Sep 23, 2004

Wedding Photography Tips

Capture the emotion
Catch the grins, tears, surprises, and hugs that make for memorable pictures. Keep your camera handy and turned on so you'll be ready for those spontaneous expressions.

Get close
Fill the viewfinder with your subject and create pictures with greater impact. Step in close or use your camera's zoom to emphasize what is important and exclude the rest. Check the manual for your camera's closest focusing distance.

Take candid pictures
Catch the unexpected. The ring-bearer squirming in his unfamiliar suit. Aunt Gertrude straightening the bride's bow. The bride greeting new family members. Old friends joking with each other. Don't worry about taking a lot of formally posed portraits: the professional photographer will take plenty of those.

Show good camera manners
Remember there may be rules restricting photographs. Respect the dignity of the ceremony by refraining from taking distracting flash pictures. Non-flash pictures may, however, be acceptable. Turn off your flash and hold the camera very steady. Got a monopod?

Take advantage of the dim light
Dim-light situations can work to your advantage. A silhouetted couple against a plain background conveys the romance and enormity of a lifelong commitment. Check the camera manual for turning the flash to "no flash."

Use a slightly higher ISO
A 400 or 800 ISO (depending on your camera) is an ideal choice to get a good picture in the dimly lit church, and it'll also come in handy when you want to stop the action of the bride getting ready or Uncle Buck's tango.

Stay within your flash range
The typical digital camera flash range is 6 to 10 feet, up to 40 feet for separate flash units. Subjects that are outside the flash range will be either too dark or too light. Check the camera manual and make sure your subject is within the flash range.