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Your Wedding Is Like Your Very Own Photo Shoot

Oct 12, 2007
You're the star of your wedding day, and with that comes an entourage of photographers and videographers bending backwards to get that killer shot. Now that you've hired them, your wedding day photo sessions should make you feel like you've just walked the red carpet. Here's how to get ready for your close-up, and look glamorous on film and video.

Finding The Right Shooter ...

Many couples consider their photographer and videographer among the most important vendors - it's no surprise the wedding details are preserved in your leather bound photo album and wedding DVD. That's not to say your wedding is forgettable, but for most brides it passes in a blur - it's the job of your videographer and photographer to capture the most important events.

You should pick a pro whose style best reflects the look your going for. If you see a lot of photos in the sample albums with shadows under the nose or eyes, run for the hills - the expectation will be less than professional. If you love the way a photographer uses soft light to create a romantic look, you can expect the same sort of quality in your own shots.

The best time to begin looking for your photographer and videographer is as soon as you've picked your wedding date and location. Like most other vendors, the best are often booked months in advance. Here are a few tips to find your perfect pro:

* Take a peek at the photographer and videographer's website for samples and galleries of their work.

* One you've chosen a photographer, ask if he/she can recommend a video professional they've worked with.

* Alternatively, you can work with a studio that offers both photography and video. The benefit - you're guaranteed your photo and video team will be familiar with each other's styles, and will work together to give you the best coverage.

* Agencies representing photographers will match you with a professional suited to the style you want for your wedding. This makes finding your photographer easy. The only downside is you may be left with less one-on-one time beforehand with the person who's actually shooting your wedding.

Important Questions ...

Once you've filtered down your list to a few potential photographers and videographers ask them some essential questions to more about their approach.

* What is the cost of services and what is included in the package?
* What type of equipment do you use?
* If your shooting film, can I purchase the negatives?
* Do you offer raw video footage?
* What types of guarantees and protection do you offer in the event you become sick?
* What are your techniques to get the most out of the subject?

It is also advisable to ask a few more open-ended questions. You'll get a glimpse into his work philosophy for each wedding, and you'll be able to gauge how passionate he is about his craft. Several great questions include:

* What inspired you to get into a career of photography/videography?
* What do you like most about your job?
* Is there a particular shot you love to take at every wedding?
* Has your style changed since you began in the wedding photo/video industry?

Timeline Of A Wedding ...

Another important wedding detail you don't want to miss is how many hours your photo and video team will spend shooting. Plan ahead and make sure they know your schedule before the wedding. Getting-ready shots are often the most intimate and revealing and proper planning will prevent a headache.

Consider capturing some of those movements you normally don't witness on the wedding day. If you plan on having two cameramen (highly recommended better coverage), work with them to make a list of your most anticipated moments. For example, a montage of you and your bridesmaids getting prepared, then edited with shots of your groom and his guys before the ceremony is a true classic. You'll get to see how well (or not so well) he handled his nerves. Other important and touching moments you might potentially miss (unless they're captured on film) are your parent's reactions during your vows, the smiles and laughter during your toast, and your own expressions as you make your grand entrance.

Here are five more glamorous shots worth adding to your album:

* Touching up your lipstick in a mirror before the ceremony.
* Making your grand exit from the ceremony to a cheering crowd of guests.
* Taking a smiling peek back to the camera as you walk away holding hands with your husband.
* Kissing under a golden sunset.
* Kissing in the backseat of your limousine as you depart the reception.

Striking A Pose ...

If your concerned that you sometimes do no good to the camera, don't stress - after having your hair and makeup done, you'll look and feel great. Stay tuned for part 2 as we talk about:

* Getting a perfect album. Tips for a well-balanced photo book.
* Studying your favorite photos.
* Ignoring the camera and getting comfortable with your shooter.
* Film or digital photography.
* Ready for HD Video.
About the Author
Mark Pommett is an accomplished orange county, CA wedding videographer and has been producing orange county, CA wedding videos for the past 10 yrs.
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