Wedding Photography for Novices: How to Photo a Wedding

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I’m very eager to impart this to you, a full outline, in the background portrayal of what goes on, the enjoyment stuff, the upsetting stuff, what should be readied and fundamentally only an extremely marvelous rundown of the entire day, begin to end.

Weddings are a genuine issue, the genuine article and you don’t get any fresh opportunities. That is the reason you should be arranged, composed and know your stuff!

Along these lines, we should put things in place: you have booked the wedding a year back, normally spoke with the couple consistently, had a pre wedding meeting to experience the course of events of the day and every single other detail (I’ll experience this in detail in another post), and now the opportunity has arrived, tomorrow is the wedding day!…

Day before the Wedding:

There is a tad of work that should be done before the big day, not much, yet simply enough so you can wake up tranquil and prepared to shake here is a little agenda that I do the day preceding Each wedding!

  • Content the lady of the hour revealing to her that I am so eager to shoot her wedding and essentially simply checking in (so she knows I’m 100% coming!).
  • Accumulate all my rigging and ensure camera batteries are charging, streak batteries are charging, rapidly clean my focal points and clear the entirety of my cards.
  • Twofold check the calendar and revive my memory about where I’m going and what I’m doing. Nowadays 99% of the time I discover I have just taken shots at the areas or settings so this doesn’t require a lot of prep, yet some time ago I used to do a recce and plan out the entire shoot, shot by shot, present by present.
  • Check the GPS so I realize to what extent it takes me to find a workable pace goal. I constantly prefer to shake up 5 mins ahead of schedule as I feel it just sets me up for a magnificent day!
  • Ensure the vehicle has oil in it. I don’t care for worrying about this on shoot day.

Morning of the Wedding:

You have woken up, overly energized and it’s an ideal opportunity to get going! I ordinarily start the day with an enormous breakfast to save me as full as feasible for whatever length of time that conceivable. Everybody is unique, yet I can get genuinely ‘hangry’ when I don’t eat and can get somewhat cantankerous! So on that note, I Continually Welcome Nourishment WITH ME on the day. I meet such huge numbers of picture takers and videographers that don’t eat the entire day and I genuinely don’t have the foggiest idea how they work! As I’m going around the entire day on high alarm and high vitality, I like to touch the entire day while driving among areas and remain hydrated.

Alright, time to get going! Last agenda before we are on our way:

  • Apparatus is stuffed and in the vehicle. Twofold watch that everything is there and batteries and cards are back in the camera pack not as yet charging in the house!
  • Lunch is pressed and in the esky!
  • Dressed to intrigue, looking proficient prepared for a wedding. Imaging yourself as a visitor, ensure you dress the part! In my organization, no pants, shirts or whatever else that looks messy. You’re speaking to yourself and your image, ensure you look great!
  • Ensure you have all your administrative work. I utilize a stunning cloud based studio journal framework called Tave. Genuinely couldn’t maintain my business without it (progressively about that in another post)

Alright, gives up!

Husband to be Inclusion (45 mins – 60 minutes)

It’s a great opportunity to put my game face on and nail the man of the hour inclusion. The subsequent I stroll in the entryway, I’m grinning, I acquaint myself with everybody (sensibly speaking, some huge European weddings may have 50+ visitors as of now partying!!), ensure the man of the hour is cheerful and loose, and begin building compatibility with everybody significant, inc Mum, Father and marriage party. A large portion of the activity is ensuring everybody likes you and feels good around you. On the off chance that you can nail that, at that point taking the photos will be sooo a lot simpler!

I quickly simply need to address what to shoot, however I will likewise expound on this in a future post. In spite of the fact that photography is an extremely inventive industry and a few picture takers like to simply ‘take a blind leap of faith’ on the day, I for one prefer to adhere to an unmistakable, methodical shot rundown that I’ve created to ensure every one of my bases are secured and nothing significant is overlooked. Particularly on the grounds that 9 out of multiple times I’m shooting to make a wedding collection, so I have to ensure I have the inclusion so I can fill the collection and ideally more.

In this way, back to it, I generally start with the subtleties, rings, sleeve buttons and so forth. This gives personal time to relax, suss out the environment and gives the young men some additional opportunity to prepare. When the subtleties are done, I locate the prettiest room in the house with the best lighting and least interruptions out of sight (picture taker with their back to a window) and the enjoyment starts! More or less I generally shoot the accompanying:

Regular Light Shooting Inside (again more often than not with my back to a window)

This article is geared toward individuals who already have a basic knowledge of working with SLR cameras and want to try out the bird’s eye vantage point. There are many books out there filled with a lot of great information on this subject, but as with anything else, all of this information can seem daunting and keep newbie aerial photographers from taking their first flights. My goal here is to compress all of the critical information into a quick start guide that will get you up in the air and taking great shots in no time.

Generally the biggest obstacle that gets in the way of taking good aerial photographs for a beginner is proper positioning in the sky for the subject matter. Most of the rules of good photography that apply on the ground are the same from an airplane, so it isn’t necessarily camera settings or composition that will trip you up. It’s placing yourself in the opportune position in a 3D environment that will make the difference between a keeper and a throw-away. You will quickly learn while looking through the lens what is going to be a great frame, but it can come upon you quick and the next thing you know you’ve missed it. Getting into that exact positioning again can be extremely elusive and frustrating.

Achieving “spatial success” starts with proper planning on the ground. The first decision you will need to make that can influence the outcome greatly is what aircraft you will use. If you are in a rural location, most likely you will be choosing between a Cessna 152 or 172. If in or near a city, then a Robinson R-22 helicopter will be on the list. Shooting from a helicopter will increase your chances of getting good shots, most of the time. The exception to this is in situations where you want to shoot large areas from high altitudes. The R-22 is one of the least powerful helicopters around, so it can take a long time to climb to a high altitude, and once at that altitude it will take a lot of time to move to different positions. At around $300 an hour, this will quickly rack up a large bill. But this is really the only disadvantage (albeit a pretty big one) to using a helicopter over an airplane. The most economical way to go is the trusty Cessna 152, at $100 an hour, or less. Only go for the pricier 172 if you need more space in the cockpit, which you might.

The next important pre-flight item is to arrive at the FBO (Fixed Based Operator) on the airport at least 30 minutes early. You need time to sit down with the pilot and get on the same page as him or her before things start happening quickly in the cockpit. I cannot emphasize the importance of this step enough. Most pilots have not flown aerial photography missions before, and although they will most likely be excited to work with you, they need to understand ahead of time the uniqueness of your requirements. Just getting you directly over the location is far from enough. Spend 15 minutes talking with the pilot while you sit in the left seat of the airplane on the ground, simulating how you will be working with your camera. Ask to be in the left seat because it is much more comfortable to turn to the left with the camera than to the right (you will have a better chance of the pilot accommodating this request if they are a flight instructor and used to flying from the right seat).

The first thing you will notice is the challenge of shooting around the wing and wheel of the aircraft, while leaning out the window (which needs to have the limiting arm removed with a screwdriver…very important). Have the pilot take the seat for a moment and look through the lens to understand this challenge. It is important for the pilot to have a mental picture of this, because they have a lot of control over placing the clear shooting space directly in line with your target at the correct angle. It isn’t enough to just get the airplane in a stable bank and circle the target, which is what pilots are trained to do. You will be asking your pilot to fly “actively”, constantly banking, pitching and yawing the aircraft to accommodate your clear shooting window. Of course, your stomach’s tolerance for this type of maneuvering might be the limiting factor, but that’s why barf bags are always available! The final note on this topic is to firmly establish your form of communication such that the pilot quickly understands what you are asking him or her to do, whether you use hand signals (recommended since there will be a lot of wind noise coming through your headset microphone as you lean out the window) or verbal cues.

If you have taken the time to properly formulate a game plan with the pilot, the flight should be fairly stress free and a great experience. Most likely you will be going for wide landscape shots in this first flight, as opposed to zoomed in shots of architecture. Your most dynamic photos will come from having the pilot fly at the lowest possible altitude that will still accommodate your subject framing. This adds depth to the photo by keeping the horizon in the shot. You will immediately realize the challenge of getting the horizon you want with the wing in the way. This is where you need to have efficient communication with the pilot to get the wing lifted at the exact moment you see your shot angle coming into place. The pilot cannot keep the wing up for very long, as the plane is turning this whole time. One trick in the pilot’s bag that can alleviate this is what’s called a “slip”…request one and you will quickly understand its value. The key is to experiment and not be afraid to ask the pilot for what might seem impossible. They will most certainly be excited to be trying something new (within safe limits of course!).

Ok, I know you are wondering about lenses and camera settings. For this first go, the standard “kit” lens with any SLR body will be just fine. Since you do not need to worry about depth of field, simply shoot at the fastest shutter speed your lens can accommodate. Normal exposure setting is fine and you will need to do some post-process tweaking of this. Go with 400 ISO to give you more shutter speed. A lot of aerial photographers like to set manual focus and tape the lens to infinity, but auto focus works great with today’s cameras.

I feel this is enough information to get you started in aerial photography and give you a decent chance of landing with some good photos. The in-flight tips I have given assume you will be in a Cessna. If you are in a helicopter, you do not need to worry about any of those points. You will have no obstructions to shoot around (but also no door to give you that extra feeling of security) and the pilot will naturally fly at a very low level. Shooting from a helicopter is the ultimate experience if you are willing to pony up the extra bucks. Just be sure to dress warm!

  • Subtleties
  • Young men preparing
  • Combos with groomsmen and people
  • Invest a smidgen of energy getting representations of the husband to be
  • A ‘cheers’ arrangement with some lager, scotch or whatever their toxic substance!
  • Family shots, every single diverse combo

Video Light Shooting Inside (close the blinds, turn off the roof lights and make some state of mind)

  • Fun shots of the considerable number of young men attempting to be cool!
  • Pictures of the lucky man


  • Strolling shots
  • All the more senseless combos having a fabulous time
  • If there is time I will likewise pull out my Elinchrom Quadra and take some business/design style shots as well

Business Tip This may appear as though a great deal yet like I said before, more often than not I’m structuring a wedding collection and in a perfect world each new scene is an extra twofold page spread in their wedding collection, and in a perfect world once more, ideally the pictures are so strangely amazing that they couldn’t in any way, shape or form expel them from their collection! From a business perspective, we have 10 scenes here, so simply the man of the hour inclusion could fill 20 pages of their wedding collection (increasingly about this in a future post)

Lady of the hour Inclusion (60 minutes – 1.5 hours)

The magnificence of shooting the lady of the hour inclusion is that it is fundamentally the same as the husband to be inclusion. 80% of similar principles apply aside from the pictures will be more brilliant, progressively bright and somewhat more lively. Keep in mind – huge grins on appearance, trailed by presentations, building affinity and making everybody your closest companion!

As in the past, I generally start with the detail shots (wedding band, blossoms, shoes and so on) which gives personal time to unwind and figure out my environment and gives the young ladies time to complete the process of cushioning around with the last contacts of hair and make-up.

A little stunt I like to use at the young ladies house is to do a ton of the photography in the main room. It’s normally sufficiently bright, has enough space, is spotless and gives me a decent setting for representations as well. The best part is that I can close the entryway and keep every other person out while I get somebody on one time with the young ladies and can get all the shots I need without interruptions!

To separate the shots, I essentially follow a similar system as the young men inclusion

Common Light in the main room (in a perfect world with my back to a window)

  • Subtleties on the bed or end table
  • Young ladies helping the lady of the hour prepare
  • Combos of the lady of the hour with her bridesmaids and people as well
  • Get some wonderful pictures of the lady of the hour close to the window and on the bed

Normal Light in the parlor (once more, in a perfect world with my back to a window)

  • A ‘cheers’ arrangement with some champagne
  • Family shots, every single diverse combo

Video Light Shooting Inside (close the draperies, turn off the roof lights and make some state of mind)

  • In the event that I have time I attempt to do a couple of more representations of the lady of the hour with video lighting. It gives the lady of the hour more assortment and increases the value of the general shoot when you convey the pictures.

That basically covers the lady of the hour inclusion, so it’s an ideal opportunity to take off, eat some grub, re-hydrate and advance toward the service!


I prefer not to begin a negative, however I need to let you know, considerably following 10 years this is one piece of the day that can even now be somewhat unpleasant. On the off chance that the wedding is across the board setting, at that point it’s never an issue, however on the off chance that it’s a city wedding and there is a huge drive required from the ladies house to the function, I’m frequently a little stressed over traffic, stopping and finding a workable pace before the lady of the hour! Fortunately this has never occurred at this point, yet there have been times that I have been late a direct result of traffic yet then the lady of the hour was as well, so I pulled off it!

Along these lines, back to work. We are partially during that time and this is a segment that I believe I can loosen up a piece. What occurs at the service is thoroughly out of my hands and out of my control so my activity is basically to simply catch what goes on as well as could be expected. Aside from being actually testing as chapels are famous for being dim and yellow, I think that its enjoyment, and consistently love hearing the couple say their promises, particularly in the event that they make them up themselves.

Some key shots to arrive are:

  • Lady of the hour strolling in and practically more significantly the husbands to be response!
  • A decent wide edge shot of the congregation from the back.
  • Close up of every one of them saying their pledges.
  • On the off chance that you can get it, get a nearby (with a long focal point) of the rings going on the finger
  • Watch out for the guardians, on the off chance that they shed a tear, ensure you get it!
  • THE KISS! In 10 years of shooting I have just missed the kiss once! It simply happened to so rapidly and unannounced and was over before my camera even gotten an opportunity to center! I investigated at the videographer who was remaining by me with as the blood depleted from my face and he just gave me a major grin, he messaged me a still from the video the following day! Near calamity!
  • Get a few shots of the marking
  • Finally, I love exiting (in reverse) with the lady of the hour and husband to be going for shots as they stroll through the cheering group.

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