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DPChallenge Forums >> Photography Discussion >> Wisdom Needed: Scared Photograher in Need
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10/11/2007 01:35:35 PM · #1
Hey everyone,

First off, thank you for even reading this post and thank you in advance for commenting if you do. Here is my dilemma:

I am going to be shooting my first real wedding (real meaning I don't know this person) Saturday. The bride is picky, hopeful and a normal bride... she is getting married in a Catholic church that is HUGE and of course, VERY DIM. There will only be minimal candle light and the room is extremely large and dark. By church regulations (I had to sign all kinds of paper work) I can't move from one designated spot and I can have NO additional lighting on my camera, no lights - reflectors, umbrellas... NOTHING>

I'm peeing my pants thinking, "Crap, all her pictures are going to be blurry!" Her walking down the aisle, her kiss, everything is movement and in this dark cave with no light how am I going to get even a decent picture????

If anyone has been in this predicament and prevailed, please let me know the secret. I'm going tomorrow to the rehearsal to see how open I can get my aperature and how I can adjust my camera to get the best picture but I'm still scared out of my mind. I warned the bride to move slow and explained the issue a bit (didn't want to make her nervous) but I need help.....

Thanks again if you know any suggestions.
(Also, if you're in a criticing mood - I just put up some new preggo shots in my homicide section).

:)
10/11/2007 01:38:06 PM · #2
Rent the FASTEST lens that you can for the weekend. It will be worth it.
10/11/2007 01:39:11 PM · #3
I agree... you're going to need more than f4.0 to get decent shots. Is the lens listed in your profile the only one you have?
10/11/2007 01:41:49 PM · #4
Yes - I have a 300 mm and that is it. :( I looked at renting and that is WAY out of my budget (keep in mind, I normally charge 1200 for a wedding and this is a friend of my sisters at work and I'm doing it for her for only 600 because she needed someone last minute and I could use the money).

:(
10/11/2007 01:42:35 PM · #5
Originally posted by DowseDesigns:

Is the lens listed in your profile the only one you have?


It sure as heck better not be :-) No way to shoot a wedding with nothing wider than 75mm on an APS-C sensor...

R.
10/11/2007 01:44:03 PM · #6
Catholic!!! Yeeeeeeeee!!! Ask the priest about the following rules and restrictions, some are more lenient than others, but as far as I know:

Don't use flash, they may have you removed from the building.

Don't get near the altar, see above statement.

Those are 2 things to remember above all else. Again, check with the priest to be sure.

Rent a lens for the weekend if you have to so you can get the shots you want. Practice practice practice beforehand with the lens and the light you will have to work with. I seriously cannot stress that one enough.

Good luck!!

ETA: If you don't think you can do it right, be the bigger person and turn it down.

Message edited by author 2007-10-11 13:45:09.
10/11/2007 01:44:04 PM · #7
Originally posted by CalamitysMaster00:

Yes - I have a 300 mm and that is it. :( I looked at renting and that is WAY out of my budget (keep in mind, I normally charge 1200 for a wedding and this is a friend of my sisters at work and I'm doing it for her for only 600 because she needed someone last minute and I could use the money).

:(


Gawd. You better find some local photogs on DPC to loan you something faster and something wider...

R.
10/11/2007 01:44:06 PM · #8
Oh, the wisdom is not helping.... you guys are terrifying me!
10/11/2007 01:45:33 PM · #9
Can you get in and practice in the Church? Try some different ISO settings, bring a friend along to act as the bride to get a sense for how it will be to shoot the motion...

You really need faster glass - and wider glass!
10/11/2007 01:47:01 PM · #10
At Vistek here in Ottawa it is only about $20 a day to rent good glass... I would be surprised if it was more than that in the States...
10/11/2007 01:47:14 PM · #11
I can loan you the Tamron 28-75mm f/2.8, a decent all-around wedding lens, if you want to pay for overnight shipping... But I would think renting would be cheaper.

R.

Message edited by author 2007-10-11 13:47:51.
10/11/2007 01:48:47 PM · #12
I got to say you have taken on quite a task for yourself given your limited lens selection. At $1200 a wedding you should have had some fantastic looking glass to shoot with. Good luck.

MattO
10/11/2007 01:49:24 PM · #13
From a pro, not me, in a similar situation. Dress up as one of the guests and sit there snapping away like a shutter bug. Then change cloths and be the photographer after the ceremony. I don't think they kick out guests for using flash.
10/11/2007 01:50:25 PM · #14
Well being a full time student and working a job as well steals all my time and money and this is something I'm buildig from the ground up. When it comes to the equipment, there is no lie - Photography is expensive. I mainly do portraiture and erotica and have never needed any more lenses and I figure I shouldn't buy what I don't need. I've always been a fan of learning the equipment I have before digging a deeper hole of debt and equipment.....

I just got my new Cannon (about 3 year ago all my cameras got stolen along with ALL my equipment in a break in, and no insurance didn't cover it). So.... when this woman requested me as a photographer, I was honored. I was going to use my flash and an umbrella and was fine until the church told me not only can I not MOVE at all during the ceremony - but I can't have ANY lighting at all. :(

Its two days away and I'm frantic. I have an asistant with a decent lens but neither one of us have a lens worth finding light in a black hole. I was hoping someone could give me advice to work with what I have..... anyone?

I'm going to the rehearsal tomorrow and plan on taking notes on how I can adjust my camera the best to work the best and I'm going to pray while I'm there too. ;)
10/11/2007 01:52:19 PM · #15
Originally posted by MattO:

I got to say you have taken on quite a task for yourself given your limited lens selection. At $1200 a wedding you should have had some fantastic looking glass to shoot with. Good luck.

MattO


Well, with that price I can afford to rent a lens.... renting around here (IN Kansas City, at least that I've found) is about 150 starting a day. Very doable ..... 600 bucks is not worth cutting in half to get lenses for the day. :(
10/11/2007 01:52:38 PM · #16
Originally posted by Nusbaum:

From a pro, not me, in a similar situation. Dress up as one of the guests and sit there snapping away like a shutter bug. Then change cloths and be the photographer after the ceremony. I don't think they kick out guests for using flash.


Awesome.... I love this. lololololol.
10/11/2007 01:54:43 PM · #17
Originally posted by CalamitysMaster00:

Its two days away and I'm frantic. I have an asistant with a decent lens but neither one of us have a lens worth finding light in a black hole. I was hoping someone could give me advice to work with what I have..... anyone?


All you can do is shoot wide open at high ISO and pray. At the rehearsal see what shutter speeds you get at the different ISOs. If you can use a tripod, you can get away with 1/30 sec in weddings, the church part anyway. 1/60 would be fine, don't need anything faster. If you can't use a tripod you have a problem.

R.
10/11/2007 01:54:59 PM · #18
these threads might help you find someone nearby with some glass you could borrow.

KC GTG

There's a lot of threads you could search too. Good luck!
10/11/2007 01:57:00 PM · #19
I agree with renting lenses. I didn't for the longest time, but will from here on out, until I buy the 16-35 and 70-200 I've been renting.

Talk to the church people at the rehearsal. Tell them you would like to use flash when the bride is walking down the aisle, but will not use flash "out of respect for the Church" during the rest of the ceremony. Most people go for this and expect you to use a flash during the march in (as nothing official has happened yet).

Then, follow the rules throughout the ceremony. When it comes time for the kiss, presentation and walk back out as bride and groom...USE YOUR FLASH. Everyone else (in the pews) will be! And they can't/won't stop a ceremony that is already over. If the kiss is in the middle of the ceremony (as some Catholic weddings are) then you might still be able to use flash...again, everyone else with their point and shoots will be from the pews...why can't you? Just make sure the papers you sign don't damn you the hell or something similar if you break rules...or am I thinking of Baptists? (I'm Baptist, so it's ok for me to joke.)

Finally, there is also a trick about high ISO and under expose to freeze motion then pushing in post (I think it works best shooting RAW) and you have to clean up the noise.

Hope this helps. Good luck!
-drew

Message edited by author 2007-10-11 14:05:31.
10/11/2007 02:04:25 PM · #20
I just read you are in KC. If you are up for a 6-7 hour drive tommorrow, they rent lenses here is St. Louis for $30 a day. And if you pick it up Friday afternoon and have it back Monday morning, you get the whole weekend for one day's rental! (Schiller's, Creve Coeur Camera, I don't know if Wolf rents).

A shorter, cheaper drive would be to Columbia. Columbia Photo rents lenses...fairly cheap if I remember.

-drew

Edit: $30 rental plus full tank of gas ($50) = $80 plus 7 hrs on the road!

Message edited by author 2007-10-11 14:07:26.
10/11/2007 02:05:08 PM · #21
Originally posted by drewbixcube:

Finally, there is also a trick about high ISO and under expose to freeze motion then pushing in post (I think it works best shooting RAW) and you have to clean up the noise.

-drew


That will be the understatement of the year.

I would go to the church TODAY and I would ask if you can just take some sample pictures in the sanctuary. Look to see if shooting is EVEN POSSIBLE. Recalling that you have a lens that is 75mm at the widest you are looking for about 1/100th for handheld. If the church is what I'm imagining, I'm not even sure you are going to get close to that. MAYBE at ISO 1600, but those shots are going to be so noisy as to make enlargements difficult.`1

Then, if fears are realized, you have at least two days to talk to the bride and explain you cannot do it with the lens you have and that you need to rent a fast lens. See if she's willing to split the cost with you.

I just see a huge disaster in the making and hoping for the best isn't the way out of it. (Sorry to sound so negative, but I'm really worried about you here.)
10/11/2007 02:05:39 PM · #22
AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH

I found a 120300 Sigma lens for 40$ a day. Doable? I think so.... any of you neigh sayers think I should decline as this is going to be the only one I can find not already rented in KC for Saturday?
10/11/2007 02:06:08 PM · #23
Man - F4 is nowhere near fast enough...

Agree that you need to borrow/rent glass with at least F2.8.

Is the bride up for re-enacting some of the ceremony afterwards, when you can use your flash?
10/11/2007 02:06:09 PM · #24
Originally posted by drewbixcube:

...or am I thinking of Baptists? (I'm Baptist, so it's ok for me to joke.)


Sorry to get off topic, but just have to say that I was raised evangelical and it was ok for us to make Baptist jokes too! From the pulpit, no less!

Resume discussion...
10/11/2007 02:07:18 PM · #25
Originally posted by Bear_Music:

...All you can do is shoot wide open at high ISO and pray. At the rehearsal see what shutter speeds you get at the different ISOs. If you can use a tripod, you can get away with 1/30 sec in weddings, the church part anyway. 1/60 would be fine, don't need anything faster. If you can't use a tripod you have a problem...


or, at least, an inconspicuous collapsible monopod with a sling or a bean bag even. The cheapest fast lens, of course, is the EF 50mm f/1.8.
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