Trembling legs, that’s what has come to you when your best friend has asked you to be the photographer of your wedding. You have already told him that you are not professional and that you are not up to that responsibility, but with a little face of sorrow he has told you that who better than you, who only wants some emotional photos to remember, than the professional wedding photographerIt goes out of your budget or any other phrase framed within true emotional blackmail … And of course, friendship is friendship … How do you say no? Well, if you have already healed in health and have insisted that you are not professional and that the result will not be the same, you have no choice but to live up to it, if not from a wedding photographer, yes from a great friend or friend Sit in your chair and keep reading because you will have to prepare well, in this article I give you the most important keys and tips so that your friendship does not end at the bottom of a well .
To begin, I recommend that you read the post that Mario wrote some time ago where he gives six essential tips. I will try not to repeat myself, but given its importance, we surely insist at some point.
The report of a wedding has three parts: the before, the day of the wedding and after the wedding. Let’s see them one by one.
BEFORE THE WEDDING
Preparation and planning. Those are the main keys. The wedding day is the most important, of course, but good preparation will help you to have more or less success on the big day.
- Equipment: prepare your equipment with battery and replacement cards. Get a luminous objective as Mario commented to you, and as far as possible with a wide angle and a normal objective (type 50-80 mm) that will help you to control any situation. The external flash, especially for interiors or if the wedding is at night, is essential. And if we talk about the ideal … prepare a second camera. Two reasons, one is that you imagine that day precisely your camera fails you? You will want to disappear from the planet or even from the galaxy! Another reason is because it is much more comfortable to have to make fewer changes of objectives and be more agile when it comes to capturing any special moment.
- Location: visit the place of the ceremony and celebration to see the scenery you have and if you can take pictures, better than better. If it is in a church, try to go to Mass one day to practice with the same light conditions. And talk to the priest, do not wait for the day to come and start putting on impediments of where you can go or not. Also look for a place that you like for the photo shoot between the ceremony and the celebration. They can be the streets of the city, a park, a modernist building or fun facades; The choice will be based on your tastes. Visit before the chosen place to check the lighting conditions with which you are going to find.
- Soak up the work of others: knowing the work of other photographers will help you have the clearest ideas and know what kind of photos are essential. With what the bride and groom have told you and with what you see in the other reports, you can be inspired and make your list with all the images you want to achieve that day.
- Don’t forget the light: check what time the sun will set. This is very important to know how much time you have between the ceremony and the invitation to do the photo shoot abroad. If you can take photos without flash, only with natural light, you will get fantastic results.
- Look for a helper and an “accomplice”: although apparently they can be confused, they will have very different roles. The assistant, as the name implies, will help you with the equipment, the flash and even, if it is also someone who is passionate about photography, it can cover you some moments to obtain different angles or perspectives, or you can even have another vision of the ceremony and it sure enriches the final result. The accomplice will need it to gather the guests. The couple will want to portray themselves with all the family and friends, so if you do not want to be running behind everyone besides dragging the camera, readjusting it and all that entails and ending a heart attack …Ask someone from family or friends to help you with this task. While you take the photos to a group, the accomplice will have to notify the next one. Better if you organize all this before the wedding day.
THE BIG DAY
The moment of truth has arrived, this is where you play it, the important moment and when you have to have all your senses alert to not miss any detail and do your best. To calm you down I will tell you something very important that you should keep in mind. You will not be a professional, but you have something in which no professional, for all the experience he has, could win you: you know the boyfriends, and most likely the rest of the guests or a large part. How does this help you? Well, in the most important part of a day like this: emotions. You may not get perfect photos in terms of technique, but knowing the boyfriends, that they know you, will help you to be more comfortable and relaxed and to know what to tell. Because you’re there to tell a story, to capture the most emotional moments, the looks, the moments of complicity, the details … in short, the soul of the event. And for this, your friendship with them will be your best ally, your strong point, on which you should focus, for the rest, I give you some tips that will also help you:
1. Check that your equipment is ready and with the white balance parameters, focus type, ISO, measurement, etc… adjusted.
2. The lighting is very important, if you do not master the correct lighting and exposure, shoot in priority opening mode, if you do not master it very well, do not risk losing the best moments and shoot automatically.
3. Ask the groom to get ready before he can go to the two houses (as long as the distances allow) and immortalize the preparations of both. If it is not possible, focus on the bride. In the houses try to eliminate everything that distracts in the funds, that there are no tangles that spoil your photo.
4. During the ceremony, try not to disturb the priest or the couple, remember that they are the protagonists. Although it is not easy, move with stealth and prudence.
5. Do not say goodbye, no time will be repeated to give you a second chance.
6. Photograph the details, when assembling the album will be a great help, as well as being a beautiful memory: the bride’s hairstyle, the flowers, the rings, the details of the table …
7. Don’t force yourself, look for spontaneous moments and run away from forced poses.
8. Unleash your creativity, take different snapshots.
9. Look for different angles and perspectives.
10. Take advantage of the elements you have at your fingertips: furniture, mirrors or even use the architectural elements to frame.
11. Use some boldness to bring originality. For example, as in this image, with a blackboard even the guests can send messages to the bride and groom. It will be a surprise that you will love.
12. Look for the emotional moments, tell a story, your story. You better than any other photographer can capture those moments of complicity between the couple or between the guests. Try to photograph the soul of the wedding.
13. If you want to take a picture of the kiss, the faces will look halfway, try to photograph them by touching your nose.
14. Be careful to overexpose the wedding dress, if underexposes it will be easier to illuminate the face from your RAW file than to recover the details of the dress.
15. Always focus on the eyes. If in profile, focus on the nearest eye.
16. Shoot in burst.
17. Get a complete picture of the ceremony site from the back.
18. Try to get an image of all the guests, it will be an arduous task, but if you do it, in addition to a lot of fun, it will be an incredible memory for your friends.
19. During the invitation you will also have to be aware of photographing the important moments: cutting the cake, the bride and groom dance… in addition to touring the tables to immortalize the guests. If you use the external flash bounced on the ceiling you will get better results.
AFTER THE WEDDING
Once the wedding is celebrated and when they have returned from the trip of boyfriends, relaxed, rested and in no hurry, you can make a photo session in the place that you like, without time limit, or distances and taking advantage of natural light and choosing The right funds. Some call this session to destroy the dress , since there are those who literally tear it apart, getting into the water of the sea, throwing themselves in the middle of a wheat field or dancing on the mud. The imagination here has no limits, it’s about having a good time, having fun without any pressure. Here are some sample images that can serve as an idea.
PD: If you share, you will do the favor to someone whose legs are still shaking!
PD: Get ready for the hard work of a wedding photographer