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10 guest wedding

steve minett , Jul 11, 2006; 03:52 p.m.

OK so im new to this ish But this has really got me stumped

Im shooting a wedding this weekend civil with 10 to 12 guests easy enough but I have been asked to attend a park following to take a few photographs of the bride and groom, I want to give them somthing special as no guests are prepared to go to the park with them, but am stuck for insperation on shots to take in the park.

the bride said she is happy to take direction but what to do to make her day for her?

any help you can give thankyou

Steve Minett


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Patrick Viebey - Orlando, FL , Jul 11, 2006; 04:18 p.m.

Maybe I mis-understand, but I'd start with the Learn/Portraits tab in this forum to get an idea how to go about this.

For shots in the park, can't really provide any idea without knowing what's there. There's a creative side to composition regarding using the environment for framing, etc.

Jennie Farnsworth - Kennesaw, Ga. , Jul 11, 2006; 04:27 p.m.

I'm not trying to stir the pot here, but with four days to go, you want to learn how to pose and shoot wedding formals?...

Conrad Erb - Philadelphia, PA , Jul 11, 2006; 04:54 p.m.

Steve - I'm assuming by 'something special' that you mean making some nice photographs, and not suddenly surprising the couple with a bottle of champagne?

if you want to see some good use of parks as a photographic setting, start to click around on the portfolios of the top 10 wedding photographers that you hear about. copy images (if you can) and put them in an 'inspiration' folder. keep looking at them.

silly as it sounds, before I shoot a wedding, I flip through a file of contemporary quasi-formal shots that I'm trying to improve. my formals are good, my PJ is pretty strong, IMHO, but my contemporary, with-a-twist formals are always getting better. some people are against this b/c it means that you are just trying to emulate someone else instead of developing your own style, but I disagree. relatively few photographers really have their 'own style', and being able to see and shoot and be inspired in different ways always makes you a better photographer.

so - go start a clippings file. hurry.


Marc Williams , Jul 11, 2006; 05:09 p.m.

Well, the job isn't going to disappear on Steve, so maybe we could help him a bit?

First go to the park and scout locations. Try to do it at around the same time you'll be shooting so you can see where the sun is. Look for a bridge, fountain, statue or some other landmark you can use as a backdrop or place to shoot the couple. That's where your inspiration will come from. For example ....

If there's a bridge just ask them to stroll hand in hand toward you from the other side and snap away.

Get them to kiss in front of a fountain or statue (if there is one) ...

Put them on a park bench and shoot them from behind as they look back at you.

Get them to share affection for one another in the way they do and shoot away.

Maybe the last thing you want to do is formally pose them ...

Newly weds will usually kiss for you, then forget you're there : -)

Craig Gillette , Jul 11, 2006; 05:12 p.m.

Scope out the park in advance if you can. Trees, shade, sun, flowers, fountains, streams, bridges, gazebos, geese and ducks (and poop) on the grass. Any issues with fees, reservations or permits?

One of my wife's favorite shots was taken sitting on the grass with her dress spread neatly around, with all the nieces and nephews. You may not have "prop" kids but sitting may be an option - or not. Find a good sized but undamaged tree and "carve" in a heart and arrow - using post-processing, not a knife.

Ken Cravillion - Oshkosh, WI , Jul 11, 2006; 05:31 p.m.

I had a wedding last year with no guests! I had to bring my wife along as they needed two witnesses. Their under age kids were the only others there.

I'm sure your park has lots of opportunities. Mark brought up some great ideas. Good luck with it!

Tim Corridan - Queen Creek, Arizona , Jul 11, 2006; 05:49 p.m.

lean groom against a tree( non sticky one) have him pull bride to him. try vice-versa. have them sit at base of tree. look for the prettiest foliage. use tree as a frame, ie: overhang. can they have some fun ones, piggy back? some couples might look silly in marcs photo. some might look better.(though i doubt it) would a step stool help any, to shoot down on them. helps avoid flab under the chins. an outside hands/ring shot is always nicer than a ring shot inside i think.

simple, but nice

MaryBall Pierson , Jul 11, 2006; 05:54 p.m.

Watch your lighting...!

Try going for backlit shade.. Anotherwords, sun filtering through green leaves behind the couple. Great if you can get some of the light in the hair/veil.

Sitting in the grass can be super! Couple tends to be more relaxed when sitting. As Marc said.. a bench is good too.

Have them walk away from camera - and shoot them holding hands walking away... Tell them to stop and face each other and take a "moment"... to hug, kiss etc.. and then tell them to look at you - faces together... After they've hugged and kissed and whispered sweet nothings to each other.. they'll look more relaxed and emotional...

Lauren M. - North Shore, MA , Jul 11, 2006; 11:37 p.m.

Hi Steve, I've only done a few shoots myself, but love Marc's suggestion and Conrad's and would use them in combination with Mary's suggestion of finding shade. In observing the pro at a friend's wedding, I noticed as the shoot went on and they and the pro joked with each other, they got more and more omfortable and it really showed in the pictures. Even just talking while shooting helps everyone relax. Put them in a pose, but then instead of saying, 1-2-3, "do this" or "do that", just have them keep talking to each other while looking at each other or do something goofy which would generate a laugh.

My friends were very comfortable with my being there and I was able to offer a couple of suggestions, also on another shoot, the groom's Mom came along and it was obvious she was close with the couple and they could be natural around her. She also helped with posing and keeping them relaxed. - (sure not everyone has that relationship with Mom - but maybe there is a best friend or sibling?)

I'm just rambling on... hope it was some help!

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