A day in the life of a wedding photographer
It is a mistake to think of any wedding as one day of work for the photographer. For me the event is really all about getting to know two people and their relationship. What emerges from this relationship is my ability to tell the story of two families coming together and to capture the memories for this brand new family.
Shooting a wedding can be difficult and labour intensive, but I hardly consider it to be a day of work in the ordinary sense. I admit that I come home from a wedding totally exhausted, but that's the result of a day-long adrenaline rush. If you love what you do, not only do you tend to do it well but you don't really think of it as work.
I have one goal - to be the eyes of the bride and groom and to tell the story of their day.
On the day of the wedding I always arrive early. If I am photographing the bride preparation, then it is an opportunity to document the excitement in the air.
Once the bride is ready, if time, i will photograph the bride and her family. Then it is off to capture the groom and his groomsmen. Too many photographers miss this opportunity, but the groom has a family too! If my groom hates formal shots then I will use a long lens to capture a portrait from a distance. This often gives the best shots without him evening noticing.
When it comes to the ceremony, I like to stand at the front of the room. I will have arranged this with the clergy beforehand and hopefully gained their trust as well. I assure everyone that i will not use my flash and point out that the camera I use has a silent shooting mode. To be able to photograph the ceremony without the constant clicking of a camera is something not many photographers can offer.
As I am surrounded by emotion, I will try to capture not only the altar shots but also the family as they proudly watch the service.
Immediately after the ceremony, my aim is to capture some of the group formals. I spend about 20 minutes organising the friends and family into groups with the bride and groom. Its a great opportunity for the confetti!
Once completed, I ask everyone to go and relax for half an hour whilst I spend some quiet time with the happy couple. My aim it to achieve romantic moments but I also have the odd trick up my sleeve to make them laugh, and create some fun journalistic images.
Prior to the wedding breakfast I will enter the room and capture the details. The flowers, the tables and of course the cake. This is also a good time to stage a pretend cake cut. I will photograph the real cake cut later, with the wedding guest's.
Its time to party!
During the evening I will endeavor to capture the guest's. The candid photo's of the wedding party and the first dance.
Once home I will back up the images put away my kit and fall into bed! Over the next few days I will edit the images and l delete any that are unflattering (such as blinking).
I remove unwanted objects where possible such as signage, alarm boxes and drain pipes. I then focus on portraits and soften the skin to give a flattering even tone.
I do not make the whole image soft as some do, but individually retouch each photo by hand. This enables me to supply strong bold portraits.
Finally, I lay out the story using what I have learned about this new family. I arrange thel images in time order and save them to a crystal USB drive. I then produce a slideshow with transitions, music and effects which contains the best 50 (approx) images. This slideshow can be uploaded online or played on a computer or television (USB compatible).
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