Do you want to improve your wedding photography skills? As a seasoned photographer, I, D Scott Carruthers, have noticed that there are specific tips and tricks that can make average wedding photographs into amazing ones.
I have put them together for you here, so that you can quickly pick up on the tactics that will boost your wedding photography abilities.
1. Make A List Of The Shots You Need
One of the main facets of wedding photography is being able to provide a bride and groom with a visual archive of their special day. Couples usually have specific arrangements of people in mind, and the best way to uncover this is by talking to the couple and asking them to come up with a list for you of all of the shots they require.
All family dynamics are unique, so increase your communication in this area and you’ll see an improvement in your wedding photography immediately. Don’t assume anything when it comes to what you think the couple wants.
Communicate, communicate, communicate!
2. Capture Lightness And Humor
Usually I find that the most loved wedding photos are the ones that highlight a light mood of love, laughter, and connection, rather than the more somber and serious photos. Be on the lookout for sincere laughter, warm hugs, and moments of levity.
3. Focus On The Details
This is one of the hardest skills to get good at, as a wedding photographer. Since you didn’t actually plan the event or the decorations, you have to develop an eye for what looks important and sentimental when it comes to inanimate decor. Look for items that look significant, unique, and sentimental, and then create a shot of only that single item.
4. Take Advantage Of Natural Lighting
Since you are not in a studio, you have to be creative with natural lighting. One of the best tips I have ever learned is to visit the location ahead of time, around sunset only a few days (or the day before) the actual shoot. Sunset shots are wedding-photography gold, and you don’t want to be struggling to figure out the best angles on game day. Get prepared ahead of time!
5. Form Good Relationships Before Hand
If the couple feels at ease with you, trusts you, and likes you, you’ll get better intimate shots.
6. Think Outside Of The Box When It Comes To Color
Look for elements in the scenery that complement elements of the wedding. This could be flowers, trees, graffiti, cars… anything! Think outside of the box and you’ll get those creative shots that make other people think: how did he do that?! You will know how: You thought outside of the box.
7. Bring Back Ups
Bring back up batteries, and even a back up camera. You’ll be thankful!
8. Move Around
This creates diversity and different angles. You’ll appreciate the the differences once you get moving around.
9. Mix Up The Kissing Poses
In addition to the typical profile couple kiss, get a kiss from the back, and from several other angles. You can go over them later with a critical eye, so just take as many as you can so that you have a lot to work with.
10. Be Open To The Unexpected
One of the best wedding photographs that I ever took was on a lakeside beach, when a flock of birds landed among rose pedals at the couples feet. This was so unexpected, that if I had been overly focused on my to-do list for the ceremony, I would have missed it.
11. Find Clean Backgrounds
Don’t make the mistake of taking photos with cluttered backgrounds. Look for clean backgrounds and your photos will look much more pleasing to the eye.