If you read my post on the different styles of wedding photography then you may already have a clearer idea of the type of wedding photography style (or styles) you want for your wedding photos.
Many couples come to me looking for a more candid style of wedding photography. But in finding out what they’re really looking for, it’s actually for more than a candid.
In wedding photography, “candid” means the photo’s been taken without the subject’s knowledge.
And that may be fine for some photos because if you’re like my wedding couples then you probably feel the best photos of you were always when you didn’t even know the camera was there.
But in many cases what you actually want is something better than just a candid wedding photo.
Let me explain it like this:
Just about any wedding picture of people dancing is by definition a candid photo. They’re involved in their activities, so they’re not aware of the camera.
In fact, just about any photo of any moment during a wedding day could be taken as a candid if the photographer isn’t the type to flag people down in the middle of their doing something, asking them to stop, hold it, turn to the camera or anything like that.
The bride or groom walking down the aisle, for example. As long as they’re not stopping to pose for the camera (which I hope they’re not!) any moment photographed while they’re walking down the aisle results in a candid photo of them.
But what’s way better than that candid is a storytelling photo. What’s that? And why is that what you want?
A candid only tells you what you’re already looking at. It gives you the surface view.
A story telling photo however, even though it’s usually a candid, tells you something more than what you see on the surface.
A story telling photo contains elements which contain more meaning. It has more depth to it.
Makes the wedding photo more personal and unique to the wedding couple too.
Like in our example of the bride walking down the aisle. Instead of any old moment where she was entering the ceremony, which would make it a candid, this photo below shows a brief moment captured during that walk.
It’s a moment where her dad looks straight ahead, a proud look on his face as he escorts his daughter. And notice too she’s turned to him at that second, and her face is expressing her delight in what she’s experiencing and also suggests a bit of an admiring glance toward her dad.
That adds more dimension to this wedding shot. It tells us something about what they’re both feeling in that moment. It tells us something about their relationship.
And that’s what makes it a story telling wedding photo.
Plus consider this: you’re getting this story out of this photograph, about this bride and her dad, even though you weren’t at the wedding. In fact, you’ve never even met these people. But because this wedding photo contains this deeper dimension, you get their story nonetheless.
So you can only imagine how much more powerful storytelling wedding photos can be over candid photos when it’s photo after photo of your wedding you’re looking at.
There are dozens of examples I’d love to show you from my portfolio but here’s one more:
A photo of the bride’s mom reacting to her daughter saying her vows – is that a storytelling wedding photo? If you said yes, congratulations. I think you’ve got it!
By the way, look in the second row of this photo. That’s her uncle choking up! Even more story to the story!
This is your choice. Would you prefer to have a snapshot showing any moment or the moments with more meaning to them?
As for me, I choose to photograph the ones that get my wedding clients to experience their memories again anytime they look at their photos.
**G.E. Masana (portrait artist and Huffington Post contributer) As Seen In HUFFINGTON POST | MARTHA STEWART WEDDINGS | THE KNOT | NEW YORK MAGAZINE | BRIDAL GUIDE | BRIDES | STYLE ME PRETTY | ELEGANT BRIDE | GRACE ORMONDE | WELLWED | TOWN&COUNTRY **
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