You’ve heard there is big money in wedding photography and you want a piece of the action. After all, it sounds like a good gig, right? Five hours of work one evening on a weekend and a $1000+ payday! What could be simpler?
Before the dreams of grandeur and big pay checks start clouding your vision, here are 20 tips I hope will help steer your growth so you are an asset to the happy couple entrusting you with their fond memories.
20 Invaluable Tips for the Aspiring Wedding Photographer.
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The origins of The Oxford School of Photography were in the training, tuition and courses run by The Photographers Workshop. Opened in 1982 as the UK’s first commercially run darkroom and studio hire centre with over 20 enlargers, black and white and colour darkrooms, full finishing area and extensive studio, PW was a haven and home for many photographers and would be photographers. As well as providing access to essential equipment we also provided tuition to those just starting in photography. This connection still exists but we no longer have darkrooms and all our courses are scheduled as evening or weekend workshops. So is PW the mother ship of the Oxford School of Photography, well yes I think it is. The Photographers Workshop is now exclusively the commercial photography arm of the covering all areas of professional photography, the new website has been developed to reflect the continuing relationship between PW and OSP.
Have a look at our new site
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From Digital Camera World
Shooting a wedding is one of the toughest assignments that a photographer can take on, there are lots of potential issues and the stakes are incredibly high. To help out, our head of testing, Angela Nicholson, has compiled a list of the most common wedding photography mistakes that photographers make when starting out shooting weddings, along with some of her best wedding photography tips for how to avoid them.
Beginner Wedding Photography Mistakes: 01 Inexperience
If your family and friends know that you own a DSLR or advanced compact system camera, the chances are pretty high that at some point you will be asked to photograph a wedding.
It’s important to be realistic about your capabilities and experience before you commit to shooting a wedding – especially if you are to be paid to do so.
Be honest with the couple about your experience and don’t allow anyone to bully you into taking on the job to save money if you are not confident.
Whilst researching I came across this blog by Michael Yamashita, he writes about wedding photography and the rather remarkable way it is undertaken in some places in China,
“Who hasn’t shot a wedding? On Geographic assignments, it’s hard to think of a story where I did not shoot one as part of my coverage, sometimes by plan, but mostly by accident — you’re in a small town out in the middle of nowhere and a procession is coming your way from down the street. What celebration/ceremony says more about a culture than an old-fashioned wedding, the ultimate cultural photo op? Everyone loves a wedding. On these joyous occasions, everyone welcomes a photo, not to mention the photographer taking them. But unique to China is the wedding studio, where the real wedding takes place before the actual wedding ceremony. Here the couple can have their choice of any of several wedding scenarios, with sets and costumes to match. A Japanese wedding at a shrine, a western church wedding, a cruise ship wedding, a Shanghai 1920s wedding, or an outdoor wedding – whatever the bride and groom’s preference. Wedding packages $5000 and up include a video as well as stills. Here’s a sampling.”...MORE
all photos by Orange Photography Studio, wedding photos and video – Shanghai, China
See More here
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I have photographed weddings for more than 20 years, mostly because they are such enjoyable occasions. The money is an attraction but not as much as the opportunities weddings offer a photographer who is interested in people. Getting started was, for me, something that came out of the street or reportage photography I did for my own interest. I was one of the first photographers around to work exclusively as a documentary wedding photographer, prior to about 20 or so years ago every wedding photographer organised groups and if pushed did a few ‘informal’ pictures. The basis of wedding photography was a specific number of rolls of film (12 shots per roll medium format) to capture the groups, the more groups the more film and so the cost increased, so something as un-defined as documentary shooting where they could be endless images to capture was not attractive to the old school wedding photographers.
Times change, many more photographers started offering ‘the story book wedding’ and when digital came along it seemed that everyone with a camera, a suit and a free Saturday wanted to be a wedding photographer. The skills needed were of course about camera control but also people skills, to get those seeming informal natural shots from an unnatural situation. Now there are a plethora of books and web sites which will help and guide would be wedding photographers, this article in Tripwire Magazine has a list of helpful tips
all pictures Keith Barnes Wedding Photography
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Times….they are a changin’.
Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ve probably heard some of the doom and gloom that’s been rumbling in our industry. And although the photo industry is different than it used to be, this isn’t necessarily bad news. The photographers who are able to successfully navigate the changing industry landscape are still running successful businesses and have adapted to ensure that their business will still be around in the years to come. Whether you’re just jumping in and are new to the industry or you’re a seasoned pro, here are three essential skills that will help you succeed.…more Written by Katie Humphreys
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Group wedding portraits can be challenging, but they don’t have to be restrictive to your creativity. Here, top wedding photographer Brett Harkness shares his tips….more here
This husband and wife, The Youngrens wedding photography team write excellent articles usually posted on Pictage
“Jeff and I were just in San Francisco this past week and in the course of four days we shot three engagement sessions for three incredibly unique and beautiful couples. Each couple was very different from the others – their stories were distinct and their personalities were one of kind.
We absolutely LOVE that all of our couples have such unique stories and personalities – we wouldn’t trade this job for anything – but photographing so many different types of personalities can also be challenging, right? Wouldn’t it be so much easier if every one of our couples responded the same way to our jokes? If they all looked great in the same type of poses? If their senses of humor all clicked perfectly with ours? If every groom thought that Jeff’s monkey dance was super awesome and NOT totally lame?
The truth is that we have to connect with each of our couples on a level that makes them comfortable and allows them to relax, but it’s not easy discovering what those levels are when everyone is so unique.”………more
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“From where I was, and from their point of view, it was two families coming together and that was the feeling, the sense of family and love going between everyone,” Hugo Burnand said…..more from The Guardian
more interesting insights into that day here
“Photographing royalty is no easy task, especially if they’re children. Just ask Hugo Bernand. The photographer was assigned the job of capturing the official photos for the wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton, and in a new interview he reveals the drastic measures he was forced to take to get the royal children to sit still.”.….more