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FORUMS Photography Talk by Genre Weddings & Other Family Events Talk 
Thread started 12 Feb 2017 (Sunday) 17:30
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Wedding tips for first timer and limited gear

 
lvph2
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Feb 12, 2017 17:30 |  #1

I have some friends that want me to shoot their wedding. I was very hesitant and upfront about my lack of wedding experience and the modest amount of gear.

7D
50mm STM
Sigma 17-50mm F/2.8 OS (Still on its way to me)

First of all, I will most likely rent a couple pieces of gear, but it will be very limited since their budget is small as well.

If I had to stick to renting 2-3 pieces what would be the better investment? I'm thinking at least a speedlite or even an off camera setup.

Wedding will be indoors as will reception. Ceremony will have overhead fluorescent lighting in a drop ceiling. No outside light coming in. Reception is going to have minimal incandescent lighting, and a high ceiling, but a pretty good amount of windows and a mountain view out the balcony.

Just looking for tip with my limited experience and gear list.



- Nikon D3300
- Nikon 35mm F/1.8
- Sigma 17-70mm F/2.8-4 Cont.
- Tokina 100mm F/2.8 MACRO

  
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Littlejon ­ Dsgn
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Feb 13, 2017 13:23 |  #2

Your going to need a flash. Do you have any experience using a flash? A second body? Depending on the layout something longer then 50 may very well be needed.




  
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tim
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Feb 13, 2017 15:02 |  #3

A wedding isn't a place to practice. If you have no off camera experience and only get the rental the day before you won't be familiar enough with it to use it effectively. Ditto with a flash, you need one but you really want experience using it in a variety of situations - full sun, partial sun, complete darkness, and also when not to use it.

Is it lack of money or lack of willingness to spend on photography?


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Read all my FAQs (wedding, printing, lighting, books, etc)

  
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Littlejon ­ Dsgn
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Feb 13, 2017 15:25 |  #4

tim wrote in post #18272469 (external link)
A wedding isn't a place to practice. If you have no off camera experience and only get the rental the day before you won't be familiar enough with it to use it effectively. Ditto with a flash, you need one but you really want experience using it in a variety of situations - full sun, partial sun, complete darkness, and also when not to use it.

Is it lack of money or lack of willingness to spend on photography?

Tims question is a very valid question. The conditions do not sound ideal for a first time wedding shooter with your limited gear.




  
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drmaxx
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Post edited over 2 years ago by drmaxx.
     
Feb 13, 2017 15:28 |  #5

tim wrote in post #18272469 (external link)
If you have no off camera experience and only get the rental the day before you won't be familiar enough with it to use it effectively. Ditto with a flash, you need one but you really want experience using it in a variety of situations [...]

^^^This^^^
Using a flash effectively has a steep learning curve. If you don't have the experience then get the fastest lens you can find, crank the ISO up and shoot without a flash. Capture the emotions and the mood of the day - ignore picture quality - and go for a monochrome end product. Just a suggestion....


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Silver-Halide
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Feb 13, 2017 15:31 |  #6

Dance with the one you brung. It sounds like you value photography more than they do, and I don't like the idea of reaching into my own pocket to rent gear that wont be reimbursed by the client as much as you're excited about the opportunity. Assuming they're giving you say $100-200, I'd grab either a used 430exII or a YN560IV with a TX--probably leaning towards the latter given your assessment of the high ceiling and the falloff from attempting to bounce the flash.


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lvph2
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Feb 13, 2017 15:57 as a reply to  @ tim's post |  #7

This is what makes me worried. But, I have had a little practice in the past. Very modest setup. A 580EX II and some cheap triggers.

https://photography-on-the.net …/showthread.php​?t=1216102

https://photography-on-the.net …/showthread.php​?t=1213226

https://photography-on-the.net …/showthread.php​?t=1211239

I still don't have an exact amount that they want to spend. I'm supposed to sit down with them soon and go over what they want to spend, what they are expecting to get for the amount, etc.



- Nikon D3300
- Nikon 35mm F/1.8
- Sigma 17-70mm F/2.8-4 Cont.
- Tokina 100mm F/2.8 MACRO

  
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tim
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Feb 13, 2017 20:34 |  #8

To be honest "friends" and "want me to shoot their wedding cheap" are red flags. I'm a pretty seasoned photographer and I wouldn't do it. They pay full price or I do it free, I have no cheap level. I've found friends and family don't respect you or your skills, whereas strangers do - strange but true.

So all in all my advice is don't do it for money, and if you do it for expenses you MUST have them sign a contract, and that contract must note your lack of experience, that no photo is guaranteed, that sort of thing. My contract, which paying customers sign, doesn't even say I'll take photos, and no-one has ever noticed.


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Phoenixkh
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Feb 14, 2017 22:26 |  #9

tim wrote in post #18272793 (external link)
To be honest "friends" and "want me to shoot their wedding cheap" are red flags. I'm a pretty seasoned photographer and I wouldn't do it. They pay full price or I do it free, I have no cheap level. I've found friends and family don't respect you or your skills, whereas strangers do - strange but true.

So all in all my advice is don't do it for money, and if you do it for expenses you MUST have them sign a contract, and that contract must note your lack of experience, that no photo is guaranteed, that sort of thing. My contract, which paying customers sign, doesn't even say I'll take photos, and no-one has ever noticed.

Sound advice. Years ago, when I was doing home remodeling, my boss told me: Don't work for friends, family or members of your church. There will always be a dispute about something: work, price... something.

Took me a while to take his advice. I did lots of free remodel jobs for fellow church members.... until there was such a demand, I had no weekend time left. I started doing my own side jobs on Saturdays just to have a decent excuse.... and I learned the lesson.


Kim (the male variety) Canon 1DX2 | 1D IV | 16-35 f/4 IS | 24-105 f/4 IS | 100L IS macro | 70-200mm f/2.8L IS II | 100-400Lii | 50 f/1.8 STM | Canon 1.4X III
RRS tripod and monopod | 580EXII | Cinch 1 & Loop 3 Special Edition | Editing Encouraged

  
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drmaxx
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Post edited over 2 years ago by drmaxx.
     
Feb 15, 2017 02:37 |  #10

Phoenixkh wrote in post #18273999 (external link)
Sound advice. Years ago, when I was doing home remodeling, my boss told me: Don't work for friends, family or members of your church. There will always be a dispute about something: work, price... something.
Took me a while to take his advice. I did lots of free remodel jobs for fellow church members.... until there was such a demand, I had no weekend time left. I started doing my own side jobs on Saturdays just to have a decent excuse.... and I learned the lesson.

It's sad to see how all this entitlement leads to less helping each other. Asking friends and family to help should mean to compensate them equally - not necessarily with money. So far, I was lucky with my experience - however, I do take care not to take money in these situations - as even little amounts leads to irrational (over-)expectations.


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mikeinctown
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Feb 15, 2017 07:43 |  #11

People quabble over stuff that is free. If they are paying for you to rent stuff then they'll magically expect you to be able to master it for them with a day's practice. Then they'll be unhappy with your work because they'll feel with the stuff they paid for that they should have gotten better results.




  
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Littlejon ­ Dsgn
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Feb 15, 2017 10:09 |  #12

I agree with those saying free or full price. I shot my brothers wedding for free (our gift to them), 1 of my best friends growing up just got married, she paid full price (our most expensive package too), but we made sure we took care of them, several dinner meetings before the big day, we surprised her by showing up the the salon in the morning to grab some photos, and we spent closer to 12 hours with them vs the 8 they booked, all by choice and none of that was communicated before that we would be doing it. Upside 3 referred weddings from her have already been booked.




  
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lvph2
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Feb 16, 2017 04:01 |  #13

Thanks for all the input. Hard part is, if I back out now that will really suck. They have yet to isolate a day where we can talk about all the details. I may still do it, but like you guys said, be upfront with everything and get a contract. If they come up with a budget of like $200 then I know I'm in for it. lol. Who knows, their budget may be reasonable, but at that point, they would be better off with a wedding photographer. I need to talk to them. Thanks again.



- Nikon D3300
- Nikon 35mm F/1.8
- Sigma 17-70mm F/2.8-4 Cont.
- Tokina 100mm F/2.8 MACRO

  
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ShahidRoy
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Feb 17, 2017 10:45 |  #14

Great wedding tips for first time and limited gear. I think you just need to be so simple and stay focused to get the perfect picture. Thank you.
Kind Regards,
Asad Farooq Photography




  
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Littlejon ­ Dsgn
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Feb 17, 2017 12:44 |  #15

lvph2 wrote in post #18275241 (external link)
Thanks for all the input. Hard part is, if I back out now that will really suck. They have yet to isolate a day where we can talk about all the details. I may still do it, but like you guys said, be upfront with everything and get a contract. If they come up with a budget of like $200 then I know I'm in for it. lol. Who knows, their budget may be reasonable, but at that point, they would be better off with a wedding photographer. I need to talk to them. Thanks again.

When is the wedding. If they can not nail down a time to talk with you that's a red flag in my book. Any exchange of money means there will be expectations. If you do it your almost better off doing it free (still with a contract). That away should something go wrong they dont feel like they paid for your services and you failed.




  
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Wedding tips for first timer and limited gear
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