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Traditional, posed photos may be the norm at weddings, but they certainly aren’t the only option. Candid shots are becoming more popular among couples who want to remember all of the small moments that came together to make their day unique and special. By using a spontaneous wedding photography in addition to traditional shots, you’ll be able to offer your clients the best of both worlds, ensuring that you’ll capture all of those moments that will make their wedding day an event to remember. Follow a few of the tips below to get the best shots of the day.
1. Be Prepared
Every wedding photographer knows that having a camera ready at all times is the key to capturing those special moments between the couple, as well as interactions between family members and friends. While there is a time and place for staging photographs during the wedding day, other moments can be simply captured without drawing attention to yourself. By just being present throughout the day and having a camera in your hands at all times, you’ll be prepared when the right moment comes and the individuals you’re photographing won’t feel the need to stop what they’re doing to pose. They’ll become used to you being in the room and will become comfortable with the process of having the spontaneous photos taken.
2. Turn Off the Flash
When focusing on spontaneous wedding photography, the key is to blend in and do your best to not draw attention to yourself and your camera. The biggest giveaway when attempting to be less intrusive is to have a bright flash going off in a dark room. Change your camera settings and go without the flash whenever possible. It may mean adjusting the white balance and making changes to your manual settings, which will be time consuming but well worth the effort. You’ll most likely notice that guests will be much more comfortable and natural when they don’t notice the camera.
3. Make Yourself Invisible
Just as you don’t want your camera to be in the face of all of the guests, you should try to keep yourself hidden as well. During the wedding ceremony and reception, the guests and wedding party will want to be focused on the event and the couple. To avoid causing a distraction, it’s your job as the photographer to be discreet. There are several steps that you can take to avoid getting in the way. First, make an effort to dress appropriately for the event. Follow the dress code that the guests will be adhering to, whether it might be semi formal or more casual. Second, keep in mind that while you’re working, it isn’t necessarily the time to let your larger than life personality shine. Stay quiet and out of the way as you work your way through the room to capture your photos.
4. Take Plenty of Pictures
There is no exact science to capturing a spontaneous moment at the perfect second. The best way to ensure that you’ll end up with a quality photograph is to give yourself plenty of options. Shoot your photos in bursts, capturing many images in a very short period of time, then move on. Taking many photos at once will increase your chance of getting that perfectly timed shot and moving along quickly will help you to be present for each moment, rather than getting caught up in one particular setting. Later, you’ll be able to take the time to go through each set of photos to find those pictures that will be worth a thousand words.
5. Take Advantage of a Second Shooter
While spontaneous wedding photography is a great way to capture the real moments of the day, most couples will prefer to have a good mix of both formal and candid shots. Be sure to have a second shooter to create a balance of the two. A second shooter offers more than just the opportunity to get your shots from two separate angles. While you, as the main photographer, may be taking formal portraits of the bridal party, your second shooter can wander throughout the room and catch a great moment of friends catching up or family members sharing an emotional moment after the ceremony.
6. Be Ready for Anything
It’s a well known fact that something will go wrong during a wedding day. No matter how precisely a schedule for the day has been laid out, something will not go according to plan. As a photographer, part of your job is to go with the flow and be willing to tackle obstacles as they come up. A sudden change of location for a particular part of the reception may mean adjusting your settings to account for a change in lighting. An unexpected speech from the best man might lead to a wave of laughter throughout the room, offering the opportunity to capture some great shots if you can be fast enough. Be prepared, but willing to roll with the punches all day.
7. Get Creative
The charm of spontaneous wedding photography is that there is no staging or posing involved. It’s up to you to add a fun twist to the standard wedding photos. Candid shots are your chance to get creative and show off your skills. Change up the composition to give even an uninteresting subject a creative flair. Considering playing with perspective as well. Don’t worry about photographing subjects straight on or even keeping everyone in focus. Experimenting with central focus points can lead to a great photo. While the eye will immediately fall on the subject that is in focus, the photo will also show off the action surrounding the subject. The photos that are imperfect may be some of the best of the day as they will display more visual interest than the expected photos that every couple receives.
During a wedding, it’s easy for the couple to get caught up in the event. For many, the day can become a blur of smiles, glasses of champagne, and well wishes from friends and family. By photographing the small moments of the day through spontaneous wedding photography, you’ll give the couple the opportunity to relive every detail of their day each time they open their wedding album.