Thursday, November 6, 2014

Valentine et Thibault, a French affaire

Over the years, CINEMATT has been lucky to travel and film some amazing destination weddings. But this wedding was like none other. Valentine is my niece, and filming her wedding created a unique situation for me.  I was a guest and at the same time the cinematographer. To see my family celebrating through my lens and to remain completely and utterly professional was a whole new game. My sister gave one of the most poignant and emotional speeches I've ever heard, that I wanted to drop my camera to hug and support her. 

Valentine and Thibault's fun and loving personality shines through in this romantic 16-minute film. I really enjoyed capturing the sweetness of their loving vows to each other--streamed through the end of the film.

Special shout-out to Robin Killip who helped me film this special day. It was so great to work with Steph and Robin, the Bubblerock team!  I look forward to shooting again in the future; who knows maybe we will meet in New Zealand!

Thank you and as usual, don't hesitate to comment.

Bonne journée,

Thursday, October 9, 2014

CINEMATT shoots sports too!

I love sports! This is one of my passions. Ever since I was a kid, sports have been a very important part of my life. Whether it was going to tennis, swimming, golf and of course soccer practice, I was always out and playing. In fact, one of the reasons I moved to the US, in 1995, was to become a sports reporter. So in 1998, when the World Cup came to France and I covered it as a correspondent for the Tampa Tribune, I achieved one of my lifelong dreams.

By now, you must be wondering what does this have to do with weddings, and the short answer is absolutely nothing! But I decided to rekindle my love for reporting about sports by shooting my godson’s soccer team. I’m pretty happy and excited about how it came out. What do you think?


SF STARS from Matthieu Meynier-CINEMATT on Vimeo.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Let's talk about money

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Have you gotten engaged recently or maybe a while ago and now you’re planning your wedding?  It is such an exciting time, isn’t it?  I know discussing finances while planning one of the most special moments in your life may not be the most romantic thing to do.  But it is a very important part of a marriage that often gets overlooked during the initial stages of courtship.  Statistics show that money is one of the most common reasons marriages fail
When my wife and I started dating, money was one of the first things we discussed even before getting engaged (although we both knew early on that we wanted to get married).  It is one of the best things we did for our relationship.  One really helpful book that we used to guide our talk was by Manisha Thakor and Sharon Kedar.  The  author’s provide useful practical tips in a friendly, easy-to-read manner that won’t put you to sleep.  Here are a few things to consider:
-Share your credit reports
-A list of red flags to watch out for in a partner 
-How to create a budget for a combined household 
-Who will be the CFO of your marriage? Or will you manage the finances as a team?
-Joint bank accounts or separate accounts?

We hope you find this post helpful and if you have any additional thoughts or insights, please let us know.  We look forward to sharing other additional tips that my wife and I hold dear in our hearts.

Happy wedding planning and congratulations on getting engaged! 

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Changing with the times: USB drives: Part Deux

Last week's post I told you about us changing from DVD to USB as our main digital support for delivery. Today, my good friend Braja, sent me those beautiful pictures of the drive I've created for her and Gene.

I just wanted to share them with you so you can see the final product. I hope you enjoy it!
Have a great week,


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Friday, September 19, 2014

Changing with the times: USB drives

When I started working in this industry as a wedding videographer in 2001, I was using VHS tapes to record 2 hour films for my clients. For nearly the past decade, Cinematt has been providing customized DVDs to clients along with an option of adding a USB drive since 2011.  Now fast forward to 2014, Cinematt is very excited to announce that we are transitioning to providing our films only on USB drives.

It seems that as technology improves over time (with the emergence of Amazon drive, Apple TV and Google Chrome) DVDs and even Blu-ray are going extinct.  CDs are now becoming obsolete.  As most of you have probably noticed, as I did when I purchased my iMAC last year,  Apple has removed the optical drive for playing CDs on their newer model computers. 

There are many advantages to receiving your wedding film on a USB drive.  It is important to show our films, which are filmed in HD, in an HD format.  DVDs are standard resolution.  As more people purchase smart HD TVs, they have the capability to view their wedding film in the highest quality resolution. With the USB drive you can play your film directly on your TV, on your computer via iTunes, and you will save time without having to load different chapters as with DVDs. Sharing the film is also easy via email or social media.

We look forward to delivering your wedding film on a USB drive and hearing feedback from you.


Thursday, September 11, 2014

98 percent of brides regret not having a videographer on their special day

This morning I read this interesting Huffington Post article by Ariane Fisher, which I would like to share with you.

While I completely agree with the points that she highlights, I would also like to add my thoughts and recommendations. One of my first recommendation is to hire a photographer to capture your wedding day. Photos are a great way to preserve that instant moment, and forever be a keepsake. 

The message I would like to convey is that you should consider high quality photography and cinematography equally (ie. budget equally for both).

Here are some excerpts from the post:

Like most brides, I looked forward to my wedding for 4 reasons:
  1. I was marrying a man better than I ever could have dreamed for myself
  2. The Big Day was a creative outlet for my DIY dreams
  3. Friends and Family were coming together from all across the country
  4. Biggest. Party. Ever.
After the wedding, here is what I had to show for it:
  • Gorgeous photos
  • A preserved wedding gown
  • Stories from friends and family about it being the best party, not just wedding, they had ever attended
Cue the regret. Like most brides, I budgeted for photos, but not wedding video. Like 98 percent of brides who make that decision, I regretted not getting a wedding video.

A beautiful well-crafted wedding film transforms those moments into a magical audio-visual experience that will forever remind you of how you felt on that day.  You will be able to re-live those special moments while you were getting ready with your bridal party, the emotion you had while seeing each other for the first time, and reading the vows you spent days to write.  And let's not forget your beautiful choreographed first dance you worked on for months.

As Ariane mentioned, it is also a wonderful way to keep memories of loved ones who have passed. One of my favorite parts of my wedding day was when my aunt and uncle (who were celebrating their anniversary) told us that in 54 years they will be the ones who will bring us champagne to celebrate our 54th anniversary. Unfortunately, my aunt at the age of 83 passed the following year.  Thankfully, I have this last soundbite of her. It's priceless!

Previous brides and grooms have mentioned that their family and friends loved watching their wedding film, especially since some of them couldn't attend.  Many times their comments were, "I felt like I was there!"  In a recent letter that I received, one of my brides said, "Do you know, my dad never remarked on my speech? I've wondered all this time if he didn't like it. But in the video, I could see his emotion. I can't tell you how much that means to me. You have given me such a gift by allowing me to experience our wedding day the way I should have, but couldn't, in the first place."

So as some of you become engaged this fall and winter, and you are planning for your special day, please make sure to allocate as much budget for a cinematographer as you do a photographer. Who knows, maybe one day that film will become your kid's favorite!

With that said, I would love to leave you with Jason and Alison's wedding film.
Alison is one of the sweetest people I've had the pleasure to work with. When I met her and Jason, I instantly felt a connection and I knew that working with them and capturing their beautiful day would be special. It did not disappoint.  From the bride prep to their final kiss, you can feel the sheer excitement they had of saying, "I do" to each other.  Jason's expression when he saw Alison in her gown for the very first time was priceless. And with the perfect weather, despite being in November, this day was nothing short of perfect for this loving couple. Here is their beautiful story captured on film.

Bonne journée, et a bientôt 

Alison and Jason | Short Film | Presidio Log Cabin, San Francisco from Matthieu Meynier-CINEMATT on Vimeo.

Thursday, September 4, 2014

13 minutes

Today's post is very special to Cinematt. We received an emotionally beautiful thank you letter from one of our brides, Melanie, that highlights the essence of what we believe about the value of cinematography. We are sharing excerpts from her 2 1/2 page letter and the 13-minute film that we created of her wedding day.  One particular statement really stands out, as Melanie stated, "In thirteen minutes, you literally obliterated every negative emotion I've been carrying around guiltily for nearly seven months." 
Merci et bonne journée,


….I planned nearly the entire day on my own over six short months, and stressed, and stressed, and stressed right up to the very day.  When the day did finally arrive, I couldn't let the anxiety go. Once the day had passed, I couldn't really remember much about it. My feelings about it ever since have been burdened by guilt over having failed at being able to take in the wonderful reality that was finally happening for me. I needed Larry to convince me that I was actually smiling when I walked down the aisle, because all I could remember was the photographer shouting out that I had forgotten my bouquet!

I hoped that when the photographs arrived, they would help me remember all the wonderful moments; remembering it like a fairy tale, and feeling absolutely no regrets. But the photos didn't work that way. They were still moments that somehow just didn't feel real. We instantly told ourselves to lower our expectations of the video. For over five months, that's what we did.

We decided to watch your film on Saturday night. Larry cooked dinner and we had a video date night. Just before hitting play, he looked me in the eyes and held my hands and told me that the video was not going to be great - it was going to be dark, we would hate the music, we would both look terrible, and my dad wouldn't even make an appearance. 

Matthieu, how can I come up with the words to tell you what the next 13 minutes changed for me? You single-handedly gave me back my wedding day. For the very first time, I could feel how beautiful it was. I instantly saw how happy I was, and all the love in my eyes when I looked at Larry. In thirteen minutes, you literally obliterated every negative emotion I've been carrying around guiltily for nearly seven months. 

Larry and I gripped hands throughout the entire 13:23, and I could feel his tears dropping on my hands. Tears were streaming down my face too. We've probably watched it 20 times since Saturday night. My mom told me that she found my dad crying while watching it for a second time, and he told her how beautiful my speech was .. something I'd longed to hear from him. You captured emotional expressions from my dad that I've seen my whole life, and have always worried I'd never have on film to remember him by….….Larry turned to me last night, out of nowhere, and said, "I stand so, so, so very corrected. I didn't think we needed a videographer, but you pushed for it, and now it seems so obvious to me. A thousand times over, it was so worth it. It was the most important thing we did."

Matthieu, I can't tell you enough what you gave to me. Not just a beautiful video, but you gave me back the day I'd waited all my life for, just to have it slip right out of my hands. On behalf of Larry and myself, thank you so, so much for this precious gift. This email doesn't begin to explain how thrilled and grateful we are. :)



Melanie and Larry | Short film Feature | Murrieta's Well, Livermore, Ca from Matthieu Meynier-CINEMATT on Vimeo.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Nick | The proposal before the proposal

CINEMATT was challenged this past week with a new and exciting project idea. Not only did it require being the cameraman but also writing the story-line, imagining the set-design, and directing this unique film.

When Nick called us three weeks ago, he was about to propose to his girlfriend. He wanted to create a film for his soon-to-be fiancée, to show her before he popped the question. With Nick’s general vision and his trust to allow CINEMATT to have complete creative freedom, we brought his idea to life.  Check out Nick’s romantic vision, The Proposal Before the Proposal, come to reality. And by the way, she did say yes! and we heard family and friends cried watching this film. Enjoy watching it, and please don't hesitate to like or comment on it.
Bonne Journée,

Nick | The proposal before the proposal from Matthieu Meynier-CINEMATT on Vimeo.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Color Grading: What is it and why is it so important?

According to the Webster dictionary, color grading is "the process of altering and enhancing the color of a motion picture, video image, or still image either electronically, photo-chemically or digitally."
Color grading is as important as picking the right music, using the right part of a speech, and choosing the right footage to make a film a complete piece. While color correcting is about getting your footage to be as authentic and as close to reality as possible, color grading is the art of giving personality to a film.  It allows the cinematographer/editor to be free to create something unique. Grading is a tedious task that requires hours of work but it can greatly enhance the film.  It’s a very personal process and many people will have different opinions on how to grade a film.  My friend and colleague, Sigmund Reboquio, said it best, “Grading your film is giving an identity to the final product that will help you to attract clients who have the same taste as you.”  
Some examples as seen on TV and in the theater include: Michael Bay’s color grading of Transformers which is very saturated, the gritty-yellow color of Cohen Brother’s in No Country for Old Men, and the black and white film by Michel Hazanavicius, The Artist.  All of these examples are different and each exudes a different mood, tone and feeling. 

Here is a sneak peak of a film that I'm currently working on with an example of color grading.

color grading from Matthieu Meynier-CINEMATT on Vimeo.

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Have you heard of BAPVA?

Cinematt has been asked to be part of a panel discussion on color grading at next week’s BAPVA meeting. You may wonder what is BAPVA. It’s the Bay Area Professional Videographer Association, which I’ve been a member since 2005 and a program manager in 2011-2012.  It’s a great way to network with fellow cinematographers, learn something new about your craft, and maybe share a few tips or two of your own.  Learning from great leaders (Michael Wong, Ray Roman, & Joe Simon), who have been instrumental in shaping our industry, has been a valuable experience for me.  Come join us to learn about color grading on Monday, August 18, 2014 at the Santa Clara Fire Station 1900 Walsh Ave, Santa Clara, CA 95050. The program is 6:30 – 9 pm, but come mingle at 6 pm.  (fee: $25 for non-BAPVA members). Stay tuned for my tips on color grading, and if you like more information about BAPVA, please follow the link below.

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Kathryn and Alan | Same Day Edit | Casa Real, California

One of my favorite things to do at a wedding is to create a beautiful Same Day Film. There is nothing better than to share those special moments with family and friends within hours of it happening. Watching the film is like going to a show and having access to the backstage. Family and friends are no longer just spectators, they are also actors within the film.   I was ecstatic when Kathryn and Alan asked me to create a Same Day Film to capture their special day and love for each other that has spanned over the past 16 years. This fun-loving couple wrote their own vows about friendship and love; a great beginning for a wonderful storyline. Thank you Kathryn and Alan for making us part of your wedding day.

Merci et bonne journée!

Venue: casa real
Photographer: Danny Dong
Make up artist: The Glamourist
DJ: Big Fun DJ
Cake artist: Sweet tooth confection
Florist: Asiel Design

Monday, July 14, 2014

Gene and Braja | Short Film Feature | San Diego, CA

When Gene saw   during their first look, the first word that came out of his mouth was "Holy, then an expletive, then another expletive!”  If you know Gene and Braja, then you shouldn't be surprised. Gene is a passionate person. He is passionate about his friends and family, and about being an amazing photographer, but most of all he is passionate about Braja!

I wanted to ensure that their film captured the unconditional love they have for each other and the passion behind it.  My favorite moment of their day was during their photo session.   Jim, their photographer, handed the camera to Gene to shoot Braja's portrait session. In that instant, Gene was the photographer, the person who has an eye for beauty and capturing the emotions of the moment; the same person who was shooting my wife and I when we got married the year before.

I’ve always loved shooting alongside Gene, as he is an inspiration for creativity and art. When Gene asked me to film his wedding, I felt honored and nervous all at the same time. And to have Jim Garner, a world renown photographer, working alongside me for the day was mind-blowing and icing on the cake. What an amazing experience!

Thank you to Isabel Gonzalez, long-time friend and cinematographer from Long Beach, for assisting to capture all the special moments and details of the day.  And lastly, thank you to Gene and Braja for trusting me with the most important day of their lives!
Please enjoy the film as much as I enjoyed witnessing their union and capturing their love on film. 

bientôt ,

venue: La Estancia
coordinator: Thomas Bui
photographer: Jim Garner
Florist: Jennifer Cole Florals
Officiant: Dharmasetu Das
Hair stylist: Daniel Lowry
Make-up artist: Madhavi
DJ: Daniel Peterson

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Things to consider when hiring a team to film your wedding

Some of the first things newly engaged brides do is go dress shopping, reserve a venue, and hire a team to film their wedding. Chances are, this is the first time any of them have hired a film crew. It can be an intimidating and overwhelming experience, filled with explanations of packages, prices, contracts and portfolios.  In an effort to give you a few pieces of advice, we have put together a short list of things to consider when selecting your wedding film team.

1)    Don’t allow price to be the only determinant.

When shopping for a wedding film team price is something you should never skimp on. Obviously work within your budget but don’t be persuaded by deals that seem too good to be true. Sometimes the reason a film crew is priced at $500 is because they’re only worth that much. There’s a good chance that you might have some guy show up at your wedding with a camera and has no idea what he’s doing. If you spend time and energy planning your wedding, you’re going to want a film that reflects who you are and the work you’ve put into every tiny detail for your big day!

2)     Hire someone who you are compatible with.

It seems like that’s something that really shouldn’t matter. It’s their talent that’s most important, right? Well, partially, yes. But if you’re laid back would you want someone who’s going to force you out of your comfort zone and make you feel awkward all day? You have to find someone you get along with and feel truly comfortable with.

3)   Hire someone who LOVES what they do.

You have to hire someone who LOVES what they do and wants YOU to love what THEY do. You want someone who’s not burnt out on doing weddings. You want someone who is doing this because it’s their passion and they aren’t just trying to pay their bills.  We attribute our success and quality to this very simple fact.  We genuinely LOVE what we do and our work shows it.

4)   Hire someone you can trust.

Trust as in any relationship is key. You hire a team like us because we are the professional.  You trust their opinions and ideas and allow them to take some creative license knowing that at the end they will give you a film you will want to watch over and over. As Ray Roman would say, “by hiring us you have the piece of mind of getting a true professional who is going to make your wedding film an unforgettable heirloom for you, your family and friends.”

Happy Planning!


Love what you saw? Contact us and let’s tell your story when you say your I do's!!

About Cinematt
CINEMATT is the fruit of many years of soul searching in order to create a brand that couples can identify with.   As the creator and artistic director of CINEMATT, Matthieu put his ten years of expertise to craft a unique wedding film for you.

Along with Dennis, who he has been working with for five years, Joshua and Sean, they strive to capture every little detail you have so uniquely chosen to make your dream wedding a true masterpiece. Filming your wedding is not only showing up on your special day. It is about getting to know you and find out what your particular interests are in order to transcribe them into YOUR film... Merci et a bientot!

Friday, January 24, 2014

demo reel 2014 from Matthieu Meynier-CINEMATT on Vimeo.

A Year in Review: Cinematt's Favorite Moments of 2013

For year's I've been trying to create a video journal highlighting my favorite moments of the previous year, but I always end up saying, "later".  Well, that is all about to change.  2014 is here and I had one new resolution.  To finally create that video journal that we could all enjoy.

I knew I had filmed some amazing weddings in 2013 and I wanted to showcase them in a fast but emotion filled video journal that would translate who we are and why we do what we do

Getting married has so many layers and facets but one thing for sure is the sense of coming together: as husband and wife, as we say I do, as one family, when two meets and create a sacred bond. I wanted to show the emotion of the journey and the ultimate reward of uniting. Whether the wedding was in San Diego, France, Hawaii, Napa, Livermore or San Francisco and so many more destinations, they all have something in common; a unique story. Their story!! 

I think this 2:40 minute clearly communicates why a wedding is so special.

Big thank you to Joshua, Dennis, Kyle, Robin and Steph, Miguel, Aaron, Wendi, Isabel, and an even bigger thank you to all our awesome couples who trusted us with the most important moment of their life. 



Love what you saw? Contact us and let’s tell your story when you say your I do's!!

About Cinematt
CINEMATT is the fruit of many years of soul searching in order to create a brand that couples can identify with.   As the creator and artistic director of CINEMATT, Matthieu put his ten years of expertise to craft a unique wedding film for you.

Along with Dennis, who he has been working with for five years, Joshua and Sean, they strive to capture every little detail you have so uniquely chosen to make your dream wedding a true masterpiece. Filming your wedding is not only showing up on your special day. It is about getting to know you and find out what your particular interests are in order to transcribe them into YOUR film... Merci et a bientot!

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Tips from the pros: How to capture amazing moments for your wedding film

Capturing the special moments of the wedding day on film is a top priority for most brides and grooms. Over the years I've gathered great tips from other film experts such as Joe Simon, Ray Roman, Matt Davis that have proven to result in amazing films for my clients.  Here are my top ten tips that I always like to share with my couples to make sure we capture stunning shots.

  1. Remind your bridal party that although it's cool to chew gum, it's even cooler if they don't while filming is happening. 
  2. Have the makeup artist set up by the window so the film crew can capture you under natural light.  Trust us, you’ll like the results.
  3. Ask your makeup artist to use a director’s chair.  The height will allow you to standout even more in the room as well as give your film crew a clear field of vision.
  4. Don't be afraid of the cameras. Although it can be a bit overwhelming to have so many cameras around you, try to forget about it and allow your happiness to show through.
  5. Turn down the music. We know you love to listen to music when you are getting ready, and it's cool. However, if the music is too loud, it can overpower special moments captured by the film crew such as the moment your mom or dad come into the room and saw you in your gown for the first time.
  6. Make time for your cinematographer. Although most of the time your cinematographer can work around photographers, it is much better if you can allow 10 minutes in your schedule to cinematography only so they can capture those extra moments that will make your film a masterpiece.
  7. Don’t run away! I know some people get nervous when it comes to giving a speech at the reception, but it would be great if your MOH or BM or who ever is giving the speech just relax and stand still while giving their speeches. We love it when they address you, and don't run around the room.
  8. No talking. The ceremony is a sacred moment and we do not want to disturb it so make sure that phones are turned off, bridal party is not in chatting mode, and enjoy YOUR ceremony.
  9. Unplug! Lately it has been very easy for people to snap away during the ceremony, especially during important moments. Consider having a sign that invites your guests to not click away while you are walking down the aisle and to stay put in their seat. You have paid a lot of money for your professional crew to do their job, so don’t let it be ruined by eager guests.
  10. Give your cinematographer time. Remind your mc that in order to get the best shot possible they will need time to set up.  So 3 to 5 minutes before a major event is happening, such as the first dance, have someone notify your cinematographer so they can set-up.

Have a tip or comment you’d like to add?  Join the conversation on Facebook

About Cinematt
CINEMATT is the fruit of many years of soul searching in order to create a brand that couples can identify with.   As the creator and artistic director of CINEMATT, Matthieu put his ten years of expertise to craft a unique wedding film for you.

Along with Dennis, who he has been working with for five years, Joshua and Sean, they strive to capture every little detail you have so uniquely chosen to make your dream wedding a true masterpiece. Filming your wedding is not only showing up on your special day. It is about getting to know you and find out what your particular interests are in order to transcribe them into YOUR film... Merci et a bientot!