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FORUMS Photography Talk by Genre Weddings & Other Family Events Talk 
Thread started 31 Jul 2012 (Tuesday) 18:47
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Photojournalist / Reportage style wedding shooters on POTN

 
Christopher ­ Steven ­ b
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Aug 01, 2012 18:31 |  #16

^This is what informed my making the original post. I'm not really familiar with what is out there. I've been super insular and trying to do my own thing. Of course it's also true that I've definitely been inspired by some of the work on this forum--yours included, just by virtue of looking, critiquing.

I can't name any. [EDIT}: I remember seeing some photos by Otto Schulze which are pretty close and way beyond what I do.



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brokensocial
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Aug 01, 2012 19:09 |  #17

Christopher Steven b wrote in post #14801483 (external link)
@mike and frida: If I gave a camera to a 10 year old and asked for them to follow the bride and groom from morning until evening, you would probably end up with hundreds of photos that would add up to a 'story'. In other words, unposed photography seems trivially to tell stories. That is, one doesn't have to do anything special in order for the photos to have this property. I'm just perhaps too curious about what distinguishes the photos of a good PJ wedding photographer from those of the child in terms of the storytelling that is going on (because obviously aesthetically the photos will likely be very different.)

I'm not sure anything does besides how the pictures are presented. I remember a wedding photographer who talked about how great photographers were defined as much by what they didn't show as they were by what they did, and I agree with that. Our most recent published wedding, for example, involved around 2500 images. We edited those down to around 550, and blogged around 120. The blog post would arguably be even more powerful if we edited it further to our favorite 50 or 20 images. It's all about how the story is told, which impacts both how the pictures are taken and how the pictures are presented.


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umphotography
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Aug 01, 2012 21:33 |  #18

Christopher Steven b wrote in post #14801715 (external link)
@Mike. I even sometimes insist on a few formals because I KNOW there will be someone in their family (grandma, I'm looking at you.) for whom that is most important. They're pretty easy to bang off pretty quickly, though, thankfully (the photos, not grandma..).

Just for background, I'm asking these questions because I aspire to push PJ style shooting into the category art. I'm a long long way off. I find that although I'm able to get aesthetically good candid moments, and although I feel like my photos 'add up' to a story (in the trivial sense I pointed out), I still feel like I'm only able to pick out 3 or 4 or 5 photos from a wedding that are even close to the threshold that I aspire to.

To answer my own question (prepare for an analogy), the child who wanders around taking photos of the day (and whose photos add up to a story), doesn't necessarily understand the relationships between the things and people he's photographing. He groups differently. He might fail to pick up on something that is physically small but of large importance in terms of meaning. Moreover, the child doesn't have a sense of existing narratives with which to play. That's a dense paragraph.

What does it mean to find a story when you are in a room in which people are simply standing or sitting, occasionally sipping from a wine glass, and talking to others in clumps of 2 or 3 or 4 ?

Chris and everyone else. I cant emphasize how important it is to do formals with grandparents and an entire family formal shot as well. For the last 4 yrs, I have had someone call me up within 1 week of a shoot and ask for pictures of a grandparent because they died....the most recent was 3 weeks ago. Wedding was on a Saturday. Grandma fell and broke her hip on Monday,,blood clot and died on Tuesday while the bride and groom were on their honeymoon...came home Friday and buried Grandma.... really sucks but we felt so good that there was several family shots with Grandma included....for some reason it happens every year,,,,Crazy but it happens


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picturecrazy
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Aug 02, 2012 17:49 |  #19

Nobody really wants to be a strictly reportage/photojournal​ist wedding photographer. Know why? Because no brides actually WANT STRICTLY reportage. Some may SAY that's what they want, but they really don't know what the hell they're talking about. They'll be the first to complain when you deliver a strictly reportage set of photos. Not to mention, her mom and grandma will probably be miffed that they don't have a look-at-the-camera-and-smile photo with their daughter/granddaughter​. Or the groomsmen all hold a retarded gangster pose for you while drunk on the dance floor.


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mullkv
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Oct 05, 2012 16:35 |  #20

Hi Christopher - I think, in my mind, the best reportage wedding photographer out there is Jeff Ascough (www.jeffascough.com (external link)).

I class myself as a wedding photojournalist and I have zero interaction with the wedding during the day - pure candid/story telling photography. My primary source of inspiration is Jeff so check him out :-)


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PhotoMatte
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Oct 07, 2012 16:57 |  #21

I was an award-winning member of the WPJA (Wedding PhotoJournalist Association) for a number of years but dropped out after I saw too many of their posted images that were obviously staged and/or had the subjects' heads cut off. Also, I found that my shooting style broadened over time so I wasn't shooting strictly PJ weddings anyway. Like Lloyd mentioned above, a lot of brides may say they want a strictly PJ wedding but I've only ever had one couple, in over 100 weddings I've shot, that truly didn't want any traditional portraits. I still shoot candids all day long during a wedding but no longer do I shy away from portraits and/or staged images.


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mullkv
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Oct 08, 2012 01:26 |  #22

I too left the AGWPJA for the same reason as you. In the UK it seems its different. I've shot around 150 weddings now and with the exception of perhaps one or two group shots they are all totally PJ. I'd say around 25% of my weddings have had no group shots either. There are plenty of clients out there who do want this style of wedding photography (at least in the UK), but I definitely agree that there are plenty that also don't want it.


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jcolman
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Oct 08, 2012 08:44 |  #23

70% of my shots are capturing what happens in front of my cameras. If there is a *story* there then you could call it "reportage", "journalistic", or whatever you want. The other 30% of my shots are ones that I direct and create. These are the shots that make the B&G say "ooohhh!!! I love it!".


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Photojournalist / Reportage style wedding shooters on POTN
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