Candid Wedding Photography

Having just edited a set of photos from a wedding I shot last weekend, I thought I might talk a bit about Candid wedding photography.  Though I enjoy all types of photography, my primary gig is that of a Branson wedding photographer…  Which is great because it just so happens that weddings are my favorite things to shoot.  I know what you’re thinking, but I assure you, it has nothing to do with the money.  Okay, it has a little to do with the money.  Mmmm, money; Uh, sorry.  But seriously, I love shooting weddings.  For one, there’s no shortage of interesting subjects to shoot.  From the architecture of the venue, to the unique center pieces and doo-dads that make each wedding unique, to the guests and wedding party themselves.

Frustrated Street Photographer? Try Candid Wedding Photography!

If I’m being honest(seems like a dumb phrase, right?  Wouldn’t I know if I were being honest?) the truth is that I love the candid nature of street photography, but I’ve never been able to muster up the courage to go out and take pictures of strangers on the street.  Due to possessing an appearance reminiscent of an extra from a Danny Trejo prison movie, I can only imagine women and children running in fear while their men folk aggressively rip my precious camera from my hands.  But with candid wedding photography, not only do I get paid to take pictures of strangers, but the worst flack I get are eyes rolled in annoyance at the reception similar to what I got from the gentleman in the image below.


You Must Blend In With Your Surroundings

Yes, Ninja Tog, the key to candid wedding photography is trying not to let your subject know they are being photographed.  If you’re doing your job correctly, you’ll turn your photos over to the bride and hear her say, “I didn’t even know you were there when that happened!” This isn’t always easy because, you know, Danny Trejo prison movie.  But you may have better results.  And if you do get spotted, just stand real still.  No sudden movements.  The creature will return to grazing…  Wait, that’s what you do when you encounter a moose in the wild.  But I think it more or less applies here, too.


Choose Your Moment Wisely

Part of the whole “blending in” thing includes not standing in the corner firing your camera off like an automatic rifle.  For one, you’re never going to compose a proper photograph like that, and secondly, it’s gonna tip-off your subject(s) and make them self-conscious knowing you are capturing every cough and nose pick.  It’s better to frame your subject, get them in focus, then wait until you see that moment that NEEDS to be captured.  This will make your candid photography, heck, ANY photography, much better.


Also, know that a lot of the best photos come from those moments between the moments.  Everybody is going to take a picture of the Bride and Groom’s first kiss.  And of course, you should too if you don’t want to get slapped by an angry bride.  But what about the smiles after the kiss?  Or the look on her parents faces?  There’s a lot to take in, so be prepared and wait for those little moments to arise.  You’ll appreciate you candid wedding photography more and your clients will appreciate it too!


If you’d like to see more photos from this wedding, head over to my Flickr page.

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4 replies on “Candid Wedding Photography”
  1. says: Becky

    Great article and photos. Like the camera data included on photos. Thank you. Same sense of humor as John!

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