Saturday, June 7, 2008

000 - Intro to Weddings for Beginners

Weddings... for some photographerss they can be magical, exciting and fun, yet to some others, they are stressful, draining, beyond difficult. For all though, it is always extremely challenging to do CORRECTLY.

With the vast availability of of digital cameras out there, and the millions of conflicting opinions between experienced shooters and beginner photographers, I made this blog to try to accomplish two goals. The first is to clear up some myths and misconceptions that anyone with a camera and a finger to press the shutter with, can be a wedding photographer. The second is to try to offer some advice to the budding photographer that wants to take pictures at a wedding, so that they have some nice results.

Let me be clear right from the start... if you are here, and you are a beginner, you will not have results anywhere near that of a professional. If your reason for being here is to become the primary photographer at your brother's, sister's best friend, uncle's, or thrice removed cousin's wedding, don't fool yourself, your results will not be as good as a pro. Indeed, I encourage you to not undertake such a task as the primary photographer. Request that they hire a pro. If you care about the couple, and want them to have the pictures that they deserve to have on this unique, unrepeatable, SPECIAL day... leave it to the professionals.
A wedding is a very dynamic fast-paced event that happens ONCE and cannot be repeated. It is strongly recommended that a beginner NOT undertake this task. The results will be potentially disappointing for everyone, and you will not be doing right by the bride and groom... for whom this event will NOT be captured properly and it may become as serious as having legal action brought against you if you thought you may have wanted to try to test yourself in this scenario.
As a beginner, you are NOT as good as an experienced professional and to expect that your results will be even in the same ballpark as that of an experienced professional is fooling yourself. Let's place both feet firmly in reality and help you get the best shots that you can, ok? Just be sure that you are not the main or primary photographer... please, leave that to the professionals.
Want to shoot photos at a wedding and you are not the main shooter, but still want to do well? You've come to the right place.

Now, a little about me:
I am not a professional, I do not pretend to be one. To date, I have shot as a secondary photographer at four weddings. Though it is far from enough to consider myself a professional (which I have no desire to ever become), it does give me enough real world experience to comment about how a beginner may get better results.

The MAIN reason I do this is less for others, because it is mostly for me. You see, I am doing this as a personal project becuase I love photography and love the challenge. In no other aspect of photography outside of a wedding photography business are you obligated to have the skills of:

- an experienced and accomplished professional photographer
- the expertise of a psychologist
- the abilities of a customer service expert
- the abilities of an accomplished public speaker
- the intensive completeness of a notary
- the abilities of a highly experienced business person
- the abilities of a marketing expert
- the abilities of a graphics design expert
- the creativity of Leonardo DaVinci
- the abilities of a paralegal or possibly a lawyer
- the abilities of an IT technician
- and likely a hundred other skills that I cannot recall off-hand
These talents are just what I see that it takes to become successful in this field as a professional.

Finally... this blog is a work in process, I will be adding and changing it as time permits. If this is something that interests you, come back now and then to see what new pages I have added. If not, don't come back, simple as that.

That said, I hope you enjoy this little pet project of mine and that it helps you out.


Next: The Equipment