In this video, I talk about having an unplugged wedding, how to go about having an unplugged wedding and which part of a wedding day works best for being unplugged.
Ultimately, there is no right or wrong here, it’s totally down to you; I have seen plenty of weddings where mobile’s, IPads and phones have been used during a wedding ceremony and it’s been fine.
However, I have seen people watch the whole wedding ceremony through their phone, I have seen and heard other photographers clicking away with their loud cameras, and I have seen people step out in front of the Bride and her Father as they are walking down the aisle.
Don’t worry about getting an image for your Instagran / Snapchap or whatever they are called.
Be a guest, relax and enjoy the wedding, be present and experience the love of two people and if you must get a shot do so with the knowledge that you might ruin a perfect moment.
If you feel the need to film the ceremony on your phone do so only after you have checked that it is ok with the happy couple and try and not be in the eye-line of the photographer, so you do not get in the back of important shots.
Also, if you do take a picture, don’t instantly upload the picture to socials, some couples want to see the evening guests without them having already seen the dress!
Whether you choose to have an unplugged wedding or not, I will still be working my butt off to get the images that tell the story of your day, every tear, every joyous hug and every different type of mobile…
Something that I have a responsibility for as a paid photographer is back-ups and data storage.
I personally do not believe an image exists unless it is in a minimum of three different places and one of those is off-site – I’m constantly worried that a hard drive will go down and I will lose photos and data.
For all my wedding work I have the photos on my iMac, I have them on a DROBO (5 hard drives with data redundancy), I have them on an external hard drive and I have them stored in the cloud using two different providers – I think I have enough coverage to mean I won’t have a problem if something goes wrong…
But what about you guys?
I offer everyone an online secure gallery for 12 months, and this can be extended for £25 a year (with the benefit of having access to print services direct from your wedding galleries). I always tell my wedding couples to upload copies of their wedding photos to an online storage vault.
Most email providers offer a certain amount of free storage – a free google drive account offers 15 gb of data which is more than enough to store copies of your wedding photos.
It doesn’t take long to copy the contents of your wedding galleries to your hard drive and then upload them to a free secure vault – it couldn’t be easier and it’s free!
It’s best to be safe than sorry!
Sometimes I like to change up my wedding disco photography – I normally shoot the disco part of weddings with a single handheld flash triggered from a godox trigger with the camera zone focused to around 2 meters I then get close and start shooting!
But sometimes depending on the venue, or the type of wedding I like to rig up a couple of Godox AD 200’s on light stands and get some directional lighting going on. It can be a little more hit and miss due to the fact that you can only shoot in certain directions unless you want the lights flaring into the lens.
In the shot above you can see the light I have rigged to the left has lit one of the ‘ravers’ perfectly and the light to the right has added a kick to the back of the bride and a few of the other ‘groovers’. The trick with this type of set-up is to wait until the ‘partygoers’ are in the zones of the off camera flash and then fire away.
In the above shot, I am still shooting with the same ‘cross lighting’ but using the light over my shoulder to light her up making sure that I am not getting the light on the right-hand side in the shot.
The settings for this type of off-camera flash does vary depending on the venue, the ambient lights and sometimes the guests. I normally have a flash set to the side of the band or DJ with the other flash directly opposite so they are facing each other.
For the camera settings; I tend to want the only light in my camera to come from the flash so I set my camera to eliminate all ambient light. The above image was shot 1/100th of second, F5 and ISO 160. These settings mean that I get enough depth of field, the ISO is nice and low so perfectly clean and the shutter speed was set to make sure I didn’t get any light streaks from the disco lights.
The flash power is trial and error to start with but after a few frames it’s easy to dial in the correct power – I always start at 32nd power which means I can increase or decrease the power of the flash, all of which is done using the Sony Godox XPRO-s trigger.
I tend to shoot for around 30 minutes with this set-up and often at the start of the disco / live music because the dance floor is not busy. The main problem with this off camera set-up is people blocking the flash. If the dance floor is really busy then its difficult to get clean flash on people and you can end up with very heavy shadows often partial shadows – these images can still work, but the busier the dance floor the more difficult it becomes.
When the dance floor becomes too busy, I switch over to my other wedding disco photography setup – I did a blog post about it found HERE
Hopefully, this gives you an idea of how you can improve or add something to your wedding disco photography – I’d love to see your results – drop me a link!
A few weeks ago I had an article published by Camera Jabber where I discussed my early thoughts on moving from photographing weddings using Fujifilm X Series cameras to the Sony Alpha cameras – mainly the Sony A9.
I will be writing several articles over the course of the next few months with Camera Jabber and one will be a further update on the move from Fujifilm to Sony.
To have a read of the first article – head on over to https://camerajabber.com/fuji-wedding-photographer-why-i-swapped-to-sony/