As a fashion blogger, you have a unique opportunity to showcase the latest and greatest fashion. Often, doing so entails finding models, buying outfits and props, and staging shoots. However, if you're on a quest to capture style in an authentic setting, you may try photographing fashion at a wedding.
Of course, shooting a wedding may be a bit stressful. However, your hard work and dedication will be well worth it when your audience and couple see photos of all the little details that made their day so special.
Find Your Style
First and foremost, you must discover your wedding photography style. Doing so will help you better envision and plan your shots. For instance, if you prefer to shoot candid moments but also love to infuse them with your artistic side, you may try lifestyle photography. On the other hand, if you like to put a modern spin on vintage shots, your style may be classical and a bit formal.
Regardless, being able to define your style will help you photograph wedding fashion in a way that makes sense to you. Only then will you be able to capture images and moments that resonate with your audience.
Usually, wedding gowns are lighter in color than the women wearing them. If you shoot the bride in bright light, the highlights may blow out parts of her dress and ruin the image. Making simple lighting mistakes is a rookie move — one that a wedding fashion photographer shouldn't make.
To combat highlight blowout, hide the sun behind a tree, wait for cloud cover or shoot your subjects with the sun behind you. You might also use a polarizing filter to create contrast and cut glare. Gradual neutral density filters and flash equipment are good to have on hand just in case you have to test a few different methods to get the shot.
If you plan to photograph both the wedding and reception, you may need additional gear to ensure you capture your subjects in the right light and through the lens of a particular style. Consequently, you'll have quite a few things to carry around, from tripods to external flash units.
If you need help, enlist a friend or second shooter to help carry gear and zoom around the venue to get different angles of the gown, tux and guests' wedding attire. Another possible solution involves renting a golf cart to help you transfer equipment from one area of the venue to another. Doing so will also allow you to take more photos in various locations without breaking a sweat.
Fluff the Gown
An assistant can also come in handy when you need someone to fluff the bride's skirt or train while you shoot. In most cases, you want the bottom half of the gown to look as full and voluminous as possible, especially in the world of wedding fashion.
One trick to fluffing a dress is to spray Static Guard between each layer, preventing one from sticking to the other. You could also sew or tie in fishing line to pull or lift the train to achieve a breezy, elegant style. Otherwise, your assistant can fluff the veil, train or skirt and quickly dash away as it floats back down. Try a few different methods before settling on one that works best for you.
Choose Flattering Angles
Odds are the bride, groom and bridal party all altered their clothes to ensure they fit perfectly for the big day. However, bad angles can make it seem as if the bride gained 20 pounds overnight. Of course, taking unflattering shots makes both you and your subjects look bad and doesn't do their style choices any favors.
Avoid shooting at an upward angle or taking a photo of the bride while her hips and shoulders are squared toward the camera. These mistakes create an illusion that makes your subjects look wider than they are. Additionally, you can direct the bride to hold up her skirt to create naturally flattering lines and showcase the dress.
Creating Stylish Moments
Every now and then, you may shoot a wedding where you give little to no direction to the bride or groom. They pose perfectly, show off their style and add their own personal flair to the shoot. Most of the time, though, you'll be in charge of creating those photo-worthy stylish moments, so let your creativity flow.
Try a new pose, bring a few props and get artsy. Pay attention to little details like the bride's earrings and the groom's cufflinks. With hard work, dedication and a whole lot of luck, your shot might just end up on the cover of Brides someday.