In Previous post we have discussed some of the various components that make up Wedding Photography and Telling the Story. You can check those out HERE.
Of those main components the connection, in our opinion, most critical in telling the story in wedding photography.
Here is where we digress a bit, but hang with us. I promise to show you how it is relevant to wedding photography and telling the story.
When digital came along it did many things for photography; the ability to shoot in varying light conditions with a single camera body, to utilize both color RAW files as well as beautiful black & white.
It also did some likely unintended damage to professional photography. Suddenly with a digital capture the belief started that anyone who could own and point a camera could be a professional photographer (after all, how hard could it be, right?!) That battle, so to speak, is still being fought today for clients who have yet to be educated on the difference between professional prints and a flash drive of digital images.
For the professional photography industry this is, as I stated, a battle still being fought to show the difference a professional photographer makes.
But some wounds are of our own making.
With the advent of digital combined with the lack of many photographers pursuing continuing education, one situation I would use as an example is we see time and time again photographers checking out the back of the camera more than they interface with their clients….
Let me ask you, the reader this, how much of a connection do you feel with someone who clicks a shutter then gazes at the back of the camera. I am not talking about evaluation of light, your settings etc, but of the need to continue and to hold the all-important connection you have hopefully built with your clients.
What we are really speaking of is the complete skill-set of the professional photographer combining technical mastery with an understanding of light, the ability to connect with their clients to shoot those all important images that are positioned between the skin and the soul…to shoot their essence. This is what is critical to wedding photography and telling the story.
Finding a professional photographer in the sea of so any out there is difficult for the clients. A terrific place to start is HERE!
What I hope to convey here is that the cameras are but a tool, and to continue to work on ourselves in this profession and that connecting with the client in wedding photography to tell the story is a huge key to success.
Blessings & Happy Shooting!
Wedding Photography . Telling The Story with CONNECTION.
Last week we discussed the importance of wedding photography telling the story. We specifically discussed getting to know the client and that out of that grows empathy which can tell you what to shoot and what will make that job unique for that particular client.
This week we would like to discuss the connection in wedding photography. To give the closest parallel I can think of , I would suggest the relationship building that happens in a good portrait session. Platon Studios does this about as well as it can be done . When viewing any of his incredible images, you will usually note that incredible essence of the subject via the eyes. This is no accident as Platon spends time speaking to his clients and in fact, as he himself detailed in a Netflix Special , he spends more time speaking to the client than he does shooting, but that time allows him to create and make that connection, and that connection , as he defines it, if he is lucky allows other viewers to feel something…. You can see his work HERE:
I believe the same things are true for wedding photography. While it is very unlikely we will get to spend more time with our clients than the shooting time, given that our weddings are 12 hours or so a day, it IS important to create that connection. What you want is for the client to let you in, to give you their essence and in doing so, allowing you to tell their unique wedding photography story. This is wedding photography telling the story This is what becomes the family heirloom, irreplaceable and deserving of PRINT, not just digital. We will discuss that in a future blog…As well as the impact of digital on the all important client connection.
Thrill your clients by giving them wedding photography that tells a story.
With all the competition in wedding photography these days, what can you do as a wedding photographer to make sure your clients hire you? What do clients always love? Their unique story. Story Telling with their wedding photography makes their photography uniquely their own.
There are many ingredients to successfully telling the story with wedding photography. Over the next few weeks this blog will list and categorize what for us are the most critical. Today we are going to concentrate on telling the story in wedding photography with communication.
Telling the story in wedding photography is for us the single most critical component of successfully shooting a wedding day.
All successful documentary wedding photography begins with communication.
Meetings and communication with the client are critical. Face to face meetings, phone calls, even brief exchanges over social media help to create a relationship for both client and photographer to know one another.
Out of the familiarity grows knowledge.
Out of the knowledge grows awareness.
Out of the awareness grows empathy.
To better relay this I am going to tell you a story about clients we had and how communication created and paved the way for a successful shoot.
This particular couple were a bit older on the scale of average age of our wedding clients. Repeated meetings uncovered the fact the bride to be was coming from a place where marriage was thought to be something that would never, ever happen. It was obvious this was a highly emotional place they were coming from with that belief. Speaking to them frequently uncovered there great love for family and the wish for a ceremony and reception that all could enjoy , but that did not cause anyone any difficulty to participate in.
This meant we had to be aware of allowing the clients to enjoy a laid back reception but to not lose photographic opportunities that may be thought of us “too much trouble”
While the client desired their church wedding , it quickly became obvious the church was a critical part of their wedding day. This meant an approach to church shooting that was respectful of their rules but allowed us to show the spiritual nature of a religious ceremony.
Clients tastes will vary. If they, or you are not sure of styles and where and how you are shooting, there does exits resources to show them a variety of styles.
You can check out one such resource with the Professional Photographers of America. You can see it HERE.
Telling the story with wedding photography requires communication, a connection and empathy. This particular image almost did not happen. The bride was kind of not wanting to go to the trouble of an official exist. Family, and us, intervened and we ended up with a shot that was a favorite for both us and the client.
In closing I’ll remind everyone that the heart is an important piece of your wedding photography equipment. Carry it with you always and keep it open….you and your clients will be glad you did!