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Old Nov 20, 2005, 3:14 PM   #11
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Oh, I forgot my biggest warning.
Make sure to talk to them ahead of time and set expectations. It is better to impress them than let them down. You'll be surprised how many people will see you with a good camera (good is in their eyes, so any DSLR is "good") and assume that you will take good pictures.

Make sure you talk with both the bride and groom. They might say that don't care and are happy with anything, but they are probably lieing. Maybe not conciously, but they are. People often have huge expectations with wedding shots and they just "hope" you can do it... and when you don't they are unhappy/annoyed. You need to avoid this by talking with them up front. I've heard that the bride is more often the one with higher expectations... so make sure to talk with her too.

I agree that you should have fun... but if you really want to do it well, you'll find that you're not really apart of the wedding. You're on the outside looking in, watching and observing. It won't be as much fun as being there, but if you pull it off they'll love you forever for it.

I like aladyforty's comment about the throw away cameras. It is a great idea, definitely do it! It could save your butt, or enhance your album. Either way it won't hurt and it costs sooooo little.

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Old Nov 21, 2005, 10:26 PM   #12
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Hi Crash331,

A friend of a friend asked if I would takepictures of her wedding. She begged and I made it clear I was not a professional.They could not afford a photographer.Go for the challenge take a lot of pictures, you will get plenty good ones. Make sure you have charged and extra batteries. I use rechargeable batteriesfor my external flashand by the end of the day I went through two sets. Luckily I had freshbatteries. I took about 350 pictures and shot in RAW and JPEG. RAW if so forgiving. I had several memory cards with me a 1GB,2GB and 512 MB. I did post processing, Ihad to add light and adjust WBto some of theChurchpictures and dance floor pictures (the room was dark). In the church Ihad to increase my exposure compensation and ISO during the ceremony. Make sure you change your settings to the lighting conditions. For example we went outside so I removed the exposure compensation and reduced my ISO, etc. Yes, things go fast but you need to jump in and take command.I won't lie I was nervous. I agree the group shots may be difficult with your lens. I used my 18-70 Nikon kit lens. I went to the church before the wedding to check out the lighting and took some pictures, that was very helpful for me. You need to find out if they allow flash during the ceremony. To me the church pictures were the hardest, getting the wedding party going down the asle and the bride and groom at the alter. After the ceremony I felt pretty comfortable doing what I love to do, take pictures. I had fun.The bride and groom were very happy with the pictures. Good Luck.

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Old Nov 22, 2005, 3:26 PM   #13
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Here's another tip. For each major point to the wedding shoot a close up, a medium shot, and a long shot, if possible. For example, with the ceremony, shoot a close up of the hands putting on the ring, a medium shot of the bride and groom doing that, and a long shot including some of the people attending. Do the close up and medium shot before or after the real ceremony. Do the same thing with the cake cutting etc. You do not have to shoot things as they happen -- you can re-enact or pre-enact. I always shoot the goodbye shots well before they leave. For the throwing of the bouquet, I shoot a close up of the bride holding the bouquet in front of her ready to throw. Then I have her throw the bouquet straight up and shoot it in the air before she catches it herself. My last shot is the real toss, but the camera is pointed at the ladies catching so I can get them doing it.

Good luck
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Old Nov 29, 2005, 10:05 PM   #14
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DBB wrote:
Here's some professional advice...:G

You're doing this for free for your Uncles Wedding?

Lighten up - Lighten up and have a good time. Take as many pictures as you want, while you're celebrating and enjoying the wedding! If you're Uncle is not a fool, then he knows who you are and what you can do

I'll agree with Dave on this one. You've been asked to do something for basically nothing, so I'm sure (at least I HOPE) that no one has unreal expecations out of you. What was suggested earlier is a good idea about going to the venue ahead of time to take some test shots.

It doesn't hurt to have a flash diffuser of some sort handy to soften the external flash unit under closer shots. Here's a site I found that shows a handy list of different types ( I use a Stoffen type ): http://www.pbase.com/john_down_under/flash_diffusers

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Old Nov 29, 2005, 10:17 PM   #15
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I shot my brother's wedding in September. Some of the shots were great (according to the newlyweds and their parents), some some were ok, and some were not so hot.

My advice is simple:

1. Stay relaxed (as an earlier respondent said). Nobody can expect pro quality pics. If they do, it's their problem, not yours.

2. Make sure your camera battery (batteries) is (are) charged fully. If possible, have a charged spare or two ready.

3. Make sure that you have enough memory.

4. Take lots of pictures.

You're doing a nice thing for a family member. Give yourself a pat on the back and don't try to be perfect.

Good luck!
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