Master your Canon: Photographing a wedding with your Canon DSLR

For some, just hearing the words ‘wedding event photography’ is enough to bring them out in a cold sweat. Just ask any seasoned wedding event snapper and they’ll tell you that there’s no other photographic category that’s quite as exciting and rewarding. As a wedding photographer it’s your duty to ensure that every aspect of the day is captured immaculately– after all, there are no re-dos!

To offer yourself the best chance of catching some excellent imagery, it’s firstly important to make sure that you have the proper equipment for the task. Beginning with the obvious, you’re going to need an electronic camera that’s up to the task of shooting hundreds, if not thousands, of photos throughout the day. A full-frame DSLR, such as the Canon EOS 6D ( ₤ 1,119 body just) and 5D Mark III ( ₤ 2,178 body just), is often the favored option for expert wedding event professional photographers as the bigger sensing unit offers higher amounts of information for the highest quality images. If your budget plan can’t rather stretch to the glitz and glam of a full-frame camera, then don’t fret, as a mid-range APS-C sized D-SLR, such as the Canon EOS 80D (₤ 999 body only), will still be able to cope with the quick rate of a hectic wedding event day.
Shoot with the sun behind the couple to avoid squinting eyes and harsh shadows

Shoot with the sun behind the couple to prevent squinting eyes and severe shadows

All of these cams are able to develop 20-megapixel (or higher) resolution images, which suggests they are ideal for producing up to A3 sized prints without the requirement to insert the images in post production– useful for any customers who are looking to purchase big prints of your work.

The lenses in your camera bag are simply as important as the video camera itself. If you do not have a lens enough time to reach the action at a distance, or you’re without a wide angle in order to fit everyone into the group shot then you’re soon going to discover yourself in hot water. Having a variety of lenses that cover most focal lengths is always the most safe bet, though whether you choose to favour zoom lenses over primes, or visa versa, or both, is completely down to your own individual preference. A medium zoom lens like the Canon 24-70mm f/2.8 L II USM (₤ 1,400) is a fantastic workhorse as not only does it provide a wide angle for group shots, the 70mm end is an ideal focal length for pictures. When opened up totally to the large f/2.8 maximum aperture, this lens is able to allow far more light than most basic zooms, which is great for shooting dingy church interiors without needing to crank the electronic camera’s ISO to a greater level of sensitivity and run the risk of having shots filled with digital sound.
Prime lenses are perfect for super-shallow depth-of-field effects

Prime lenses are ideal for super-shallow depth-of-field effects

Sometimes the very best shots are those that have actually been taken without the individual even knowing, and the best method of doing this is by taking them at a range with a telephoto zoom, such as the Canon 70-200mm f/2.8 L USM (₤ 945). The 70-200mm focal length sets wonderfully with the abovementioned 24-70mm lens, indicating that in between these two lenses you’re covered for a lot of kinds of photography.
The Canon EF-70-200m f/2.8L IS II USM
The Canon EF-70-200m f/2.8 L IS II USM

Aside from zooms there’s also the alternative to opt for prime lenses instead. Clearly the repaired focal length of a prime lens means that in order to get closer or further far from the action you’ll need to physically move the video camera, which some might discover limiting compared to a zoom. However, on the plus side, prime lenses are especially lighter in weight and offer a much wider maximum aperture.

Altering backward and forward in between lenses can be a fiddly and time-consuming task, particularly at a wedding where seconds frequently indicate the difference in between capturing the shot or not. One service to this problem is to buy a 2nd electronic camera body. If your pockets are deep sufficient to cover the expense, owning two cam bodies grants a number of advantages; firstly it indicates that you can connect a different lens to each body and have them readily available at all times. Likewise, the second body will mean that you always have a back up need to the worst take place and one of your electronic cameras stops to work.
If bad weather is stifling your location choices, use off-camera flash for studio-quality portraits indoors

If bad weather is suppressing your place choices, utilize off-camera flash for studio-quality pictures inside your home

It’s typically the case that smaller accessories are quickly overlooked, however are really vital pieces of equipment that will make the whole shooting procedure a much smoother operation. Purchasing a handful of extra electronic camera batteries will ensure that your electronic camera never ever runs out of juice at a crucial moment. If you wish to even more minimize the time spent swapping over camera batteries then you could constantly aim to acquire a battery grip for your video camera. This unit slots on to the base of your camera and permits you to store several batteries at one time, drastically extending the battery life of your cam.

Over the course of a big day it’s not uncommon to take upwards of a few thousand images (depending upon how snap happy you are), so you’re going to need someplace to save all of that information. Getting half a lots high-capacity, high-speed memory cards will not only make sure that you have sufficient space for all those images, but will likewise keep your video camera’s buffer clear when shooting in constant burst mode for uninterrupted shooting. Do bear in mind, however, that if you choose to shoot in Raw then your images will be far larger in size than a basic JPEG, suggesting you will require bigger sd card (or multiple smaller cards) to store them.
Shoot with a wideangle lens to pack large groups of people into the shot

Shoot with a wideangle lens to load large groups of individuals into the shot

If you’ve been reserved to photo the wedding reception as well as the ceremony, then you’ll also require to make certain that you’re well gotten ready for capturing images in low light. As soon as the music begins roaring and the lights go down, it’ll be up to you to produce your own source of light or be confronted with loud images produced by utilizing a high ISO. Purchasing a flashgun, such as the Canon Speedlite 430EX III-RT (₤ 219), will enable you fire a powerful beam at your target to brighten them without counting on the ambient light.
It’s also worth mentioning that the ‘RT’ in the 430EX III’s name represents Radio Transmitter, which indicates that the flash has the ability to be fired remotely off-camera by means of compatible DSLRs or with the help of the Canon ST-E3-RT Wireless TTL Flash Controller (₤ 239). This indicates that if you want to enhance your imagination even further you could also look to purchase several light stands and flash brackets in order to fire the flash off electronic camera for studio-style lighting effects.

Organisation is crucial

The night before the big day, spare a couple of moments to make sure that you have actually loaded whatever you might need for the day ahead. As you’re working your way through the list, it’s likewise essential to evaluate each of the items to ensure that they are in complete working order so that you do not get any nasty surprises when you come to use them on the day. If you have a lens cloth, provide your glass a quick once-over to remove any dust or dirt build-up, too.

The trick to great preparation is to offer yourself adequate time to go through and pack everything instead of hurrying it at the last minute and risk forgetting something. It’s also essential not to over pack– it’s great to cover yourself for every single possibility, however taking excessive things may wind up slowing you down.

Back-up as you shoot

It’s much better to be safe than sorry. If you happen to own a laptop computer and an external hard disk, make sure to pack it with the rest of your electronic camera equipment as you can use it to support your images on the day. Normally there will be a lull duration while the bride and groom enjoy their wedding event breakfast, so this is a great time to support your shots onto your laptop computer for safe keeping. It’ll also permit you to maximize some space on your sd card for additional images throughout the night’s celebrations.


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