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Author Topic: Wedding expert suggestions desired...first time.  (Read 4542 times)

cszy67

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Wedding expert suggestions desired...first time.
« on: April 28, 2013, 07:50:23 PM »
Hello folks - a local couple are going to be married and it was suggested that since they don't have enough money to hire a photographer I could shoot help them out. What I am asking for are some basic suggestions - maybe even a "how to shoot a wedding" for amateurs such as myself.

The gear I plan to use are my 7D along with my EF 24-70mm f/2.8L. I understand this lens is a great choice for guys shooting with 5Ds and such but with a crop sensor should I use this lens or my  EF 16-35mm f/2.8L II?

The ceremony will be during the evening outdoors at the Norfolk Botanical Garden and the reception will be indoors. The bride has provided a nice list of the shots they would really like which is quite helpful.

Guys, I would really like to provide them with a good assortment of photos to choose from since this is such a special day for them. I am not charging anything of course but I would still like to do the best I possibly can. If you can provide basic suggestions such as:

  • Mode - Full, CA, P, Tv, Av, or M?
  • Flash or not? Fill indoors, outdoors, etc.
  • ISO on Auto from 100-800 or just set it on a particular value?

Just really a comprehensive review of the basics for a guy trying to do the best he can. I am a fast learner but truthfully normally enjoy taking time to set up a shot, use a tri-pod, experiment, etc. I am not a pro like many of you guys who make adjustments on the fly with full knowledge of what is required to create the desired shot.

Thanks in advance for your suggestions and none are too basic.  :)
7D ~ 16-35mm f/2.8L II ~ 24-70mm f/2.8L ~ 70-200mm f/2.8L

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Wedding expert suggestions desired...first time.
« on: April 28, 2013, 07:50:23 PM »

bycostello

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Re: Wedding expert suggestions desired...first time.
« Reply #1 on: April 28, 2013, 08:28:05 PM »
to be honest if you are asking such basic questions should you be taking on this responsibility?

To keep it safe and simple, av 5.6, auto iso and fill flash.

Rat

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Re: Wedding expert suggestions desired...first time.
« Reply #2 on: April 28, 2013, 08:30:09 PM »
5DIII, 17-40, 24-105, 70-200/4IS, 50/1.8II, 85/1.8 and a truckload of gimmicks and bits.

Bennymiata

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Re: Wedding expert suggestions desired...first time.
« Reply #3 on: April 28, 2013, 08:30:45 PM »
While I have shot a few weddings professionally, and lots of parties and events, I am not an expert.
The 24-70 will be good for a lot of the shots, but I often find myself using my 24-105 as you often need the slightly longer reach, especially for the candid "people enjoying themselves" shots.
I use a flash most of the time, especially indoors, and find that by bouncing the flash off the ceiling, that you will get good results.
I usually use aperture priority and adjust the aperture as required to adjust my depth of field.
Ideally, you will have 2 bodies wih you, one with the 24-70 and the other with the wide angle lens for the larger group shots.
Make sure you have spare batteries for your camera and flash, and at least 64gig of memory card space.
Take the shots in RAW, as you may need to pull in highlights during processing or pull stuff out of the shadows.
I've never used a crop sensor for weddings, but have often used my 60D for parties and it works fine.
Make sure you take a couple of test shots in each environment you'll be, to make sure your settings are correct.

Best of luck.

cszy67

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Re: Wedding expert suggestions desired...first time.
« Reply #4 on: April 28, 2013, 09:07:27 PM »
Thanks so far for the informative replies - I am reading the entire "Emergency wedding, of sorts" right now as suggested above. And yes I do agree that this is a high degree of responsibility but truthfully, the couple had never really budgeted for a photographer since having "quality" shots of their wedding just were not that high on the list of them. I was volunteered and they are very happy but as a back-up they are handing out a few dozen disposable cameras for guests to have fun with.

I am just trying to help out here and figure if I take 500-1000 shots they should be able to pull a few dozen really nice ones out. And since I have never formally shot a wedding before I am just looking for the basic suggestions more-or-less to confirm what I have read elsewhere. An example would be shooting in Av at 5.6 or 8.0 as that reinforces others suggestions.

And I really do appreciate the help folks, the more info the better.
7D ~ 16-35mm f/2.8L II ~ 24-70mm f/2.8L ~ 70-200mm f/2.8L

robbymack

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Re: Wedding expert suggestions desired...first time.
« Reply #5 on: April 28, 2013, 10:00:17 PM »
Rent a back up 7d just in case and also the 17-55 2.8 and a back up flash.  Thats really a better range on crop than the 24-70. I think you'll enjoy the wider end plus at 55mm on crop that lens makes a great portrait length. I'd also look at a prime just to have with you as we'll. general advice is shoot what you feel comfortable with. So while manual will probably give you better overall results this isn't the time to experiment. If no flash play between 2.8 and f8 depending on lighting and whats giing you the best shutter speeds. with flash 5.6, max shutter sync speed (I think 1/200 on the 7d) and auto iso.

drjlo

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Re: Wedding expert suggestions desired...first time.
« Reply #6 on: April 28, 2013, 10:11:45 PM »
Pretty much any gear can be made to work, but I would have at least one fast prime in the bag for when darkness hits and flash is not wanted or effective enough.  Doesn't have to be fancy, maybe 50 f/1.8 or 1.4..

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Re: Wedding expert suggestions desired...first time.
« Reply #6 on: April 28, 2013, 10:11:45 PM »

Chewngum

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Re: Wedding expert suggestions desired...first time.
« Reply #7 on: April 28, 2013, 10:27:45 PM »
You will be much better off buying/renting a 50 1.4 or 35 1.4 as f2.8 is not fast enough for most places in the evening. Add in a flash and the kit is fine. I have done weddings with a lot less and a lot more and pulled out with great shots. Get to know your gear properly though, no need to rock up on the day and be like "so my camera is doing this funny thing where.....and so all the photos are useless". The AF/MF switch on the lenses are notorious for being the root cause of OOF images.
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barton springs

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Re: Wedding expert suggestions desired...first time.
« Reply #8 on: April 28, 2013, 10:59:36 PM »
Excellent link for you ..... please reconsider what you are trying to take
on here. These are your friends.

http://rickkent.com/weddings_NOT.ME.htm


digital paradise

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Re: Wedding expert suggestions desired...first time.
« Reply #9 on: April 28, 2013, 11:42:44 PM »
It is amazing how people seem to wind up with no money for a photographer for one of the most important day of their lives but have no issue with putting that pressure on friends. My suggestion.

Camera on P Mode, flash on ETTL and shoot away. Do the best you can and don't stress about it, they are getting what they paid for.

K3nt

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Re: Wedding expert suggestions desired...first time.
« Reply #10 on: April 29, 2013, 05:29:07 AM »
Get that flash OFF the camera. Stick it on a monopod with the YN-622C trigger and you can get a lot more creative with the flash bit and even ask someone else to hold the flash for you everynow and then.

Take the time to get the couple out of the hustle and bustle for maybe 30minutes and get the "base" shots..
This will help:

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Wedding-Photography-A-Guide-Posing/dp/0956546307/
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Zv

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Re: Wedding expert suggestions desired...first time.
« Reply #11 on: April 29, 2013, 05:54:53 AM »
I would rent a 5D II or III and some fast glass and shoot with two bodies. A zoom on one and a prime on the other. But you should take test shots before you do anything to get an idea of what lens and what lighting to use. I think bounce flash will be the safest bet for you. Aim it at a wall if possible. Light coming in from the side looks better than from straight down (racoon eyes). If you have to use fill flash point thr flash away from thr persons face and bounce off your left hand. Sure, off camera flash is awsome but learning that in a short space of time is asking a bit much.

Flash tip. Take a shot without flash in Av mode or P mode. Take a reading and put camera in manual. Dial in the exposure. Then turn on flash. Now the flash will add to that exposure and now you can control the ambient by changing shutter speed and flash power by changing aperture.
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Sporgon

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Re: Wedding expert suggestions desired...first time.
« Reply #12 on: April 29, 2013, 06:55:11 AM »
Look in your local 'phone book / websites for local wedding photographers.

Ask/bribe/beg to accompany them on a wedding shoot. Watch and learn  ;)

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Re: Wedding expert suggestions desired...first time.
« Reply #12 on: April 29, 2013, 06:55:11 AM »

Inspiron41

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Re: Wedding expert suggestions desired...first time.
« Reply #13 on: April 29, 2013, 07:18:04 AM »
If you can provide basic suggestions such as:

  • Mode - Full, CA, P, Tv, Av, or M?
  • Flash or not? Fill indoors, outdoors, etc.
  • ISO on Auto from 100-800 or just set it on a particular value?

Just really a comprehensive review of the basics for a guy trying to do the best he can.

awww man...if you're asking these questions, then you need to review the basics about ISO, Aperture, and shutter speed. i know you're going to come back and say I REALLY UNDERSTAND IT, but do you?

you didnt tell us how much time you have before the wedding. BUT, for your own sake and for your own learning experience, get away from this computer and take your camera. Set it to MANUAL and start shooting. Teach yourself how to adjust ISO, Aperture and Shutter Speed until you have the best exposed picture (learn to read your histogram).

Ask yourself -
Are the pictures exposed correctly (not too dark, not too light - see what your histogram)?
What's the relationship between ISO, Aperture and shutter speed?
What's the values for ISO i need to set for indoors and outdoors?
What're the correct white balances i need for indoors and outdoors?

From then, you'll find using Program mode and Aperture mode more helpful. After that spot metering, AF lock, flash (ETTL and then manual). I do weddings every weekend, all this is second nature to me.

But serious, if you're photos are just dark or just over exposed, have no clue how to fix it, and pissing your pants, just set it to AUTO. And please, look down and see what you're taking. Don't take a 100 photos in a row and not look at your screen.

Good luck, hope you can do well.


ps. anyone can tell you to get this lens or that lens. or i can even lend out my equipment to you, but i guarantee you, it won't make a difference compare to your 7D. 7D and 24-70mm is good enough for a second photographer. learn your basics is a must.
« Last Edit: April 29, 2013, 07:24:54 AM by Inspiron41 »

douglas459

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Re: Wedding expert suggestions desired...first time.
« Reply #14 on: April 29, 2013, 07:24:33 AM »
I have photographed hundreds of weddings over the years and have enjoyed growing as a businessman and an artist. If this is going to be a one time thing, I agree with the post suggesting P Mode and ETTL for the flash.
If you want to do a superior job  or are thinking about a new career, purchase "Captured by the Light" by David Ziser and follow his advice. This is quite simply the best and most complete book on the subject of wedding photography. His "Digital Pro Talk" website is also an invaluable asset.
Good Luck!

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Re: Wedding expert suggestions desired...first time.
« Reply #14 on: April 29, 2013, 07:24:33 AM »