Many can read and write, so any one of those people can be a writer, right? Wrong – writing is an art that requires a lot of training. Writers work hard at their craft, slowly evolving by reading other writers and getting feedback on their own writing. Photography is the same. Any person with a camera (or smartphone for that matter) can take pictures, but having an Instagram account does not make you a photographer. If you’re a new photographer, pay attention to the following insights regarding big events as suggested by experts.
Let’s go back to the writer analogy. A writer may edit a story as they go along, but from the beginning, they have characters, a plot, rising and falling action, and other essential elements in mind. A photographer also needs to plan ahead. For example, if the job is taking shots for a wedding, a good photographer will scout the venue before the big day, noting areas of good daylight, architecture of the grounds, and even minute things like how the colour in particular areas will match the gowns of the bridesmaids and men’s tuxedos.
Budding Photographer Essentials
The Big Picture
Remember you have an audience, those eventually viewing the shots. You’re not just recording as things are happening. Pictures serve as lasting sentiments of the event, so it’s necessary to provide onlookers with the big picture, shots that express the excitement, seriousness, and story of the event. For example, take pictures of the couple and bridal party in front of the church, the birthday boy in front of table with all of his presents, or the intense look of the athletes before they take the field for the championship game.
Pictures are not living things yet serve as a reflection of highly emotional moments. Candid shots are valued by onlookers because they reveal the truth versus the pretence involved in posing for a picture.
A good photographer goes unnoticed yet remains vigilant in capturing the emotions on people’s faces in the crowd, the bride’s mother, or the father as his son returns from the armed forces. While posing is not altogether fake, candid shots truly reflect life as it unfolds. For example, snap a shot of the bride filling out her free wedding invitation templates. A good photographer knows where and how to capture those moments.
What would happen if a writer made all of the characters in a story speak alike, look alike, and act alike. It wouldn’t be much of a story and would be incredibly boring to read. The same is true for pictures and onlookers. They want and appreciate variety in the pictures regarding backgrounds, shapes, colours, people, action, still shots, etc. A good photographer is a storyteller. Pictures are relics of a particular point in time. Some people are more visual while others are auditory learners, so imagine the pictures to complement the story of the event as told by a great storyteller.
Taking a shot of the wedding church, a birthday cake, or a welcome home sign is not much of an accomplishment without context. Without the newly married couple coming out with expressions of relief, joy, and passion in their eyes, the picture of a church is just that. Without a father embracing his son in his military uniform underneath the “welcome home” sign, the sign has little significance to onlookers. While particular elements, like the birthday cake, serve as ingredients in creating a great picture, the overall context is more important.
An Olympic athlete does not just stride into an event; it’s likely they’ve been training their whole lives. A great writer does not let ink pour out of his pen to create a novel. He’s probably been revising and then revising his revisions before sending that to an editor. Likewise, a good event photographer seeks out and records all kinds of events. Of course, you don’t want paid jobs to be considered “practice,” so ask friends and family members if you can record family reunions, dinners, parties, etc.
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