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Daniel Harrison October 22nd, 2006 11:03 PM

The trouble of Time...
Well I just finished shooting a wedding on the weekend, and wow, lots of suprises!

It was held at the same place as my last wedding, with the chapel and reception being in the same venue. I really hate this as it means that everyone is waiting while I take photos and consequently they give me very little time. Having learned from my last experience I told the couple I needed 1 1/2 hours to get the job done. Well a week before, it got pushed to 1hr. 15min. Not very cool. Then the day arrived

Bride was 40min late! Mother of the bride was late, all in all the service started 50min late, at about 4:50. Service went long to about 5:50 and the caterers were getting stressed! So out we go to take the group photo and I am shooting at ISO 800 because the sun is gone (I love my 1D 2). Anyway I then went through the family portraits and people were missing and had to be fetched and by the time I got down to just the B&G it was DARK and there was no time left anyway.

Tried to get a few more shot in the chapel with my studio lights, but alas no time.

So they get what they get I suppose (got a few posed of them together and heaps of the ceremony and reception) but, what do you do in these situations? Have any of you had a situation like this?

Ray West October 23rd, 2006 06:31 AM

Hi Daniel,

Turn the question on its head. if you were the couple, in that situation, what would you want to do, what would you want the photographer to do? Talk with them.

Obviously do the best you can with what you've got. I think it would not go amiss if you offered to do some extra studio work for them, at a reduced cost, or whatever. It depends what they have paid for, what they expect.

Bear in mind a) I'm not a pro photograppher b) I've no idea of the Australian wedding photogrphy business c) I do not know how you are pitching yopur business and so on.

It may be just a day's work for you, but it may mean more than that for them, so maybe you give as much as you can.

Best wishes,


Daniel Harrison October 23rd, 2006 08:19 AM

Hi Ray,
I completely understand what yo uare saying, and I take weddings very seriously when I do them. But in this instance I did not have controll over the events and what is done is done, you can't go back. I think it will be fine, there are a couple good posed shots of them together as well as family photos and alot of great photos from the actual event, which is really what it is all about.

My question is have others encountered these problems, and is there anything they have put in place to avoid them? I will try and make the couple as pleased as can be in any way I can, and I am sure they will be OK. They are having 4 weeks in NZ so they won't be back for a while!

Thanks alot for your input, some very good thoughts there


Ray West October 23rd, 2006 09:51 AM

Hi Daniel,

Thanks for your thanks. Hopefully, in a few weeks you will be able to report what actually happened. For some folks, four weeks could be a long time to be married....., so the problem may just disappear :-(

Best wishes,

Asher Kelman October 23rd, 2006 10:04 AM

Sorry this happens occaisionally. Only it can never be due to the photographers screw ups.

That's the benefit of a photgraphy agrrement for the job. It says what you will do and what they will do and when if you so choose.

One thing, could you have partially rescued the situation better with adequate flash if you did not have it set up already?

Anyway, I hope it turns out. I agree that an offer of a make up session is an option, especially if they are going to buy pictures.

Things almost never turn out as bad as you fear!


Bob Cooper October 25th, 2006 04:57 PM


Originally Posted by Daniel Harrison
Well I just finished shooting a wedding on the weekend, and wow, lots of suprises!

Welcome to the wacky wonderful world of wedding photography where if something can go wrong it will. It is hard to know exactly what I would do if I were in your shoes.

I did have a wedding last year where it rained all day. We were facing the prospect of shooting in the hotel lobby but the clouds parted just as the sun was setting and I got a great photo of the couple out on the shore over looking the lake using just one flash and a tripod. If we werenít able to do that I have a backup plan.

I bring a mini studio set up to every wedding. It consists of two umbrellas, two Manfrotto stands and two 580EXs, one 550EX, one 420EX, an ST-E2 plus lots of batteries. I also have a backdrop in a bag. If it is warm outside then I will set up there. If it is windy then I set up the flashes without the umbrellas. If I canít get what I need outside I set up inside.

Hope this helps.

Daniel Harrison October 25th, 2006 08:36 PM

Thanks Bob,
it's good to see that I'm not the only one who gets these sticky weddings ;-) I came prepared for anything with 3 studio lights siftobxes etc. but there just wasn't time for that. They have some good ones though and I think that they'll be pretty happy. They were an interesting couple, she was from Iraq and he was brought up in Melbourne. The mother of the bride could not speak english - but they were a great couple here is a photo of them on the day. The groom laughed allot, and I have never seen anyone so animated during a wedding ceremony!

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