Researching a new venue (Wedding Photography)

Discussion in 'General Shop Talk' started by Antithesis, Nov 21, 2016.

  1. Antithesis

    Antithesis No longer a newbie, moving up!

    Aug 24, 2007
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    I am assuming it's pretty normal to struggle a bit at a new venue... no familiarity and no routine means an extra bit of stress. What is your general strategy for shooting at a new venue?

    I try and arrive around an hour early to get a lay of the land, but are there any other tips that might be helpful? I find that shooting at a new venue means my work suffers a bit, and I always get the "it's going to be so much better next time" feeling, but I'd really like to be able to nail it the first try. Any tips are appreciated.

  2. pendennis

    pendennis No longer a newbie, moving up!

    Jun 9, 2014
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    Dearborn, MI
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    When I was photographing weddings most venues were "new", and an hour beforehand wouldn't have been enough to do any meaningful research. Let's say your lighting isn't going to be adequate because of size, existing light, etc. One hour still means you're cooked.

    I always took one or two days well in advance of the weddings and visited the church or wherever the ceremony was to take place, as well as the reception/banquet. I always talked with the minister, priest, or rabbi, and the manager of the reception/banquet facility. For these pros, this isn't their first rodeo, and they provide extremely valuable advice and assistance.

    The church may not allow even available light photos during the ceremony, regardless the bride's wishes. The reception manager may have a secure room to store your spare gear, etc.

    By approaching these folks well in advance of the event, you gain information, as well as good will. They're invaluable as references, especially if you've done a good job. I can't tell you the number of referrals I got from priests, ministers, banquet facility owners and managers for future customers.

    For me, preparation was days and weeks in advance, not hours.

    I always kept detailed notes on each venue both pre-event and post-event. Preparation and post-mortem are as critical as the event.
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  3. Gert1985

    Gert1985 TPF Noob!

    Dec 3, 2016
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    I think we can not get the old venue for wedding photography for every time so we would ready to adjust quickly at the wedding site to continue wedding photography.

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