This Guy Shot a Wedding Video with His iPhone and all Hell Broke Loose

A newbie wedding videographer from Chicago, Illinois who calls himself “Uncle Joe” just put a bee in the bonnet of some serious professionals in the media business on a popular Facebook group:

“Hi! I’m Uncle Joe and I’ll be using my iPhone…”

To video professionals, “Uncle Joe” is a well known reference to a newbie videographer who is always in the way when they’re trying to shoot a wedding they were paid for. A frustrating wannabee with the cheap camera who steals business from people who make wedding video their living.

“It’s not 2007 anymore…and Uncle Joe doesn’t use a SLR camera anymore. Hi, I’m an Uncle Joe, a friend of the wedding couple.”

“One week ago, I filmed my first wedding ever. I used my iPhone, iPad and my drone then edited on my iPhone with the free iMovie app. I have no professional photography or videography training. I did this for free for family as I was a guest who was asked if I would make a video.”

Like Scrappy Doo who always asked to “put up your dukes” Uncle Joe continues to taunt and hype up the group of 98,000 subscribers:

“I have a theory, and this is it; today’s Uncle Joe is as good for professional wedding videographers. Why? Because today’s Uncle Joes are close to the quality of lower end professional videographers.”

“A high end wedding will want a professional studio filming their wedding, right? However, with so many low end videographers out there, the industry is saturated. Uncle Joes are making videos that are not that bad. So Uncle Joe is helping prune the industry of excess videographers.”

Uh oh…

“Uncle Joe is good for the industry”


To rub it it even more, he then posted the actual wedding video:

and the responses started coming in:

Re: “Hi! I’m Uncle Joe and I’ll be using my iPhone...”
I don’t do weddings, but I can imagine myself replying to Uncle Joe with “I’ve got the water-squirter thing that I normally use for the cat.” iPads have a big enough screen to be a fair target. Am I evil?

Re: “Hi! I’m Uncle Joe and I’ll be using my iPhone...”
Are you sure some kid didn’t shoot this?

Re: “Hi! I’m Uncle Joe and I’ll be using my iPhone...”
Ever hear of the wolf in sheep’s clothing? Well, the wolf’s clothing just got more sophisticated. Uncle Joes will always be out there screwing with the pro, with teeny tiny camcorders and phones and some will be quite good and some will be awful (like this video) I honestly think that they will affect the industry even more than what they already do now.

What? What? What? Why bash this?

That’s right. This wedding video wasn’t captured with an enormous camera that would cost you several months’ rent or heavy equipment that you probably won’t be able to lift – this lavish love story was filmed with a little device everyone has.

How could a mobile phone provide satisfactory results for a wedding? This is not a joke. I’ve always believed it was inevitable that the day would come when the iPhone is taken seriously as a professional filmmaking tool. That day is today and the time is now. There is no barrier to entry for both photography and filmmaking. Everyone you know has a mobile phone or iPhone. It’s a Hollywood film and photography studio in their pocket.

That’s incredibly scary—and exciting.

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  1. If your intention is to compare your film with the average uncle Joe you are definitely wrong, Uncle Joe doesn’t take a drone with him to a wedding and a tripod, shoot with multiple camera’s and take a direct feed from a mixer with a external recorder.

    Although your video is not bad at all and even better then the average weddingvideographer’s work in my country, it wouldn’t prune the industry of excess videographers, it would only add to the lower end videographers which the market is already saturated with.

  2. It’s good for your first wedding.

    I wouldn’t get to carried away with this “uncle joe” thing. Concentrate on your craft and the rest will take care of itself. A few areas of weakness: editing/ pacing and the lack of an optical zoom lens. You have all the elements and typical shots just need refine how the are blended together.

  3. A serious lower end wedding videographer would use cameras with much bigger and better imaging chips, manual controls, smooth zooms etc, so you are doing exactly the same thing with a much reduced image quality by just using a phone/phones. There is a noticeable quality loss in the lower light parts of the video, particularly noticeable when there is movement and also characterised by an overall lack of dynamic range in low light. One thing that bothers me is your use of the drone, because apart from the limited and basic shots, there is a shot where you are flying directly over the heads of the guests, which certainly In the U.K. and I assume in the US would be illegal. That would suggest that you do not have a licence to film in these circumstances as you would be aware of the limitations and also the need to have an observer.

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