Looking back at Weddings in 2017
Looking back at Weddings in 2017
Looking back over a great year.
Looking back at the weddings in 2017, I can tell it’s been a great year. I can honestly say that I have enjoyed every single wedding, each of them having their own character and unique stories that make them memorable to me. I have photographed 30 weddings in 2017 all over the country and there have been a lot of highs and some lows but overall a very worthwhile year.
At the beginning of the year I did not have that many bookings for weddings in 2017, however, the bookings started coming in and by May I knew that wedding season was going to be very busy. In the summer I photographed weddings all over from a Castle in Wales to a yacht on the Thames. I loved the variety and diversity, it’s a real joy for me to be presented with new stories to tell in different settings.
What have I learned?
2017 was my first year shooting with Fuji X cameras. I moved over from big full frame DSLR Canon cameras to small Fuji mirrorless cameras, Xpro 2’s. I started using these cameras in late 2016 and was seduced by the weight, ease of use and their stellar performance. I knew that I wanted to use these cameras for all of my weddings in 2017, after shooting only a couple of weddings with them the previous year.
Since then It’s been a learning curve, the Fuji camera’s are amazing and the quality of the images speak for themselves, however, processing these images is like taming a wild stallion, they take a lot more care to get right and I have painstakingly reviewed my post processing workflow over the course of the year. I have now found a workflow that compliments the Fuji files perfectly.
For the Photographers
I am now using Capture One instead of Lightroom. Capture One renders the Fuji raw files beautifully and the skin tones don’t suffer from the wormy look that can plague Fuji users when using Lightroom. I am aware that there are work arounds to get the files to look similar, however, Capture One just gets it right instantly. The images are richer and I have been able to develop a preset which I am happy with, whereas I would sometimes feel that I was settling with the Lightroom offerings.
Anyone who knows photographers will tell you that we can often suffer from Gas, this is not a stomach complaint it stands for Gear Acquisition Syndrome. In other words we like to spend a lot of money on lenses, cameras, lighting and anything else that we feel will make our photography better.
The truth is that we often don’t need these things to improve, what we actually need to do is focus on the moments, the composition and look for opportunities to be creative. That is not to say that you shouldn’t have professional equipment if you’re doing a professional job, far from it. I have back ups of my equipment in case I need it. However, I have learned this year to stick to the lenses and equipment that compliment my work.
I have learned to keep my equipment simple. At all of my weddings in 2017 I have had two cameras on me, one with a 16mm F/1.4 (24mm Full Frame Equivalent) and another with a 56mm F/1.2 (85mm Full Frame Equivalent). I have only bought one other lens this year and this is a Mitakon 35mm F/0.95 (50mm Full Frame Equivalent) this is used when the room is too tight for the 56mm such as with getting ready photos or in a small ceremony room.
I have also experimented with lighting. At the start of the year I was using flashguns where as now I use continuous flash. I have a Yongnuo light wand, which was relatively inexpensive way of dipping my toe in the world of continuous lighting. Due to the ease and level of control that continuous lights give me I have now expanded my selection and use Rotolight’s Neo 2. This is a far superior light but does pretty much the same thing. I still use flash guns but only when I need something a lot more powerful.
The only other addition I have made to my equipment is the Fuji X100F, this is a small compact camera which I use for mainly for my own personal photography and travel photography. It does have a place in wedding photography as it has a beautiful 35mm lens and is extremely small making it very stealthy and non intrusive, perfect for true documentary photography.
I have been welcomed warmly at every wedding this year, I have been treated as a guest which has allowed me capture more intimate and honest moments. I am grateful to all of the couples who have trusted me to tell their stories. You are all amazing and I wish you every happiness in 2018 and beyond.