Reflections : A Wedding Review


There are plenty of things I do as a photographer that I simply do without thinking, almost as if a portion of my mind is consumed with photographic technicalities. Sometimes JD jokes that I become a machine on a wedding day and he’s learned not to stand in my way or me and my camera may RUN HIM OVER. I move fast, shoot faster, and try to stay out of the way as much as possible. After I posted Marie and Charlie’s Pennsylvania wedding, I received a few technical questions from fellow photographers, so I thought I’d answer them in a Reflections post for the benefit for anyone who may be interested.

How did clients in another state find your work and hire you for their east coast wedding?
My clients find my work in a myriad of ways, but Marie discovered me via a wedding blog while she scoured the web for wedding ideas. She visited my website and blog (reading for a bit before she decided to contact me) and after a few emails, we scheduled a time to chat. The minute we spoke, we knew we were a perfect match. She’s the peas to my carrots. A week later, I received a signed contract.

The church was dark, what lens did you use and what were your settings?
Before the ceremony started, I asked the priest what the photographic restrictions were for the church during the ceremony. With the exception of the procession and recession, flash was not allowed. Now, if you were to see how dark this church was, you might have felt the knots in my stomach multiply. Exponentially. The bride and groom were slightly removed from guests as they stood/sat on the church stage. Because of the distance, I used the 70-200IS 2.8 for most of the ceremony. I fluctuated slightly depending on my location, but the setting for the following pictures is: f/2.8 2500 ISO 1/40.

What did you tell Marie in order to find the train tracks?
Because she knew I was unfamiliar with the area we were shooting for her wedding, I simply asked her to find a location that might work somewhere between the church and the reception location. She’s a blog reader, so I knew she was familiar with good location scouting! I try to schedule 30 minutes for the First Look and an additional 10-15 minutes after the ceremony for sunset pictures if the bride and groom are up for it. Because the church and the reception location were 30 minutes from each other, Marie scouted the area in the weeks leading to her wedding…and I trusted her judgment. I think she did better than I could have (and, yes, I tried).
Photo by JD

What were your settings for the purple flower picture? What lens did you use?
I used the 85mm, 1.2 lens. The settings were: f/1.2 160 ISO 1/800

How did you set up your flash for the reception pictures?
I primarily used my on-camera flash pointed toward the low-ceiling (which was white) and also used my bounce card. Here’s an example…
Lens: Canon 35mm, 1.4.
f/2.8 640 ISO 1/40

As the room darkened, I used a mix of on-camera and off-camera flash. Here’s a couple examples…
Without off-camera flash
Lens: 24mm, 1.4
f/2.8 640 ISO 1/40

In this photo, I triggered the off-camera flash (as seen behind Charlie’s head) to add a little more dimension to the room and lighten a darker portion of the dancefloor.
Lens: 24mm, 1.4
f/2.8 640 ISO 1/40

I hope this helps a little bit…if not, I’ll try again next time!

Happy Tuesday!