Wedding Photography, Congratulations Mrs and Mrs Beck

I would just like to say a massive congratulations to newlyweds Mr and Mrs Beck.

A fun couple, and a couple that it was my absolute pleasure to photograph. The Bride and Groom, their little boy, and the rest of their family and friends. It was the first time I’d ever shot a wedding party lineout lift (I don’t even remember who came up with the idea), great fun. And a great day was had by everyone involved.

I raise my glass to Mr and Mrs Beck. Congratulations, and may your future bring you all the happiness you deserve.


Wedding Photography, The Wedding Photographer’s Kit Bag

Not going to be a long post this one, guys. Just a quick overview of the equipment I carry on any given Wedding Photography gig.

So lets start with the camera/cameras, to use the technical term, the ‘camera body’. There’s loads of choice out there. Canon, Nikon, Sony, Fuji, Olympus etc etc. I myself, I’m a Canon man. So I carry with me a Canon 5D MKiii and a Canon 5D MKii, both full frame cameras, important for capturing the full picture especially in tight venues. And also very important if you’re going to print, especially larger prints like canvases. As an extra spare, because I’m super cautious. I also have one Canon 7D, just in case the other two bodies fail me. I know, right? As if, but hey, you never know. So I definitely won’t fail to record somebody’s big day because a camera decides its the perfect time to give up the ghost.

Lenses. For me there are only two absolute must have lenses. The first never leaves one of the camera bodies, and that is the Canon 70-200mm F2.8 L series lens. This lens is a workhorse, it gobbles up light like nobody’s business. It’s fast, it’s sharp, put this lens up against most other lenses and it will embarrass them. Plus it has a really nice focal length, so I don’t have to be in people’s faces when capturing the big moments. Meaning I can capture natural reactions, more candid shots of the Bride, Groom and their guests. Who doesn’t want the teary mother shot in their wedding book, right? The second must have lens for me is at the other end of the focal range. So I have my Tamron 24-70mm f2.8. Again, it has a nice aperture, so it swallows light. It’s another super lens I wouldn’t be without, a cracking “walking around lens”. It allows me to capture wider shots, such as the big family shots, without being about 200 metres away. And also it’s a great portrait lens for more up close, posed shots. Like when guests throw themselves in front of you wanting a picture (I love that everyone is so happy at a wedding, and wants their picture taking). I also carry a 10-18mm wide angle lens, that doesn’t get as much use, but can come in handy if your family is extra big and the venue doesn’t offer the vantage to get you all in with any other lens.

Lighting. Lighting is super important, churches can be dark places. And unless you want all your images to suffer from low shutter speed camera shake, or really high iso digital noise, you better be packing something. I carry with me as many as four speed lights, these can be mounted on camera, or preferably, off camera if the venue allows it. Of course, a trigger to fire them. The first dance is almost always guaranteed to be in some degree of darkness, this is where the big gun comes in handy. One Godox AD600. A powerful 600 watt portable studio strobe, when you simply haven’t got other light sources to play with, accept no substitutes. Used as a key light and combined with a couple of speed lights, this will do the job just grand.

Sundries. A lot, of fully charged batteries for all the equipment. Battery grips for the cameras and multiple camera straps. And last but not least (cheesiness incoming) a smile and a good attitude. Nobody, and I mean nobody, wants a surly, up themselves photographer gracing their big day.


What Is The Problem With Boudoir Photography?

Boudoir photography? *Gasps* isn’t that just an excuse for a
seedy photographer to take pictures of pretty ladies in their
undies?………….

Right. I’m going to stop you right there, we need to discuss
boudoir photography and its merits, and the misconceptions around it.

So, here’s the thing. Your view is not just your own, its
quite widely held. And I daresay there are a few photographers out there that
do only want to photograph women in their undies. But they are the minority. Boudoir
photography is not what a lot of people think it is, and what they think it is?
Top and bottom, “adult entertainment”. A friend of mine recently encountered
this problem when arranging a boudoir shoot, he was looking for a nice
location. A nice room in a nice hotel, he wasn’t trying to get it free. He was
more than happy to pay for the room, for the time he was going to use it. By in
large, the response to this request ranged from the flat ‘no’ to the ‘we don’t
allow that sort of thing here’. What sort of thing? I can only assume they
thought he was going to have the beautiful lady he was working with, naked and
trussed up like some kind of roasting joint. With all sorts of unsavoury things
being photographed (like unsavoury things don’t happen in their hotel rooms,
right?)

It’s complete madness, and not what boudoir shoots are about
at all. More often than not, there’s no nudity and if there is any, it’s
generally of the ‘implied’ variety. That means, you think you’re getting
something really racy and risqué. But really, you’re looking at a person
wearing more fabric, than if they were on a beach in St. Tropez or Benidorm.
(have you seen swimwear these days?) Boudoir is a beautiful expression of the
art of photography, and something amazing you can give to your partner as a
gift. Or, you know what? Something amazing you can do with your partner.
*Gasps* That’s right, boudoir photography is not just for female subjects. I’ve
seen male boudoir, too. Granted, there are usually less stockings and suspenders
involved, usually. But yes, why not? If you’re comfortable being intimate in
front of the camera, absolutely go for it. And in the end, that’s what it comes
down to, being comfortable. A good boudoir shoot can be empowering for the subject,
but you should never do anything you’re uncomfortable with.

And one for the wedding photographers. Sometimes, the bride
or groom are going to want some boudoir style photography. Something to give as
a gift to their soon to be husband or wife. Perhaps before the wedding? It’s
actually a really nice idea, and something as a photographer you should consider
offering.

So, remember. Boudoir Photography is an art form, it’s not
seedy and it’s probably not half as risqué as you think it is. Maybe give it a
try? Oh, and the friend I mentioned earlier. He did get a location to do his
shoot, and it turned out fantastic. Some really nice shots of a really
beautiful lady. Kudos.