My wedding photography plan...please tell me if I am insane

Started Jun 27, 2008 | Discussions thread
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Jerry Fusselman
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My wedding photography plan...please tell me if I am insane
Jun 27, 2008

Here is my understanding (tell me if I am wrong):

Wedding photographers can shoot video and stills. We should have both. They are a big expense, but you cannot really expect to get complete coverage of the wedding if you try to let amateurs do it. You might get a smattering of great shots, but complete coverage of the key moments won't happen if you try to do without a professional photographer.

Here are the facts:

I am getting married August 16. My bride looks dreamy gorgeous, especially in her wedding gown. But, we want to keep our costs down---the total costs have to stay well below $10,000.

Fortunately, the church provides a free video of the ceremony. Even more fortunate, my brother is a fantastic commercial video photographer (yes, someone in the family has talent). Unfortunately, while we want video, stills are what speak to my bride and me more, so we desire some great stills as well.

Here is my current thinking:

We might not use a professional for the stills; instead, I might spread my camera system out among photo-savvy friends and relatives for the wedding, especially the reception, and hope for the best. I have a 40D, a 5D, and a 1D Mark II. The lenses are 10-22, 17-40, 35TS, 24-105 IS, 50 f/1.4, 85 f/1.2, 135 f/2, 70-200 IS f/4, and 55-250 IS. I even have a 200mm f/1.8 mountable on a gimbal tripod (and hand-holdable some of the time) if that might help. I could rent a 70-200 f/'2.8 IS if it is wise.

My thinking is that three good photographer friends or relatives could use the three cameras, and I could borrow one to go around and say high to everyone at the informal reception afterwards and take a few shots of my friends just to be sure. My bride could do the same. We like our own pictures after all. In particular, shots with the 85mm f/1.2L often look better than professional to me, where an f/2.8 zoom seems like a needless compromise. Or is this an insane idea? Be honest.

I also have a Casio F1 that can do some amazing things in the right hands. Oh, and I have a lot of medium-format equipment that could also be used in some way.

If some key moments are uncovered with stills, I think we can live with that. We want some great stills, not necessarily a compete set of the standard pics that everyone expects.

And which lenses should be left home, due to their not being that valuable at the wedding or the reception? Should I rent any lenses to help the crazy plan work better?

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Jerry Fusselman
Sleeping Rainbow, Utah

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