I've been receiving a lot of emails from photographers that are new to the business, asking for tips and tricks to help their first wedding go smoothly! Here are my top 5 tips for new wedding photographers shooting their first wedding!
1) Create a list of shots!
When shooting your first wedding, you will not have enough experience or knowledge to turn up to a wedding without a detailed plan of the shots that you need to take for the client. After a few weddings, this becomes second nature as you get into the flow of things, but on day 1 you need to set up a list of shots you are going to take so that you don't miss anything important.
Some of the MANY Important shots include:
- Ring photos
- Bride and Groom getting ready
- Bride walking down the aisle
- The ceremonial kiss
- Signing the wedding documents
- The first dance
- Family photos
Make sure to keep a list of all the essential shots that you need to take, and tick them off the list as you go along.
2) The Mother of the bride probably knows everyone!
Running around organising a crowd of people to take family photos, whilst simultaneously taking the family photos, can be a logistical nightmare! It is likely that the Mother of the bride knows almost everybody at the wedding, so she may be a fantastic asset when trying to headhunt for important members of the bridal party or wedding attendees, when shooting family portraits!
Don't be shy when asking her to find people for you, she will almost certainly be happy to help.
3) Scout the location before the wedding
In the wedding photography business, preparation is key! Spending an hour or two at the location before the wedding, can save you a lot of time on the day. Having a feel for the location you are shooting will make you much more efficient, and will also reflect positively in your work as well.
If the location is at a private venue which you are not able to scout without permission, discussing a time to check out the location before the wedding is a good excuse to network with other vendors!
4) Shoot on silent mode
It's important to remember that you are shooting a couple's special day. You do not want to ruin their ceremony with an annoying and obtrusive *click click click* every few seconds! Consider setting your camera to a silent-shooting mode to avoid irritating your customers.
5) Don't be shy
Following from point 4, sometimes it is better to be in the way and to get a fantastic shot, than to hide in the back of the wedding and miss a special moment! I always discuss with the bride and groom whether they will allow me to get up close and personal during the ceremony. Although you may seem a little obtrusive to the audience, being allowed freedom in your movements during the ceremony will allow you to take the best shots possible!
I hope this article was helpful, and I wish the best of luck to you on your next wedding shoot!