Sometimes towards the end of a understanding your camera type course I am approached by a student with their new entry level digital slr and kit lens attached to it and told they are going to be a wedding photographer and do I have any advice to get them started. Ignoring the sheer arrogance I try to explain that having just completed a basic understanding your camera course might not be enough technical skill and that experience is vital as no amount or classroom teaching can allow for that moment when the heavens open and you are forced to shoot groups of 20 people in a corridor leading to the bar as that is the only open space available. On occasions I am blown away by the fact that said students give me their business card declaiming themselves as a photographer who will do your wedding, portrait, fashion, commercial, in fact every type of photography they have ever heard of.
Well now I can just direct them to this post, it really does define the minimum amount of professional equipment required, and the need for the understanding of how to use it, how having complete technical understanding is a pre-requisite before offering to mess up someone’s wedding pictures. There is no doubt that photography has always been an industry and profession that people have entered without formal college training, and that taking a professional approach and learning the craft is part of entering a profession.
Here is that article, before you decide you are ready have a look and see what a professional brings to the party, here is that link by Mark Stagi
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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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
Wedding Photography Arts and Entertainment, Business, oxfordschoolofphotography.co.uk, Photographer, photographersworkshop.co.uk, Photography, San Francisco, United States, Wedding and Events, wedding photography, Youngrens