Who doesn’t love capturing the perfect moment at a friends’ wedding? Through trial and error I’ve come up with some advice for opportunistic shots. The bride and groom will really appreciate the extra moments that may not have been captured by the official photographer or other family members.
Side note though…I am by no means a wedding photographer, I just a hopeless romantic who can’t help herself with a camera in hand. In fact, the number one point I wish to make is to stay clear of the official wedding photographer(s) to let them do their thing. Also be sure to put down your camera long enough to live in the moment! That in mind here are a few suggestions for different angles:
During the reception, the classic first dance along with the Father daughter/Mother son dances are a great opportunity to get crowd-free shots. The trick is to discretely kneel alongside one of the front tables (it really helps to make friends with the people sitting in the chairs you are kneeling between to decrease the obnoxious quotient. As long as you aren’t blocking anyone’s view and aren’t at risk of tripping anyone you’re golden.
Get high: During the dance parties and speeches getting a bird’s eye view can capture the energy of the room. Just be sure to stand in the back of the room so as not to block anyone’s view during the speeches. If during the reception you want to stand on a chair make sure to have a spotter. You can also use people to frame the couple in the shot.
Be on the lookout for candids: One of the best things about having a smart phone is the ability to use its camera anytime!
And my personal favorite challenge…getting the groom’s face as he sees the bride for the first time: Before the ceremony, try to find a seat that’s on the isle or has an unblocked view of the altar (without boxing out grandma).