What’s more important than having a successful wedding ceremony? Getting the perfect wedding album, of course! Ok, we may be exaggerating a teeny weeny bit but who can deny that a wedding lasts one day and the wedding keepsake pictures last a lifetime? You don’t want your precious wedding album to be full of plastic shots of people just smiling artificially at the camera, do you? This is one of the best days of your life and to capture all the fun and unexpected moments that made it so memorable, nothing works better than candid or spontaneous photography. How should you get that done? We’ve got all the information you need.
1. Have a multi-camera set-up
Sure, the bride and groom are the focal points of the day so there should be a camera on them the whole time, so the customary romantic poses and meet and greet with guests can be captured. But that is a pretty skewed way of covering the wedding. The ideal mix is to have a multi-camera set-up. Other than the main camera focused on the couple, you should have another digital camera and Handycam that moves around the ceremony and captures all the interesting snippets like animated gestures, laughing, kids making funny faces, guests enjoying their food and the like, which will add more character to the coverage and make for a fun video viewing.
2. Take silent captures
Too often, a great photographic moment is ruined because someone says “Hey! Look here and say cheese.” The moment you announce that you are clicking a picture, the subjects naturally get conscious and the magic of the moment is lost. This is especially true at weddings where a photographer hauling a giant camera and in-your-face flashlight invariably captures only fake smiles instead of the real mood of the gathering. How to avoid this? Simple. Stop announcing and just click the picture! Carry a small camera discreetly or have an SLR with a long zoom so you can take candid shots from a distance, thereby not interfering with the flow of conversation. Oh, and flashlights? Total mood (and sight) killer!
3. Tell a story
Photography is often referred to as ‘painting with light’. And just as you would in a painting, the photographs you click should tell a story instead of it just being a bunch of captures on ‘who came and wore what’. This is especially true of candid photography, where instead of the camera that’s stationary on a tripod, you are able to have a 360-degree look of the function. Get in behind the scenes. The nervous groom getting his tie straightened out by his friend, the bride’s friend whispering something in her ear, the teary-eyed parents welcoming relatives, happy uncle looking sloshed on champagne! These are the shots that will lift the album and have people talking about your eye for detail for a long time.
4. Get into position
Like any event, a wedding also has its own schedule. As a candid photographer, it is vital that you are thorough with the order of proceedings so that you are present at the prime position to click some priceless candids. Say the groom is due to arrive at the wedding hall on a horse, you don’t want to be stuck somewhere back behind twenty revelers dancing away! Your presence must start from the moment the groom is helped onto the horse and must cover the reactions of the people around, the dancing and hopefully that odd enthusiastic stranger who joins in on the celebration with their scene-stealing moves! You should also be aware of the place around, the best points to click photos from and the climate and so that you can adjust exposure appropriately and click high-resolution pictures. What if it rains or what if there is a last minute change in schedule? A candid photographer must be on his or her toes and get into the right position to capture all the action.
5.Shoot in bursts
Sometimes, everything falls into place. A playful moment between the bride and groom, a stunning outdoor setting, natural light and you or another photographer present to capture this moment for eternity. Sound perfect? It will until you click and find later that the bride’s eyes were closed or your finger shut out half the lens! Candid photography is about the moment and on the single click mode, there is a chance you could mess it up, unable to get that exact scene again. The solution to this is to employ the burst mode. In this camera setting, one click will give you multiple images back to back, giving you the cushion to get the right capture in case the image is shaken or any other change is made in the last second. Multiple images of the same scene aren’t exactly what you want on the editing table but you’ll be glad to have backup images that will help you create the dream wedding album for the happy couple.