If only

… I knew then… what I know now. Hey! Experience and knowledge help! Arrogance, ego, and confidence go a long way. Stupidity is/was abundant. Well, I got rooked into agreeing to shoot a wedding. I have shot weddings. I have never been paid. I am not a professional nor do I aspire to the role. Let’s go with the thought that even a blind squirrel gets a nut sometimes.

I shot the wedding rehearsal, the wedding, the reception and so forth. I had a vague dim understanding of what it took to document the day as a photojournalist style wedding shoot.

The wedding shoot went well enough. I was joined by another relative of the family. I’m not a bad (photographer). But… not good (great) either, well, certainly not a professional wedding photographer. Pushing (directing) people around is not my forte. Nonetheless I was in the right place often enough to bring off a credible set of wedding shots. Free! Hmmmm? Nary a compensation other than a grateful “thank you” from the groom’s mom… and dad.

The wedding ceremony was in a gazebo in the shade. Lighting?! Flash?! And the post ceremony family shots were in bright sunlight. Oh no! Contrast and shadows?!

Equipment? I was woefully under-equipped. I used a Nikon D70, hardly a professional body. Flash?!! I coulda (so!!) done much better. I only wish I knew then what I know now! You catch my drift? Meanwhile, the price was right and the job was done. I was satisfied that I had ticked all the boxes I wanted as a wedding photographer. I did not quit my day job as a neurosurgeon for a number of years. That was good too. Ya gotta start somewhere, and, I stuck with surgery.

Sorry, Susan. She was offended with the original photo to this post. I changed it. She may otherwise object. But my comments stand as truth. I am not now nor have I ever been a wedding photographer except in the strictly amateur sense. My comments stand. I assume the bride is still married to her son. Not hearing from Susan in so long I am and was surprised she is still following my blog. Did she miss yesterday? – another wedding of one of her (the only) other kids.

As to this photo: it’s always tough in bright sun to shoot a decent portrait. Flash would have evened the light so that the eyes were not in shadow. High contrast works on young people and young skin. Wrinkles and flaws are much more noticeable with harsh shadows.

So, I shot a wedding

With yesterday’s preamble I was persuaded to shoot a wedding. I used print film. Digital images were sprinkled in. I am pretty much exclusively a slide film user. But as the supplemental photographer and photojournalist for the day…. My shots were solid and I did document the day. I suppose I was an annoying “uncle Bob” for the real wedding photographer. Nonetheless I had full access and did my best. What did I know? – a whole lot less than I do now. Ha ha. Ego and arrogance? Nah! Not an ounce in me! Confidence?! Well, there was a real professional wedding photographer in attendance. I got my share of unique candids. And I was annoyingly shooting over the professional’s shoulder. Little did I understand about undercutting her revenue stream.

Later on – a year or so – I shot Susan’s son’s second wedding as the primary co-photographer. She went cheap. No more extra $$ on professionals. Susan used me and a cousin to do the job.