Sunday, January 18, 2009

Portrait Practice

I've been booked for sure as the second shooter at my very first wedding this summer, and of course I'm nervous. I'm making lists and checking them twice and I'm spending hours on flickr and various blogs and photography sites gathering info and ideas.

Most importantly though, I'm conscious of the fact that what I need most is practice, practice, practice! So yesterday while the kids were lounging on the couch I pulled out the camera. I sat on the floor in front of them so they could still see and started shooting. Here are a couple of favourites:

I had on my 50mm 1.8 for all of my shots, as I'm still getting to know it better. I did my favourite lens exercise: set your camera to AV, choose a pretty stationary subject, and then open your aperature. Wide open! Take your shot. Move your dial one stop, shoot again. Do this for every single f-stop. You'll get a real quick feel for what the lens can do and what settings you're going to like. Of course, you should do it again and again at different distances, but it's a great exercise and you'll really know your lens when you're done.

Anyway, both of the above shots were taken at f/2.3, so I guess I know what makes me happy.

Guess what I'm practicing for here?

(Don't you love how she's willing to hold out her hands for me but not take her eyes off of the television?)

So while I'm practicing and playing, I'd love to know a couple of things:

1) Who's your favourite wedding photographer? Why do you love them? Link me up!

2) What editing software do you use and why? I'm still trying to choose. I downloaded the trial version of PSE7 before Christmas and played with it a bit but really spent most of my time weeping and wailing and knashing my teeth. I'm going to download Lightroom today and see if it annoys me less. I can't afford the full version of Photoshop. I'm even considering Gimp because--FREE! Of course I prefer to get the shot as perfect as possible in camera, but everyone needs a little buff and polish, right? I want to be comfortable with whatever software I choose long before the wedding so I can edit quickly but carefully, so I'm going to have to decide and buy in the next month. (I just don't think Picasa can handle it.)

Thanks everyone! Have a happy weekend!


  1. Beautiful shots - lovely willing models too even if they are TV watching! Just thinking of getting a nifty fifty - think you've convinced me!

  2. Stunning shots of gorgeous kids what more could you ask for? Love how she's helping and still watching TV, already multitasking :)