Wedding photography: 10 mistakes to avoid

Published 8 years ago

Capturing weddings is one of the most challenging photography tasks one may only imagine. A wedding photographer needs to capture the happiest moments of the greatest day of the couple’s life, which is a lot of responsibility put on a single person’s shoulders.

While trying to be everywhere at the same time not to miss precious shots, gather everybody for group shots, take elegant pictures of the bride and groom, come up with funny ideas for photos to spice up the wedding album, as well as the ways to deal with mini-catastrophes no wedding ceremony may go without, there’s no way even the most experienced wedding photographer avoids making a couple of mistakes. And, what about a beginner who’s trying his best to shoot his first weddings?

Thus, it’s necessary to come prepared and aware at least of the most common wedding photography mistakes not to repeat them while capturing a ceremony.

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Top 10 wedding photography mistakes

Top 10 wedding photography mistakes

1. Not finalizing the schedule of the wedding day with your client. You need to talk to the bride and groom about what the best time to carry out a ceremony is, as it’s rather important to make the full use of the natural light and avoid unflattering shadows at least while capturing the ceremony part of the wedding.

2. Forgetting to ask for a detailed guest list with all the relatives and friends divided onto the ‘groom’ and the ‘bride’ sides. If you manage to get that list with the clients’ notes about which group picture they’d like to take and which people they want to include, you’ll make your wedding group photography task a lot easier.

3. Not cooperating with a videographer. You need to work closely with the videographer your clients hired to avoid major tension on the wedding day and avoid “conflicting cameras’ situations, when your clients have to figure out which camera to smile for and which angle to choose. The technical difficulties shouldn’t bother the newlyweds during the most joyful moments of their life. That’s why you need to talk to the videographer and work out your operation plan together.

4. Not hiring a second shooter. Unless the ceremony is quite private and doesn’t involve too many guests, it’s practically impossible for a single photographer to capture all the details and moment he’d like to. Thus, in order to create as many beautiful wedding day memories, which display different artistic perspectives on the event, it’s better to hire a second photographer, who’ll add an unusual touch to the final wedding album. If you can’t find a helper for your upcoming wedding photography assignment, go to and leave a request for a second shooter to get matched up with a local pro.

5. Not backing up the pictures. The worst thing you may do to your clients and your career of a professional photographer is losing all of the pictures people have of their once-in-a-lifetime event due to a terrible memory card or hard drive failure. Thus, back your work up on different resources (external hard drives, online clouds) just to be sure.

6. Not using the external flash and overexposing the bride’s dress. An external flash will make up for all the poor lighting situations you might have to go through on a wedding day. It’s potential to brighten up the subjects in a flattering way is worth spending money on. On the other hand, you have to be really careful with your exposure setting while taking pictures of the bride not to make her gorgeous white dress look completely dull and lifeless.

7. Not knowing your backgrounds. Experienced wedding photographers never miss a chance to visit the venue before the wedding day to discover the best locations for taking pictures. A clean, picturesque background makes even the prettiest picture 10 times better, while plain and senseless backdrops tend to mute the beauty of the newlyweds and the ceremony in general.

8. Not talking to your clients about how they’d like to look in photos and what flattering poses they might use. Ask your clients to send you a couple of their pictures they like the most in order to understand their perspective of a perfect portrait and be able to meet their expectations.

9. Blinding your clients with the sun. No matter how astonishing the background you chose for the picture looks, the photograph won’t come out nice if the people in it try their best not to squint. Moreover, it’s the softer, diffused light that complements pictures the best and allows avoiding harsh shadow lines.

10. Not bringing backup equipment. Bad things happen during the most crucial moments. Lenses fall and crash, cameras break down and refuse to work, memory cards fail to save the pictures, etc. You can’t afford to let your clients down on their big day and ruin your career due to the stubborn and faulty technology. So, always bring a spare set of equipment to shoot the ceremony or pair up with a second shooter for that matter.

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mistakes, photos, wedding, wedding photographer, wedding photography, wedding pictures
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