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03-18-2017, 02:43 AM   #16
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QuoteOriginally posted by Brooke Meyer Quote
Yep, make it your wedding present. It will last long after you've forgotten the invoice. As gently as I can say it, you asking questions here means you don't have the knowledge, confidence or experience. Good intentions no doubt, love of children and family certainly but do yourself and your son a favor, hire someone knows how and what to do. It his wedding day and your chance to beam.
I'd do precisely that.

03-18-2017, 11:42 AM   #17
mee
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Never shot a wedding. Been asked but turned down the offer. I have shot formal ceremonies before though. It is interesting how dark an indoor setting can be when it looks rather bright to our eyes. And these photo shoots are A LOT of work. You probably won't even remember your son's wedding as you'll be running around so much trying to get the right shots.

If you do decide to go through, as most others have mentioned, plan FAR ahead by mapping out where you can stand and what shots you will be taking.. how the lighting will be.. all the planning will gauge what gear you bring (esp lens choice).

Unless your son (and his soon-to-be wife/ your soon to be daughter-in-law) are 100% on board with the fact that these shots will probably not be the same kind of photographs they see in wedding magazines or taken by 3k+ dollar wedding photogs then you're potentially headed down a rough patch. There are no do-overs with weddings.

I'd rent at least a decent TTL flash (and know how to use it properly -- bounce/diffusion/etc).. but before that I'd ensure the church allows camera flash. The first ceremony I shot was with a K-5 II and an 18-135mm. That lens was too slow in hindsight. And I wish I had a flash unit on hand. That building had very tall ceilings though so direct bouncing wouldn't have worked. Would have liked also a flashbender or the like. Many of the images were noisy or smeared when they would have been sharp had I had more light.

If you have a little more to spend.. rent a K-1 a 24-70 and practice ? Small buffer shooting RAW means you'll have to time the shots.. minimal machine gun spraying.

Even if you spend nothing on rentals or other gear.. whatever gear you decide to take, make sure you tune it correctly with the AF micro-adjustments. Esp if you are shooting wide open (due to the poor lighting). You don't want to review your shots after the wedding is over only to discover they are all back focused. Again, there are no do-overs. Please plan accordingly.

And women are good for volunteering us men aren't they? hahaha

Last edited by mee; 03-18-2017 at 11:50 AM.
03-18-2017, 02:25 PM   #18
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If possible, maybe ask for entry to all the venues prior to the day, do some test shots, take some exposure readings, preparation is the key, Write a list of the shots you need. Always have a back up plan and alternative locations near by for the informal and formal shots of bride groom and bridal party. Finding a quiet spot for informal shots of bride and groom is good, they can relax a bit between venues.
Anyway good luck with it.
03-21-2017, 07:42 AM - 1 Like   #19
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While I am not a wedding photographer, it the past couple of years, I have shot several for friends and relatives who were short on money. The good news is that our modern digital cameras are wonderful tools and very capable. The most important thing is to get the shots. Weddings move along very quickly and a missed shot never comes again. Being in focus and crisp shots without motion blur are most important. I use a Sigma 17-70c for most of the wedding. It's fast enough for low light and has enough zoom range because there isn't time to switch lenses.

I take a lot of shots. Like hundreds. There's always somebody blinking, yawning, or with a very unflattering expression so I will often use bursts or at least take several shots of the posed group and family shots. I also tend to step back or zoom out a little to avoid any distortion in the corners and crop the shot in PP. It also gives you room to straighten the shot. Some may argue about poor technique but getting the best out of the gear at hand is more important.

Other obvious things are be careful with the flash. Bounce if the ceiling is low enough and use a diffuser to avoid the harsh flash look. Make sure you have enough SD cards and fully charged batteries. Again and I stress this; get LOTS of shots. Lots and lots of shots! Check your shots from time to time and your histogram too. Be aware of things in the background that can cause problems like windows and mirrors and drunks who think it's funny to photobomb the shot (it happens a lot).

Your DA 20-40 will work although I've never used it. I prefer a zoom with more range. I bought the Sigma 17-70 specifically for my daughters wedding and I have used it for 5 more. The 28-105 isn't wide enough IMO although it COULD work if you have the room. I mount my DA 50/1.8 on a second body and have a few more lenses in my bag for special shots if the chance arrives. I almost always find a use for my DA 10-17. I avoid my manual glass at weddings because things just move along too fast.

03-27-2017, 12:19 PM   #20
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Is this your son's first wedding? Do you think it will last? Hire a damn photographer... there has to be a local college near where they are getting married. Call the art department and talk to a photography professor and see if they have a portrait class that would do it for the experience. Put an ad on Craigslist or Facebook. Charge it. Pay for a friend who shoots to come shoot it. Hell if they're getting married in Alaska I'll offer my services and work cheap. Do something other than not being a part of and present for your son's wedding by being their photographer. Or, sell/pawn the K-3 and the DA20-40 and pay for a photographer.

If you insist however...

Get a DA*50-135 f2.8. It's literally made for portraits and weddings. An absolutely awesome lens and only $400-500 used, or rent it if you can't afford it. You'll need the speed and the reach. You can use it for probably 80-90% of the shots. Put this on the K-3.

I used my HD DA20-40 successfully, and I would use it again. Great for the reception, I mostly used it as a pair of primes (20mm or 40mm) and set it at f4, 400 iso, and worked my flash. A 16-50 or the 17-70 would probably be a better choice, but I wanted to keep a Limited in my bag. Put this on the K5.

Leave the film camera at home, or loaded as a last-ditch backup with the 30, 50, and 100. Pray you don't end up needing it. If you have time to think about it, it could be fun to break out for the reception and some portrait work if you have time, but you probably won't.

You'll need a flash with a rotating head. I use a Yongnuo 560IV and 560TX transmitter, about $100 total from B&H, but the 583 with P-TTL is probably a better on-camera choice. If you have more budget, there are Metz, Sigma, and Pentax P-TTL flashes out there too for various amounts of $$.
03-27-2017, 02:04 PM   #21
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I will try to go a little against the flow, but I think it's a important point, dont stress it, you are limited, important things happen fast in a wedding, go with what you are familiar with, don't create big expectations, but be active, take what you are comfortable with and make the most out of it, but don't stress, it's a hard situation for you, there will be important moments where you won't be able to be the father and photographer at the same time, get help.
But again, enjoy your son's wedding, and keep calm, active, but calm.
03-27-2017, 02:54 PM   #22
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QuoteOriginally posted by onlineflyer Quote
I understand it's not the best situation but hiring someone is just out of the question financially. Also, the wedding is out-of-state so I don't know anyone to ask and the couple doesn't have any photographer friends. It's a small wedding in a small church with dinner afterwards in a local restaurant. They did not plan on pictures but my wife offered my services. I don't intend to make a big production out of it, just looking for some friendly input from the forum. When everyone is home son #2 and I take pictures and we have a lot of fun just being a family. I'm hoping this situation is the same.
I think we are seeing a lot of people try to warn you that you should not do this. But you seem fairly happy with the option and you are not subbing in to just save money - you are subbing in where no photos were planned due to money. You literally have nowhere but up to go. Yes a wedding can be a stressful situation and yes you have plenty to do. I understand why so many are warning you to not do this but I also get that you don't feel like that's a viable option.

PM sent.
04-11-2017, 04:05 PM   #23
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Double edged sword here. Yes it's cool to shoot at a friend or family members wedding when you're doing it for fun.
You know more about the couple and can therefore catch more real emotion than the hired gun. Downside if you are standing in for the hired gun , you can't have any fun!
It would really suck to hear your new daughter in law complain that you didn't make her look radiantly lovely on her special day after you busted your butt trying to help.My suggestion if you do this , let them know full well that you'll be happy to share whatever pics you may happen to take that day but your primary function is Father of the Groom not Joe Pro Photo.
Try to get as many before and after shots (candids) as you can with emphasis on outdoors when possible. If you haven't set up studio lighting and done posed portrature before you should probably avoid the posed pics normally associated with weddings. Lastly I'd suggest you beg , borrow or steal a fast zoom 17-50 /2.8 for indoor / no flash work. Put the 70/2.8 on the second camera for "environmental portraiture"
My $.02
Best of luck!


Last edited by Floggin Rodger; 04-11-2017 at 04:23 PM.
04-12-2017, 06:46 AM   #24
mee
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Ok I shot a wedding. Well technically.

I was invited to a very small wedding, of some family friends, and brought my camera along in case they didn't have a photographer. When I got there I only saw someone with a small point and shoot trying to take photos. So I pulled out the K-1 and lowly 28-105 and went to town.

The ceremony itself was in a very very dim setting.. in a gymnasium converted into a church sanctuary (so no windows) with most of the lights turned down.

I wasn't sure of the use of flash at the time so I didn't have one on my camera. Just cranked up the ISO past my normal comfortable zone.


I will say two.. no three.. things about my experience:

1) (If flash is allowed -- ASK ahead of time) Get a TTL flash and learn how to use it properly.
2) Plan shots ahead
3) You will miss much of the actual ceremony as you will be watching everyone to get photos at the right moment

Just before the wedding ceremony started, another photographer (with a flash) showed up. (doh! on the flash) And no one was complaining. So, in light (no pun intended) of the situation, I let her take most of the photos.

I did sit near the front and on the outside by the aisle. So I got shots of the bride and sort coming up the aisle (the other photog was not positioned in the right spot to get those).

Without the flash though, they are pretty grainy (as to be expected).

This means a lot more time in Post pulling out grain and trying to retain detail... it would have been smarter to just shoot with a flash.

The fast lens would be nice too. But even that won't fix the issue entirely. For much of the ceremony, I was shooting at 28mm and f/3.5 --- f/2.8 is only what a half stop down? I still had to crank the ISO to 6400 and pull up a little in post Get a flash.
04-12-2017, 11:19 AM   #25
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QuoteOriginally posted by mee Quote
So I pulled out the K-1 and lowly 28-105 and went to town.



Get a flash
Actually 28-105mm is about perfect for weddings on a full frame sensor. The problem is that the Pentax lens is a 3.5- 5.6. You need something fast at all focal lengths. You might consider this for your K1



Tamron 28-75mm f/2.8 XR Di Autofocus Lens for Pentax AF


Flash is frequently not permitted , usually not appreciated and typically not used effectively.

Last edited by Floggin Rodger; 04-12-2017 at 11:24 AM.
04-12-2017, 04:36 PM   #26
mee
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QuoteOriginally posted by Floggin Rodger Quote
Actually 28-105mm is about perfect for weddings on a full frame sensor. The problem is that the Pentax lens is a 3.5- 5.6. You need something fast at all focal lengths. You might consider this for your K1

Tamron 28-75mm f/2.8 XR Di Autofocus Lens for Pentax AF
Yes the speed of the lens is precisely why I recommended a flash.

By the accounts I've read, that Tamron lens is soft unless stopped down. I'd just go with the Pentax 24-70 if I was doing weddings more.



QuoteOriginally posted by Floggin Rodger Quote
Flash is frequently not permitted , usually not appreciated and typically not used effectively.
In that case the photographer is in trouble.. I'd probably opt for a 50 f/1.8 or faster or maybe even a fast 35mm in that case (if doing more of these) and just crop a bit. Then again, I suspect most weddings are not performed in SUCH dark settings as the one I was in.
04-12-2017, 05:42 PM   #27
mee
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QuoteOriginally posted by Brooke Meyer Quote
Not mine
I'll take your word for it for the sake of argument. I still wouldn't buy that lens!
04-12-2017, 10:32 PM   #28
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Sounds like a small, low-key affair and that they will be happy with anything to remember the day by.

Figure out a handful of posed shots to take at the church - bride and groom, bride and family, groom and family, etc...plus the key parts of the ceremony. At the reception, make sure that you have at least one good shot of each guest in the group photos.

And enjoy the day.
04-28-2017, 01:39 PM - 3 Likes   #29
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Well, the day has come and gone. We all had a blast. I took a few hundred photos, some in the church, some outside the church and some in the b&b the kids were staying in overnight. I have not had time to review all the shots but I sent some to the kids and they were just thrilled. I was able to visit the church the day before and it's a good thing I did since the lighting challenging, as many here had warned. I found the DA 20-40mm to be the perfect lens for the event, the vast majority of shots were taken with it on the K-5iis. I also think the small event helped. I didn't feel any pressured, in fact, I left my camera in the car during the reception dinner.

I want to thank everyone for supported me and provided helpful advise. No one is in debt, I still own all my equipment and the kids are really happy. Here are a few photos taken.
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04-28-2017, 03:53 PM   #30
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Excellent! Congrats!
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