow up in Compton or even beginning to imagine the hardships people face day to day. But, I do know that keeping the amenities with the rich and denying them to poor isn’t really going to help anyone. Public health is everyone’s problem and I think Laura Richardson will make sure everyone knows it


Mysterious Universe Podcast

We love to blog.... but when witting a blog what do you listen to? Another Blog. Well, a podcast from a blog. Being fans of the X Files and Science Fiction- we have to listen to this. Did I mention the creator of X Files lived a block away from my street- and dated my great cousin??? Serious. Anyway. This is a fun podcast to listen to and you should have a real treat- even if everything is taken with a grain of salt. Or is it? Go to



The Los Angeles AIDS Walk

One of our favorite officiants, and we do love many- but this certain one is close to our hearts, since she is the one that married David and I (so who can blame our nepotism?) is walking for the cure. The cure for AIDS.

David and I tend to follow many causes like the cures for Cancer, Alzheimer's, and basically any other horrible disease that exists in this world (Cancer and Alzheimer's because we know many affected people- and cured ;-)!!!)- so when we got the e-mail from Elizabeth of Marriage To Go - we had to pledge.

Her goal is to become a "Star Walker" in the next 5 weeks, by raising $1,000. She made it simple for us to pledge- all we had to do was donate and she would do the walking! So as the holiday season comes into full swing, let's all remember the less fortunate and if not donating your money, perhaps your time- with a little positive thought on the matter or volunteering. When we look at some of the countries that are devastated by this disease- we thought that it was the least Charles Lauren Films could do.

If you do feel moved though, please visit our officiants website and pledge a few dollars - what's 5 bucks? - a day without a Starbucks?- every little bit helps.

Here is the e-mail she sent to us.... you read it and if moved, you can copy the links and paste them into your browser to make a difference today!

AIDSWalk is an important annual event in Los Angeles which shows community support for AIDS patients and gets desperately needed funds to the organizations that care for them. Funding needs for prevention efforts are now more urgent than ever. Half of the new HIV infections occur in people under the age of 24; more than one million people in the United States are estimated to be living with HIV – a first since the height of the AIDS epidemic in the 1980s. If current trends persist, AIDS could claim up to 100 million lives worldwide by 2020, and AIDS will become the worst epidemic in human history.

So we all need to keep on walking--for hope, for research, for prevention, for patient care, and for a cure. You can walk along with us with a few clicks of your mouse or strokes of your pen. Here's how:

**If you'd like to WALK or VOLUNTEER for the event day, you can register online by clicking "Register Now!" (why not start a team at work and get a corporate matching grant?):

**If you'd like to DONATE TO MY STARWALKER EFFORTS, click on "Sponsor A Walker" and type in my name to go to my donation page. (Elizabeth Oakes)

**Any donation amount is appreciated--a lot of little steps add up to the journey home! However, the website won't take donations under $25, but you can submit a check made out to "AIDS Walk Los Angeles" and mail it to me by October 15th--Elizabeth Oakes, 3435 Ocean Park Blvd. #107, Santa Monica, CA 90405--and I'll be sure it gets where it needs to go. You can also send a check if you prefer that to online donation.

**My goal again this year is to make it to "StarWalker" status, which means I have committed to raising $1000 in the next five weeks. If you make a donation--no matter how small--you'll receive a thank-you newsletter with photos and my personal account of the walk (and find out whether I made StarWalker or not!) plus the gratification of knowing you are helping to make the world a healthier and more loving place.

A little love goes a long way! Thanks for sharing yours.

----Enough said.

Cheers to Rae Gabelich...

Cheers to Councilwoman Rae Gabelich of the 8th District of Long Beach. Every year we film the State of the Arts Luncheon in Long Beach, California. Because of this we film a brief 30 second sound bite with all of the districts councilmembers in Long Beach.
We love everyone- from Patrick O'Donnell and his Irish fairs' to Suja Lowenthal and her awesome office decked out with pictures of Gandhi. Or then there's Val Lerch with his witty comments about his mothers hot pan and Tonia Reyes Uranga detailing memories of Los Posada. And who can forget, Gary DeLong with his fondness for Musical Theater West and Dee Andrews recounting his days as a Dallas Cowboy football star. And of course Gerrie Schipske and her nurse “look alike” to Bonnie Lowenthal and her amazing cultural office!
But this year we sort of have a sweet spot for Rae, who gave us a glass mug detailing the City of Long Beach and it's incorporation in 1897. We thought that was pretty cool- so here's us with the mug filled up- with sparkling apple cider, as a toast to all of the city councilmembers and their help in making the state of the arts luncheon video a success once more!

The New "The Knot" Ad

As some of you might know we advertise in the magazine "The Knot". This year we've been working on a new ad to make it more- well, user friendly. We hope that the new ad does just that- enticing potential clients to come meet with us, which would lead to new bookings- which makes David and I happy, because filming weddings is our most favorite thing of course! (Hint, that's why we are in this profession!)

Take a look at our new ad and see what you think. Is there something you wish we've added- what would you like to see in an ad? What would make you want to call us, etc.? E-mail your suggestions to Because after all, if we aren't addressing your needs as a bride, then why are we in this business? ;-)

Squirrels and Squirrels....

Moving to Santa Monica has been a interesting experience. As some of you might know- there was a news segment on the squirrel population and how it was running out of control in the city of Santa Monica. Although our neighbors have had their trials with the squirrels- I find them fascinating! Coming from a suburban "un-nature life" it's a treat to see, well anything that resembles wildlife in this world.

We have installed a "squirrel log" and a squirrel "feeder". Don't worry- we've read up on the mal-nutritions of squirrels and how you have to be careful what you feed them. So, while our neighbors are complaining that the squirrels eat their berries and the City of Santa Monica is exterminating them- I feel the least we can do is enjoy them while we can, and snap a few cute pictures in the process. I've told David we need to install "Squirrel Cams" on each tree and provide a live feed on our website-- he hasn't gotten back to me yet... I wonder why?



A client of ours came to us with an idea. Instead of opening up their video with a nice romantic interlude with the bridesmaids, groomsmen , bride and groom- they wanted an epic, but funny twist to this thing we call love. Although it might not be everybody’s cup of tea- it is hilarious, and a definite must watch, and we had tons of fun making it- click the link bellow to see….

Fall is Almost Here...

Who can help it- it's almost that time of year again. It begins to cool down and the summer days of laziness and suntans are replaced with cuddling up by the fire with your loved one and sipping hot apple cider in a big mug in front of you. These are our favorite days- and even more fun when we do fall weddings. Perhaps it's all in anticipation of the holidays to come, but I think- it's Fall itself that has a special meaning to us. So keep your eyes posted- we do a lot in the fall, besides weddings, and we will be sure to tell you about it!

Passing the Garter

The Garter toss. It's all fun and games until someone actually has to catch it! Women will line up in droves to catch the Bouquet- of course we will, it's free beautiful flowers- who wouldn’t! But men lining up to catch the garter?- not so much. One of our clients, however, anticipated this and put a new spin on the common routine of catching the garter. See what happens in the following clip...


Wait Time For the Perfect Video

David and I often wonder, when some industry professionals look at us in confusion, as we tell them it usually takes 3 months for a couple to receive their edited wedding video. A bit taken a back at the long length of the process, David and I kindly explain- that the shooting is not even half of the work, it is all within the editing. Of course you have to have amazing shots to edit a great masterpiece wedding video, but that's not the half of it. After all we are taking something that is totally in the raw and adding to it the reality of life that existed that day- not an easy task. Certainly, the most creative task I can think of.
That is why when looking for a wedding videographer creativity should be the word of the day when scrutinizing the final product. Remember the person you hire should easily be working for 40 hours or more on your wedding video, otherwise they aren't really doing anything for you. There may be something to the old adage saying "Good things take time"- and it holds true for the wedding video as well. Just a little advice we offer you to ponder.


Pete Carroll Tells Our Couple to Fight On...

Thanks to Joanne's maid of honor Christine, we are honored to have this clip of famous USC Coach Pete Carroll giving them the "go ahead" to fight on and last forever in their marriage. We have added this to their love story, that we will be showing at their wedding as a surprise to Andrew the groom on their wedding day, at the Ritz Carlton, in Pasadena.

Now with David's mother as a staunch die hard UCLA Alumni, who every year wants the Bruins to kick some you know what Trojan butts, we might have been afraid to post this, for fear of rejection from her, but come on, it's Pete Carroll!!! This isn't the first time we've had this privilege, however. When working for PBS, I was fortunate enough to have the privilege of setting up our episode of USC's Travler (the horse that Tommy Trojan rides), so USC football has always had a place in our heart- even if we are Beach Alumni. Hey, we never had a football team to support, that was nixed in the 1970's when The Beach lost to Michigan like 10 to 180, and in the third quarter the replacements were getting broken arms from the Michigan boys. So they canceled football forever at the Beach- so if you can't beat them... join them. Where did that USC sweatshirt I had go to?? ;-)


Freedom Writing

Kelsey and I finally saw Freedom Writers last night. It was a film that was true to what happened while trying to make a connection to the book and diaries that it was really based on. I know Erin Gruwell through video projects that I did with her and the Freedom Writers after they went to college, for archiving and documentary purposes. I was moved to tears every time they worked on new material and practiced telling their passionate stories. I was honored to have worked with them and have included at the bottom of this post a page from their book that they autogrpahed and gave to me. After seeing the movie, I had to bring that out and take a look at it again.
I know how hard Erin Gruwell had to work to make what she did happen with her kids. The Long Beach School District acted exactly how they are portrayed in the film. Many of my friends from high school and college are teaching now in the Long Beach and the LA Unified School District. The bureaucracy and vain attempts to come up with ideas, get messages across and be efficient is blocked so often that many of them have thought about quitting after only a few years of teaching.
If you are interested in social change or teaching you should see the movie.

This was one of those times when people came together to make amazing connections and create brilliant ideas that caused actual change in a community and the country. Many of the writers and Erin spend most of the year on tour doing speaking engagements at schools and corporate events around the country. Just remember that true passion, the kind you need if you want to grow to your true potential, often doesn't involve people you used to relate to. The people around you in life need to grow with you. If they don't, you need to move on.
If you don't want to see the movie, the book has much more emotion.

Arts in The Beach

Kelsey and I are privileged to do a lot of work with The Arts Council for Long Beach. We have made grant videos, spent months capturing the learning of children and finding the perfect moment from Long Beach's city council. Click HERE to visit the Youtube channel that we set up for them.

Happy Summer!

The last few weeks have been very exciting and busy times. We have filmed eight weddings and all of the CSULB graduations since the last post. We have created about 80 hours of tapes. I thought I would share a blog posting from one of the couple's whose wedding we captured during the time. Michele and Philip had a very hard time finding a videographer. They met people in their dirty homes, others who they had appointments with never showed up and left them waiting at Starbucks. I can promise you that you will never have that experiece if you come visit us for a consultation. People have said that our meetings are more like friends talking and watchng TV in a living room than an office consultation.

One of the coolest weddings we did during the break was Evan and Elena's. It was at Shutters on the Beach in Santa Monica. The ceremony was outside on the sand, and as soon as Elena walked down the sandy aisle, everyone on the bike trail stopped to watch. Evan is an amazing guy and is very connected to the natural world. As I stood with him on the beach waiting for Elena to have her picture taken, a bee landed on a bouquet he was holding and he began to pet it! At the same time, someone in his bridal party found a sea shell that was small and red which looked identical and was the same size as the design on his red tie!

The next day we were very lucky to work on Jennifer and Wayland's wedding. This was a Chinese/American wedding where Kelsey and I split up at 7:00 to film each of them getting dressed. Then we met back at Jennifer's house for the traditional entry game where Wayland has to prove his worthiness to Jennifer's bridal party. Then we went to Wayland's house for a Chinese Tea Ceremony. Then they had a party downstairs with a real roasted pig. After that everyone went to Pickwick Gardens for formal pictures and the tradiational American ceremony. Then they took more pictures as we went to Ritz Gardens for a huge Chinese feast and celebration with dancing dogs, a 10 course meal, nonstop activities and dancing. All day there were firecrackers going off, flying in the air, flying towards my camera, flying at the neighbors. It was cool.

I'll talk about more next time as we prepare for Corrine and Kenny's wedding this weekend. The ceremony will be in one of her realtive's backyard. When people invite friends and family to a private home it makes for very personal and emotional experiences and I am looking forward to it. It is all happening around our old office location in Long Beach and Lakewood.


We were on a Mission

This Saturday wedding season was in the air! As we drove to the ceremony of Michelle and Farid at the San Fernando Mission, we saw gas stations upon gas stations filled with limos fueling up for the busy day ahead of them. This was the first time that we filmed a wedding inside a Mission. The inside of was extremely ornate with stunning gold trim and historic paintings. Kelsey and I have toured most of the missions along the El Camino Real in California, but Kelsey has had especially close contact with them while she worked with Huell Howser to film his mission series.
Farid and Michelle were very lucky to have the grounds all to themselves and their family and friends. Just across the way in the free park at the mission, about 10 different groups of weddings and quinceaneras were lining up for poses in the roses. When the ceremony ended and it was time to take pictures, however, we had it all to ourselves and the photographers, who did a great job and had a wonderful time with us taking cool poses. After a rest for everyone, the party moved on to the Odyssey Restaurant in Granda Hills where you could see the mission from above. What a great time!

A Powerful Love Story

On May 5th we were honored to not only film, but participate in Tricia and Randy’s wedding. CL Films has known Tricia for sometime now, filming various events for her throughout the years. Not only had Tricia asked us to film her wedding, but she also acquisitioned us to create her and Randy’s Love Story. CL Films set out to do what it does best and the results produced not a dry eye in the room- but that of course is the result when a couple are in love. See for yourself in the following clip…..

I never saw her in that way...

It took a while for Rodney to notice Julianne...he was busy knowing her as a friend at church. Both from Inglewood, an offhanded comment from a Revered at Ward AME caused Rodney to sit up and see Julianne for the amazing person she is. This is a segment from the beginning of their video. We were able to introduce the location where our Bride was getting dressed while her Groom waxed poetic on the nature of their love.



"Toasts are never long enough they make me calm...." said David while editing this morning.


April 21, 2007 The Wedding of the Century

Hi everyone! Charles Lauren Films just got back from a great weekend of filming the wedding of Melissa and Alex on April 21st. They had an amazing location- Coyote Hills Golf Course, with many greens and waterfalls with bridges- very opportune wedding moments. The Coyote Hills Golf Course has a great outdoor venue for shooting weddings, which is evident in many of the shots you will see in the teaser. The reception followed and the entire event was a blast-

Melissa and Alex may be in Hawaii on their honeymoon, but when they get back they will be excited to see a bit of their magical day here, on our website. I know from personal experience, having just got married- if I would have been able to see my footage 2 days after my wedding, I would've been in tears- so I told David, we need to serve every bride this way, having a teaser, like a trailer for a movie uploaded to our website on Monday morning the 2nd day after the wedding. Everyone knows that we spend a lot of time making wedding videos that people will cherish for years to come- but just being able to see a few beautiful clips of what was said and how you looked a few days after is pricless, not only for the couple- but the families as well- forget the photographer's proofs! (well, just kidding), but all kidding aside, Charles Lauren Films is taking it to the next level and you can expect this kind of dedication if you decide to book your wedding videography with us. Click bellow to see the teaser clip of their wedding--

Watch Alex and Melissa’s “Wedding of the Century”


Just a Reception...

Kelsey and I spent yesterday getting beauty shots of the campus of California State University, Long Beach for a marketing video we are making for the College of the Arts. We also filmed part of a lecture, the symphony rehearsing and a play, Pericles, Prince of Tyre. The lighting was beautiful for the play and it will turn out amazing on HD. Today I thought I would post a highlight reel from a wedding that we did for Rudy and Carolina. It was different from the norm because we only filmed the park and reception. They had their wedding at the Wayfarers Chapel in Rancho Palos Verdes and reception at The Reef in Long Beach. Our friend Marc Gold has a contract with the Chapel to do most of the multi-camera ceremony shooting with robotic cameras…so we picked up where he left off and started at the photo session at Malaga Cove and followed them until the end of the night.


Sing Her a Song

Hi, this is David “Charles.” For all of the grooms-to-be out there, I have an idea for you that will sweep your wife off of her feet and win yourself a place in the hearts of your guests for years to come. After you are finished giving a thank you speech, try getting up, grabbing the DJ’s microphone and serenading your wife with a beautiful song. It doesn’t have to be the kind of song you would sing on a gondola. It would be better if it wasn’t Con Te Partiro. Try something alternative and modern, like Nealesh sang to Jyoti at their wedding in January. This wedding was also shot in High Defintion.

Putting the Groom on the Spot

Talk about putting the groom under pressure. People say that during the cake cutting, what the groom decides to do, whether he smashes the cake in his wife’s face or not, is directly correlated to the kind of honeymoon he will have. What his new wife does, however, has no bearing. In this clip from a wedding we did last August, our groom, Dave, is put on the spot like few grooms ever will be. His wife is Mary, but she has an identical twin sister named Ann. The girls’ brother made a slideshow of pictures where it would be impossible for a regular bystander to identify which is which. Watch and see how Mary’s new husband can recognize his new wife while all of their family and friends from Long Beach and England look on. As an aside, Kelsey actually guessed more correct than Dave did while we were editing ☺


"m a s t e r s of
r e f l e c t i o n"

Today I was listening to the National Public Radio (NPR) station in Los Angeles, and they had begun a discussion on the "Ask a Ninja" podcast. Very funny show if you ever happen to catch it on- anyway regardless to say- I'd never heard of it, so I went to "i Tunes" and started watching it. The segment I saw was on Ninja's and their reflections in the mirror. Of course this is a funny show- so he commented on how Ninjas are "masters of reflection" and then went onto many more funny comedies on everyday things. I laughed at how he said that Ninjas were masters of reflection, but then I started thinking and knew it was time to write another blog.

Just as a Ninja is a master of reflection so too are the videographer and the photographer at every wedding. Everything anyone ever sees after the wedding will be directly related to the reflections the photographer and videographer presented in their album books or the finished DVD. So when it comes to choosing a videographer and a photographer a bride needs to make sure that her reflections match that of the videographer and photographer. If their ideas don’t click together and they can’t relate to anything the videographer/photographer are saying or presenting than the brides day won’t be properly captured as a reflection of what she and her groom/family/etc. wanted. Fortunately, most brides have this inner gut feeling on exactly what they want- so sometimes it’s not that complicated. Other times however, since video is a very new medium to this industry- as oppose to say photography- a bride might not be sure exactly what she wants and how to capture that. When a bride and groom come into our studio they sometimes are not sure what to expect, but then we go through the process and show them how we capture the love, emotions and details of their day and then they are “sold” that this is the right reflection they want to remember of their wedding day.

As recently a bride myself, since we couldn’t videotape our own ceremony/reception of course- we went looking for other videographers. I won’t go into it in this blog, but many of the videographers we interviewed did not even remotely compare to the reflections I wanted to remember of my wedding day. I don’t want to put our industry down, but I would say a good 70% of them did not even compare. I couldn’t believe it, a trained videographer (me) searching for another trained videographer, and it was complicated. I can only imagine then what a bride must go through. That is why videographers need to step it up a notch, become real, be professional- when a bride sees you in jeans and a t-shirt and says my studio is being remodeled let’s go to a coffee shop and they can’t get their portable DVD player to work- there is a real problem. And it reflects badly on all of us. Let us not be an incoherent mumble jumble distorted reflection of our industry- but let us all rise up and be masters of our own reflections.


“ t e m p o r a l
d i s t o r t i o n”

One might ask….What gives video its true emotional impact? CLF would answer- Temporal distortion. Although videos emotional impact is not limited to this reason alone, but temporal distortion does play a significant role in the way we view the images we see on the screen. Now what do we mean by this- again this goes back to the theory of wedding/ event videographers as memory keepers that have access to time travel.In our wedding videos we often show the ceremony taking place and then overlay an audio sound file of the best man giving a toast- thus reconfiguring the way the event was presented in real time, lending to a temporal distortion- moving through the dimensions of time however we see fit, to present the event in the best light possible. Go to to learn more on how temporal distortion is the key to filming biographies .
"m a r r i a g e"

Until 3 weeks ago, I had had no personal knowledge of what it takes to be a bride, other than behind the lens. Sure you know how to capture the first dance, getting great push in shots with the steady cam for the emotional first dance that leads the couple into the "forever and a day, say I do club"- I could always convey the emotion that the bride and groom were going through- but to actually feel it, is a whole other story. An awakening of a now tangible memory that will be held to my heart for years to come, as a keepsake and testament to the love we vowed to honor and uphold just hours before... and the great thing about that is, it was all recorded.

As the years fade the image could lessen in purity and my memory could falter- but whatever happens, no matter what, the image will stay pure, the memory will forever be kept, because I did what every bride must do, have it captured on video. Of course I did, I am a wedding videographer- but it only stressed to myself how important our job actually is. Wedding videographers are the memory keepers, that have access to time travel- to take anyone, anywhere they want to go in time. For anyone who says the time machine hasn't been built yet, I laugh at them. CLF has been building it for 5 years- and we keep adding to the archives, event after event.

Storybook 4.15.07, Charles' Log

Kelsey Lauren and David Charles have now officially tied the knot. The wedding videographers have wed themselves. So is married life any different? Yes... Did we have any stresses up to or on the wedding? Yes... Can we edit better films now because we've been in the shoes of our clients? Yes!Stay tuned... for tomorrow Kelsey Lauren (KL) will give you the post bridal play by play- as for David Charles (DC) "I'm just glad it's over so we can get back to doing what we love- filming weddings, not that I didn't love marrying KL, but you know the score. Strangely enough-but true, event after event only gets better. Each wedding we film has a special unique touch, different than the previous and different than the next. Because of this factor- it makes my job, filming weddings, truly something I want to go back to work for, day after day, year after year.

Storybook 4.15.07, Lauren's Log

Wedding Videography that Captures Love . . .

Welcome to the Charles Lauren Films (CLF) Blog. This is a place for our clients to come and see the trends that CLF is setting in the wedding videography industry, but most importantly a place to have just a little bit of laughter, because let’s face it we all need a place to laugh.

What can we expect from the CLF Blog?

If you’re one of our clients and have recently been married- expect to see your highlight reel posted for friends and family to enjoy and watch over and over again.

If you’re thinking about becoming one of our clients- expect to see other couples highlight reels posted for screenings, and don’t forget your handkerchief, because remember this is going to be you sometime in the future….

The thoughts of our company, what we’ve been going through, what we are up do, technical updates and the like.

The FYI section, what we have noticed happening to the wedding industry, things to consider when tying the knot, sensational ideas and the like.