April showers may keeping us on our toes but the lighter evenings have arrived, which means summer is just around the corner (promise!). And with the sun’s arrival comes the endless stream of summer events; weddings, christenings and garden parties.
With so many opportunities to catch up with friends and family, plenty of memories will be made – memories you’ll want to capture on camera. Worry not, as you don’t need to be a pro photographer to get some great summer snaps, just grab your digital camera or phone and let us lead the way with our simple tips and tricks 🙂
1. Ensure you have enough battery to last the full event
It may sound silly, but make sure all your devices you are taking to the event are charged to the max! Better still, bring a back up battery or a portable charger. Events like weddings can be long days (and nights), and you don’t want to miss any photo opportunities because of a flat battery.
2. Free up some memory to capture all your great photos
Be sure to free up space on your device beforehand and bring an additional memory card. Imagine that magical moment when the bride walks down the aisle and then the dreaded message “cannot take photo” appears on your phone. A rookie mistake that could have been avoided with a little preparation.
3. Make sure your lens is clean to avoid blurry photos
A simple yet often forgotten trick – clean your lens (especially on your phone). The lens on your phone spends most of its life in pockets or knocking about in your handbag. Simply give it a little love and your photos will look HD again!
4. Mix up your composition and perspectives
Change your perspective. Mix things up by taking shots from down low, up high or with wide angles and you’ll create a different style of photography that will surprise you. Here are some other great photography composition ideas you may like to give a try at your next wedding.
5. Avoid zoom as much as possible
Be wary of the zoom. While a smartphone or compact digital camera is a great tool, photos often lose quality when zoom is used, unlike on a DSLR. Where possible, try to get closer to the action to get your perfect shot.
6. Let natural light be your friend
Make use of natural light as much as possible and stay away from flash where you can. Natural light is the most flattering and will improve the quality of your photography.
7. Experiment with focus
Focus! Most phones have tap to focus features or digital cameras might have these built in. Make sure you’re focusing on your desired spot before pressing go. Try playing with the blur and you might create a more artistic shot too.
8. Think about what you want to capture, from beginning to end
Plan the moments you would like to snap. Every event has a beginning, middle and end, so try to tell that story of the day. Perhaps it’s the calm of the venue before everybody arrives, the emotions at the main event and the unforgettable dance moves in the evening!
9. Take photos of the spontaneous moments
Photograph people doing things and interactions between people, that way you’ll capture the real spontaneous moments. Sometimes it’s the shot you take a second after the formal or posed shot when everyone is relaxing that truly shows the emotion.
10. Pay attention to the details
Don’t forget the details! Lots of planning goes into events, so give the close-ups some attention. At a wedding, photograph rings, backs of dresses, shoes, flowers, the cake before it’s cut, favours on the table – the list goes on. Pinterest and event magazines are great places to get inspiration on how to compose stylised shots like these.
11. Don’t delete!
Finally, don’t discard your ‘mistakes’. Keep in mind that images can be chosen, cropped or even edited later. You might not see the beauty in it at the time but who knows, it could become mantelpiece material with just a few tweaks!
12. Enjoy yourself
Above all, have fun with it! And remember to relax and enjoy the events as well as taking lots of lovely photos.