23 Nov Hope Springs Eternal – At The Wedding
Bob Hope, that is…he admitted that he sprang eternally for cover while on USO tours during WWII. I can sympathise with him, having done photography at weddings for years. I didn’t get Stuka attacks but there were bridesmaids…
Photographers are hopeful creatures. We cannot help it, and it has been a character trait ever since the daguerreotype days. Anyone who thought that they could make art with iodine fumes and hot mercury baths had to have a courageous view of life. It might have been a short one, but it was busy.
The more professional of us hold hope in abeyance and try to substitute certainty – we test out ideas constantly and try to have each situation covered by a preset or a program. This works right up until we press the shutter button and then we are delivered right back down to the gambling floor of Casino Foto. Despite what the makers of our cameras tell us about matrix metering systems being able to remember some 10,000 scenes, we can find ourselves looking at No. 10,001 and wondering if it needs a slightly larger aperture. The cowards amongst us have a 5-shot bracket set on everything and sort it out later.
We hope we have enough battery power to last the entire show – so we take three spares. If we have critical moments to cover we hope the darned thing doesn’t flash red in the middle of things – so we change batteries before we need to. We hope the venue has enough light in the right places to make the subject look good. – otherwise we are going to have to supply it and that’s a pain.
We hope the subject of the images looks good enough to make for easy exposures. Flaws can be coped with but multiple flaws in different places starts to make the job hard.
We hope that we will be assisted when we need it and left alone the rest of the time. Mid-shoot debates with the uncle of the bride about which camera is best are never going to make for a good working experience.
We hope the stars of the show will be the star of the show…and not have to share the position with a half dozen wannabe’s. You can tell a good story if there is one hero and one heroine, but if the story has to expand to include the heroine’s mother and her aunty Lou and three rival bridesmaids, the romantic storyline gets frayed.
We hope that they have included us in the buffet line and that we will be given enough time to eat something.
We hope that the conga line will finish before 2:00 AM. Because we finish about 10:00…
We hope that someone will give us time to pack up the gear before they turn out the lights and lock the venue doors from the outside.
We hope the images transfer from the card to the computer without a blue flash and smoke in the card slot.
We hope that we can get the editing done before the bride’s mother rings us and demands a look-see.
We hope they pay the bill.
And finally, we hope that they like the images.