Saturday, January 9, 2010

Get the Job Done: First wedding of 2010!

This afternoon, myself and three other assistant photographers, will be shooting my studio's first wedding of the new decade! After attending last night's dress rehearsal at the Tuscan-inspired Bella Sera Event Center in Brighton, I can't tell you how excited I am to shoot Jack and Patience's wedding in such a fantastic venue.

Sweeping staircases. The glow of multiple lighted Christmas trees. Darkened wood and stained concrete floors. This place is filled so many different backdrops, textures and lighting that it should make for some amazing photos.

If you remember, Patience is the cousin of Harriet, whose wedding I shot last May. Harriet's referral and vote of confidence in my work helped me secure Patience's trust as well as her contract. I felt so much pride and honor to have relatives walk up to me last night and shake my hand and say "you do great work!" It's that kind of confidence that makes me want to do an even greater job. Here is a shot of Harriet below, as well as a shot of Harriet and her new husband Peter above.

One of the most difficult things to consider regarding this wedding is placement of photographers to capture the event from as many angles as possible. One photographer will be placed at the bottom of the two staircases where the wedding party will be walking down and moving in front of the altar. Once the party is in place, these two photographers will be responsible for shooting tight shots of the ring exchange, kiss, family members. etc. One photographer will be placed in an overhead balcony to get scene setting shots and capture the moment of the bride walking down the stairs, hopefully with a wide angle big enough to get her and the audience watching her decent. And another photographer will be on the ground circling the audience and shooting from the rear since the bride and groom will be facing the audience. This is unusual because all the other ceremonies I've covered had the bride and groom's back to the audience.

As a side note, the videographers and I coordinated where everyone will be so that each set of professionals will have the space they need to do their work. I couldn't believe it when the lead videographer told me that she spent her last wedding fighting with a photographer who had no regard for her work, standing completely in front of her camera on numerous occasions to make sure he got his shot. I think that kind of behavior is unnecessary, and that photographer can be sure he won't be getting a referral from the videographer. Photographers have to realize that they aren't the only vendor involved in making this day a success for the bride and groom. It's important to carve out relationships with the caterer, the DJ, the wedding coordinator, the event space managers, the officiant -- anybody who can later vouch for your business and you for theirs. It's about mutual respect.

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