NO matter how many times I shoot for wedding, every time the bride walks down the aisle and the moment the groom starts looking for his handkerchief to wipe out the tears he tries to hide from the crowd, I still get emotional. It’s in that moment that your saliva starts getting thick and you have a hard time swallowing.
The one thing I like about shooting weddings is the relationship you develop with the couple. You sometimes clap more than the guest and almost want to grab the mic and talk about the couple and how inspiring they are to shoot and the love story they shared to you. But you have work to do, and your job is to take photos that will make sense of the most important day of the couple.
You get to meet their family and people they consider friends for life. You get to see the drama, sometimes among siblings and relatives, and the excitement and thrill of pulling it through the day and delivering everything that is expected of you. Every wedding is always unique. The challenge is always there no matter how many times you face it. You don’t want to add to the problem.
I think that the only way for you to find inspiration in this type of job is to be committed to your client. It’s the genuine effort to make their most awaited day that they have prepared for emotionally and financially be worth every second they well deserve. When you commit and carry with you their story, it becomes a responsibility more than work.
Showing up for a shoot and not even prepping yourself, and worse of all, not planning for it, is a disrespect not only to your craft but to the people who believe and expect a lot from you. Shooting weddings require a lot of skill set. Apart from the technicalities of photography, you have to know how to handle your clients.
If you’re spirit is not there on the shoot day, your client will just stare at you and look into blank space. They need direction. It’s not like they do photo shoots all the time. You have to fill in the energy and command the entire room. It’s funny because sometimes you’ll find yourself doing some stuff far beyond your league. You’re there, so don’t just stand around. Lend a hand.
Time and space is your constant challenge the entire day. You can’t let it affect you; you have to be composed and calm. You’re not the only supplier that they need to attend to, and even if the schedule is pushed to the wall and you end up just a few minutes to do your work, you have to take it and produce results as if you had a lot of time.
In the end, after all the spectacle of the entire day, your pictures will remain. It’s what they will hold on to for the rest of their lives. They probably won’t remember how the food tasted like, but the memories they’ll treasure will depend on your photos. It has become the anchor of where their relationship made a milestone.
It takes more than your photography skill to handle wedding photography. After the day’s roller-coaster ride, the beautiful pictures will be your reward, and the photographer in you will kick in and you smile with satisfaction looking at your work. Keep on shooting everyone!