Posts tagged with photography:
Thank you for such a full answer! there are a lot of rules all over internet, and for unexperienced person it is hard to determine which of them make sence. I am on my way to buy a digital camera, but in the same time I am afraid that I'll be one of those who has really good camera and makes ordinary photos. ) A little bit earlier it was me who asked you about which camera you use, but unfortunatly it is not being sold here, in Ukraine :) Maybe one time you'll share your techniques ? )
Wow! What a weekend. What was already a long, tiring, frustrating week (seven straight days of work; the last five of those were opens that had me up at 3:15AM), was capped by a flurry of adventure in photographing my first wedding, ever. The absolute, defining factor of our day was the New Mexico spring wind rolling through all of the places we were supposed to stop and take photos. The bride was a trooper, though, and it was a rewarding experience.
Before I get any further, for those of you looking to see wedding photo highlights, they’ll all be appearing on the Stripes and Spots website and our Facebook page. I may put a few here, but the bulk will be elsewhere. I’m currently in the process of backing everything up and uploading the unedited versions before I get down to work on picking out the best ones.
I got off work on Friday at 1PM and immediately packed the car and drove south. I got the oil changed on the car in Pojoaque and then attempted some shopping in Albuquerque before meeting up with Kathy. We had designed some business cards earlier in the week, and we stopped at a copy shop near UNM to get them. The guys apparently had struggled with printing them all day, even taking another 20 or 30 minutes on it after we got there, and were very good to us despite the hassle. They charged us less than $5 for 60 business cards, so we practically gave them a 100% tip.
I sent Kathy home to pack while I waited for the cards to be done, and then it turned out that my key wouldn’t start my car! I started to freak out. I’ve been cleaning the car out regularly, getting it washed, making sure it’s all ready to go for this trip, and then this happens?! It’s done this before, so at first, I kept my cool. Then things got a bit scary after ten minutes. At about the twenty minute mark, I called Kathy and asked her if she could come get me. At the same time, a young family man named Carl walked by and asked if I needed help. He thinks I need to replace an ignition circuit. Eventually, he turned my steering wheel to point straight, and then the key turned just fine. The rest of the weekend, I made sure to straighten the thing out, and the car started without any problem.
Also, the drive to Alamogordo was very windy and dark. We managed to stop at the Food Network-famous Buckhorn, which is where Bobby Flay challenged a local in his green chile cheeseburger cooking abilities. We got there 10 minutes before close and even though we were so late, they were especially accommodating and the owner himself chatted with us about Alamogordo. We made it back pretty late to Alamogordo, but my mom was still up to greet us.
After waking and cleaning myself up, my mom knocked on the door and told me she had orange danish rolls out in the kitchen for breakfast. This is when I know my mom is predicting a big day for me. For most of my life, she has made these for me on the first day of school, or the day of prom, or my wedding, or a big orchestra concert. That meant a lot to me.
Kathy and I headed out a bit later than expected. When we got to the hair studio where the women were all getting gussied up, the bride’s (Nicole) sister and one of the bridesmaids almost had complete hairstyles and makeup. We got to hang out for several hours with the bride, her bridesmaids, sisters, and mothers of both bride and groom. The interesting part about taking photos at this point was that some of the women (specifically, the mothers) did not want to have their transition documented on camera. We got what we could of the transitions from normal people to ~FABULOUS~ people in a cloud of hairspray.
(In the middle, Kathy and I left to buy bits of clothing, as we’d shown up in dresses and the wind was kicking up enough that we knew we’d need outfits that included pants.)
We followed the bride to a hotel room they’d reserved for the sole purpose of preparing for the wedding. Ladies, here’s a tip I learned from this experience: verify that your room will have a lot of mirrors if you’re going to do this! The maid of honor was awesome in calling reception and demanding they do something about this. I’m sure this helped Nicole feel like everything was being taken care of, on an otherwise hectic day. We got dress and shoe pictures. Unfortunately, there wasn’t a bar across the window for the curtains, so we didn’t get the light coming through the shot, as I’d have liked. We took many detail shots, as her dress had a lot of beading.
We then headed out to Bosque State Park, which I never visited in the seven years I lived in the area. I really ought to have, and I encourage those of you in Las Cruces to check it out! Unfortunately, the wind was now at nearly unbearable speeds. We met up with the groom, groomsmen, and the couple’s two boys, Jack and Miles. Jack is four years old and just a treat to be around. Miles is two, and was a bit of a pill, largely due to the wind. Her husband, Chris, is an “artist type,” and we had a good time joking around with the guys.
We really wanted photos down by the trees of the Bosque, but with the wind made it ridiculous to be out in the open. We took the men out into the open, but considering the hours we spent on hair and makeup in the morning, I felt terrible getting the women out in the wind. Also, a favorite scarf of mine shows up in a lot of the photos on the bride, as I gave it to her to attempt to protect her hair from the wind. In the end, she let it all pass over and we even took pictures of the bride and her maids walking toward the camera. There was a point where the boys came running out to us, and we got great photos of it- I even managed to get a shot of the younger one starting to trip. He then managed to fall flat on his face and bust his lip open. Kathy and I set aside our cameras, a form of taking a knee, and then the groom insisted that this was the memory and that we needed to be taking pictures of it. We nervously laughed, and Kathy acquiesced.
I’m not 100% pleased with this part of the day, as I wasn’t able to get all the shots I wanted. Nicole kept apologizing to us for the wind (as if she could do anything about it), but I was the one who felt bad. There were so many great shots we could have taken, with combinations of the wedding party all together, but I felt it would have been unreasonable to keep them there any longer for photos. Everyone was on the verge of being miserable. I know that the photos we did get were good, at least, but I’d have liked to compose a few more.
We then drove to the Rio Grande Winery, where the wedding would be taking place. There was an advance crew of folks there who had obviously helped with other wedding setup, and they were adjusting the plan with the wind in mind. The ceremony was supposed to be out on a grassy, stoned patio in the open, but all the tables were instead moved to the brick patio against the building that was protected more from the wind. Our photobooth, with ombre streamers for a background, had been destroyed and dismantled, so yet another photo op was set aside.
The ceremony took place at about 6PM, when the wind was beginning to die down. They still went out on the grassy part of the patio, and it was short and sweet. Kathy used a shorter lens and stayed nearby, while I stood in the back with my longer lens. I didn’t waste any time standing where I needed to, but there were a lot of other folks standing and holding up cameras and phones, which didn’t allow for perfectly lined up shots. I know I still got some good photos. Right after the wedding, we took family photos. Unfortunately, not everyone was happy to be taking them, and one of the sons wasn’t even in the pictures as it was considered a bit of a hassle to get him outside for it. One of the bride’s sisters also did not want to be in the pictures, which was sad (she’s at a particularly self-conscious age). Nonetheless, we tried and got a few great ones (I love the photos we got of the groom and his family- they hammed it up for us).
We stood around and got photos of everyone we could right afterward, and walked around to take photos of the tables full of guests. We finally got a glass of wine each, which loosened us up big time. We got some dinner too, which was just amazing after our long day! We then picked up our cameras and took photos of the reception. After this, it wasn’t particularly structured for us. I can say I was really pleased I bought my external flash; it did amazingly inside and under the patio. During dinner, we listened to mariachi, and when it got later, there was a local oldies rock band that played. Dancing was a bit under-attended, and our photos of it came out less than ideally, as it was out under the dark sky (nothing to bounce my flash off of). I also took pictures of the wine glasses at the bar, and the vintner asked me to email him those photos. The wine did a few wonders for me in that I got more comfortable taking random shots without asking, and I got to chat with other guests.
It was a pretty fun night still, from the attendee’s point of view. As a photographer, I was a little frustrated we didn’t get more group shots. As soon as the wedding was over, the bridesmaids all covered up in jackets and the groomsmen scattered to hang out with different groups. It wasn’t their fault; again, it was just not my desire to get anyone out in the wind. Anyhow, we left around 9:30PM- about half the guests had left at that point, and we had to drive back to Alamogordo.
I woke up at 8:10AM and said to myself, “I can do better than that,” and went back to sleep. I slept until 10:45, and woke up feeling more rested than I have in weeks.