10 ways to get better pictures from your wedding.
Everyone wishes for a great wedding in the family. Its a once in a life time occasion after all. For most people at least ;p . And you want to have great memories from it for yourself. To look back and reminisce the moments or just to share with friends who might have missed it. There is tons of information available online and you should ideally research. The more you learn, the more refined your decisions would be and your expectations would be quite precise as well.
Well here are a few tips which I hope will make sure you get decent pictures from your wedding (even if I'm not shooting it ;p ) . Some of the audience might not be photography enthusiasts so here are the ground rules for all.
1. Plan ahead. The more time you have decisions, the better your choices become from the available options. E.g. you start booking things 2-3 months in advance (which is late in most books) and you find that best venues, and contractors are already booked. It would push you to second best choices already. Better venue + better photographer will get you better pictures.
2. Re-examine the venue. Don't be lured by quick venue pictures. They all look good and are professionally shot at leisure and photoshopped to likeable levels. Real life situations are very different. Lighting is very different, its crowded and decorated differently. If you can't picture it yourself, as your planner or photographer for their views. If you are getting great deals from 2 hotels and one has better lit (or outdoor venue) go with the latter every time.
3. Have a planner. You could read more about it on the earlier blog. But let the decor and traffic flow be professionally managed, this will automatically lend to good pictures.
4. Outdoor venues are unmatched. Nothing can beat day light. I shoot with the best equipment available and I can tell you that pictures shot on a phone in daylight can be far better looking than those shot with the best gear in the night.
5. Avoid colored lights. If you have a sangeet or reception and multicolored lights are used for decor then that's fine. The problem starts when the local electrician tries to bathe everything in ugly hues of deep pink, magenta, green and blue. It murders many a pictures and video clips.
6. Ask for spot lights. In case the venue is decorated with multiple lights, you could ask for a better lit central area where the couple would be seated, and this can be separately lit instead of ambient lights. Have witnessed this at many star hotels who have beautifully dim ambient light. But that's not very good for photography.
7. Invest on make-up. All girls know that make-up can make or break their day out. A small detail they all keep forgetting is hair and its accessories. Most realise this horror finally on the wedding day, with the clock running down there is no way back. A quick touch-up for the groom is often overlooked, but could be quite worthwhile.
8. Photographer. Well its easier said than done. And there are a lot of good photographers out there. But some don't match your expectation. I have seen clients 'fighting' with the photographer after they saw the wedding pics. Because what was delivered was not what they expected. To avoid this, disregard the label value. Don't care how big a name in the industry he/she is. Look at one or 2 detailed weddings from his/her work. If it does not match what you're looking for then keep looking.
9. Make room: Can you cook a 5 course meal in a STD-PCO size kitchen. May be you can, but you sure couldn't plate it masterchef style or want to eat it yourself. Same for photographers. Have fewer photographers. Discourage people crowding around important areas and try to imagine the size of venue when you know no. of guests.
10. Have a tentative minute schedule: If you can plan a basic schedule for all events, and break it down as a minute plan, you can perhaps evaluate what you can pakc in a day and what you can't. Often couples miss out on nice portraits at great locations... why? because of bad planning they are now running 90 minutes behind schedule and have to rush for the next event. They missed those pictures and to add to the misery they looked stressed, making it looking worse. So plan ahead. Plan in detail. Be realistic. And smile!