Do not show up at the wedding photography shoot empty handed.
Bring a few props along. The wedding day is a very busy day. Once you come in, you will not really have much in the way of things in coming out in case you did not pack something you needed. You will not have enough time for you to get everything you need once you get to the wedding venue. One of the things that you can bank on that will always pull you through the day would have to be props that you bring along with you during your wedding photo shoot. A few props here and there could never hurt and might actually help you out a lot. You will need a decorative hanger that photographs well. You will be able to use this for when you are showcasing the bridal dress before it will be put on by the bride. You will need a large empty frame that the couple and the rest of the other wedding guests can play around with. There are a lot of props that you can bring in. there is always something new in craft sites like Pinterest and the like.
Get acquainted with your camera like the back of your hand.
You do not have time to mess around with wedding photography. You have all the time in the world to get some kind of technical background about your camera. Do your best to get through with that during your downtime. You will not have the same kind of free time to figure things out while you are in the middle of a wedding photo shoot so it will save you a lot of time if you do not end up having to fumble over the settings and the modes because you did not figure it out to begin with when you had the chance.
Attend the rehearsal no matter what happens.
This will serve as your dry run for the main wedding photography event. The rehearsal is a one-time deal that you should never pass up. It is the perfect opportunity for you to be able to get acquainted with the main people involved in the wedding party and ceremony. Anyone and everyone who matters are usually in the rehearsal dinner or party so this is your chance to get them to know you and to make them comfortable enough to not mind being photographed by you. This will make your photos so much better once the actual event is under way.
Talk to the bridesmaids.
Give them some pointers on how they should pose for the pictures when they march down the aisle. Bridesmaids are pretty aware of what they will have to do already but it still helps a lot if they get some kind of reminder. Talk to them and walk them through on how the whole thing will go down. They need to know the sequence, the timing, and so on but more importantly, they will not to know how to carry themselves in the process.
Try to back up a bit and keep your distance if you want to get great looking pictures.
Wedding photography is all about learning how to get out of the way when it is most crucial. There will be a lot of moments during the wedding wherein your presence will not always be appreciated if you are a little too visible. Learn how to identify when these moments are. More often than not, wedding photographers are not allowed to use flash or be right next to the altar during the solemn wedding ceremony. There will also be other moments during the wedding wherein you will have to stay back a little from the people you are photographing so that you can draw out really natural looking facial expressions. Try to take note of this rule of thumb. Whenever you start seeing disinterested facial expressions on the people that you are taking photos of, keep a good enough distance from them and you will start to see their expressions change.
Ask the couple who booked you for the wedding photography gig if there is any way they can get you in touch with a key player in their wedding; like maybe a maid of honor or the best man, or even the wedding planner if they hired one. The couple will not be all too available to answer any of your concerns or questions during the wedding. You have to remember the fact that the wedding is all about them. They may not always be as available as you would like them to be. Ask the couple for a contact person that you can get in touch with. This person will need to be a key player during the wedding. He will need to know enough about the wedding to actually make some decisions on the spot if he needs to.
You will come across some problems when it comes to taking pictures of the wedding dress.
You will need to get a handle on that one way or the other if you do not want to end up disappointing the bride with unappealing photos of the said dress. The wedding dress may be a bit problematic to take pictures of because the camera sees it differently. It tends to see a bright spot where the wedding dress is. The camera will try to automatically adjust it making it look like it is being dulled out. It will not look pretty for the pictures and the bride will end becoming very disappointed with the outcome. Fix this problem easily through some positive exposure compensation.
Work on getting yourself a second camera no matter what happens.
You will need it as insurance for your wedding photography shoot. If your camera breaks down in the middle of you covering a wedding photography event and you do not have a spare one to cover up for it, you end up ruining the entire wedding photography gig for your clients. Borrow or lease one out until you can afford to buy one.
Ask the couple for a person other than themselves to be your official communiqué during the wedding photography event.
Your clients will not always be available to answer any questions that you might have once the wedding has started and is well under way. The only way to get things sorted out would be if you are able to set up and prepare everything ahead of time. Foresight is everything when it comes to this particular kind of industry. If you get some kind of contact other than the couple who can help you all throughout the event, then that would be the perfect solution for you. You will need to have some sign offs, just to make sure that things are still pretty much in check and that everything is going well as planned.
A true wedding photography pro knows the value of sticky tape to a photo shoot.
The little things may not seem like they will get to matter much but until you get to the point wherein you have exactly what you need under the same circumstances, it can really save the day for you. Sticky tape is one of the most useful items that you could ever get your hands on. Most of the wedding tailors are not very particular with the hemming of the pants, the dresses, and so on and so forth. Photo emergencies can happen all of the time. Sticky tape can be the perfect meantime solution if you need a temporary quick fix for any clothing problems that you may come across with.
Leave a little room for the fun things.
Wedding photography does not always have to be so structured and stiff. Although you need to come up with some kind of schedule or timeline for the images that you will need to take, you should bring in some kind of leeway in between. Give some spare time for the little spontaneous events that can happen during the wedding. Although things are planned out, there will be interesting and adorable little unplanned moments in between. Those are things that you should keep an eye out for because they can turn out to be really great for the photos that you take one way or the other. These candid moments bring in the natural and personal touches in the photos that you take and the clients will really get to appreciate for noticing.
Let the kids be kids and let them be themselves.
It will bring you great looking pictures. These moments should be under the unplanned events one way or the other. Kids will always try to have fun every now and then and they might disrupt the events as things happen on the side but that is not something that you should stress over. Kids in general are pretty alluring. Their innocence and charm translate well in the photographs and those are things that you should bank on when the right time comes. They will try to play around and mess around a little. Be there to document the moments as they happen.
Always scout the wedding venue well ahead of time.
Wedding photography is all about the preparations. This is something that deserves to be mentioned again and again. Visit the wedding venue a few days before the wedding takes place and try to familiarize yourself with the location as much as possible. Take in the landscape and do some practice shots. Visit the place at about the same time of the day that the wedding is happening. You will be able to take in the lighting situation better if you visit at the same time of the day. Lighting is crucial during a wedding photo shoot especially if the venue is set outdoors. It is very important for you to do the practice shots as much as possible. This is also the perfect opportunity for you to make the bride and groom feel comfortable with getting their pictures taken by you at some point or so. You can package it as an engagement shoot. The couple will not be able to thank you enough for the extra service that you will be able to put in one way or the other.
Bridesmaids play a very important role during the bridal march.
Make sure that you spend extra time to get them excited for the wedding photography side of things. Bridesmaids need to make sure that they are able to really smile, walk slowly, and do the rest of those things that will help you make the photos turn out great. This should be something that comes without saying but it is still quite surprising how a lot of bridesmaids miss out on crucial detail. This is the main reason why you should talk them through it. Give them all of the useful tips that they could benefit from one way or the other.
Attend the rehearsal no matter what happens.
It’s good practice for when you get to the real wedding photography event. The rehearsal is the perfect opportunity for you to get to know the people that you will be taking photos of during the wedding. Try to be amiable and talk to them. Make them feel comfortable around you. You do not have to break an arm and a leg over this. Just be natural and try to keep things as genuine as possible. Do not ever make the mistake of skipping the rehearsals because they are your perfect opportunities to have a practice run before the big wedding day.
Be on the move all the time.
There is a reason why wedding photography is the highest paid niche in the professional photography industry. Wedding photography takes up a lot of hours and a lot of work. Those are the kind of things that take time and effort and just pure hard work. Bring out the most comfortable pair of shoes you wear and make sure that you are able to change up your angles a lot. This is the only way for you to be able to get the most variety out of your photos.