Meet Our Intern Sara

Hello! My name is Sara Erickson and I’m an intern at Grassfire Studios. I grew up in small town Bemidji, Minn. Yes, if you’re wondering... it’s where the REAL statue of Paul Bunyan and Babe is located.

I moved to Moorhead four years ago when I started my journey at Minnesota State University Moorhead (MSUM). When my parents dropped me off in the dorm, I never thought their piece of advice was valid until now. They said, “the next four years will fly by. You should enjoy your college years before they are gone.”

Here I am four years later… I blinked and graduation was over. I graduated from MSUM with a broadcast journalism degree and a minor in advertising. My passion is creating videos that make people smile or at least the feel good stories people love to watch. Maybe one day I will tell yours.

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Why did you choose to work for Grassfire?

This question actually makes me laugh because the story on how I started isn’t your average story. I was in writing class at MSUM with Kerstin Kealy who works as an anchor at WDAY in Fargo. As one of our last assignments she told us to email someone from our dream job. At the time I wanted to email someone realistic, someone who I could actually job shadow or possibly get mentored by. A friend of mine did some work for Grassfire and hooked me up with their contact info. I went and talked with them and after shadowing one time I got a job. Best decision of my life to reach out because I wouldn’t be where I am today without them. Big shout out to Kerstin Kealy for giving me a push.

What’s your favorite thing about working for Grassfire?

Everything. Actually my favorite thing is having creative freedom. Some jobs are strict on how creative you can be, but here at Grassfire they want me to push the boundaries of creativity and ultimately learn to master different skills like editing and filming. Plus I have the best boss, Preston, who wants me to succeed in the projects given to me.

What do you do at Grassfire?

I started just editing the extended videos like the ceremony, first dance, and speeches. Soon after I proved myself as an editor I was given the opportunity to edit my first wedding film. After throwing my full effort into editing the film, Preston offered me the opportunity to film my first wedding with him. From there I took off and have been editing wedding films and helping film weddings.

What are some random facts about you?

  • My passions consist of being creative making videos, taking pictures or going on crazy adventures.
  • I love making a positive impact on people, so yes I make it a point to try and get you to smile!
  • To get my creative juices flowing sometimes that means hiding behind bushes to get the perfect shot.
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Fun Facts

If you were to create a slogan for your life, what would the slogan be?

Be kind. Stay positive and don’t forget to smile.

What’s the best way to start the day?

The best way to start my day is with a good workout, but first coffee. I feel working out in the morning gives me a jump start on my motivation for the day.

Who inspires you to be better?

My parents inspire me to be a better person. My dad fuels my positive attitude and continues to encourage me there is good in every situation. My mom continues to light up my heart. She shows me to love unconditionally and to support those I love dearly. With the two combined I am inspired to be a better person each and every day.

Any advice to future interns at Grassfire?

My one advice to those interns who come after me is take every opportunity give to you and run with it. Make the most of it even if it seems like a small project… they add up to other opportunities down the road. You will only succeed if you put your best creative brain to the test.

That’s all I have. Grassfire was one of the best decisions of my life. I am thankful for the mentorship that has been given to me.

Intern Sara

 

Love Stories, A Budget-Friendly Option For Couples

The #1 reason couples choose not to work with Grassfire Studios is cost. Most of our couples spend $3,000+ to capture their wedding day. That's why we also offer Love Stories.

They're a more cost-friendly option because they require less time to film, but still share the same trademarks, length, and emotion of our wedding day films.

Here's one of our most recent love story films, featuring Annika and Cole:

 

With a love story film, our team will capture you doing something you love together. Perhaps at the park walking your dog, you favorite brewery having a beer, or at your favorite roast house having a cup of coffee with a book in hand.

We’ll tell your love story through a casual interview that covers the important moments in your relationship. How did you meet? What do you remember about your first date? When did you say “I love you” - and who said it first?

We’ll capture the most important moments of your love story in a beautiful, handcrafted film. It’s the perfect way to help announce your engagement, share at your wedding reception, or make a keepsake you’ll cherish forever.

Our Passion Projects

We're patrons and practitioners of great film. When we're not capturing wedding films, we're making short documentary films.  Here are a few of our most recent projects.

One Important Thing Only Video Can Capture At Your Wedding

For couples debating whether they want wedding videography, we often talk about the many significant moments and little details we capture in video throughout the day. 

But more than anything, couples tell us there’s one particular part of the day that can’t be replicated.

Your toasts.

While your vows make you officially married, your speeches or toasts are often the part that make it feel like it.

Couples tell us they’re the one part of the day they didn’t expect to   reflect on the way they did.

Speeches and toasts can make you laugh and make you cry. Many do both.

Most of the time, they’re filled with memories of friendship and camaraderie. They’re stories about growing up, learning about life, and finding your way with the people you care about most.

Here's one of our all-time favorite wedding "speeches" from earlier this year. Enjoy!

 

Guest Post: Wedding Videography Myths From A Past Bride

We're excited to feature a blog post from Amanda Hofland below. She regularly publishes on her own newlywed posts on her blog, Notes From A Newlywed. Amanda and her husband were also one of the very first couples to hire us to capture their wedding when we started Grassfire Studios. 

 Amanda and her husband, Calan.

Amanda and her husband, Calan.

Chances are, this is the first time you’ve thought about hiring a videographer for your wedding, and because of that, you have a lot of unknowns. You don’t know what to expect, you don’t know if it’s worth it. You’re probably worried it will be weird. 

I’m here to tell you that you’re not crazy for those thoughts, but am glad to say that it’s really not so bad. In fact, it may very well be the best decision you make during your wedding planning process.

Let’s go over some of the most common concerns couples have before booking a videographer.

1.      Won’t it feel like the paparazzi are following us around all day long? No! Actually, quite the opposite. You’ll hardly even notice your videographers are there. A good cinematographer will get all the shots for the perfect video without invading your space. I only remember seeing my own videographers three times during the whole day, and they were all times I found a moment to sit down and observe what was going on. But sure enough, they got all the shots, and photos prove they were there – most of the time they just blended into the group of our guests. My maid of honor called Preston and Justin video ninjas! Trust us, you’re going to be so busy that day that a video camera will be the last thing on your mind. 

2.      Will you guys be in the room when I’m putting my dress on? Not unless you want them to be! Your videographers will respect your privacy and let you get dressed alone; they can join you again when you’re ready and get footage of you putting on your shoes and jewelry instead. They’ll follow your direction and make you as comfortable as they can while still doing their jobs. 

3.       Can’t I just have my cousin record the vows for free instead?  You could, but we really advise against that. I’ve read some horror stories of people who had one of their guests record the ceremony, and it just can’t compare to the quality you get from a pro. Having a guest record means you get their perspective as a guest, and they will probably want to enjoy watching the ceremony themselves and be hesitant to move around for different angles. Aside from the poor sound quality and shaky footage you get with a handheld camcorder, there are other distractions guests will have that hired pros won’t. In one review I read, the bride said that her uncle recorded the vows, but it cut out and was drowned out by his daughter who started throwing a tantrum just as he started filming. Another said that their dad filmed the reception, but he also wanted to dance, so their video is a shaky montage of the floor as he swung the camera around while shaking his groove thing. Yet another said that they got three straight hours of raw footage, so they ended up hiring a video editor anyway to make something out of it they can fit in watching. You can’t redo your wedding, so it’s best to get it right the first time. Personally, I never once regretted hiring the pros. 

 

4.       Our budget is tight; we’ll cut the video. I can think of so many other areas of a budget that can be cut over video. In hindsight, for my own wedding, I would have spent far less on centerpieces, flowers, welcome bags and those other small touches, because that’s not what mattered that day, and I can’t keep them to look back on. A wedding video is one of the few things you can keep forever as a keepsake. I recommend making an anniversary tradition of watching your video, and for me, hiring videographers was 100% worth it.

 

5.       Why should we do a wedding film instead of a traditional full capture wedding video? A wedding film is really like a short story of the best day of your life. Longer, linear videos can drag, and you should never want to fast forward through your wedding! Especially if you’re watching it with others, shorter films are more exciting and hold everyone’s attention – even strangers watching it! These days, everyone is so busy and attention spans are short, so a 3-12 minute film makes every second count. 

If you have any other concerns about booking a wedding videographer, definitely speak up and ask! We’d love to talk about it.

A Few Of Our Favorite Films From 2015

Brittany + Charlie

At the end of the summer, right before the leaves started to lose their color, we filmed Brittany and Charlie's outdoor wedding. Their day was the perfect balance of charm, fun and tender moments.

Amy + Petter

It's been said that music is the language of love. For Amy and Petter, that's especially true. Their wedding was full of meaningful poetry, moving music, and an abundance of love. It was a very special day.

Kira + Greg

Kira’s mother, Gretchen, had been waiting for her daughter’s wedding for 25 years. You can only imagine how that anticipation translated into planning the big day. In a celebration truly fit for a fairytale, Kira and Greg tied the knot in her family's hometown of Watford City, ND.

Emily + Derek

It's not uncommon for our films to draw tears, but this wedding was especially emotional. While Emily's father wasn't there to walk her down the aisle, he would have been proud to call Derek his son-in-law. 

Mari + Dan

We filmed with Mari and Dan at his parent's beautiful lakeside house. With the warmth of the sun and the sound of the waves as a backdrop, they tied the knot.