On February 11th I photographed six wedding ceremonies in one day…I’m that good. Okay, so maybe it was just the same mock wedding six times in a row, but it was still pretty intense
Once again I had the pleasure of leading a group at the SoCal Photog Shootout. How popular is this event? Well, this time around it sold out in two minutes. This month’s theme was “The Wedding.” Over 60 photographers were given the opportunity to photograph a full wedding day, with groups including engagement photos, details, getting ready, bridals, ceremony, and romantics. We even had a reception so photographers could practice their first dance photos.
I was in charge of leading the ceremony group, and along with the bride and groom, we had two bridesmaids, two groomsmen, a father of the bride, and even a flower girl. It was so much fun sharing my knowledge of how to approach the ceremony portion of the wedding day, especially coming from a photojournalism background. So many of our shootouts are very controlled situations, having the opportunity to pose the models and put them in perfect light. In other words, it’s almost too easy to come away with great shots. My goal for this group was to really challenge the photographers, most of which have never photographed a wedding ceremony before. I wanted them to realize that during a ceremony you have to make split second decisions to capture a moment in sometimes not-so-perfect light, and do all of this without the opportunity to pose the bride and groom. Oh, and you still have to make a beautiful photo with all these factors in play.
After all of the group rotations, I also had the opportunity to critique the photographers’ photos they captured throughout the day. Before the day began, I couldn’t stress it enough to everyone how important it is to have your work critiqued. I focused on giving each photographer (everyone I could get to in the short time I had) some constructive criticism after looking at their work for the day. In the wedding and portrait photography business, we often receive lots of nice comments about our work, either from friends in the business, clients, or family (I know mom, you love my photos, and I love hearing that every day, so please don’t ever stop telling me that I’m the best photographer in the world). Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE compliments, they lead to referrals, and that’s what my business is based around. But I also strive to improve my craft every day, so I can stay ahead of the competition and continue to give clients the improved quality and beautiful work they hire me for. And let’s be honest, I don’t think my mom will ever tell me I need to work on stronger composition, be more aware of my background, or work on my lighting techniques. If she did, then we’d be business partners! I have so much more to say about critiques, actually, I’ll be starting a weekly critique on my blog
soon, so stay tuned…
Okay, onto the photos! I didn’t really snap too many photos throughout the day because I wanted to focus on teaching more than my own portfolio. But I did manage to get a few keepers. There are so many people to thank for putting this event together. It couldn’t have happened without Hanssie Trainor and Matthew Saville, they were the brains behind “The Wedding.” Also a shout out to the other group leaders for the day, including Wai Reyes (my partner in crime in LA), Gavin and Erin Wade, Brian Khang, Cean Orrett of Cean One, and Stephen Knuth.
Our amazing vendors for the day…
Coordinator: Amanda Auer of In the Now Weddings
Venue: Ron at the Romanesque Room
Florist: Honey and Poppies
DJ: Marcel Gonzalez FirstChoice Entertainment
Videographer: Nick of Crafthouse Productions
Rentals: Town & Country
Catering: Jay’s Catering
Venue Concierge: Mary Lallande
Bakery: Colette at Fancy That! Cupcakes – Unbelievable cupcakes! Even though I only got a bite before Hanssie stole mine…again.
Styling: Michelle Cunningham
Hair/Makeup: Kacee Geoffroy & Becca
Hair/Makeup: Alisha Baijournas
Specialty: Classic Party Rentals
Kacee Geoffroy and her husband Erik played our bride and groom for the day…
Can you imagine having 10+ photographers photographing your wedding? Plenty of shots of the first kiss!
Our cute flower girl, Mackenzie. She did not like being called flower girl
She kept running away from me…
You can’t hide from me all day!
Lots of great photographers…
Sometimes we even have photographers model as well! Here’s Kristin Vaughan
peeking out the door…