Choosing Your Wedding Photographer – Wedding Photography Styles Explained

You’ve chosen your date, booked your venue and started shopping for dresses. Now you’re looking for a wedding photographer. There are a lot of styles of wedding photography out there, and while people in the industry might know these styles inside out they be confusing for couples. Remember as well that not only are you picking a style of photography, but different types of wedding photography can make different demands on your time on your wedding day.

Picking the style of photography you want at your wedding boils down to three things. What style of images you want, how long you want to spend with a photographer on your wedding day, and most importantly of all your own personality and comfort in front of the camera.

There are plenty of different photography buzzwords out there. Vintage, editorial, artistic or contemporary are just a few. Perhaps more confusingly they are used by different photographers in different ways. Ultimately it is up to couples to ask plenty of questions and do plenty of research before picking a photographer, and to rely on seeing full set of photos from completed weddings Do not rely on the best five or six shots from several weddings to make a choice.

Wedding photography styles are a compromise between producing fantastic work and keeping to a timetable. A photographer might produce brilliant photos, but if he takes too long to produce them you probably won’t enjoy the experience.

Traditional (or Posed) Wedding Photography

A lot of people think of traditional wedding photography as endless stuffy group photos where everyone looks stiff as a board. Worse still, the different collections of people seem to go on forever. I think there is a fashion to be down on traditional wedding photography, but the actual working framework is still the same for most wedding photographers. The photographs may be more stylish but the actual experience on the day for the bride and groom is very similar.

There is always a trade off between the type of work a photographer does and the time it takes to shoot it. More formal posed photographs will take longer to set up and achieve. Any photographer who produces artistic posed work will need a certain amount of time to produce his best work. It is important that you find out how much time he will need, and work out how it will fit into your day. There are photographers who spend a couple of hours on formal shots. Make sure you are happy with giving over that amount of time on your wedding day. If you are not that comfortable in front of the camera you may find this type of photography more difficult. A good photographer should be able to help you and put you at your ease but for many individuals it can still seem a bit daunting.

Reportage Wedding Photography (Wedding Photojournalism)

If traditional is all about posed photographs, then reportage wedding photography is the opposite. It relies on capturing moments as they happen, and is more like a fly on the wall documentary. This form of wedding photography means that the photographer spends most of his time in the background, and so has become increasingly popular with couples. Weddings are also increasingly less formal than they used to be. Documentary wedding photography demands a different skill set from traditional wedding photography so you have to make sure that your photographer has the correct photographic background and can show you full weddings to back this up. Wedding photojournalism is more about a complete set of pictures from the whole day than a set of a dozen highlights. There are photographers out there who will jump on the latest bandwagon to gain business, but still use the same old style they always have. Wedding photojournalism is all about anticipation and being in the right place at the right time. It is not about closely directing people, so it puts many traditional wedding photographers outside of their skill set. There are some less ethical photographers who will use the latest buzzwords to improve their search engine presence, but still shoot the same tired old pictures.

If you are reticent about having your photo taken, wedding photojournalism is probably your best choice. The photography happens without you really realizing and you’ll look your natural best.

Although these two approaches might appear polar opposites, in reality most wedding photographers will offer a blend of these two styles. There are not many wedding photojournalists who don’t shoot at least some formal photographs and traditional wedding photographers will shoot informal pictures as well. Find out what proportion of each a photographer likes to shoot, and better still ask them what they like to shoot the most – chances are this is what they are best at.

Vintage Wedding Photography

Vintage wedding photography is a style that has been coming into vogue recently, but in lots of ways its a hard one one to quantify. Vintage can mean anything from using old film cameras during some of the wedding to just a different approach to post production to produce ‘vintage’ looking digital files. There are some great photographers out there, but bear in mind that if you are receiving files that are heavily edited in a certain style, you run the risk of your photos looking rather dated a few years later. If I was hiring a vintage style photographer, I personally would want at least some of the wedding shot on film, I’m not a huge fan of faking things. As always ask questions, see examples and make an informed decision.

Editorial Wedding Photography

This wedding genre is inspired by the fashion editorials of glossy magazines, at it’s best it can produce fantastic high-end images. To produce this successfully on a wedding day the photographer needs to be highly organised, and would probably need an assistant to help set up some of the shots in advance, although that would depend on his or her style. Do your research to make sure that the time requirements for this type of shoot fit in with your plans. If you really like this type of photography but don’t want to devote too much time to it on your wedding day, consider booking a separate photo session after the wedding. Often describes as a trash or cherish the dress shoot, a separate photo session might be the best way to get the wedding day you want and the photographs you’ll love without losing a huge chunk of your wedding day. It also means that you and your photographer can pick the ideal time of day for the right light and you have scope for rescheduling if it’s pouring with rain. In many countries, particularly the US, high end wedding photography is evolving towards three shoots: the engagement shoot, the wedding day, and an editorial session. Don’t necessarily think that it all has to be done in one day.

Artistic or Fine Art Wedding Photography

Essentially an evolution of traditional wedding photography, this type of photography offers a contemporary take on the traditional set of posed photographs, although these are both terms that have been somewhat over used by the photographic community, so again do your research. At its best this genre can produce moving romantic images, but some photographers can over use the same poses, so it can feel a bit impersonal. Ask to see lots of shoots and don’t be afraid to input your own ideas at your pre-wedding meeting.

Conclusions

There are lot of styles of photographer out there, but the main thing is to look beyond the catchy buzzwords and look long and hard at portfolios. Ultimately it is the competence of the photographer you are hiring that really matters. Experience, personal service and professionalism are what ensure a consistent standard of photography from wedding to wedding, and the consistency and ability to deal with the different shooting conditions that present themselves throughout a wedding day. Their portfolio should show a good balance of shots from bridal preparations to the first dance. Ask questions about how much time they will need to complete those all important formal and couples shots, and work out how much time you are happy to give. Even with more observational styles, planning and communication before the wedding is vital to get the best results and to get them efficiently. Keep to the guidelines and you are sure to have a memorable wedding day with photos to match.

Unique Wedding Ideas – The New Hot Trend – Photo Booths

Looking for a unique way to make your big day a little more unforgettable and entertaining? Try renting a photo booth for your wedding. Photo Booths supply a fun and memorable way for you and your guests to interact and create amazing mementos of your special day.

Photo booths are a hot new trend for weddings. They not only provide something fun and interactive for your guests, but they are a great way to create a photo montage of your big day. Many photo booth companies provide you with a CD compilation of your day’s photos, and others will even place them online for you and your loved ones to access, share, and print. Many companies offer a scrap booking option too, a must have if you want to create a detailed archive of special notes and pictures from your wedding day.

Choosing the right photo booth for your wedding is a delicate process. You want someone you can trust, but you also want to make sure the photo booth you rent meets your desires. There are a few things to look for when choosing a photo booth company:

Do I Want a Vintage or Digital Booth?

Vintage
-Some folks like the classic look and feel of a vintage photo booth. If you are looking to invoke nostalgia, a vintage booth is perfect for you. Their old school look and feel will remind you and your guests of days when these were a common site. One drawback is that they are bulky and are limited in where they can be placed. They also tend to cost somewhere in the range of $1500-$2000+ for an event. However, if you love the idea of having a classic booth and those unforgettable photo strips, then this is for you.

Digital
-For others who don’t have their hearts set on the classic look, a digital booth may be the answer. Digital booths have the advantage of being light weight and highly mobile, and thus are cheaper, usually ranging from $1000-$1200 for an event. Additionally, these booths can create high resolution photos and can fit 8-10 people, sometimes more. If you are looking for something with a little more bang for your buck, and are willing to spare the vintage look for a more modern curtained booth design, then a digital booth may be right for you.

What to Look for in a Photo Booth Company?

Photo Resolution
-You want to make sure that the booth you choose provides high photo resolution. This will ensure the clearest, sharpest pictures. Some companies may try to charge you extra for “high resolution” photos, but there are many companies out there that provide the same resolution or better, at no greater cost.

Booth Size
-Most classic booths are a little smaller inside than digital booths. Make sure you ask your classic booth provider how many people fit inside before booking with them. Typically, it’s 2-4 people at a time. Digital booths have a little greater range. These booths can fit anywhere from 4 or 5, all the way to 15 people in some cases. A bigger booth usually means more money, but once again, some companies provide large booths at no greater cost than other’s small booths.

Photo Archive
-Some Vintage and most Digital photo booth companies will provide you with a CD of all your event’s photos. You can take this and copy it, print the pictures out, and share at will. This is a great benefit if your chosen company provides this service. Some companies take it a step further and offer online password-protected galleries. You and your guests can log into the gallery with your chosen password and view all your wedding images. You will all be able to share, save, and print these pictures for usually 2-3 months after your event.

Booth Attendant
-Some companies will offer a booth attendant to watch over your booth. The last thing anyone wants on their big day is something extra to worry about. Be sure to choose a company that provides a trained booth attendant for your event.

Scrap Booking
-Some companies will offer scrap booking options. Scrapbooks are a perfect match with photo booths. Most companies will offer double prints with this option and your guests can take the doubles of their pictures and add them to your book with a memorable note. This is a great way to create a special keepsake from you wedding.

Choosing a photo booth company for your big day is a tough decision. Be sure you know all the facts before choosing a provider. You will find that some companies want to charge you extra for upgrades that you can find for free elsewhere. Be sure to make sure you know what you are getting for your money. Most importantly, get what you want. It’s your wedding! If you are in love with the vintage booths, go ahead and choose one, even if you can’t cram 10 people in there. Likewise, if you love the idea of an online gallery or a booth attendant, go for the digital booth. Either way, you are going to have hundreds of priceless memories to look at after your big day.

Wedding Moments You Wouldn’t Want to Miss on Film

Wedding photos may flood in by the hundreds since events seem to last the whole day. From the preparation, to the walk, the toasts and the after party, all these moments might be too much for the couple to cherish at the moment. Here are our favorite picture-perfect moments that would immortalize the raw emotions felt and seen at the big day only.

The Countdown. The bride in her gown trying to get her hair done and chitchatting with the girls while the groom is having a bottle of beer just before heading off to get a shower -these are the precious moments leading up to the biggest event of their life. Be it nervousness, excitement or pure bliss; get to know what’s really on their minds as they realize “This is it!”

The Once-In-A-Lifetime Dress. The couple has spent a big fortune on this single item, just to have the perfect gown the bride has dreamt of. During the preparation, photographers can borrow the gown for a while and have fun with it through shots taken at the street sign, at the back of wooden doors or at a sun-drenched window. Think of it as the only photo wherein the dress gets the spotlight wrinkle and dirt free.

Just the Two of Us. This specific scene would be tricky to catch, possibly right after the ceremony or before the couple enters the reception. When the crowd has gone off to wait for the program to start, the newlyweds now get some quality time alone and then it sinks in – we are finally married. Have them stroll along a beautiful garden or make them sit on a swing. Getting the romantic scene would be one surefire photo that they will never forget, and might even be framed for their new house.

All Set and Ready to Dine. One common overlooked part of the whole wedding is the table. By the time the guests and the newlyweds arrive at the reception, the meticulous details of the linen, the centerpiece and even the place cards might already not be on the top priority. Why not rush to the hall before the crowd and try getting photos of the table arranged precisely as planned?

The Little Ones. If they looked like angels at the aisle, the adorable ring-bearer and flower girls are obvious subjects for some super-cute portraits. At the middle of the ceremony, take a snapshot of the kids at their cutest. They might be paying attention to what’s happening, playing along with other kids or fussing around with their clothes, the shots might not be as wedding-inspired but then let’s face it, they’re just too charming!

The Last Hoorah. In most themed weddings, the newlyweds have prepared a dramatic exit to top off the day’s festivities. Riding a helicopter, a horse or taking a vintage cab ride into the city, these goodbye moments signify the start of the couple’s journey together. Make it worthwhile by snagging shots of the crowd, both set of parents, close friends and the husband and wife as they bid farewell all together. Zoom out and frame in the whole scene including the venue and everyone waving goodbye at the couple.

For more details and other varieties of photos, contact your wedding photographer and get to know what their style is and approach they have towards the chosen theme.