I have been asked by several photographers for tips on wedding photography – so here are my tips.

1) Family Photo Co-ordinator

For many wedding photographers, the family photo session part of the day can be quite stressful. Guests are going everywhere, they’re in a celebratory mood and the photographer won’t be aware of different families dynamics. Ask the couple to nominate a family member (from each side of the family) who should act as a “director” for the family photos shoot. This person can gather everyone up, help get them in the shot and should be the one who keeps things moving. This will allow you as the photographer to concentrate on “shooting”.

2) Visit the wedding venue before the big day

Visit the wedding venue before the big day. This is really helpful to know where the event will be taking place, get an idea of a few position for shots and to think about how the light might come into play. If possible, take a camera during your visit and take some shots.

3) The key to success is “preparation”

Be well prepared – as on the day things can go wrong. Always have a back up plan, just in case things do not go plan. Have all your batteries fully charged, memory cards must be blank and formatted, get all your gear ready the night before the wedding, even check if the car is working properly, think about the route to the venues and time to get there, work out an alternative route, just in case.

Get an itinerary of the day so that you know what’s happening next. One of the most helpful tips for any wedding photographer is to get the couple to think ahead about the shots that they’d like their wedding photographer to capture on their big day and then compile a list so that they can tick them off. Where possible, attend the rehearsal of the ceremony where you’ll gather lots of great information about the possible position to shoot from, the lighting, order of ceremony etc.

Know the sequence of events for things such as cake cutting, speeches, etc and make sure you are in the right place at the right time to get those perfect shots.

4) Shoot the small details

Photograph rings, backs of dresses, shoes, flowers, table deco, menus, even the street name where the wedding is held – as these gives a personal touch to the final album.

5) Use diffused light

The use of bounce flash is the key, as in many venues the light is very low. Some venues will allow you to use a flash and therefore, think about bouncing the flash that will work for you – a word of warning – if you bounce a flash off a coloured surface, it will add a colour cast to your image. Another way to use diffused light is to use a diffuser to soften the light. So what do you do if the venue doesn’t allow the use of flash – use a fast lens at wide apertures and/or increase your ISO.

When shooting outside (we all love to do that) use fill in flash. Dial the flash back a little (one or two stops) so that the shots are not burned out. Put the couple in the shade, as this will help if the background is full of sunlight.

6) Shoot in RAW

Weddings can present tricky lighting and therefore, shooting in RAW can be particularly useful as it will give you much more flexibility to “process” your images after the event. Hence shoot in RAW and ensure that you have a few spare memory cards. Frequently check your camera setting and make sure that your settings haven’t changed from what you want them to be.

7) Don’t delete your images on the camera – sounds mad but it’s easily done! In the current digital technology era, there is a temptation to check and delete those images that don’t look right. Keep in mind that in the post-photography process you can crop and manipulate images and you may inadvertently delete interesting images which can give that extra wow factor in the final album.

8)Change your “view”

Get creative by changing your perspective – get down low, get up high, use wide angles and so on…..

9) What’s round the corner?

Things may go wrong on the wedding day – which then, can be the best part of the day from your point of view. When things don’t go according to plan, it could be very tense and panicky for the couple and guests, however those moments can actually make a day and give the couple great memories and a big simile.

10) Enjoy and have fun

Weddings are all about celebrating – they should be fun and enjoy it, the more fun you as a photographer have, the more relaxed those you are photographing will be. Best way to approach this is to smile and guests will smile back to you. You must be someone that the couple like being around.

Photos by Dinendra

Views: 38

Comment by Marisa Taylor Photography on September 14, 2010 at 7:00pm
Great tips!
Comment by Dinendra Haria on September 16, 2010 at 11:56am
Thanks Marisa.

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