TPF Noob!
Jan 22, 2012
Reaction score
Can others edit my Photos
Photos OK to edit
I have been asked to photograph a friends wedding in February and I am quite nervous about it since I am new to photography. I have a canon rebel xs and wanted to know what lenses would be good and what settings to use for an indoor no flash church wedding. My friend is on a tight budget that's why she asked me and I really don't wanna mess this up for her. Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!
If you value your friendship simply refuse. Explain to them there's no "do-overs" on a wedding and they need to account for the cost of hiring a professional if they ever want to have their special day captured.

You don't have the gear or experience necessary to do the job, which I might add, even photograhers with plenty of experience have difficulty. Weddings are in my opinion the most demanding of a photographer, more than gear more than years.

If you do decide to be their main photographer I wish you the best of luck!
Be honest with them! Wedding photography is one of the most difficult, in my opinion, and I don't do wedding photography. I would kindly let them know that it would behoove them to find a professional.
I was asked to photograph a wedding once and I refused explaining that I simply do not have the experience to record an important event that is going to be a twice or three time deal in one's life.:lol: And there's even a 50/50 chance it will be only a once in a lifetime event. Seriously though it is better to refuse and be honest than do it and feel terrible if the images do not meet your friend's expectations.

As someone who was on a very tight budget when I got married and couldn't afford a good photographer, I would tell your friend that getting a professional photographer should be her priority. When my daughter gets married I'll be damned if I make the same mistake twice.. The pictures will be there forever, everything else will be gone. Make cuts everywhere else, except the pictures!!
The very fact that you have to ask those questions, means you are NOT ready...... there is no way you can shoot a wedding with any competency! Please don't do it, if you value your friendship with the bride.
Yeah it's best not to accept the job. Wedding is a whole another beast and there's so much more that goes into it than having gears and etc. Eye for details, move very quick, know what to photograph, being at the right location/angles, waiting for the right moment. A split second and you miss a beautiful shot.

I don't know why people get married without a little budget for photography at least. That's the only source for them to remember it by and it's a once in a lifetime event. I would borrow, or get a loan to hired a professional.

But if they can't afford anybody...and you have to photograph their wedding, rent a 7D with 24-70mm 2.8 and a flash. Indoor at a Church usually 2.8 is enough to take photos without the flash. I know you're doing it at no charge but if you want to do a better job, folk out a hundred something and consider it as a gift to them.
I'de say to go for it

before "going for it" have your friend sign a paper in front of a Notary. Make sure that you make the friend aware that they cannot sue you if they are not happy with the crappy photos

most that can happy is that your friend hates you forever and tries to sue you for crappy photos
Threads like this make me want to
Darn it Gary post a warning before scary things like that! ;)

As for the OP - I echo what has been said above. By all means go to the wedding and take your camera, but take photos only in the capacity as a guest and nothing more. From your opening post it does not sound like you've experience nor personal confidence enough and sadly those are two critical things you need for something like a wedding.

I know you want to help your friend and I know they've asked (and most likely complimented your photography), but shooting an uncontrolled - unpausable and new environment is a very difficult thing for any photographer, let alone one with little direct experience and not the best specific tools.

If you really want to help more offer to put some money toward hiring a proper photographer (wedding gift) a few friends pitching in along with the Bride and Groom and you should be able to afford the rates of a decent photographer to record the day.
I wouldn't do it. My mom still hasn't totally forgiven my dad for insisting his friend could do it. Their photos are awful! And the friend at least had some experience with photography. Wedding pictures are something the couple wants to look back on for years. That's not something to mess up. The one thing I'll be putting a lot of money into for a wedding is the photographer (although, my uncle and cousin think they can "handle" it--over my dead body!).
+1 to the "don't do it" crowd.

It's not that you can't, but if you're not comfortable then odds are you're going to fare very poorly and your pictures even more so.

The only time this even makes sense is if the bride simply cannot afford another approach... in which cas I suggest you find someone she knows with more experience than you sound like you have.
Let's see... a womans most important day of their lives and you ask which lens and what settings should you use to capture it.. This by itself should give you
pause that this is ripe for problems.. I consider myself a pretty good photographer and I've been asked several times to shoot a friend/relatives
wedding - I've always refused because .... I dont' have the experience, equipment, or the desire to lose a friend. I did, like you should, consider
the request a compliment, but if you've never done this before, don't do it! - If you dont believe me, watch 2 TV shows - Peoples Court and Bridzillas..

Wedding photography is a specialized area that needs specialized training - They may be your friend now, but they immediately become a customer/critic
the minute they begin to review those pictures after the festivities are over..

Just my thoughts...

Darn it Gary post a warning before scary things like that! ;)

No kidding!!! But, get rid of the winking icon!!!!!!!! without experience....hoooo boy....a flame-proof jumpsuit is what you need.

If you absolutely MUST do this, I would suggest the Tamron 17-50mm f/2.8 zoom lens or the Canon 17-55mm f/2.8 zoom lens is your best option. Buy one and start testing the lens out immediately. And I mean test it, shoot it, shoot it, shoot it, shoot it. February is a short month, and January is doggone near'll need the time to become familiar with the lens and how to get decent pictures with it. I am NOT kidding either.

If all you have is say, the "kit lens", the 18-55mm f/3.5~5.6 lens that probably came with the Rebel, then you simply must politely and firmly tell your friend you and your camera are simply not up to the task of an indoor, no-flash wedding in the dead of winter in the NE USA...if it was summer in California or Florida, the amount of light coming in through windows would boost you up 3,4,5 f/stops, but February in Penny???

Most reactions

New Topics