Professional wedding photographers need to capture the best moments of a wedding event. Are you looking to improve your wedding photography? Then, you will benefit from the best wedding photography tips and tricks described in this article! The best wedding picture tips improve upon your existing wedding photography workflow. There is no need to reinvent the process for wedding photos.
Wedding photography tips help a photographer shoot a couple’s most precious moments. But that is a lot of responsibility for the wedding photographer! So, you will benefit from knowing the best wedding photoshoot tips described in this guide.
What is Wedding Photography?
Wedding photography is a part of photography that is focused on capturing the events, people, and activities related to a wedding.
The wedding photographer can click photos of the bride, groom, and guests during the wedding ceremony. Also, wedding photography can include the entire process, from the proposal, engagement, and pre-wedding, to the entire wedding event with the decorations, venue, and rituals.
Wedding photographers typically use techniques from portrait photography and documentary photography to capture memorable moments of the bride and groom, the bridesmaids & groomsmen, their family members, and other guests.
Need Help Editing Your Wedding Photos?
What Equipment Do You Need for a Wedding Photoshoot?
You must ensure that you have the essential equipment before going to the wedding photoshoot.
Some of the key pieces of equipment for wedding ceremonies are:
- Cameras for Wedding Photography
- Lenses for Wedding Photography
- Lighting for Wedding Photography
- Essential Accessories for Wedding Photography
It is important to ensure that all the key equipment is on hand whenever you need it. Thus, a camera bag will be helpful to keep your gear close. Helpful wedding photography tips start with the equipment needed for a flawless shoot.
Cameras for Wedding Photography
You must invest in a good camera that delivers high-quality photographs. In general, a DSLR or Mirrorless Camera is a good option. Additionally, I recommend having a backup camera if something goes wrong with your primary camera.
When choosing your wedding photography camera, you must ensure that it has fast shutter speeds and reliable autofocus, as the subjects will be dynamic and you will need to click fast. Furthermore, the more detail the camera captures, the better for photo editing.
Lenses for Wedding Photography
The lens for your camera will determine the quality of your wedding photos. Therefore, you must keep a variety of lenses for different scenarios and shots.
Some important lenses for wedding photography:
- Wide Angle Lens – For Group and Candid Shots
- Macro Lens – For Closeup Shots of the Decorations
- Telephoto Lens – For Taking Shots from a Distance
Lighting for Wedding Photography
External flashes and diffusers help you control the lighting during the wedding. Ideally, the wedding venue will be well-lit and helpful for photography. However, this is not always the case. So, a wedding photoshoot tip is to keep a flashgun or other external camera flashlight to always be prepared.
Essential Accessories for Wedding Photography
The best wedding photography tip I can give any photographer is to always keep extra batteries, chargers, and memory cards during the wedding. You never know when your camera will run out of juice or memory.
Other important accessories to keep during a wedding photoshoot are lens cleaning kits, tripods, light stands, and lens hoods. That way, you are always prepared for any scenario.
Wedding Photography Tips
Here are the best wedding photography tips to help both new photographers and seasoned pros get the best out of the wedding ceremony:
- Familiarize and Master Your Photography Gear
- Do Not Work Alone: Bring External Help
- Prepare Beforehand
- Know Who You Are Shooting
- Get a Good Understanding of the Wedding Venue
- Make a Shot List to Capture the Important Moments
- Observe the Ceremony and Be Bold
- Ensure You Capture the Smiles
- Capture Various Angles
- Shoot the Small Details
- Get Wedding Group Shots
- Don’t Discard the Mistake Shots
Familiarize and Master Your Photography Gear
A good wedding photography tip is to get an intimate understanding of all of your camera gear, including lenses, camera settings, and shooting modes.
For example, a fast shutter speed helps capture fun party moments at the wedding reception, while a long shutter speed is best for still, pre-wedding portraits.
Another example is a wide-angle lens for group shots, but a prime lens is better for a high-resolution shot of the wedding couple at the altar.
Understanding the best settings and lenses for each wedding photo helps you capture the best quality images. Therefore, familiarize and test out your photography gear beforehand to ensure everything works seamlessly.
Do Not Work Alone: Bring External Help
Another important wedding photoshoot tip is to shoot photos with one or more partners. Thus, you can ensure you do not become overwhelmed with the process.
Consider working with an assistant (or another photographer) who can shoot different angles of the same shot. As a result, you will have a larger number of photos to work with when creating the wedding album and photo editing.
Furthermore, your secondary photographer can capture the smaller moments amongst the guests while you focus on the bride and groom.
The best wedding photography tips talk about the photography process. But, pre-planning the wedding photo shoot is as important as the shoot itself.
Create a schedule to ensure you spend time shooting all the important moments and do not miss anything.
Furthermore, ensure you keep extra batteries, memory cards, and other gear.
Preparing beforehand will save the day if anything goes wrong.
Know Who You Are Shooting
Knowing the bride, groom, their families, and guests can be daunting. However, you must have an idea of each person, especially the important guests to ensure you take photos of them.
Therefore, discover the guest list and seating arrangements to familiarize yourself with the people you need to photograph. As a result, you will capture the important friends and family of the wedding participants.
Get a Good Understanding of the Wedding Venue
It is helpful to visit the wedding location the get a feel for the layout and potential photo opportunities. You will understand the lighting situation and be able to prepare the gear in advance. Furthermore, familiarize yourself with the team arranging the venue to establish an understanding. These people may prove invaluable during the wedding with any issues that crop up.
Make a Shot List to Capture the Important Moments
A shot list is a document mapping out all the photos you need to take. Of course, you still have to take candid shots, but a shot list ensures you do not miss anything important like the groom’s first look at the bride in her wedding dress.
Other common ideas to include in a wedding photography shot list include:
- The flower girl walking down the aisle
- The bridal party preparing for the wedding
- Emotional family moments
- The cake-cutting event
- The newlyweds’ first kiss
Having all of these in your shot list will help you when you are unsure what to shoot next. Also, be sure to ask the bride and groom if they want to add any particular shots.
Observe the Ceremony and Be Bold
Another essential but underrated wedding photography tip is to be attentive to what is happening at the wedding. You should ensure that you get all the important moments between the bride and groom, their families, and guests. Furthermore, being bold will help you always be where the big moments are happening.
Ensure You Capture the Smiles
Being observant during the wedding will help you capture the happiest moments and smiles. Sometimes, the candid or hidden moments are the most special parts of the photos.
For example, kids playing, a group of friends laughing together, or people dancing quietly are all joyous moments that liven up the wedding photo album.
You can’t create or plan these smiles, because they’re original, honest reactions. So, be on the lookout for them, and capture them when they occur! The couple will love these kinds of photos. And that is the best wedding photoshoot tip, keep the couple happy!
Capture Various Angles
Another essential wedding photography tips and tricks are to make your shots unique by capturing photos from multiple angles and perspectives. Having a partner is the best way to capture the same moment from different angles. As a result, your photoshoot won’t be filled with classic wedding poses, but include wonderful creative angles.
Shoot the Small Details
Instead of exclusively focusing on the people at a wedding, you should also take some time to shoot the small details.
For example, you can photograph rings, shoes, table settings, backs of dresses, menus, decorations, and other small details that give your photographs intimacy.
Check out wedding magazines for some inspiration before the wedding photoshoot.
Get Wedding Group Shots
Another important wedding photoshoot tip is to get group shots. Everyone wants to click a portrait with the couple, which could take a long time! So, it’s better to shoot in groups, leaving you with enough time for the most important shots.
You should use your familiarity with the wedding guests to make groups efficiently. Then, ensure that imperfections are fixed like flyaway hairs and other small details.
Finally, the important wedding photoshoot tip is to click lots of photos. With group shots, there will always be someone moving or scratching their nose. So, lots of photos will help you filter out later.
Don’t Discard the Mistake Shots
The final wedding photography tip I will give you is to not delete any “mistake” shots during the ceremony.
You never know which shot will look amazing when slightly edited. For example, an unwanted object can always be cropped out during image post-processing, so the other subjects may look perfect otherwise.
In conclusion, wedding photography requires lots of preparation, the right equipment, and a good knowledge of the various shooting styles. The final wedding photography tips and tricks I can provide are to have fun and learn wedding photo editing.
You can check out our article on Photo Editing for Photographers for more information on image-post processing.
If you are not having fun during the wedding photoshoot you are missing out. And always remember, you can always edit out the imperfections later, so don’t fret about the little details!
Finally, I hope this article helped you in your next wedding photoshoot. You may think you do not need the wedding photography tips and tricks described in this guide. However, please give them a try. Even a seasoned wedding photographer can take away something from these wedding picture tips.
Wedding Photography Tips FAQs
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about common wedding photography tips.
Try to keep the ISO value between 400-800 for indoor weddings. Doing so will help you achieve grain-free photographs. Higher ISOs may introduce more digital noise. However, it all depends on the camera, so try out a few settings.
On the other hand, outdoor wedding photography requires an ISO setting between 100-400. So, choose wisely when shooting, depending on the lighting conditions.
The most common soft skills a wedding photographer needs are artistic ability, business skills, and computer skills. Hard skills a wedding photographer should have include portrait photography and the ability to use a wide range of cameras and lenses.
Do not go under 1/60 seconds during a ceremony to avoid blurriness. If you are using external lighting, like for receptions, then between 1/200th to 1/60th is suitable for shooting the best images.
Keep it simple.
Focus on Frame and Composition
Use Different Angles and Perspectives
Add Depth to Wedding Photos
Find Symmetry In Your Shots
Create Silhouettes Using the Sun
Use Reflections to Tell A Story
Practice your people skills and network.
Work on the behind-the-scenes skills.
Develop your personality and let it shine.
Tell a story with your wedding photography.
Develop a good relationship with your clients.
Continue developing your wedding photography skills.