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It may sound very short, moments are something so simple, right? Why would that be the essence of anyone’s specialty for 12 years?
I know, so let me tell you first what I consider to be “the moment” and why it is so challenging to capture it!
Pretend for a second that you are not reading any of this for now but actually sitting right next to me and listening to me talking. And then all of a sudden you see - boom! - my head turns into a head of Justin Beiber with Abraham Lincoln-like beard, Donald Trump’s smile, Dwayne Johnson’s neck, with Oprah Winfrey’s glasses and I am dressed up for the wedding.
Then you go - Whaaaaaaaat did I just see?????
- Yes! Sure it was, an amazing moment!
You’ve just met so many famous people all in one!
And this would be a great illustration of the two very important components of our “capturing-the-moment” approach:
Remember, this example is over-simplified and exaggerated in order for you to get a better idea.
This moment is “raw”. It is not captured yet. So, in my approach, the wedding photographer would have to anticipate that something like this is coming up and he/she would have to position him/herself in a good place, with a good fresh angle, respecting light and delivering all with a good composition.
The first moment of transformation would be captured when your eyes are most round and you got this terrified look on your face first. When you come to realize that this is all just a joke, you will start laughing or smiling. This laugh or smile happens only during this very brief moment when your eyes give this short sparkle visible for only a split second, then you can still be laughing but that brief glare is gone.
This moment can be captured from more than one position, more than one angle and with different lenses that will show you different features of the same moment.
Some lens would show you more the interaction between the two people, some would give you a great close up shot etc.
There are a lot of things that can be done to capture the moment.
There is no way that all of this be done at once.
At this point we need to make good and educated choices.
It is very challenging!
“The main question I’ve been asking myself all these years is this : how can I be fast and precise and take all of the possible moments of your wedding day?”
I believe that there is always a way to anticipate where my crew members and myself need to be to maximize the amount of authentic moments taken nicely on the wedding day.
Considering how many different moments are packed into even a very simple interaction between people you can imagine how fast I need to be thinking during the fast flow of weddings. I had to literally become intuitive and develop solid reflexes to be able to do what I wanted. This intuition and reflex I’m talking about, takes years of experience to acquire.
At one point our studio had 5 teams and we used to have sessions with our photographers from different teams going through all their shots for the day. We would review together all of the shots taken, one by one. After many tech sessions like that I have noticed that a lot of them might have seen the shot, but did not have the proper reflex to be at the right place at the right time. (i.e. good composition, good angle, good light, and well… a good choice of lens).
“When done right, the “capturing-the-moment” approach creates an amazing memory of your wedding day and definitely lets you relive it over and over again. When the image is real and authentic - you know and feel it!”
Gleb and his crew just finished my sons wedding two days ago . What a pleasure it was for our family to have Gleb at our event full of life. I would love for you to post your work on your site as you are the best in the city.
/ Furniture Business Owner
Gleb was so dedicated to his work; we can see he is really passionate about what he does. He took the time to get to know my wife and I and also scouted the filming locations ahead of time to ensure that everything would go smoothly. All in all, it was a great experience and for us and we would definitely recommend Gleb to anyone.
Gleb and his team are incredible, very creative, thorough and easy to work with.
Marc Andre Palerme Restrepo
/ Asset Manager
Definitely there will be a lot of staged shots as well, throughout the day. We still need family portraits, couple portraits and your personal portraits. Definitely we will get you involved into a lot of fun activities and capture your reactions as you do it. These staged and soft-staged shots have their place on the wedding day as well - no doubt about it, but the heart of my approach is still “capturing-the-moment”.
Your wedding day experience will be translated into so many moments, I would have a lot of shots of your interaction with your loved ones, a lot of looks, smiles, hugs, congratulations, tears, pets expressing their feelings, kids jumping and gleaming and getting bored and falling asleep in the cutest poses everywhere around, grandparents wise looks and more. I will be capturing it all meticulously moment by moment for you.
In my style the moment by moment flow of time on your wedding day is extremely precious to me. I know how incredibly fleeting and irreversible every moment is.
Every moment is unique to me. It is more than just a word. I live through every moment on your wedding day.
Over the years, I have realized that my capturing-the-moment technique is unprecedented, I can guarantee you that!”
Since you are shopping for your wedding photography now,
Imagine the following: someone pointing a camera with a very long lens
straight onto you. How would you react?
Some churches restrict movements during shooting. What to do?
Family sessions can become very messy.
People tend to wander around, they don’t really know where to go.
What to do to keep things organized?
Bride said it is important for her that...
Imagine the following: someone pointing a camera with a very long lens straight onto you.
How would you react? You might get uncomfortable, shy, worried or playful… right?
Worst comes to worst you might freeze up in front of the camera. Do not worry. If that happens, we will deal with it, with these *tricks* below*. I am no different myself. When someone points a camera at me, I become playful most of the time.
Is this good or bad, you might ask yourself. Different photographers will tell you different things.
Puritan photojournalists photographers will probably tell you that these reactions are not good and you shouldn’t be having them.
From their perspective none of these reactions are good!
They’ll tell you “we need you to be yourself and not react to my camera, etc” They may also add “We are trying to capture you as you are in the moment of the wedding day and not capturing your reaction to the camera presence”.
In my opinion this kind of perspective will only add extra pressure and more strain on you on your wedding day.
I used that approach a while ago and realized is not the most practical.
I say - just be yourself. If I caught you reacting to my camera - we will play with this reaction in a positive way, and have fun shooting and see where that will lead us. And in addition, we will have a good laugh. And there, I have captured a true moment with you. And you will definitely appreciate the picture.
Hence, be yourself. I’ll play my part of the game. It is my job to figure out how to be at the right place at the right moment, with the right angle, and the proper lighting. It is my job to bring in the artistic elements into my shots. As the day continues I will get more candid shots of you and you will discover I have accumulated a plethora of great candid moments on this day.
Don’t you worry. All you need to do is to enjoy your day, you don’t need to pretend to be something you’re not. Be yourself.
If you want some silly or posed pictures, formal or casual pictures, alone or with someone in particular, definitely don’t be shy and let me know. It will be my pleasure.
Please make sure to tell us about any restrictions in regards of shooting in your place of celebration. Some churches restrict movements during shooting. Some go as far as restricting any movements at all. We need to know it in advance. Often these rules have been introduced back in the days when cameras were super big and bulky and those rules have not been updated since. We can take the time to speak to the celebrants, and can explain them how respectful we will be of the place of worship so we can have more freedom of movement to shoot. We have done this countless times.
Sometimes the rules are very strict and cannot be changed in which case we may negotiate installing cameras at specific places for the entire duration of the ceremony. This is something we can’t afford to discover last minute. It is critical to ask your celebrant first.
Most of the time right after the wedding ceremony we will be taking the big shot of everyone.
Then it will be the immediate family’s turn and whoever you decide to be part of the family portraits near the lieu of celebration.
Sometimes people ask me if they are considered immediate family, and my answer is very simple - if you think you are an immediate family member you probably are - so stick around!
Family sessions can become very messy. People tend to wander around, they don’t really know where to go, they chat amongst each other, not paying attention, some will leave the premises to get something in the car. This results in situations depicted as : “oh hey, my sister’s cousin will be right back, he just needs to bring me my purse that I forgot in the car, etc”
Time is so precious and this waiting time is literally taking away from the most creative part of the day: your Together session! This is the last thing we need on your wedding day.
Family portrait session is something we all appreciate and is a must-have, we have to shoot for you yet it is still more of a formality, and we need to get it done as soon as possible.
Maybe even 2 people: a person on the bride’s side and another person on the groom’s side if necessary to help us get through this session. They will guide and direct the group so that the photo session goes fast, smooth and easy for everyone.
Once you have chosen your bride’s team leader and your groom’s team leader for this part of the day, it is important to provide them with the complete list of shots that needs to be taken. They will be able to call the next people in the list. Ideally these team leaders know all the family members.
( I don’t mind yelling the names if the group leader is shy :-)
Here is a good working template for your future family shoot.
Make sure that the DJ and MC will be constantly communicating with photographers and videographers throughout the whole evening. They need to tell us what is about to begin and what is the next event.
We do not want to miss out on anything, but some of our equipment and lighting really take a few minutes to begin functioning properly.
All we really need is a warning in advance that something important is coming up. We will do the rest! We got you covered. We will not miss a moment.
On the Home page of this website I gave more useful tips for those hiring both photo and video for their wedding day.
We are here for you.
We are by your side all day long.
We are here to create timeless memories for you and the best results are achieved if we do it together.
We want you to look your very best.
We want to capture all of the possible beautiful and authentic moments.
We want your children, your grandchildren and yourself to cherish and cherish these moments for years and generations to come!
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