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3 Wedding Photography Rules You Didn’t Know About

By Vanessa Joy Photography on July 3rd 2019

Wedding photography is a beast in itself. As a wedding photographer, you need to know how to shoot everything from still life, portraits, groups both in the dark and in the light. You’re always on a tight timeline and forever dragging heavy gear around. But to top it off there are unspoken rules that you must follow if you hope to have a career.

There are the well-known ones like only the bride wears white and don’t hand out your own business cards if you’re not the primary photographer. But there are some small rules that aren’t as obvious but will be disastrous if you break them.

1. Know When to Shut Up!

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had an assistant just not understand this rule. Whether is over ooh-ing and ah-ing over every detail or giving me photo suggestions in front of clients, it gets annoying fast. Learn to read the room and be conscious of over-talking.

[Related Reading: H5 Proven Ways To Book More Wedding Photography Clients]

2. Understand the Couple’s Relationship Style

Now hopefully your clients came to you because they love your photography style. However, that doesn’t mean that every client that loves your style has the same personality. Get to know your clients and what their relationship is like through a simple online questionnaire or by actually spending time with them two-on-one. The last thing you want to do is try to pull serious romance out of them when they’re a quirky fun-loving couple. You’ll see how I pull out my couple’s relationship style in my upcoming tour and workshop.

Charleston Charm Wedding Photography Workshop

Whether you specialize in southern charm weddings or big city weddings, you will walk away from this workshop with the skills and confidence you need to build a successful business.  Don’t miss four days chock-full of the beautifully stylized hands-on ceremony, bridal party, an engagement session, and reception shoots to add to your portfolio. Watch the trailer here to find out all of what we’ll cover:

Where: Charleston, SC
When: November 10, 2019 -November 13, 2019, 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM
Cost: $1,999
Discount Code: JOY for $100 off!
Purchase Here

This is a unique workshop for wedding photographers looking to improve their photography skills, build their portfolios, and have some fun, too!

This workshop is for intermediate to advanced photographers but if you’re a beginner you’re sure to get a lot out of it as well. Basic understanding of your camera operations including using manual mode, f-stops and shutter speed is preferred. Photographers looking to refine their business strategies will enjoy the lecture portion of the workshop no matter how long they’ve been in business. Please read the agenda to understand the workshop outline.

NOTE: Our host hotel is the French Quarter Inn, 166 Church Street, Charleston, SC 29401 where Canon has negotiated a special rate for workshop attendees which expires Friday, October 4, 2019.  Please call (843) 722-1900 and mention Canon to make your reservation arriving 11/10/19, departing 11/13/19.   

3. Repeatedly Ask What They Want

This isn’t necessarily a rule but since I just had a horrible experience with this over my last wedding I figured I’d write about it. Never stop asking your clients if there’s something else they want. Do it all throughout the day. For my last wedding, I did my normal bridal party setups on a set of stairs. Apparently, my bride also wanted traditional, straight-line posing. She didn’t tell me this at any point but was “sick over it” the week after the wedding about not having those traditional shots. Is that her fault for not communicating that the day of? Yes. Is it my fault for not asking what else she might want? Yes. There’s no good solution other than creative Photoshop for me and her at this point, but for you, always keep asking what else your clients want and avoid this dilemma.

[Related Reading: How to Improve Your Wedding Photojournalism with Charmi Patel Peña | Community Critique Ep. 6]

Hopefully this all help add to the experience that you give your clients. You, of course, want to make sure that you deliver amazing photography, but sometimes the experience has more impact than the photos. For more about posing and wedding photography, come join me on the Wedding Photography Tour or 4-Day Charleston Workshop!

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Vanessa Joy is a professional New Jersey and New York City wedding photographer capturing NJ, NY, Hamptons, Long Island, NYC and destination weddings. With an emphasis on luxury weddings with an extravagant flair, Vanessa Joy focuses on creating a unique boutique experience with each of her couple’s wedding photography. Vanessa is an experienced photographer who has captured everything from Jersey Shore Weddings and NYC weddings, to elegant formal affairs at Pennsylvania farms and vintage chic weddings with intricate wedding details.

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