How to Do Wedding Photography

As pictures form lasting stills of a wedding day, it is important to have a strategy for taking high quality wedding photos and employ effective techniques for ensuring that the bride and groom are happy with the moments you captured. While some aspects of wedding photography can only be gleaned through experience and having an eye for art and the ‘perfect shot’, other aspects can be taught and knowledge surrounding the art of wedding photography can be acquired.

An essential key in doing wedding photography is to discuss what types of photos the couple wants of their special day. What types of poses are they looking for? Are there specific locations they want to include? Ask about any specialized candid shots, portraits, and classic wedding poses the couple may want to include. Take note of how many people are in the wedding party, family members to be included and any specialized photos to be taken. Make sure to make a master list of all the photos that were requested and that are on the non-negotiable list for photos. Be sure to show any portfolio or prior work you have done so they will get an idea of what type of photos you take and in what style.

As a wedding photographer it is essential that you are detailed in nature. The difference between a good picture and an excellent picture may be one simple element or detail that was missed. For example, be sure to visit the locations that will be used the day of the wedding. Take note of any possible issues you may encounter such as lighting conditions, obstructions, d├ęcor, and where other people will be situated. Look for anything that may hinder your shots and form a plan to navigate any issues you may encounter on the day of the wedding. Be sure to discuss with any additional photographers on hand or videographers the positioning each of you will take during the day and which moments are the most important to capture so you work together as a team.

Ensuring you are well-equipped and organized are essential keys to doing wedding photography well. Having the proper equipment that will be appropriate for a variety of locations with different levels of lighting, flashes, tripods, filters, memory cards and back-up drives are critical to have along for the day. Your master list, a back-up camera, lighting equipment and weather-related precautionary equipment is also a good thing to keep with you. An assistant may also be necessary or secondary photographer in order to catch any moments that you may not be able to capture.

As a wedding photographer you will also need to embrace the importance of perfect timing. This is crucial in terms of capturing the essential moments as well as concluding your work with the couple in a timely fashion. Be sure to schedule enough time for you to be early to each location you are required such as hotel rooms or salons where wedding party members are prepping, the ceremony location, reception hall, and any additional locations. Try to anticipate moments that will take place throughout the day such as the lead up to the pronouncement of the couple, first dance, grand entrances and any sentimental moments you may encounter. Timing also includes spacing out your pictures to ensure you have enough room on memory cards or working with an assistant to capture specific moments. It also includes sending the prints, DVD, or CD of pictures to the couple in a reasonable time frame following the wedding.

To do wedding photography successfully requires knowledge of the industry, an awareness of moments taking place around you, and the ability to plan effectively. An eye for detail rounds off the best wedding photographers in the business capturing perfect moments for the couple to relive in the years to come. Learn from other veteran wedding photographers and apply any tricks of the trade to make your wedding photography stand out. As you grow as a wedding photographer you will find ways to encapsulate the essence of the couple in the photos using personalized techniques.