Useful Tips And Hints On How To Professionally Photograph A Wedding
The wedding is the big day for the soon-to-be newly weds, and everybody wants it to be perfect in every detail, from the décor to the photographs. If you want to make the best out of this special event and capture shots that the couple will cherish in the long run, then the following tips and hints will surely come in handy:
1. Make Sure Everything Is Ready
Preparation is key for wedding photography, so make sure that your camera’s batteries are fully charged and that you also have some spare batteries as well. The last thing you want or need as a professional photographer is to realize that you ran out of batteries just before the most important shots of the wedding, such as the couple’s exit from the church.
Speaking of preparation, it is highly recommended to inspect the location where the wedding will take place and mark some of the best spots for photographs. Focus on elements like the background, the overall décor or the lighting – everything needs to be perfect! Also, make sure to arrive early in order to avoid traffic jams.
2. Make A List Of The Most Important Shots
Even though every marriage is unique and individualized in its very own way, they all share some common features, such as the bride getting her hair or make-up done. Speaking of the bride’s preparation, that is a great moment to shoot a few frames for the photo album. Stay in the background and try to make yourself invisible – do not crowd the hairdresser or the bride herself, and stay away from mirrors as you do not want to catch your reflection in them. Also, don’t forget about the groom, as he is equally important!
A truly skilled photographer knows that the details can make or break a wedding photo album. That being said, make sure to shoot a few frames of the bride’s wedding dress, her shoes, her hair accessories, the floral arrangements and such. These will undoubtedly be a great keepsake in the long run!
4. Punctuality Is Vital – Arrive Before The Bride Does!
One of the most important moments in the entire wedding is the bride’s arrival to the church, and that certainly has to be filmed and photographed. In order to do that, you must arrive at least 30 minutes before she does, find a comfortable spot where you can shoot the frames without being interrupted by the guests and unpack/install all the camera accessories, such as the tripod and such. Take shots of the floral arrangements as well!
5. Take Plenty Of Shots Throughout The Entire Ceremony
The wedding consists of three crucial parts: the beginning, when the bride arrives at the church, the ceremony itself (and the most important one) and the ending, when the couples leave the church. Take hundreds or even thousands of pictures throughout the ceremony and try to make yourself unseen, otherwise you may disturb the couple, the priest or the guests. Use the silent mode of your camera and try not to use the flash in church. Also, make sure to use the right lenses and check them to see if they are clean and properly installed.
Focus on the priest talking, the couple exchanging vows and rings, the kiss, signing the register and such. Grab shots of everything – the more, the merrier!
6. Don’t Forget The Friends And Relatives!
While it is true that the wedding photographer must focus mainly on the church and the ceremony itself, it is important to take some pictures of the relatives, the friends and the married couple surrounding by all the guests. However, it is important to make sure that you do not only take posed shots that seem framed and fake – try to take some incidental shots as well, where the subjects look as if they are taken by surprise and they do not even know you are photographing them. Take pictures of the floral beds, the confetti, the doves (if any), the newly weds’ car, the church doors and such. Be creative, sky is the limit!
7. Other Useful Wedding Photography Tips
Check, double check and triple check all the camera accessories and the batteries before going to church, if you need to. Shoot as many frames as you can, thousands of them even, just to have where to choose from.
Communication is crucial for every successful wedding album, so make sure to constantly keep in touch with the couple, find out what they like and dislike and what their personal preferences are. Perhaps they want a certain wedding theme for the album, or perhaps they are looking forward to suggestions. Keep an open mind!