MISTAKE 6: THINKING THAT BECAUSE A PHOTOGRAPHER HAS EXPENSIVE GEAR, THEY’RE BOUND TO TAKE FANTASTIC PHOTOGRAPHS
It really is no guarantee. I could buy a top of the range Aga, and believe me, you probably wouldn’t want to eat what I could create with it.
This anecdote sums it up best: When the author Jack London had his portrait taken by the noted San Francisco photographer Arnold Genthe, London began the encounter with effusive praise for the photographic art of his friend and fellow bohemian, Genthe: “You must have a wonderful camera…it must be the best camera in the world …you must show me your camera!” Genthe then used his standard studio camera to make what has since become a classic picture of Jack London. When the sitting was finished, Genthe could not contain himself: “I have read your books, Jack, and I think they are important works of art. You must have a wonderful typewriter.”
MISTAKE 7: NOT CONSIDERING AN ASSISTANT PHOTOGRAPHER
Planning is everything when it comes to wedding photography. I’ll always try and meet the client and nail down timings – what time they’re arriving, when guests are due to arrive, when the cutting of the cake and first dance are due to occur, and so on and so forth. This means I can plan where I’ll be, at what time, and what photographs I’ll be taking when I’m there. However, I don’t have eyes in the back of my head (more’s the pity), and they haven’t yet invented a camera with a lens on the front and the back (well, there’s always my smartphone, but I don’t think you’d want me to photograph your wedding using that..!)
I always try and recommend my couples pays a little extra for an assistant photographer. This means you’ll obviously have two pairs of skilled eyes watching proceedings unfold – while I’m photographing the first kiss, my assistant is capturing the beaming smiles and tears of joy amongst your wedding guests. While I’m capturing the bride and groom walking down the aisle towards me, my assistant is capturing the reactions of your guests, the confetti throwing and so on. While I’m capturing a close-up of the cake cutting, my assistant is taking a wide photograph of everyone in the room.
MISTAKE 8: LEAVING ALL THE DECISIONS TO THE PHOTOGRAPHER
As mentioned above in point 4, there are a number of “must-have” photos that I’ll always capture, although I recommend my clients to provide as much input as possible when it comes to their photographs. I’ll recommend poses and locations for your photos, but let me know what images you’d like. Set up a Pinterest board with wedding photos you love and share it with me (just bear in mind that if you pin photos from a beach wedding in Belize and you’re getting married in Bromley, you may be disappointed. Be realistic.)
Trust in my expertise, certainly, and the more ideas you can provide me with the better.
MISTAKE 9: INSISTING ON TRENDY PHOTOS
Around ten years ago “selective colouring” was all the rage – you know, a black and white photograph of a bride holding a bouquet, but the bouquet is in colour (it’s been selectively coloured in Photoshop). A couple of years ago it was vintage – desaturated / washed out photos of trendy couples holding Rolleiflex cameras. The problem with photographing in a style that’s currently trendy? It dates. Badly. In ten years time your photos will look “of a time” and definitely not timeless. After all, brown corduroy flares were hip at one point in history (so I keep telling myself as I once owned a pair. Anyway, moving on..!)
MISTAKE 10: NOT REALISING JUST HOW IMPORTANT YOUR WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHS ARE AND WILL BE IN THE FUTURE
This is a summary of all the points above. Make sure you hire someone you can trust to capture beautiful wedding photos. Put quality above price. How do their photos make you feel? How does the photographer make you feel when you meet them? Your wedding only lasts a day, and memories fade over time, but your photographs should remind you of your wedding day for the rest of your life.