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My First Solo Wedding


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#1 Alvenmod

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Posted 03 September 2013 - 01:49 AM

So, as some of you know I have just gone pro and registered and started my own company to make some money to fund my passion for photography. I have done a wedding before as assistant shooter and i just landed my first wedding booking as main photographer. The wedding is planned for the 5th of October and will take place in a beautiful church in the old town part of Stockholm city, after the church the guests are invited on a boat cruise which will take them to the reception which is located on an island in the Stockholm archipelagio. The venue is at an aquarium so the surroundings will be water tanks with sharks and what not swimming around, pretty cool venue if you ask me.

 

As this is my first wedding i have asked a friend of mine, who has almost hundred weddings under his belt, to assist me. This makes me feel less nervous as I know I have a backup just in case I freeze ;-)

 

I have not yet had the planning meeting with the couple but that will be the first thing to do to get an idea of what they are looking for and to plan the day together with them. I also plan to visit the church, the cruise boat and the aquarium before hand to get a feel of the locations and what angles to use and what equipment I need, settings etc.

 

I would love to get a discussion going here about wedding photography, dos and don'ts and helpful pointers to make my first wedding a success.


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#2 Hung Nguyen

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Posted 03 September 2013 - 02:19 AM

I have one going on the same date too, what a coincidence. I would check for the rules and regulations for the ceremony. Can you be any where near the bride and groom during the ceremony, are flashes allowed. I assumed it would be very dark in the aquarium and most of them won't allow you to use flash ( I think this part your buddy has more than enough experience to walk you through it). I will definitely get the plan for the day, scout the area, ask the groom and bride who are they must taken picture with so I can write down a note for myself to make sure I got those. Extra batteries for the camera and flashes, back up flashes, back up plan to the back up plan. My two cents.


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#3 Tony Northrup

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Posted 03 September 2013 - 08:44 AM

How exciting! I'd definitely appreciate your help flushing out Stunning Digital Photography Chapter 7 with new tips!


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#4 Alvenmod

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Posted 03 September 2013 - 03:24 PM

How exciting! I'd definitely appreciate your help flushing out Stunning Digital Photography Chapter 7 with new tips!

Happy to help, did you add any of them yet in the current version? Will have to re-read this chapter again a few times before the 5th...


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#5 Richard Law

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Posted 03 September 2013 - 05:58 PM

I completed my one and only solo wedding shoot last November and although it was stressful I enjoyed myself and the results were acceptable. I would do another wedding but would spend more time beforehand perfecting flash techniques and posing ideas. My main advice would be to stay vocal throughout and take control, I felt I was over absorbed in getting my photos correct which took my focus away from guiding the people I was there to shoot.

#6 Yannick Ciancanelli

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Posted 04 September 2013 - 12:10 PM

good luck man :)



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#7 Alvenmod

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Posted 04 September 2013 - 12:22 PM

Thank you Richard, yes I watched the main photographer last time around and he did guide them, he also suggested an app for Android/iTunes called simply Posing app https://play.google....mendo.posingapp. I downloaded it and it does have very simple illustrations of poses for different kind of modeling and also some helpful tips. Very useful, at least when at my level of experience.


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#8 Richard Law

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Posted 04 September 2013 - 06:09 PM

Hi. Yes I used that app too, a very handy resource when you are not really sure how to pose people.

#9 Joe Baker

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Posted 04 September 2013 - 11:52 PM

I know most guys won't admit this, but if you look under the photography section of Pinterest or do a search for wedding poses on it, you will get some different ideas as well.  I have shot one wedding and it will be a loooonnnngggg time before I shoot another one.  Luckily it was for a friend and I achieved okay results, but I really want to second shoot before I do another solo one. The main advice that I can give you is to be cool and patient.  Everyone is going to be stressing out that day, so do your best to be the epitome of cool.  Good Luck!


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#10 Nik Andrews

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Posted 05 September 2013 - 04:52 AM

I have completed two weddings now and had good reactions from both couples.

Here is an image from the first one.

Nik-Andrews-Photography-106-of-298.jpg

 

I did a variety of treatments on some of the images as I felt B&W or sepia suited some over colour, but gave the bride and groom the option of the original colour image too.

 

 

 

And an image from the second wedding.

Sarah-and-James-426.jpg

 

I found both of them challenging but also fun and allowed my creativity to run riot. I do need to get a little more confident in posing and directing although I much prefer reportage style photography compared to the over exaggerated poses of the past. Both Brides wanted a photographer that just blended in with the proceedings and from the one email I got from the first Bride I think I managed to achieve this.

 

 Thank you so much for being our wedding photographer Nik we love our photos – lots of happy memories of our big day! You were so discreet hardly any of the guests knew they were being photographed, just as we requested. We will be recommending you to friends and family just as you were recommended to us by another satisfied customer.

Best wishes and thank you again

Lynne and Allan

 

I have two more dates booked in this year one for the last weekend in September and then the first weekend in October. I now have a Canon 6D so that should also help with the low light found in many churches in the UK.

 

Cheers

 

Nik


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#11 Alvenmod

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Posted 05 September 2013 - 06:32 AM

Thanks for Sharing Nik, I also find directing poses a bit awkward, but a little direction is sometimes good as well, just need to get out of zone. Luckily for me I am a very ouson and usually have no problem talking and interacting to new people, I believe I have the social skills to be able to make the couple somewhat relaxed...we'll see...


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#12 Justin Eckert

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Posted 05 September 2013 - 06:23 PM

I really love the first picture you posted, Nik. I legitimately thought you posted a photo from yesteryear before I realized you took it! It's awesome!



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#13 Joel Carlin

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Posted 05 September 2013 - 11:27 PM

I just did my first wedding as an assistant and during the posed shots of both families and the couple, the brides father complained to me that we weren't taking enough control and we weren't telling them what to do. I actually thought the guy I was working for was doing a great job, but it was so hot and they were all dressed up and they just wanted to get back into the air conditioning and eat dinner. After that at the reception we did a great job and the whole thing came out great. So I would say, make sure you have a plan for the posed shots and do not be shy about telling them what you want from them. Tony has some good suggestions in the wedding chapter and the portrait chapter too. And good luck, please tell us how it came out.  :)


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#14 Gisele

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Posted 06 September 2013 - 08:38 PM

congratulations! Can't wait to see the results



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#15 Alvenmod

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Posted 10 September 2013 - 02:08 AM

So I had my first meeting with the lucky couple and was prepared to listen to their wishes and requests and create a check list together with them. I found that they had very few or no ideas at all, it was more of "We trust you, you are the photographer and we don't want to tell you how to do your job, we have seen your work and trust you completely".

 

While that is very nice to hear as they show confidence in me and give me freedom to set this up as I want it, it also makes it difficult somehow as I have no idea what their preferences are.

 

Anyway, I am heading out to the church (a glorious old church in the old part of Stockholm) this weekend to do some recon, they also want to take their portrait shots in the old part of the city (we are talking buildings from the 15th century, narrow streets not fit for cars but for horse and carriage kinda deal) and it could create some awesome shots if I do it right. The church is stunning and i so look forward to this job...https://www.google.c...iw=1680&bih=963


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#16 Gisele

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Posted 10 September 2013 - 09:19 AM

Wow - that church is beautiful! 



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#17 Livia Kropf DeBonet

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Posted 13 September 2013 - 06:03 AM

The one thing I would add is "make a list." List of shots, and specially detail shots you want to do ( bride's shoes, dress, bouquet, the rings etc.) The bride/groom can add to the list (they will tell u who are their important people who need to be in plenty it photographs). You carry around in your pocket and literally and use to check that u are getting everything. I've only done two (friends) weddings - the first without a list and the second with a list - it totally helped. :)

#18 Tony Northrup

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Posted 13 September 2013 - 08:52 AM

The one thing I would add is "make a list." List of shots, and specially detail shots you want to do ( bride's shoes, dress, bouquet, the rings etc.) The bride/groom can add to the list (they will tell u who are their important people who need to be in plenty it photographs). You carry around in your pocket and literally and use to check that u are getting everything. I've only done two (friends) weddings - the first without a list and the second with a list - it totally helped. :)

 

Like the ones at the end of Stunning Digital Photography Chapter 7 :D


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#19 Nancy Tardiff

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Posted 18 September 2013 - 03:05 PM

I am the second shooter for my step daughter's wedding on September 28th. I also will be primarily responsible for the pics of the pre-wedding shots of the bride and bridesmaids I am nervous as there is a lot riding on this. As I am also part of the family though I am thinking that I can have a much more intimate approach to some of the pics. Other than taking sentimental shots for friends' weddings, I really have very little wedding photography experience so this will be a challenge but one that I am looking forward to nonetheless! Everyone in this forum has such good advice! Wish me luck! (And thank-you, thank-you, thank-you Tony for your book!)
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#20 Bartholomew

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Posted 22 September 2013 - 08:22 PM

I commend you for taking the leap forward, I hope I will be able to do the same one day. With that said, I'm sure you will do fine, obviously you have done your homework and I'm sure things will fall in the right place. I can't really give you much advice on weddings, but I know one rule that applies to pretty much everything in general 'Keep calm & cool' if you find yourself in a jam 'regroup & collect yourself keep on shooting.' Best of luck, and keep us posted looking forward to the pictures  :) 


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