What to Look for in a Wedding Photographer by Dave Lakins

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When you’re not a photographer, or really hugely into photography, chances are this is the first time you will have been asked to sit in judgement over a number of wedding photographs and decide which are best. Photography is so much more than just pushing a button; good photographers are just as much experts in their own field as say a surgeon is in his.

Can you separate bad images from good? Can you tell who really knows how to use their camera and get the best from it?

Also, being a Wedding Photographer especially is much more than just taking beautiful images. A good Wedding Photographer needs to be confident and relaxed on the day to know how to blend into his surroundings, to get on with everyone he works with and fully understand how a wedding works; can you spot the difference in the pictures of those photographers who do just that from the ones just going through the motions?

Maybe not, and it is important because you are hiring this person to be around and with you on the most important day of your life. He has just one go at getting it right; there is no room for error!

So here’s a quick guide to what to look for, to help you see the good from the bad:

Blown highlights do you even know what that is?

Thought not! It’s when the photographer has trouble sorting out the lighting, he focuses on the dark area of the picture the light adjusts itself which means the darker areas can be seen, but the lighter areas all get thrown together into the ‘white’ band. This means that the brightest parts of a wedding dress, for instance, will be ‘blown’ great big areas of pure white with no detail at all. A good photographer will adjust his settings for even the trickiest of lighting situations to make sure this never happens unless they want it to.

Relaxed expressions check people’s faces. Do they REALLY look like they’re having fun? Or are they smiling for the camera whilst wishing they could go and do something less boring instead?

It is helpful to check not only the bride and groom but also the friends and relations in the photos.

Spot colour this is when a picture is black and white, with one area left in colour. It’s dated, mildly tacky and unless you’re directing Schindlers List it’s considered a big no-no by Those Who Know.

Too many ‘effects’ a less-than-perfect image can be ‘fixed up’ by copious use of soft focus filters, messing with the colours, or the previously mentioned spot colour. An enthusiastic but inexperienced photographer will often over-use all the tools at his disposal on every picture. When actually they should all stand up very well with absolute minimum of interference. That’s not say effects are bad just the over use of them.

Black and Whites should be clear white and crisp black, not all grey and muted.
To make a digital image a really good black and white requires more than simply hitting the ‘desaturate’ option. A flat, grey image is usually the result of lazy or amateur processing.

Are ALL the pictures you’re seeing posed? If so, is that what you want?

Sometimes a photographer will carefully stage all images even the ‘fun’ ones. Be sure to look carefully, and assess whether the subject actually knew this image was being taken. Then see just how many of them come into that category. If they mostly do, then no matter how much they call themselves unobtrusive you’ll be spending a lot of the day turning and smiling when directed make sure this is what you want.

When it comes to your wedding photo album, do you feel that the album tells the story of the whole wedding? Can you follow the whole story of the day, or is just a series of pretty images? Which do you want for yourself?

Article Source: ArticleRich.com

September 11, 2014 |

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