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01-13-2011, 09:27 AM   #1
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Question for those that do weddings.

I asked this on another forum, but interested to see what Pentax users have to say about this......

I've been to a few weddings in my life, and one thing that I've noticed, is that of ALL of the ones I've been to, the "PRO" only uses a flash in the hot shoe of the camera. I think only once I recall one of them doing something off camera, and I saw the pictures after, and the off camera shots he did were not very good. (in my opinion) I've never seen any of these photographers using a modifier on the flash of any sort. Is this the common way of doing it, or have I just been lucky to not witness it being done the way everyone boasts about? (umbrellas, soft box, etc) How do you do yours?

01-13-2011, 10:45 AM   #2
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Depends largely on the photo style and venue. If you are doing formal poses in 1 location, its easy to set up lights with modifiers and crank out great shots. If your client requests photojournalist style, you can't exactly be "on the move" with a lights stand, umbrella and strobe. For that, you bounce a flash to add some light to get the shot. A speedlight diffuser really just cuts down on the flashes power if you are already bouncing.
01-13-2011, 10:53 AM   #3
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I would add I remember a lot of guys using potato mashers for the extra power and flexibility (the head rotate pretty much any direction except down), and occasionally with a stroboframe. these were the days of Medium format wedding shots though.
I haven't been to a wedding in a long while though, I imagine it's more big flashes on top of the camera now (i think a strobo-frame would help though, but the added weight would make the journalistic style a little more difficult)
01-13-2011, 04:36 PM   #4
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I wouldn't use a shoe mount flash unless my Metz 60 got broken and I had to go to a back up.
I have a handle adapter that allows me to put the flash head precisely over the lens axis when the camera is vertical, which covers about 95% of my non studio shots at a wedding.
The new and improved way, from what I understand with the high end guys is to have a camera mounted flash (not on the shoe but above the camera) and then a helper holding a second flash behind and to the side of the subject, generally both flashes have modifiers on them.

01-13-2011, 08:07 PM   #5
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It's a matter of convenience also. Hotshoe mounted flashes mean pretty reliable and consistent results (albeit not all that exciting) that get the job done. It also depends on the circumstances. On the fly, I always have my flashes mounted on the hotshoe or extension cable. When mounted, I bounce when possible - otherwise I'll only use it for fill-flash. Set up for posed formal shots, I generally shoot wirelessly through an umbrella (because that's my chosen quick and easy modifier) - it gets the job done nicely once I've got my flash settings all down pat.
01-13-2011, 09:59 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ash Quote
Set up for posed formal shots, I generally shoot wirelessly through an umbrella
Do you shoot through or do you use the umbrella as a reflector?
01-13-2011, 11:16 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Wheatfield Quote
Do you shoot through or do you use the umbrella as a reflector?
I have both, and don't really have a preference of one over the other - the end result looks much the same in the outdoor setting. I'm also not sure whether the shoot-through gives me any less range for being a more obstructive diffusion method as opposed to the reflective umbrella. Either way, I use the umbrellas quite close in to the subject and am happy with the results they both produce.
01-14-2011, 11:33 AM   #8
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Thanks for the info from everyone. Interesting to read. I figured it was mostly what worked best for the conditions. I would imagine it would be a pain setting up a umbrella for every shot, but sometimes you read about some people doing it for everything. I thought it seemed a bit much, but what do I know?

01-14-2011, 12:23 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by eccs19 Quote
Thanks for the info from everyone. Interesting to read. I figured it was mostly what worked best for the conditions. I would imagine it would be a pain setting up a umbrella for every shot, but sometimes you read about some people doing it for everything. I thought it seemed a bit much, but what do I know?
I wouldn't set up the umbrella for individual shots - I set aside time with the bride and groom (and family) for a sitting at one or two picturesque settings at their locations of choice - usually a garden or reception venue. Then the posed shots are done in blocks; gear is packed up and I move on to reportage-style wedding photos again. Work smarter, not harder.
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