Thursday, January 31, 2008

I do...

I did two weddings in December and they've been a great run for the Canon 5D and new lenses. The new Mac Pro has far exceeded my expectations and has been an absolute PLEASURE to work on. I LOVE it!!!! And my Christmas present this year was the super sleek new Apple Aluminum Keyboard - wow this thing rocks my sock! Not that I didn't have enough pressies anyway, hehe but I can't understand why Apple don't stock the new keyboard with the new Mac Pro's... It really confuses me. The come with the new aluminum iMac, so why oh why wouldn't they come with the Mac Pro which is the ultimate Apple machine???? I dunno - you pay way more, you should get all the sexy new toys with it. So it came with the standard plastic one, which just didn't look right with all this new sleek aluminum, I just HAD to get it. So that was my pressie this year, at $70 I think it's worth it (for something that's not a necessity! LOL). So everything is working wonderfully and has really sped up my processing and post-shoot work. I love it!

Adobe Lightroom is a lovely package and although I still haven't fully used it to it's potential it's been so great for dealing with the 2000 shots from the last wedding. Developing is a breeze and the way it works is so great, without touching any of your original files. It's fantastic and I would really recommend it to anyone who does professional photography and is working with bulk images. Actually I would recommend it to anyone who has a keen interest in digital photography and digital developing. It's not an expensive program for what you get and really works well with Photoshop (CS3 version).

The last wedding we did has a lot of absolutely amazing shots - they're great and I think it's down to a lot things; the lovely new camera, the gorgeous subject (the bride was soooooo beautiful!), the day, the props (I sourced some white umbrellas for them and told them on the morning that to be safe I think they should get them - just as well cause the rain paid us a few visits!) and the fact that Chris and I are both way more confident and comfortable doing weddings. We're producing some really good stuff now and I don't even feel funny saying that - I know it is and it feels good to know that. We have great tools and are making sure we're constantly researching and learning - this has paid off, along with doing more and more weddings too of course. So, I used to think wedding photography was embarrassing to do, but that was because I didn't like the traditional type of wedding photography and I didn't want to be associated with that. But there's a whole new breed of wedding photographers out there - photojournalists, a non-traditional documentary-style approach to weddings (which is what we do) - our method is capturing the day as it happens, using the photography to tell the story of the day, rather than dictate it, creating natural, relaxed, artistic photographs, yeah sure there has to be the posed shots, but we try to do these as naturally as possible as well - we're getting better at achieving this with each wedding we do. Of course, a lot is based on the subjects and how relaxed they are, which we work really hard at making sure they're as relaxed as possible. But some people just aren't comfortable (I'd be horrible!!) getting their photo taken, that's when it's really hard work for us. But I think we're doing soooooo well and getting a great name out there too, in saying that though I'm not gonna get complacent! We'll always strive to continue to improve and develop. I'm loving how I can combine my design experience with this as well, I think it gives us a point of difference in amongst the many incredibly talented wedding photojournalists out there. Hope so anyway!! We have another couple of weddings booked in and some meetings for more, which hopefully they chose us as well. It's all going so well, though the long days on your feet (11 hours for the last one!!!) when pregnant sure aint that much fun! I don't notice it at the time, it's when I stop at the end of it all that I realise how exhausted I really am. But the question is, do I enjoy doing wedding photography now? I do!

This is what we're using...
Main Camera: Canon 5D
Lenses: Canon EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM, Canon EF 70-300mm f/4-5.6 IS USM, Tamron AF28-200mm f/3.8-5.6
Flash: Canon Speedlite 580EX II

Secondary Camera: Canon 350D
Lenses: Canon EF-S 18-55 mm f/3.5-5, Canon 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6, Tamron 28-200mm f/3.8-5.6
Flash: On camera

Plus the tripods, reflectors and an assortment of filters.

Our next big purchase will be an upgrade to the secondary camera and lenses. The lenses aren't good at all, actually the Tamron is a good high range lens but the Canon ones just aren't up to the level they really should be. You sure can notice the difference between photos taken with the new lenses compared to the old ones! The clients can't though which is the main thing. What we'll ideally do is upgrade my camera (the main one) to the next one up, being the top Canon Digital SLR, the 1D and Chris will use the 5D. Then the lenses... GULP and at around $2000 per lens, this is fucking frightening!! Ah well, not something we can think of just yet anyway. We stick to the big wedding packages which includes two photographers because this is where the real money is and that's how it just about always turns out, but it doesn't always work that way. So sometimes I'm doing them myself if the clients budget doesn't allow for two. So at this stage the one main grunty delicious beast is fine, I spose. hehehe

The following are a few spreads from 12" bound storybook albums I designed after shooting the weddings, the first three are from the last wedding in mid December, the fourth is from a wedding back in February (you may remember a previous post with images from this one regarding retouching), the next is of the bride from the last wedding (my god she is an absolutely, stunningly GORGEOUS girl!). The last one is of pics of some storybook albums so you can see what I'm talking about. Really, super nice albums!! Wish we had one. Actually I wish we just had wedding photos *sob* :( My external harddrive shat itself when I got the new machine and in the process wiped itself - of everything I've ever done... all design work (even current clients), all photography work, our wedding photos (we hadn't gotten around to printing them or doing an album or anything yet), all photos of our son - his birth, everything, all software and things, all fonts, all fucking everything. I'd cleaned out the old machine in preparation for the new - everything was on the external harddrive - just the one copy. GULP. I should have known better. We all get a little too comfortable and relaxed and learn the hard way huh? FUCK IT! This is a sore, sore point for me as I'm sure you can imagine.


Blogger Sandra said...

Hey Girl!! Hi Saffron!! Thank you so much for the lovely visit! Always a treat hearin' from ya! I'm so glad that things are going great for ya! I'm well as well. I just haven't been able to devote as much time to blogging and commenting as I'd like to. I checked out your other two blogs as well! Your place is gorgeous and your son is becoming a handsome little fella! I love his new bed! My four year old daughter desperately needs a new and bigger bed. Hopefully we can get her one soon. This wedding photos are absolutely amazing! I wish the you only the best that life has to offer! ; - ) Thanks for being the lovely person that you are and for always being so thoughtful! ; - ) Give a hug to Tanya for me the next time you see her! ; - )

Sending Texas smiles and sunshiny rays your way!,


9:18 PM  
Blogger LadyHawk said...

Hi Saffron. The 'sample' wedding photos you posted are gorgeous. I hate formal photos and the ones done by you are spontaneous and, as you said, show the day as it was. Great job!

My heart goes out to you for the loss of your photos. I can understand how you must be feeling. We (divemuster, moggie and I) are paranoid about saving and backing up our photos. We have multiple back-ups on different external harddrives, on each other's computers, on dvd's .. etc. And even then, we hesitate when having to format the cards!

10:01 PM  
Anonymous Sean said...

Truly brilliant pics. Seriously.

8:12 AM  

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