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Yay! My cuz just called me (again) and asked me to shoot her wedding...

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  • #16
    Ohh one more thing. If you can go to the rehearsal do that! I call it my ceremony practice run. I ask to have the lights the same and so on then shoot it like I shoot the wedding that way I have an game plan on where I will be and what order things go in. Also I can check my settings and tweek if something goes wrong. Saved me once because in my second wedding I thought I was where I needed to be and every shot of the procession had motion blur so I had to bump the iso up a stop and then bring the shutter speed up.

    Also go to bed early and take tylonal PM. its the only way I have been able to sleep at least 5 hours before one because of nerves.
    Cameras: Canon 60D, Canon 20D, 35mm Nikon FM2n
    Canon EF lens used : 50mm f1.8, 18-55mm f/3.5-5.5, 75-300mm f/4.5-5, 85mm f/1.8
    Tamron Lens: 28-75mm F/2.8 XR Di LD Aspherical (IF)
    Strobist: Canon 580EX II , "Vivitar DF400MZ, Nikon SB-24, LP-160, YN568EX"
    http://flickr.com/photos/bhursey | http://brianhurseyphotography.com

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    • #17
      Everyone who asks if they're ready to do a wedding are usually not. And by a long way. I think it is obvious that you are on the opposite side of that scale and would by all measures of your existing work do a sterling job. Your attitude is 100% understood though. Maybe below is just the answer - you won't get all the shots you want if you;re not the main photographer, but you could possibly scrape about 50-60% of what you would have liked by using the below suggestion?


      Originally posted by GTAltman View Post

      I would do this...

      I'd shoot the wedding, but not tell her I'm shooting the wedding.
      If she comes back and raves about the shots, then congratulate her.
      If she comes back crying, hand her what you have and want to give her.

      Even if you capture one shot that she can use as a Thank You, then you've saved her bacon!

      My recommendation puts no pressure on you, is nothing more than an insurance policy, and if you don't like the shots, tell her you got nuttin'.
      Canon EOS 7D + 20D, 70-200mm F4, 17-55 F2.8 IS, 50mm F1.4, 550EX.

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      • #18
        Originally posted by GTAltman View Post
        Here's what I see though...you care about her deeply - and you should because she's family and you don't want to see her her and disappointed, no matter HOW correct you will be.

        I would do this...

        I'd shoot the wedding, but not tell her I'm shooting the wedding.
        If she comes back and raves about the shots, then congratulate her.
        If she comes back crying, hand her what you have and want to give her.

        Even if you capture one shot that she can use as a Thank You, then you've saved her bacon!

        My recommendation puts no pressure on you, is nothing more than an insurance policy, and if you don't like the shots, tell her you got nuttin'.


        All the best on whatever you decide.

        Gary
        I love that idea. You're not committing to anything, so no one can blame you if it's screwed up.
        My sister asked me to shoot her wedding. She was doing a cheapy beach wedding package and didn't want to spend the extra $100 for the photographer, since "you have a nice camera". I told her that was a bit more responsibility than I wanted. She's sort of a pain in the ass and very stubborn.
        She wound up paying for the photographer and got all the family-on-the-beach shots. I stayed out of the way, didnt take any pictures. That was basically all the photog was contracted for, but she went to the reception for the free food (and she rode with the minister) and took a few pictures. I did take some shots that I set up, and the photog would run over to take a shot of my setup. It was pretty funny.
        But it gave me a cheap Christmas present, I blew one of mine up to 16x20 and said "hear you go".
        And since I had to drive 600 miles, give up a week of vacation time, and spend a lot of money just to stay there, I kept the damn towels I bought for her. They were nice towels.
        -----------------------------------------
        Canon T1i 18-35mm, 50mm, 28mm, 100-500mm and some other stuff.
        Please don't read my blog!

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        • #19
          Originally posted by smordant View Post
          Be interesting in hearing your experience if you do it. Good luck either way.
          I'll keep an update on my progress here

          Originally posted by GTAltman View Post
          Here's what I see though...you care about her deeply - and you should because she's family and you don't want to see her her and disappointed, no matter HOW correct you will be.

          I would do this...

          I'd shoot the wedding, but not tell her I'm shooting the wedding.
          If she comes back and raves about the shots, then congratulate her.
          If she comes back crying, hand her what you have and want to give her.

          Even if you capture one shot that she can use as a Thank You, then you've saved her bacon!

          My recommendation puts no pressure on you, is nothing more than an insurance policy, and if you don't like the shots, tell her you got nuttin'.

          All the best on whatever you decide.

          Gary
          I already told her I would do it she was very very happy. all giggly and laughing and stuff. I feel bad for her cause she thinks shes getting this "great" photographer for her wedding lol

          Originally posted by BigFuzzy View Post
          If she means so much to you, you can fly ME out there, house me in a nice hotel, and cover daily costs, and I'll do it. No cash charged....however..

          Where's "there" anyways?

          Oh, and only 4 stars minimum hotel, with a bottle of something good waiting for me in the room.

          Plus a driver.

          Some attractive company wouldn't hurt either.. you know, as an ..uh.. assistant (no, YOU don't count).

          Oh, and I only fly 1st class.

          Plus I need you to rent me a whole set of kit.. you know, as backup.

          There, you're covered. You're welcome.
          Either do it full bore, or run away. But either way Jason, pretty ...unsmart(!) to promise to take care of it. hahah
          Well you had me till you said 1st class ticket lol. Even I can't afford to go first class. But if your willing to fly coach, keep November 17th open on your calender (+couple days for travel), it might end up cheaper for me to fly you here to shoot it than for me to miss a job.

          The wedding will be in Edmonton Alberta, Its an ugly place, and November is a crappy time of year, but Jasper is pretty close... only about 500km away and its very nice. Probably be a bit of snow by that time, average temps between -10C to +10C, not too cold yet, but you'll want to bring a coat. Good news is that the mosquitoes will be gone by then. Its usually overcast and the lighting is difficult, so you might want to come a couple days early to work out indoor locations, or figure out a way to make gloomy winter weather into something suitable for a wedding album.

          Unfortunately for me, I dont get to take "days off" I can opt out of a job, but if I do, i dont miss 1 day, I miss every day. If the job was 20 days, I miss them all. It would be more economical for me to fly you here, pay for a 4 star room, with a bottle of something nice produce some pretty company, a driver, a car (or truck probably) and rent my own gear from myself for your backup use, than it would be for me to miss a job.

          Originally posted by bhursey View Post
          Ohh one more thing. If you can go to the rehearsal do that! I call it my ceremony practice run. I ask to have the lights the same and so on then shoot it like I shoot the wedding that way I have an game plan on where I will be and what order things go in. Also I can check my settings and tweek if something goes wrong. Saved me once because in my second wedding I thought I was where I needed to be and every shot of the procession had motion blur so I had to bump the iso up a stop and then bring the shutter speed up.

          Also go to bed early and take tylonal PM. its the only way I have been able to sleep at least 5 hours before one because of nerves.
          This is some good advice. I told her that I wanted all the locations, the timeline and to do studio/engagement shots all so that I have as much practice with them as I can. Also thinking that with all these extra shoots I should have enough keepers of the couple to make a healthy book, then I just need to get the normal type shots during the wedding, and snipe emotion shots during the reception. Even with my paltry skills I should have enough keepers over 3 or 4 sets to fill a wedding album. Thats my thoughts on it anyway. I'll definitely be at the rehearsal.

          Originally posted by andrewdt View Post
          Everyone who asks if they're ready to do a wedding are usually not. And by a long way. I think it is obvious that you are on the opposite side of that scale and would by all measures of your existing work do a sterling job. Your attitude is 100% understood though. Maybe below is just the answer - you won't get all the shots you want if you;re not the main photographer, but you could possibly scrape about 50-60% of what you would have liked by using the below suggestion?
          Ok, you know when I said I didn't need kudos? yeah... it feels good anyway lol. Thanks for the vote of confidence ;D

          Originally posted by UlpilotSC View Post
          I love that idea. You're not committing to anything, so no one can blame you if it's screwed up.
          My sister asked me to shoot her wedding. She was doing a cheapy beach wedding package and didn't want to spend the extra $100 for the photographer, since "you have a nice camera". I told her that was a bit more responsibility than I wanted. She's sort of a pain in the ass and very stubborn.
          She wound up paying for the photographer and got all the family-on-the-beach shots. I stayed out of the way, didnt take any pictures. That was basically all the photog was contracted for, but she went to the reception for the free food (and she rode with the minister) and took a few pictures. I did take some shots that I set up, and the photog would run over to take a shot of my setup. It was pretty funny.
          But it gave me a cheap Christmas present, I blew one of mine up to 16x20 and said "hear you go".
          And since I had to drive 600 miles, give up a week of vacation time, and spend a lot of money just to stay there, I kept the damn towels I bought for her. They were nice towels.
          I could use some towels. Maybe I should get my wife to pick some up for her, then I can keep them too lol

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          • #20
            Originally posted by Tzetsin View Post
            Its usually overcast and the lighting is difficult, so you might want to come a couple days early to work out indoor locations, or figure out a way to make gloomy winter weather into something suitable for a wedding album.
            I pray for over cast weddings its like a magical massive softbox. Although it does give a grayish blue tint but shoot raw.
            Cameras: Canon 60D, Canon 20D, 35mm Nikon FM2n
            Canon EF lens used : 50mm f1.8, 18-55mm f/3.5-5.5, 75-300mm f/4.5-5, 85mm f/1.8
            Tamron Lens: 28-75mm F/2.8 XR Di LD Aspherical (IF)
            Strobist: Canon 580EX II , "Vivitar DF400MZ, Nikon SB-24, LP-160, YN568EX"
            http://flickr.com/photos/bhursey | http://brianhurseyphotography.com

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            • #21
              Originally posted by bhursey View Post
              I pray for over cast weddings its like a magical massive softbox. Although it does give a grayish blue tint but shoot raw.
              This I've yet to master. gloomy days rob me of all that splendid color. i loooooooove color. high saturation contrasty beautiful color... overcast is my nemesis. I'll make do though.

              Raw? of course I will shoot raw. Is there another way to shoot??

              Originally posted by Menomenom
              Alberta isn't too far from Washington...maybe Jim Bryant can come and show you how it's done? Just think what your cousin would say if you told her you were getting a Pultizer Prize Applicant to shoot her wedding.
              Actually.... His prices are pretty reasonable. Btw, you have to be nominated for the Pulitzer Prize, you don't get to apply.

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              • #22
                Originally posted by Menomenom
                I'm completely serious. You should hire him and shoot together, and then post your experience and some photos here.

                As for the Pulitzer, this was discussed in another thread that was deleted by a mod. Anyone can apply for a Pulitzer. Anyone. A panel of judges then reviews the applications and picks three "nominees", one of which wins the official prize.
                Pfft, I can't watch and steal all his secrets if I have my eye in my own camera ;D If I hire anyone I'm simply going to enjoy the wedding and let them do all the work.

                I didn't know that about the Pulitzer. Still, since anyone can apply I'd imagine there are a lot of candidates. To be nominated is still something to be proud of.

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                • #23
                  Originally posted by Menomenom
                  This a family forum. Please keep the conversation civilized and free of profanity.

                  I'm sure if I had said the same, I'd be banned from this forum. How many posts do I need before I can talk like that?
                  Is it just me or does it seem like your purposely provoked Jim on this. Your description under your name even further proves this. "Future Pulitzer Nominee".

                  What you said was totally not needed on this thread. I highly respect Jim and his opinions and so does the majority of the forum. If he was nominated for a prize great! I have seen Jims work and I can see why he was nominated. However that is not what this thread is about. This thread is about a established DPS forum member who does non wedding photography and does great at it trying his hand at wedding photography. I just see your initial and subsequent posts as an unneeded aspect of this conversation.
                  Last edited by bhursey; 07-03-2012, 08:50 PM.
                  Cameras: Canon 60D, Canon 20D, 35mm Nikon FM2n
                  Canon EF lens used : 50mm f1.8, 18-55mm f/3.5-5.5, 75-300mm f/4.5-5, 85mm f/1.8
                  Tamron Lens: 28-75mm F/2.8 XR Di LD Aspherical (IF)
                  Strobist: Canon 580EX II , "Vivitar DF400MZ, Nikon SB-24, LP-160, YN568EX"
                  http://flickr.com/photos/bhursey | http://brianhurseyphotography.com

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                  • #24
                    Originally posted by Jim Bryant
                    Well, PM me then, so we can sort out our problems!
                    Is this Newb really worth the effort?
                    .
                    .
                    .
                    .
                    .
                    And back to the topic at hand.... Tzetsin, I understand not wanting the pressure of being the person expected to deliver professionally captured memories all by yourself and would definitely decline if I was in your shoes (although I am no where near as good as you)... But this is a difficult dilemma, as I would jump at the opportunity to have a go ahead to be in the action clicking away at such a beautiful event. However, I would also be firmly clear that I am not and will not guarantee professional quality results. If the bride (your cousin) wants to be certain her memories are properly captured then she needs to invest in someone with the experience needed to properly capture them.

                    $2k in booze? That's quite the investment in something that won't last very long... Everyone has different priorities though I suppose. If she's not happy with her recorded memories after the big day, she'll only have herself to blame, so feel free to remove yourself from the need to feel any guilt/pressure over it. Based on her decisions thus far she has clearly decided that this is not a priority.
                    Learning the technical world of DSLRs
                    Canon 7D w/ Sigma 17-50 f/2.8, EF 75-300mm f/4-5.6 III & EF 28-80mm f/3.5-5.6 II
                    Canon Rebel 2000, Canon AE-1 w/ FD 50mm f/1.4, NikonL120

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                    • #25
                      Originally posted by KitKat70 View Post
                      $2k in booze? That's quite the investment in something that won't last very long... Everyone has different priorities though I suppose. If she's not happy with her recorded memories after the big day, she'll only have herself to blame, so feel free to remove yourself from the need to feel any guilt/pressure over it. Based on her decisions thus far she has clearly decided that this is not a priority.
                      You see, thats just it. You know, and I know, and everyone here knows how important images of important events are, for years down the road, but these other people... those people that don't put any value in doing something that hurts a little today to benefit themselves tomorrow are like people snorting cocain for the first time. They think its ok today, but down the road they're screwed... And I'm like a concerned parent that knows where the road ends trying to get their kid to stop... no amount of talking is going to change their mind. But in this I have more power than a concerned parent. In this I can affect the outcome. At personal cost, but its the price we pay for bonds.

                      There are only two things I can think of in a traditional wedding that you don't need to make the event happen. Booze, and the photographer. One to help the festivities that night, one to remember the festivities in the morning. I don't know why people always choose booze.

                      I guess its circular lol, if you drink all night, you need pics to remember, if you dont drink, you dont need pics..... lol (joke)

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                      • #26
                        Originally posted by Tzetsin
                        Please don't use my thread to further your vendetta. Thankee kindly.
                        Fine, let me give you some advice.

                        You, like many on this forum, are trying to tell the client what they want instead of listening to what they want. I know, it's a strange concept...giving the customer what they want. Photos are very important to us, but not everyone feels the same way.

                        If your cousin wants you to shoot the wedding, she's telling you "I don't care about photos that much...adequate photos will do." You're telling her "No, you must have the best!".

                        Looking through your photos, it's obvious that your post-processing skills are very good, but I don't see much in the way of artificial lighting. Knowing how to bounce flash is essential for good indoor photos, and is quite easy to learn. Your nifty-fifty is a fine lens, and will do a fine job with candids and other indoor shots, but you may need something wider for the formals. If you can rent a 70-200 f2.8 IS II for the ceremony, that would be good as well. A full-frame camera would be nice, but your 60D should do just fine.

                        If you can do that, you'll be more than adequate, which is all your cousin is asking for. Also remember that a wedding can last 8+ hours (the last one I shot was 12), and even a bad photographer can get a handful of good shots in that time.
                        Last edited by Menomenom; 07-04-2012, 01:34 AM.

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                        • #27
                          I noticed that you have until November 17th to work out scenerios you will run into. That's plenty of time to work out in your head what you will need to learn to be reasonably comfortable on the wedding day. Think of it as a project and work through the project step by step.

                          Here are a few things to remember.
                          1- Flat lighting (on camera flash) although not the most dramatic lighting is the safest to assure you get a usable results. Get the safe shots and then experiment.
                          2- Carry a cheat sheet/ itinerary of shots you need to get. Segment the day and make lists on seperate pages for each segment. That way you don't have to memorize all the shots.
                          3- Study other photographers for ideas on posing. Such as when getting shots of the rings, the detail shots, etc.
                          4- Find a local wedding photographer and see if you can go on a few weddings with him prior to the date or just crash a few weddings without your gear and observe what the photographer does. Use a decerning eye though because it might be his first wedding as well.LOL This will give a feel for the flow and speed of the day.

                          You've got lots of time to concentrate on what you will need to learn to do an acceptable job and the talent and ability your images already show will make alot of it more than adequate.

                          Also, get friends to stand in and practice shots that you are not comfortable with until you are. You know that if you post stuff in the critic section here explaining what you are doing you will get plenty of helpful suggestions. Also feel free to PM me with any questions and I'll be happy to work it out with you.

                          Best of Luck!
                          Nikon D 600/ Nikkor 35-70mm f/2.8, 80-200 F2.8 D, SB900, SB800

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                          • #28
                            Originally posted by Menomenom View Post
                            Fine, let me give you some advice.

                            You, like many on this forum, are trying to tell the client what they want instead of listening to what they want. I know, it's a strange concept...giving the customer what they want. Photos are very important to us, but not everyone feels the same way.

                            If your cousin wants you to shoot the wedding, she's telling you "I don't care about photos that much...adequate photos will do." You're telling her "No, you must have the best!".

                            Looking through your photos, it's obvious that your post-processing skills are very good, but I don't see much in the way of artificial lighting. Knowing how to bounce flash is essential for good indoor photos, and is quite easy to learn. Your nifty-fifty is a fine lens, and will do a fine job with candids and other indoor shots, but you may need something wider for the formals. If you can rent a 70-200 f2.8 IS II for the ceremony, that would be good as well. A full-frame camera would be nice, but your 60D should do just fine.

                            If you can do that, you'll be more than adequate, which is all your cousin is asking for. Also remember that a wedding can last 8+ hours (the last one I shot was 12), and even a bad photographer can get a handful of good shots in that time.

                            While I agree with this post, I see a problem. Call it "ego" or whatever, but as a "photographer" there is a "standard" which is self imposed. Having an opinion on what "good" photography is (and it *is* just opinion) that becomes the minimum standard regardless of what the "customer" wants.

                            If I can deliver that standard great, if not I will feel a failure. It's not just about "what the client wants", not if you are "an artist". It is if you are "a businessman/salesman." (person)

                            And yes, that's why "artists" starve a lot of the time.....


                            BTW, I think this is the first post I've seen from you which had some sense of helpfulness/support, wasn't primarily antagonistic, and didn't make me think you were a 20 yr. old who "knows everything" and just want's to stir up s4!t. Keep it up and you might become a valued/respected member here.
                            Last edited by sk66; 07-04-2012, 02:48 AM.
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                            • #29
                              hi Tzetsin,

                              I have total different thoughts from others.

                              a) First, you need to know why your cuz asking for your help. Understanding her requirements and constraints (especially financial) is more important than listening to "NO!" ..

                              b) Is the money matters for her? If she really unwilling to pay for photographers, then I think you really need to do your best to help her out, rather hesitating. Do plan, practice shots with her in her house. You know her much well than other photographers, and you should able to access her house easily before the wedding day. You know her house lighting conditions much well than others. And she will be more relax with you compared to stranger photographers.

                              c) Trust yourself. Try your best.

                              Go ahead and do it. And i trust you will do the job. Stop hesitating, and help her out. She just want memories, and it is always better than none. Start working hard for preparation and stop hesitating. Trust yourself. Use whatever equipment you have and just do it. Usually wedding shots are very rush, so do a few rehearsals.

                              Just visit her house, identify where she should do the makeup. It is always better to find place with large window where the lights are diffuse during the time you want to capture the shots. Look at the ceiling and walls, the color, and tone. If you are going to use artificial lighting, those color and tone really impact your shots. To make things easier, perhaps, repaint the ceiling or walls or adding the existing lights and whatever you could do to improve the shots.

                              d) Will your refusal bring unhappiness to her? Think about that. Perhaps there will be no photographers at all, which makes her regret for whole life. So, just take your camera and shot. Why are you wasting so much time learning about photography while you cannot trust yourself and help her out

                              e) if you feel uncomfortable of shooting her, then the solution is pretty simple. Do a few times rehearsals then you will used to capture her, and they will be more relaxed. Remember you are not shooting strangers but someone you know well.


                              Try your best, and I trust you can do great job. Starting capturing photos in your list, and post the critique section, and I am sure many experts will help you out.
                              Last edited by ccting; 07-04-2012, 03:42 AM.

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                              • #30
                                Originally posted by ccting View Post
                                .

                                Look at the ceiling and walls, the color, and tone. If you are going to use artificial lighting, those color and tone really impact your shots. To make things easier, perhaps, repaint the ceiling or walls....
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