The Stories of Us 6

Capturing those unscripted moments, for the ages

There are few things in life more precious than candid photographs of those special moments. As a professional photographer, I put a huge emphasis on capturing natural spontaneous photographs. Extreme photojournalism I call it!  Here, a few tips for commemorating those special, often unexpected, moments.

1.  Try and let the scene play out before you “interfere.”

If something wonderful is about to happen, let it go and see the magic unfurl before our eyes.

2.  A telephoto is indispensable. Click away with a 70-200 and you are guaranteed to go unnoticed.

I cringe at the idea of telling them to look at me, or smile for me, or act for me in these instances. Why? Because they are best friends and family and they’ve waited a long time for this big moment to come! Let them be!

3.  What to do if no one is being spontaneous?

First, give them a bit of direction on position and click away. I never tell then what to do. “Smile for the birdie!” is a huge no-no! But I might try to say something funny just to get them going.

The moment you finish taking the posed shot, the bridesmaids and bride will let their guard down by laughing and joking and giving the real emotions I crave. You have a micro-second to get the shot! Finally, try to remember to put yourself in a position to get the spontaneous images, like the second photo above.

Moments form like perfect storms, you see them like Doppler radar, clouds forming and heading toward each other. It’s a matter of placing yourself in the right place to catch the right time. Most importantly, you must be present…”ON”….at all times. Not for one second should you sit down, or look at your iPhone or take a break to eat!  Basically, it’s that simple…and that hard.