Again this week I had the chance to explain my philosophy when it comes to photographing weddings. I’m there to capture the day, record the moment and – whenever possible stay out of the way.
I shoot in an unobtrusive manner. Sure, you need a photographer to manage the situation when it’s time for formal portraits – but during the ceremony it’s important to get the shots without stealing the show.
A couple I’ll be photographing in July made a point to tell me “Don’t get in front of mom during the service.” A welcome point, but almost unnecessary. If I’m in front of anyone, I’m generally kneeling. I prefer the over the shoulder approach.
Guests enjoy themselves and see the bride and groom instead of the back of my head. Whether I’m working in a church, or beside the Hudson River – in the Catskill Mountains or Adirondacks, the scene and scenery should be the center of attention.
In filmmaking, there’s something called the establishing shot – that can be the areal view of the bridge on which the meeting will take place, or view from the clock tower – at a wedding, it’s the shot that shows all of the guests waiting in anticipation or applauding the kiss.
As important as the rings are, I feel these big-picture sorts of moments are at least as photo-worthy. The rings will always be on those fingers, but friends and family will go their separate ways once the wedding has ended.