Story: Proof you need redundant equipment to shoot weddings

Discussion in 'General Shop Talk' started by Destin, Aug 26, 2017.

  1. Destin

    Destin Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    Shot a wedding tonight.. just got home. Had a few moments of panic while I was shooting the first dances. I was shooting them a little differently than I normally would, with just one on camera flash.

    The D750 being new to me, I don't know it as well as I'd like. One second I was shooting the first dances getting good results, the next second the flash absolutely will not fire. Doesn't matter what I do, even the test button won't fire it. My trouble shooting went like this:

    1.) Flash is on and seated in the shoe. Batteries are fresh. Turn flash and camera off and back on. Remove flash and re-inset in hot shoe.

    Still no flash.

    2.) Begrudgingly shoot the parent dances with ambient only using the DJ's colored lights for fill, with the knowledge that I'll have no choice but to deliver these shots in black and white to hide the color casts.

    3.) Said screw it after the parent dances, went and got my D500 and threw the flash on it. Worked perfectly. Swapped the 24-70 onto the D500 and went back to shooting. Shot the rest of the night with this combination because I didn't have time to troubleshoot the problem.

    Just got home and took a minute to look at it. Realized that if you hold the flash button and rotate the rear command dial you can disable flash. This somehow got bumped, and I didn't realize that this option existed so I wasn't able to quickly diagnose it in the heat of the moment.

    Lessons to be learned:

    - Don't use a camera for a critical event 4 days after you take delivery, it's a recipe for disaster. But I really wanted to test it out in a challenging environment.

    -Know your camera like the back of your hand. Then study it some more.

    -ALWAYS have a backup for every piece of gear. Even if you don't break something, you may not have time to trouble shoot a simple problem in the heat of the moment.


    Luckily I was prepared and this only cost me color in a few shots. But if I didn't have more flash units and a second body, it could have easily ruined my photos for the rest of the wedding. This is exactly why you shouldn't start shooting events professionally until you have enough gear and in depth knowledge of how it works.


     
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  2. snowbear

    snowbear Big Furball Supporting Member

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    Glad you survived. These things seem to always be learning experiences.
     
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  3. smoke665

    smoke665 TPF Supporters Supporting Member

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    Have you ever noticed that problems seem to only occur at the most inopportune time???? Glad you could recover. Thankful that I don't shoot anything for profit and only what I choose. It would stress me out way to much, if I was being counted on to cover a "special moment".
     
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  4. dennybeall

    dennybeall No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Having a backup available can become an obsession if you've ever had gear go out at a critical time. I even keep a complete camera bag thrown in the back of the car with an old Nikon D80, flash and 4 batteries. Even as an old retired guy doing occasional gigs, having a backup to the main gear feels good.
     
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  5. Flash Harry

    Flash Harry No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Any wedding photographer turning up with only one camera shouldn't be there. You can guarantee if somethings gonna go wrong its going wrong at that wedding, I always had two sets around my neck, I took every 'important' shot on each body to make sure that even a corrupt card wasn't going to cause me too much grief and like you say, know your gear inside out, imo there are too many settings on cameras which can cause problems and theres enough crap to think about during a wedding without something daft giving you a problem you didn't need. Glad you sorted it and worked out what it was on the new one.
     
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  6. dennybeall

    dennybeall No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    The second camera is also a good way to carry a different lens, such as a very wide angle. It's a lot easier to grab the other camera than to change lenses on the fly.
     
  7. Destin

    Destin Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    I carry two cameras during the ceremony. But the 70-200 isn't needed on the dance floor later so I drop to one camera at that time
     
  8. astroNikon

    astroNikon 'ya all Bananas I tell 'ya Supporting Member

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    Yeah.
    Isn't that a nice feature when you need to use it .... and know it's there :)

    when looking at the back screen that annoying pops up all the time you can see the flash is turned off with the wheel when you press the flash button on the top left front. Viewfinder either shows the flash icon or doesn't .. which isn't much help. You would think it would show the flash icon with the circle and slash through it.
     
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  9. Destin

    Destin Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    Yeah it definitely caught me off guard man. It is nice to have... now that I'm aware of it.

    Thinking back I don't think my old D7xxx series cameras did this, but I'm not entirely sure.
     
  10. astroNikon

    astroNikon 'ya all Bananas I tell 'ya Supporting Member

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    Back when I had my D750 and D600 and 2nd shot a wedding it drove me nuts using both. The ISO button and +/- / QUAL/ WB/ Lock side buttons were in different places. that's when I learned to put the D750 ISO button on top in place of the record so they are in totally different spots between the 2 cameras. But it still drove me nuts as I had to look. Sometimes when it was kinda dark the lighted buttons would be worthwhile to have (D500, D850, etc).
     
  11. astroNikon

    astroNikon 'ya all Bananas I tell 'ya Supporting Member

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    I had a D7000 too but don't know.
    Just looked it up, yup .. it does it too

    D7000_Flash.jpg
     
  12. SquarePeg

    SquarePeg Hear me roar Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Nice job of staying calm and getting the job done despite the hiccup.
     
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