If you are going to take wedding photos, preparing ahead of time is vital. Many recommend that you prepare two months ahead. To start preparation, you must get to know the bride and groom taking, careful note of their needs and wants. Ways this can be done is by asking them the following questions:
1. How many photographers will there be at the wedding.
2. Do the guests consist of mostly family or, is there going to be a mixture of family and friends?
3. Which locations will be used? Will the wedding be at a church or in a backyard? Will there be a reception?
4. What types of photos would you like? Would you like formal group portraits or do you want romantic and candid couple pictures? This is an extremely important question. Be sure that you understand what type of photos the bride and groom want. Ask them to describe some of the favorite wedding photos they have seen. This will give you an idea of what they have in mind.
It is questions such as these that will help you understand the requirements of the wedding which will, in turn, enable you to take better shots.
After you have learned of the wedding locations, it is a good idea to go and scout them out. You will want to take note of the types of lighting as well as other features of the environment. If the wedding is going to be in a church, go there and check out the decor. It will also be beneficial to figure out where you will position yourself. Some churches do not allow flash photography so, it is a good idea to get a fast lens. If there will be a reception, check out the dance floor and ask for the seating arrangement.
Organizing the gear that you’ll need for taking the photos is another critical step. It is usually a good idea to do this a month ahead of time as it will leave you enough time to check and double check to see if you are missing any equipment. Here is a list that may help you keep in check;
1. Digital camera. You should also have a camera for backup.
2. Camera lenses and filters.
3. Tripod. This is critical for taking pictures indoors under low lighting conditions.
4. Memory cards. Bring ones that have a lot of space as you’ll be taking a great number of photos and always have an extra.
5. Portable drive. This is critical to bring along just in case you should run out of space on your memory cards.
6. Make sure the battery is charged and that you have a backup battery.
7. Assistant. It would be helpful to bring one along as he or she could help you set up and position the group. The assistant can be a family, friend, or whoever you decide to bring along.
Now, the wedding day has come, and there is a great deal of excitement. To help you keep in check, here is a sequence of events that will occur;
1. If you are taking pictures at the house, be one of the earliest to arrive so you will have time to set up your equipment as well as your positions.
2. When taking pictures at the church, take note of where the priest and couple will be standing and position yourself where you can get the shots you need but will be as unobtrusive as possible.
3. When it is time for the reception, get there faster than everyone else. This will give you time to set up your equipment as well as your position. This is the time where you can take all of the fun shots!
4. When taking formal photos, have your assistant there to help you. Start out with the large groups and then go smaller removing family members so you can get a variety.
5. It is common now to upload all the photos to an online gallery so that the couple can choose which and how many photos they wish to have edited and printed. You will need to know this information so that you know how much to charge them for the number of photos they have chosen unless an agreement was reached before hand. Even if an agreement was reached before hand, once they see the photos, they may want more than was originally agreed upon and you may have to charge a per photo price for photos in addition to the number that was originally agreed upon.
6. Once the couple chooses the photos they want, cleaning up and editing the photos is important as you want them to be as perfect as possible and be pleasing to the couple.
As taking wedding photos can be a challenge, it can also be rewarding as you have played a crucial part in helping the couple capture those precious memories.
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