So, you want to get into wedding photography eh?
Well, I can tell you that it has been a journey for me! I literally was asked by a friend in 2010 to do her wedding for free. All I had was my trusty Nikon d3100, one flash and a 50mm 1.8. Fortunately the wedding was during the day, so that really saved my butt.
I knew nothing that day. I just have fun and bounced the flash off the ceiling all day. I was shooting at 1/250 shutter speed (and for those that don’t know anything about flashes, that’s way too fast!) So I ended up having big black lines in my photos!
I do have to say though- that was one of my favorite weddings. I think because I knew nothing and I was just having fun!
After that- I started taking on more weddings by myself. It wasn’t until my 10 wedding or so that I decided that I needed an assistant.
I started buying the crap out of amazon. I tried all these different kinds of lenses and gadgets. I bought flash remotes, backdrops, third party lenses, battery grips, filters, etc… I probably spent over $5,000 on stuff that I didn’t need, nor did I ever use.
I also discovered how to use a simple off-camera flash system. It only took me 10 weddings to figure out what I needed and didn’t need.
There are two kinds of wedding photographers. One: the kind that just jumps in full tilt without knowing and just let’s “things happen” (me.)
Or, the second kind: the person that mind get overwhelmed by all the information out there and automatically feel discouraged that they will never get there.
If you are the first kind of photographer: be careful that you don’t take on too much- go slow and be mentored by someone first! Don’t do what I did! Don’t be the crappy beginning photographer for five weddings!
If you are the second kind of photographer: Let me encourage you that wedding photography is a dance, a marathon and a party all rolled into one! So go with it! Always be too prepared for the worst to happen!
Here are my favorite tools in my wedding kit. After 6 years of perfecting what I needed and what I didn’t need, I am sharing this list with you to help you get started!
I would love the new Nikon D4s. But let's face it: over $5,000 for a camera, when a D750 does a smashing good job!
Always have a backup!!!! I never shoot a wedding (or a basic shoot) without one!
This is the lens that I'll use on my camera 90% of the day.
It's always good to have a nifty-fifty in your kit for emergency!
I couldn't see investing in a $2,500 70-200 2.8 lens when I'm only going to use for the ceremony! I also use this for ring shots! (I still might rent the 70-200, but It's SO heavy for me to use all day!)
These lenses are great! I have over 10 of them. I love how they can remote flash eachother!
This is a great little thing for family portraits. It folds up supersmall too!
I only use rechargeable batteries! Go green!
I have several bags- but you can't go one with a "dressier" bag for weddings.
I always have two extra batteries per camera!
I know it's a little much, but I am shooting double save mode on both my cameras. Therefore I get duplicates of every image on each memory card. I have lost over 5 memory cards worth of photos from just technology failing. So always double save everything!
These are really handy to have. I also wear a hip pouch sometimes to keep all my cards in! (I know, fancy right?)
This is my secret weapon! I can carry everything with me!
I have two flashes going for the reception. They are also great for family pictures inside a dark church!
Sand bags- Yes! You never want a lawsuit for a light stand falling on a cake!
I love this strap- I can shoot for over 8 hours with little to no back pain!
I know it seems like a lot now for some of you! For others, you might be saying- "that's not bad at all!"
Wedding photography is a very expensive game to get into. I honestly never recommend anyone getting into it unless they are serious about the artistry, the passion and the skill level it takes to do wedding photography WELL!
I would love for you to let know if any of these tips have helped you in your photography journey!
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