Chicago is one of our favorite places in the world to shoot film and photos. The Windy City has unique architecture, an unmistakable skyline, and proximity to Lake Michigan. It’s also an inspiring city for couples looking to get married, one with countless options when it comes to vendors and even more spots to say, “I do.” When it comes to creative professionals, Chicago’s scene is strong, and savvy wedding planners know to tap into it. Chicago is full of intimate wedding venues; some are even pretty unconventional. In short, it’s a great place to get hitched and to be creative. These Chicago wedding videographers are just a few of the super-talented vendors the city has to offer. Check them out!
Shooting films since elementary school, Kathy Ramirez is simply bursting with talent. From the time she started her Chicago wedding videography business in 2013, she’s shot over 200 weddings and counting. The first thing that’ll strike you about Kathy’s films is the framing. In fact, the freeze-frame in the featured video shows that off perfectly. Her gorgeous work is cinematic, with visuals that don’t just add to a story, but tell it with dignity, class, and a little bit of magic.
2. Melissa Lanzar of Bea Rose Films
The creative genius behind Bea Rose Films, Melissa Lanzar is joined by her fiancé, Jordan Borino, in filming unforgettable productions. Though every wedding film this dynamic pair shoots is different, there’s virtually one key trait each video shares: Chicago as the backdrop. The Windy City is ever-present, whether it’s the epic skyline from Navy Pier or the salmon-pink brick of the buildings downtown. Using a refreshing, high-energy editing style that’s exciting to watch, Melissa and Jordan’s thoughtful videos are quintessentially Chicago. In short, we’re obsessed, and we have a good feeling you will be, too. Check out their studio, Bea Rose Films, today!
Rhys Ladhani and his team of talented filmmakers have been in the wedding business for almost seven years. Audio experts, lighting pros, and editing fanatics, they always look out for the small details during the day, which may be the most sentimental of vows, the funniest of speeches, or the way that lone beam of light slips through the window into the church and onto the aisle. One thing we love the most about Rhys’s videos is the color grading. Never resorting to the overused faded and dreamy style we’re seeing a lot of these days, the films are warm and saturated. Watching his videos, you’d think you were there, and when a couple goes back to look at these after the fact, what more could they ask for?
4. Luke McBride of Unscripted Visuals
Based between Chicago and Indianapolis, Luke McBride and his team at Unscripted Visuals have made some of the most adorable wedding films we’ve seen. Ever. It’s rare we feel things when we’re watching them outside of the editing and filming styles used. However, Unscripted Visuals’s cinematography wows our technical brains at the same time as hitting us right in the feelings. Luke really gets to the heart of his couples’ relationships and the things they love — including each other. Plus, it helps that his documentary style preserves the authenticity of each moment.
5. Anna and Artem of 312 Film
If you believe the internet hype, husband-and-wife duo Anna and Artem are two of the best videographers in Chicago. Since launching the company in 2005, the pair have shot all over the world, beginning in Eastern Europe. Their wedding films are cinematic with a flare for emotion that doesn’t lapse into over-sentimentality, carefully taking advantage of all the tools they’ve learned over the years. One of our favorite shots of theirs was a champagne cork hitting the floor in slow motion. Capturing details like that on such a busy day is something only the best wedding cinematographers can do, and it’s those little pops of flair that give the video such vibrancy.
6. Jessica Lyle
It takes an army of vendors for the perfect wedding. Without a cinematographer like Jessica Lyle, however, such things as coordinated outfits and weather have to be left to memory. Jessica is a gifted filmmaker who leads with her heart. Thanks to her degree in digital storytelling and video production, she has her finger on the pulse of the event as well as the tripod. We enjoy her films because, while they’re shot candidly, her edits truly elevate them, packing an authentic narrative into a short time frame (which is no easy task). In addition to this, she deftly uses natural colors and lighting, a classic style that doesn’t chase fads.
7. Yomi Adekahunsi of Yomi Films
Yomi Adekahunsi is the lead cinematographer for Mirar Media, a creative agency based out of Oak Park. As well as this, he operates under Yomi Films. He’s been behind the camera since he was 12 and has shot weddings for just as long, getting his start assisting his father. His films are photojournalistic, personal, and vibrant, with a good mix of still-photographs and live footage. He’s able to capture every bead of sweat and set of cufflinks, and each video is spirited and true to each couple. Take a look at his website for more. You won’t regret it.
8. Daryl Coffey
Pulling double duty as a Chicago wedding photographer and videographer, Daryl Coffey is a master of frames. Not every photographer can do cinematography and vice versa. But those who can, like Daryl, make all the difference. As an example, there’s a shot in the video we picked out with the bride descending a spiral staircase. It’s shot from above, but it’s also shot from a point of view where it looks as though the staircase never ends. His wedding films are rife with astounding visuals like this. Combining these with candid moments with the wedding party, we’d call him an expert at what he does.
Luis Malagon has been shooting weddings for the better part of nearly a decade, constantly honing his natural talents behind the camera. The movies he produces are incredibly touching, driven so compellingly by the music choices you’d think they were actually playing as he was recording. We love the colors he uses, bright but not unnaturally saturated. With most of the greys and blacks faded just enough to make out the distinction between lapel and tux. Given the chance, we’d love to climb into his mind for some insight. Indeed, Luis’s films are truly magical and something to keep forever.
10. Ben Mahoney of LEAP Weddings
Ben Mahoney is the creative director of LEAP Weddings, a film company he kick-started right after graduating in 2006. He’s been in the wedding filmmaking business ever since. Alongside his crew of talented cinematographers and creatives, Ben makes movies that are a departure from the conventional. His films are engaging and one of a kind, produced using masterful storytelling. LEAP Weddings’s films are documentarian in style, presenting the day so anyone can watch, whether they were there in the flesh or not.
Whether you’re looking for a wedding cinematographer or want to get into the business yourself, Chicago is a hub of creativity and romance. Remember: Millennium Park also has ice skating. It doesn’t get more romantic than that.