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Old Feb 1, 2010, 11:31 AM   #1
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Default Saturdays Wedding

A close friend of my Daughter got married on Saturday. Neither the Bride nor Grooms family provided any financial support for the couple, so their wedding was done on a shoestring budget.

"Shoestring" included an aspiring young photographer who provided his services for free, Free because this was his third wedding shoot and he is trying to build experience so that he can pursue Wedding Photography as a business and source of income.

My daughter asked me to take some photos of the wedding using her K100D and kit lens. I, of course, agreed. (More on the K100D, lens and built in flash later.)


since I didn't want to interfere with the young man who had been contracted as the "Photographer", I sought him out, explained that I too would be taking some photos. But, if in any way, I was in his way or hindering his shooting that he was to let me know and tell me to get the "H" out of the way. He said, "Oh, it won't be any problem and you won't be in my way."

Well, I thought, this kid isn't going to get much done as the "Photographer". And, I was right.

He not only let me get in his way, but he let about 20 people with P&S cameras get in his way. I learned a lot about how "not" to do wedding photography on Saturday watching this kid. He should have taken control but he did not.

If I ever decide to do a wedding, I'm sure I'll make some of the same mistakes, but I sure learned a lot.

Now, the K100D and Built in Flash.

The wedding was not in a church and there was no prohibition on using flash.
Without reservation, I can tell you that the K100D is a great camera. I can also tell you that the 18-55 kit lens, for wedding photography, is just slightly better than useless. And, I can tell you that using the built in flash amounted to just barely more than having no flash at all. My Daughter insisited that I use her camera for the wedding.

I can hardly wait to see the results of the photos I took compared with the photos the "Photographer" took. I have a feeling that my shots, even with the limitations of the Camera, Lens and flash, will probably be as good, if not better than thos of the "Photographer".
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Old Feb 1, 2010, 11:55 AM   #2
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aspiring young photographer who provided his services for free, Free because this was his third wedding shoot and he is trying to build experience so that he can pursue Wedding Photography as a business and source of income.
this kind of thing is always prelude to disaster.
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Old Feb 1, 2010, 1:02 PM   #3
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A few years ago I did my son's wedding with my K100D and 18-55mm kit lens. The only other lens I had was the Da 50-200mm which I didn't use and regret that. I did have the 360 flash, but didn't know how to use it.

The wedding ceremony was outside so these didn't come out too bad:







Indoors was another story -
Should have bounced the flash on this one.



But this one didn't come out too bad:



I agree with what you said, I learned a lot.

Look forward to seeing yours.

Jim
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Old Feb 1, 2010, 1:27 PM   #4
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this kind of thing is always prelude to disaster.
The free part or the "aspiring photographer" part? My wedding was shot for free, however it was a retired wedding photographer doing the work, not an aspiring one.
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Old Feb 1, 2010, 1:32 PM   #5
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The free part or the "aspiring photographer" part? My wedding was shot for free, however it was a retired wedding photographer doing the work, not an aspiring one.
not quite the same

more the part where the guy thinks by shooting weddings for free and without experience, rather than apprenticing with a knowledgeable/experienced wedding photographer to show him how its done and ensure good results for the couple, is the best way towards his career aspirations......
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Old Feb 1, 2010, 1:46 PM   #6
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Wedding photography is not easy. As you correctly noted, a wedding photog has to have a command of the situation and be able to direct, coordinate and be assertive. They also have to have an artistic vision for what is an interesting photo. Lots of people can take sharp, well exposed images. Not all such images are very interesting to look at. There-in lies the major difference between a general photographer taking photos at a wedding and a wedding photographer.

In the end I would always caution a person against using a family member that is NOT an experienced wedding photographer. Why? Because - at least when you are unhappy with a stranger's "free" work there is no damage to family relationships. But when the family member is taking the 'official' photos - the 'photographer' is likely to think their shots are great. When the couple doesn't agree I think it's detrimental. Sure, they'll say the right things in public but in private they'll always hold the 'poor shots' against the family member.

It's great to augment the 'official' shots with family member shots. But taking over official duties for a family member's wedding is probably a bad idea IMO.

As for the OP's specific scenario - it's a shame they couldn't afford a photographer. As to the 'new guy' trying to learn by doing for free - my advice to someone wanting to go that route would be to seek out photogs in their area that are true wedding shooters and inquire about being an assistant. That way you can learn the management, posing, directorship aspects as well as get some experience taking photos. Just my opinion, YMMV.
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Old Feb 3, 2010, 8:39 PM   #7
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Have to agree with John G-my partner & I have been doing weddings for about (5) years-he had been doing them by himself for (20) years.
He definintely has command of the situation and it really takes at least two photographers to do it right. It is getting extremely difficult to make any money-a lot of couples will have "Uncle Harry" do the photography because he has a fancy digital camera. We offer other options such as shooting the rehearsal (which also benefits us) and shooting the bride getting ready at the salon or hotel. We do about 8-10 weddings a year which is plenty for part time. I still use my old Ist DS with the AF500 FTZ flash & the Gary Fong Lighsphere-can hold it's own with any of the newer camera's.
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