It started late one Friday night. I was surfing the Internet, chasing one rabbit after the other while perusing wedding stuff. Now that I think about it, I think I was researching wedding venues. I found a beautiful barn in Southern Maryland, and on their Facebook page, they had shared a wedding film. I didn’t know the venue, I didn’t know the bride and groom, and I’d never heard of Thuis Studios, but I watched the film anyway.
And I cried.
Then I clicked over to their Vimeo channel, and watched another wedding film. And I cried again. I watched another film or two, and knew I wanted a wedding film, and I wanted them to create it. Their beautiful wedding films caught my eye, but it was their passion for veganism that won me over. And I just knew. Not knowing with your brain, but knowing with your heart.
Since then, I’d had the privilege of working with them twice: first as a bride, and again as a colleague when they created my promotional film. As I’ve gotten to know the Thuis team, I’m continually inspired by their dedication to their craft and desire to create art in motion. They don’t create videos; Thuis creates films.
I wanted to create a post dedicated to them and their story. They are joyful, down to earth, and wicked talented. Despite working with them closely for two projects, I discovered new things about Thuis Studios in this little Q+A!
NJP: Thuis Studios – what does Thuis mean? How did Thuis Studios come to be?
TS: “Thuis” is a Dutch word that means to be at and/or feel at home as if with family or friends. It’s a word that has remained with us from our time in the Netherlands (8 years over two separate military tours of duty). Since we are a family and a home-based business, “thuis” reflects how we operate and the experience we desire for our clients.
Thuis was actually conceived when we were asked to photograph a wedding and Brynn, who was a guest, decided to bring along her video camera. Her dad (Bill) sent the resulting film to a cinematographer who critiqued and provided instruction, to include a hands-on tutorial (and later on-the-job-training) after another friend asked if Brynn (and Jason) wouldn’t mind changing their role from guests to filmmakers. Kasey+Jeff’s marked the first real wedding cinematography venture…and they were also our first Maternity, First48 and Welcome Home Baby family! After a few more wedding film requests we thought, “Hey, this might actually lead to something.” And soon after Pam+Bill found themselves on the wedding cinematography team.
NJP: Why is it important to you to bring the feeling of being “at home” to your client experiences?
TS: Having a great rapport with clients is paramount. We want clients to know we care as much as they do about their day and the memories we are entrusted to capture. When we all feel “at home,” the communication, assistance and support can be exchanged freely. We’re not just “the cinematographers” or “the photographers,” we’re people who want this to be your best day ever! If I may share what Whitney, a previous bride, wrote: “I’m not overexaggerating when I say that I could not have gone through planning my wedding without Thuis. They not only went above and beyond all vendors by responding promptly and supporting all of my decisions, but they also served as a huge source of moral support. Wedding planning was incredibly hard on me and I would not have made it to one of the best days of my life without them, truly.“
NJP: In addition to wedding cinematography and business promotional films, what services do you offer?
TS: While it isn’t currently listed in our Collections, Wedding Day Details+Portraits was recently revived as an add-on to our wedding cinematography. It is designed for couples who want both cinematography and photography services but who might not have a budget that will allow for both. The Details+Portraits focuses on the static elements of the day and backs away to allow the cinematography to shine where movement and audio are most important (e.g.: Ceremony+Reception).
Thuis also offers “Just Because” photography. And that’s just because you’ve achieved a milestone (graduation), just because you’re in love (couples), and just because you’re having a baby (Maternity, First48 and Welcome Home Baby). While we assist with posing, it’s more like we help set a scene, as our goal is to capture real emotion and relationships. We’ve recently added cinematography to our First48+Welcome Home Baby. We think the combination is fabulously sweet!
NJP: YES!! I LOVE your welcome home films!! Why should expecting parents consider this kind of film?
TS: It’s the precious movement of tiny little fingers and toes…of little blinking eyes and those sweet yawns. It’s the nose kisses in action. It marks one of the first days your new family is home together and the mesmerizing interactions between parents and baby.
NJP: Can you briefly explain why and how creating a film is different than creating a photograph?
TS: While the creativity is similar, many of the technical aspects are different. A low shutter speed in photography can spell disaster, but it’s OK in video! Focus is more forgiving with video because the brain is OK with something coming into or exiting focus over a series of frames. The same is true with something as simple as catching someone in a blink or talking. The frames before, during and after all make sense in video. With a photograph, it’s a split second in time, so if that split second is out of focus, or someone blinks, or you caught someone in an awkward moment, the photograph is no good.
NJP: What does film offer than a photograph simply can’t?
TS: Movement and audio. Movement is the obvious answer. While some of our films are set strictly to music (First48, Welcome Home Baby), wedding films share the voices of your family and friends. Future generations will be able to hear people they meet as older folks, or maybe people they actually never got to hear in person. The say the first thing you forget about someone who has passed is their voice. To be able to see their faces and hear their voices is something to treasure.
NJP: What do you guys do when you’re not filming?
TS: Three of us still have full-time jobs. One in a veterinary clinic, another works sales, and the third works for the DoD. As often as we can, we take part in companion animal (usually dogs) transports as part of a volunteer train bringing animals from southern high-kill shelters to waiting rescues and adopters in the northern states. We all invest in continuing education…either online courses or in-person seminars with the top pros in our industry.
Because of the old critters we love dearly, we’re pretty much home-bodies! We try to make a yearly jaunt to NYC to check out gear at B+H Photo Video (angels singing) and to grab as much fabulous vegan fare as our bellies can hold. Every once in a great while we get to sneak away for pleasure. Brynn+Jason love their beach time, and Pam+Bill love to travel…anywhere. We’re all years over due for an adventure! If you’re interested in more about who we are, please check out the About tab on our website.
NJP: Where can people find you?
All images are copyrighted by Thuis Studios.