Welcome to a my blog seriesYour Flagstaff Wedding Vendors! Flagstaff is a hidden gem for many reasons but one of the biggest is our variety of wedding vendors for couples looking to get married in our mountain town. From Photographers (represent!) to DJs, Florists, Rental Companies and Chefs my goal is to highlight as many vendors in our community as I can so you can make the most informed decision or referral when your wedding comes up.
In this series of blog posts I have been interviewing our Flagstaff wedding vendors and sharing more about what they offer, who they are and how you can get in touch with them. Today our spotlight is Leslie Allred, a Flagstaff-based Videographer!
Who are you and what service do you offer in the Northern Arizona Wedding Vendor arena?
My name is Leslie Allred. I moved to Flagstaff from Moab, Utah just over 4 years ago. I lived in Moab for 9 years and spent 5 of those years as a seasonal biologist for the National Park Service and the U.S. Geological Survey. After becoming a mother and hoping for a more flexible job, I started Leslie Allred Films in 2016. I vividly remember filming my first wedding. It was an elopement in Arches National Park in front of Double Arch and I was so nervous! Since then I have filmed close to 150 weddings in a huge variety of locations--from luxurious venues to remote corners of the desert. I love working outside. Since I was 19, I've had jobs that allow me to enjoy the outdoors, and I love that I get to continue to do that as a videographer. I'm definitely not afraid to strap on my camera gear and climb a mountain for an elopement. In addition to weddings, I also offer commercial and lifestyle videography. In Flagstaff, I've worked with NAU Panhellenic, CrossFit Flagstaff, Grand Canyon Rentals, Canyon Pet Hospital, and other small business owners. I also adore doing newborn family sessions in the home or hospital after the baby is born. Some of my most important, but rarely seen work are life history films. Often these films feature an individual who may have little time left, and their family has asked me to film an interview where questions are asked about childhood, achievements, romances, regrets, and let me tell you, this is such an honor.
Lastly, I grew up in Tucson, so I love being back in Arizona. The variety of scenery never gets old. I trailrun, mountain bike, paddleboard, and hike as much as my schedule allows. I have an obsession with the Grand Canyon and love that Flagstaff is so close. And let's be real, I love a good bowl of ice-cream (Tilamook please!) and binging a good show.
How long have you been creating in your space and what made you decide to offer these services for Arizona couples planning their weddings?
I have been filming weddings since 2016. I love telling a love story through video. Every couple is different, and every wedding is different, and as a result, all of my films are different. I capture real moments as they unfold, and then ever so carefully craft them into a film. I go through endless amounts of music to find tracks that fit the couple and the film (all music of course is legally licensed). It's a process, and the end result is so satisfying. When it comes to the actual wedding day, I am calm, experienced, and know what I need to do (and what gear I need) to get the shot. I work side by side with the photographer because their work is equally important and with good communication, I know how to ensure we both get the content we need. I am flexible, adapt quickly, and do my very best to blend into the wedding and make the couple and guests forget I'm there.
Where are you based currently and what areas or Northern Arizona do you serve?
I am based in Flagstaff, AZ and work mostly in Flagstaff and Sedona. However, I am open to traveling around the entire state. I've filmed at the Grand Canyon, Phoenix area, Tucson, and have weddings on the calendar for Payson and Pinetop.
What is your favorite thing about your business?
I love that I repeatedly get to witness some of the best parts about humanity. I witness people committing to love each other no matter what. I capture family and friends who show up to support and celebrate unconditionally. I witness toasts where relationships are healed and gratitude is expressed. I see great dance moves. This world can be crazy, but there is still so much love.
What was the biggest challenge or most unexpected obstacle you've had to overcome? This can be a general challenge or a specific project that tested your abilities.
This is a hard one. Recently I was filming an elopement and a crazy monsoon came out of nowhere during the ceremony. I get obsessed with checking the weather before a wedding, and this storm was not on the radar. In a matter of 5 minutes, the lighting was everywhere, and it was hailing, pouring, and windy. It actually got really scary. We were a 10 minute walk from the car with no cover. Figuring out how to keep my cameras as dry as possible, staying safe in the lightning, comforting the bride who was in tears, and then scheduling a reshoot was intense. I am very familiar with monsoons and being prepared, but it was a humbling experience and a reminder that weather cannot be controlled or counted on.
What is your favorite review or piece of feedback you've ever gotten from a client?
My favorite feedback was when a bride forwarded me a text from her mom that said "thank you thank you for hiring Leslie" with lots of crying and heart emojis.
What is your favorite *thing* that you offer / create / make? Why?
I absolutely love that I get to create films that will be watched for years and years to come. Time passes quickly and people are gone too soon, but my films preserve beautiful moments and memories. Not only do I capture the visual, but the audio as well. How special it is to not only see but hear those we love?
How would you describe your "Dream Client"?
My dream client is someone who has an idea of what they want, communicates that with me, and then trusts me through the process.
Where would you like to see your business one year from now?
I would love to film a few epic destination weddings outside of Arizona. Also, every year I hope for projects that push me and make me grow. In 2022, that project was filming and interviewing the sorority chapters at NAU to create a recruitment video.
Where can interested potential clients find your pricing information?
They can email me at email@example.com. I have basic pricing information on my website, but emailing about specifics is the best way. Weddings start at $2500. Elopements start at $1800.
Is there someone in your industry that inspires you to keep going when things get tough or to create outside of your comfort zone?
I worked with a photographer 5 years ago who told me "stop comparing yourself to other videographers- your clients hire you because they love your style". It's really easy to fall back into comparing, but I love the reminder that I am creating films for my clients, not the internet or other videographers.