Wedding shoot

Having been making photographs for many years, most of my work has relied upon available light. However, in photographing a wedding yesterday, I employed some artificial lighting techniques.

I rented a PocketWizard remote flash setup and also a better flash than what I own, both from LensProToGo. Unfortunately, testing the equipment the evening before the wedding, the PocketWizard transmitter failed. While this is certainly not as bad as discovering a failure an hour before a shoot, it was stressful none the less. Fortunately, I was able to make a long detour on my way to the wedding and pickup a replacement from LensProToGo. The moral of that story is: make sure to get rental equipment in your hands (and test it) a few days in advance of your shoot; if there is any problem, your supplier has time to ship you a replacement

During the actual wedding ceremony, I relied upon available light. After the ceremony, with more time and freedom of place, we staged some photographs with the bride, groom, wedding party and parents. For these staged shots, I primarily chose electronic flash bounced off a reflective panel. A small light source (e.g. flash pointed directly at your subject) can be harsh with specular highlights and hard-edged shadows; the reflective panel creates a larger light source, which creates for a more gentle light, reducing specular highlights and softening shadow edges. Having the flash on a remote stand allowed me to change my camera position without needing to move the reflector.

It was a very lonnng and tiring day. Late at night, reviewing the images on the camera LCD, there were definitey some issues, but I was most concerned with apparent bluriness. However, the images looked much better once I got them onto a desktop computer display.

For information on wedding photography, I recommend the training videos by David Ziser at KelbyTraining.com. KelbyTraining allows anyone to sample the first few video chapters for free; subscribe as a member to see all chapters.

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