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Wedding photography

SexyDan 14 14 1 United Kingdom
8 Jan 2009 9:35PM
Hi all, one of my best friend's has asked me take pictures for her at her wedding, normally Id be cautious as photographing people is my least favourite subject, but knowing that she doesn't have a lot of money I could hardly so no. I have struck a deal that she gives me some money towards any equipment I might need.

My camera bag contains
Sony alpha 100 camera
18mm-70mm lens
75mm-300mm lens
UV filter.

What Id like is any suggestions of additional equipment I should purchase to get some good enough result for an amateur. I guess a Flash is a defiant especially being in March and outside shots could be limited to weather.

Also any of tips on techniques would be cool.

JamesBurns 13 1.3k 7
8 Jan 2009 10:35PM

Quote:What Id like is any suggestions of additional equipment I should purchase to get some good enough result for an amateur.

To get good enough results for an amateur then surely all you need is a point and shoot? Failing that, the kit that you've got already... To get good enough results as the main photographer at a wedding is a different matter entirely.

Quote:I guess a Flash is a defiant especially being in March and outside shots could be limited to weather.

I find flash very defiant. Especially if it's used direct, at full power. Funny bugger, flash.

Seriously though, are you going as a guest, as a photographer, as a photographing guest? Do you want to achieve outstanding results, mediocre results or a couple of half-arsed images before you hit the bar and drink yourself into a corner?

The kit you should get is the whatever kit you need, to get the results that are required, regardless of the situations that you encounter. And then a whole other set in the back of the car in case any of that goes tits-up. That might sound like a clever tw*t answer too, but without knowing how you shoot and what you're trying to achieve then it's impossible to answer.

Quote:Also any of tips on techniques would be cool.

Take great pictures. Have someone standing by with a fast car in case things don't go to plan...

Essentially you've turned up and said: "I'm shooting a wedding. I don't have a clue what I need or how to do it, can someone tell me absolutely everything please?". At least put a bit of graft in... If you'd have searched this very forum for "wedding photography" then you'd have turned up dozens of answers, some of them valuable and some of them sarcastic, just like this one. If you really don't know what equipment you even need, and forgive me for jumping to conclusions here, but maybe it's not the right thing for you to be doing?
Meg 16 393 United Kingdom
8 Jan 2009 10:46PM
well we do it with a canon eos 20 d, 2 300ds and 2 flashes and a tripod, also sit with her and ask her what photos she wants prior to the wedding and if poss do a run through at the venue before the wedding day so you are familiar with the lay out of the area and where the best places to take pictures from lighting and sun (if there is any) angles etc, thinking about both inside and outdoor shots. but definatly a tripod, but mainly relax and have a good time.
Oh and if there are lots of children that need to be photoed something to grab their attention my friend has a red bear and a toy car and a puppet in her camera bag to get the children looking the correct way and to distract them, but there is 3 of us working.
User_Removed 19 2.8k 11 United Kingdom
8 Jan 2009 10:47PM
I quite agree with James here.
If you're not confident, don't do it.
If you do, your best friend may turn into your worst.

However, if you do go for it, the very best of luck as I see nothing else that makes me think you know what you're in for.

geoffash26 17 2.5k United Kingdom
8 Jan 2009 11:40PM
I think you need to write a general version of what you have said above ... which will lay in waiting on the site until the words "my friend and wedding" appear in the forum and will automatically post itself in flashing lights on the thread... :0

PS... well explained
col.campbell 18 1.4k 4 United Kingdom
9 Jan 2009 1:31AM
I pity your dilemma. Photographing a wedding as a favour for a friend crops up regularly in the forum here. As stated above, if you are expected to act as the main photographer and you lack the confidence, perhaps you should decline, explaining your reasons.

I've been asked before, but have always explained that trusting me with such an important event may result in divorce before the honeymoon's over! On the other hand, as my experience gradually grows (I'm strictly amateur, very amateur at that), the last couple of times I've been asked I've told them I'll accept nothing more in payment than the cost of film, processing and my dinner at the reception, and I'll promise nothing. If a couple are so strapped, for whatever reason, that it's a choice between my photos and nothing, then I'll do what I can. Luckily for me, no-one's called my bluff yet.

If you're going ahead with it, search the forum on this site. There have been the good, the bad and the Fugly of conversations on the subject in the past, but trawl through it, read and digest as much as you can, and then come back with specific questions on anything that's stumping you - some kind helpful soul will come along and help you out.

Incidentally, the best photos I've taken at a wedding so far were when I just turned up, had a pint, took a few snaps, and mingled. Admittedly I was amongst family so there was no pressure so anything you can do to mitigate pressure on yourself will probably help.
Carabosse 18 41.7k 270 England
9 Jan 2009 1:36AM
Maybe rope in a few of the happy couple's other friends to take some photos as well (without getting in your way of course).

That way, if there is a disaster - e.g. if your memory card fails without you realising it, then all is not lost. Smile
ade_mcfade 17 15.2k 216 England
9 Jan 2009 10:26AM
nothing like a good wedding thread to wake James from his lair Wink

happy new year mate Smile
JamesBurns 13 1.3k 7
9 Jan 2009 10:52AM

Quote:Nothing like a good wedding thread...

And this is nothing like a good wedding thread! Tongue

Back at you matey... May your 2009 be free of gastric discomfort.
SexyDan 14 14 1 United Kingdom
9 Jan 2009 7:56PM
Thanks.....i think, maybe i'll post the pics for some critique on here, i know i can't really get out of it as my friend is doing the whole wedding for 3k.
My mum;s wedding photography was 3k alone, but i must addmit never before or since have i seen such stuning wedding photo's, not even at my brothers wedding in 2008 (mum's was 2002). But i guess you get what you pay for?
scottishphototours 17 2.6k 2
10 Jan 2009 12:08AM

Suggest you sit down with the bride and make up a list of say, 20 images that you could take for her. This would be the bare minimum she could expect on the day and would give you something to work to. After you complete the 20, step back and shoot some candids.

There's no point in jumping in too deep here because if you screw it up, you'll get dogs abuse from family and friends. Make it as easy for yourself as you can.
Centurion 16 1.2k England
10 Jan 2009 9:06AM
First I would ask them what they expect in terms of style. Do they prefer the more traditional approach of portraits and formals or would they like an unobtrusive approach, documenting the day as it happens.

With some knowlege of lighting and posing you could probably get away with doing traditonal photography reasonably well. As long as you know your gear, can interact well with people and know how to position them in the right locations.

Documenting the day can be a little harder to pull off. You may well know how to use your gear well, can control lighting conditions with ease but if you are slow on the shutter or don't work yourself into the right position things can get ugly and they can very easily turn into snapshots.

If you are a good people person I would go own the traditional route. If you are somewhat shy then the documented approach may suit you better.

Whatever you do regardless of gear etc is stay on your toes, keep moving, keep looking and instead of getting caught up with what is happening, try and think ahead of what could happen and position yourself so your there at the right time in the right place.
stevo100 12 5
10 Jan 2009 11:54AM
Hi Dan.

First can I say your a brave man.

second be confident in your ability, dont worry about failure.

buy mark cleghorns wedding photography book it's a good reference point.

look on photographers web sites, for posing tips.

you need to focus on the must have shots, it would be better to photograph your first wedding with a second shooter, work out who is doing what, maybee you do the main shots and the other do the documentry/candid.

good luck I guarantee by the end of the day you will be exhausted.

if your going to use flash, use a diffuser, and point the flash 45 degree
JamesBurns 13 1.3k 7
10 Jan 2009 12:10PM

Quote:...dont worry about failure.

Yeah, what's the worst that could happen?

mark_delta 14 1.3k
10 Jan 2009 12:13PM
You can learn all you need to know on this website

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