Most bride and grooms don’t realise the wedding preparation a photographer puts in to making sure each wedding runs smoothly. Interestingly a photographer in business only spends 20% of their time on photography. The remaining 80% is dedicated to business, including things like preparation, admin, accounts, invoicing, contracts, communications, replying to emails.
What that means is while you see your photographer for 4-8 hours of the day, they spend days before and days after working on your wedding. Therefore you guys might be interested to know how we ready ourselves to make sure we get all the required pictures from your day. So that you know we are prepared and ready to face what may come, as a result you can put your mind at rest knowing that the photos will be captured.
Photography Equipment or “Gear”
So the first and possibly most important thing on the list is Photography Gear. This is what captures your beautiful high resolution photos and needs to be maintained. Cleaning, checking, and testing are all parts of this process, for every wedding.
Back up “Gear”
One thing you should be asking your photographer is whether they have “back-up” gear. Essentially this is a set of back up equipment should any of their main equipment fail. I always bring my back-up gear to every wedding and while 9 times out of 10 I won’t even use it. It is simply there as piece of mind for the 1 time of 10 that something may go wrong.
Next I make sure everything is charged. I charge all my camera batteries including spares, I carry spare sets of rechargeable AA batteries, around 4 or 5 spare sets (you never know!). I make sure my flashguns already have sets of batteries charged and loaded so they’re ready to use. I charge my battery pack for my flashguns as well. I also prep and charge everything in my back up gear.
Now I’m not trying to scare you and say something will go wrong at your wedding with the photography equipment, but it is a possibility. Even if only a small one, knowing your photographer is prepared can put your mind at rest and let you focus on enjoying the day while we focus on the photos.
Under charging I will also just mention that I also spend this time going through all my memory cards. I make sure previous images are backed up, and that all the cards are formatted and ready to go for the big day of shoot ahead of me!
Clothing is important and tricky because you need to be smart yet comfortable. I always wear smart trousers, a blazer and a nice shirt underneath. You look smart for the wedding and professional to show that you are there to do a job. The day before the wedding I iron the selected outfit for that day and hang it up, ready for the next day.
Plans & Communication
One thing I always go over are any notes and communications that I’ve had with the couple. I make sure they are aware of all the draft timings put in place. Then when prepping the day prior to the wedding I get together any schedules, group shot lists and timelines. As well as any other information I have in regards to the desires of the couple. I.E a list of important things to capture like bouquets, rings, flower girls, etc.
The next important thing is to prepare postcodes of all venues listed against a draft schedule. I print maps in case I struggle to find a place. I also research the venue on Google Earth to give myself an idea of where I will be going, if I haven’t been there before. This gives me less opportunity to get lost or have trouble finding a place and risking being late as a result.
Getting everything prepared beforehand means you have less to worry about on the day. And more importantly more time to focus on the couple and capturing the biggest day of their lives.
I hope this gave you all an insight into how I prep for a day of photography when it comes to an event as big as a wedding. It’s important to get as much as possible right, so that when something goes wrong, you can easily fix it.
It’s better to be over prepared than be under prepared and have unwanted things go wrong. Thanks guys, and remember you can never be too prepared.