Lights, Camera, Action! Wedding Photography 101

Justice Photography

Don’t be camera shy! Photography is the #1 MUST-HAVE Regardless if you are doing an engagement shoot or not, you will still need a photographer. A photographer is almost as important on your venue; you want to feel connected. They are taking pictures of the best day of your life (no pressure!) so you want to hire a professional (no iPhone photos!)

I met our wedding photographer way back in the day (2012) when he was just starting out. When Sage transitioned into weddings and I saw a few weddings he did, I was thinking before I was even engaged “he needs to be my wedding photographer!” 

Read on for Sage’s tips to know when looking for a wedding photographer:

1.  Find someone that’s very comfortable with both natural light and flash.

A lot of photographers can take absolutely gorgeous images during the day, but once they get into a tricky lighting situation (either indoors or at night), they struggle to produce consistent images.  Having a photographer that understands flash (and preferably off-camera flash) is key for getting consistent images throughout the whole day.

2.  Make sure to ask to view multiple galleries from the potential photographer.  

You want to look for red flags, while also seeing how they approach different sections of the day.  Some red flags to look for in final delivered galleries (that have been fully edited) are: poorly cropped images or images that aren’t leveled to the horizon, improper exposure, poorly composed images, portraits that are cropped awkwardly (cut off wrists or hands, cropped at knees, feet cropped off, etc), missed focus on the subject, unintentionally blurry or overly grainy photos, distracting objects in the background of portraits (trees or poles coming out of the back of someone’s head, etc).

3.  When choosing a photographer, make sure you find someone that will help you feel comfortable and “your self.”

Finding someone that can help bring you out of your comfort zone, help pose you correctly, and help bring out a genuine smile are all very important.  You need someone that’s going to have your best interest at heart and who will be blunt with you if they don’t like the content they’re getting. A good example is sometimes I’ll show up on a wedding day and the bride will be getting her finishing touches of makeup applied.  She’ll look a bit nervous or not be fully present, so instead of taking photos of her looking miserable, I’ll crack a joke or say something to help make her less stressed and feel like her true self! This is key throughout the whole day.

Our Engagement Shoot(s)

The weather outside was.. well weather. But we had our love to keep us warm! We had June Gloom in full effect both at our Elfin Forest engagement shoot and also during our Tourmaline engagement shoot. However, that didn’t stop us! We had a great time on both shoots with our photographer, Sage, which gave us equally beautiful and unique images showcasing our engagement and for our Save the Dates. 

Tip 1: Find a location that is reflective of your relationship. I chose Elfin Forest because I wanted a “woodsy look” which was great however, we are more beach people and ended up having a second shoot at the beach. If you have a place you love, like a first date spot or your adorably decorated apartment, shoot it there. 

Tip 2: Time of day. The golden hour doesn’t always mean a sunset, however, the lighting is much better than say at noon. During the week is better for a shoot because there are fewer people around making the shoot more intimate. 🙂

Tip 3: What the heck to wear? I wore traditional white in my photos but you don’t have too. If you have another dress or blouse in another color you look good in, wear it. And make sure you try on your outfits and move around in them PRIOR to your shoot so you feel comfortable. Comfort is key!

xoxo, Nat

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