How to Take Wedding Photos

How to Have The Most Profitable Wedding Season As a Photographer

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For most wedding photographers, the wedding season means shooting back-to-back weddings, aka bringing in more profits. As a wedding photographer and a businessperson the wedding season is essentially the time for you to rise and shine! It’s time to reap the benefits of all your marketing strategies, and get busy! But how can you ensure that you capitalize on all the good business opportunities that come your way and set yourself up for a profitable wedding season? In this blog, we help you figure that out and offer tips on how to make the most of the wedding season and increase your profits.

When Is The Wedding Season?

Understanding the wedding season months and wedding season in the USA  is essential for any photographer who wants to have a successful wedding photography business in the country. The wedding season extends from late spring and continues through early fall, with June and September being popular wedding months. The pleasant weather during these months is definitely something that makes them a preference among couples planning their weddings. 

Summer is the peak wedding season and with good reason. The weather is warm and sunny, making it perfect for outdoor ceremonies and receptions. Spring is another popular choice for couples getting married; the days are starting to get longer, the weather is warming up, and everything is beginning to bloom. Plus, there are often lots of public holidays in spring. 

A winter wedding might not seem to be the obvious choice for many couples, but there are brides and grooms who wait till the temperatures lower a little more or till the first snowfall to say I do to each other in a wonderful winter wonderland setting. 

For wedding photographers, these popular months for weddings offer a variety of opportunities to capture beautiful images. The wedding season essentially means when demand for wedding photography services is high, which also means higher wedding photography package prices.

Suggested Read: How To Book More Weddings This Season

Most Popular Wedding Months

March to October are the most popular months for weddings, with the wedding peak season falling in June. During these popular wedding months, there is a higher number of weddings taking place, resulting in high demand for wedding photographers. And if you’re now wondering about what is the busiest season for weddings, then our answer is that it’s usually between late spring to early fall. 

The off-season wedding months are typically during winter when weather conditions are not ideal for outdoor ceremonies and receptions. So, from November to February, the demand is lower, with January being the slowest month. While there are still some weddings during this time of year, they are generally smaller and less expensive than during the peak season, which is why prices are lowered in the hopes of attracting more wedding business clients.

Latest Trends In The Wedding Industry

infographic stating turn your business profitable by keeping up with wedding trends

According to wedding statistics 2022, 2.5 million weddings were predicted in 2022, making it a huge year for weddings and wedding photographers in the US. And it really does not come as much of a surprise considering how many couples have been waiting years for their chance at happiness due to the pandemic.

With the aftermath of the pandemic and with people’s changing values, wedding season 2022 came with its own set of latest trends. Below, we’ve outlined some that you should know about.

1. Intimate Weddings

Wedding photographers who are able to capture the essence of an intimate wedding are highly sought-after by couples looking for a more personal and unique wedding experience. In addition, these often take place in more intimate locations, such as private homes or small wedding venues, which helps provide wedding photographers with opportunities to capture moments that might not happen at larger weddings.

2. Grand Party Weddings 

While some couples have shortened their guest lists, others are going all in with large, extravagant weddings. These parties often include hundreds of guests, lavish decor, and extensive menu planning and entertainment activities. Wedding photographers who are able to capture the essence of these big events can quickly build a reputation for themselves and command high prices for their services. 

3. Full Wedding Weekends 

Instead of just photographing the ceremony and reception, full wedding weekends allow photographers to capture all the events leading up to the big day, from the rehearsal dinner to the post-wedding brunch. Full wedding weekends can be a lot of work for photographers, but they can also be very rewarding. With so many events to capture, there is plenty of room for creativity and innovation. 

4. Destination Weddings 

Destination weddings have been around for a while, and they’re certainly here to stay. While this may require some extra travel, destination weddings provide a unique opportunity to capture stunning landscapes and cultural nuances. You can use our destination wedding photography guide to learn more about this wedding photography style and how to capture it flawlessly!

Tips For A  Profitable Wedding Season

A profitable wedding season means more money for your wedding business. To maximize earnings, you must work on your business planning to book as many weddings as possible. However, competition is also fierce during the wedding season, so it’s important to stand out from the crowd. Here are a few tips to help you have a profitable wedding season.

1. Plan Ahead

infographic stating plan and follow a checklist for all your action items to ensure a profitable wedding season

The key to making more money for your wedding photography business during the wedding season is to start planning ahead. Try not to leave things till the last minute, and prepare all your checklists in advance.

A. Plan Everything in Advance

Use your time to map out your schedule, research wedding venues, and develop a pricing strategy. Ensure that you have the right equipment, plan for travel, and budget for assistants. Be flexible with your availability, and if you really want to stand out, try to work weekends and holidays when demand is highest, and nobody else wants to do the job. But we’d only recommend doing this if it doesn’t completely throw off your work-life balance. Boosting profits is important, but so is keeping your mental and physical well-being in top shape. Prepare your calendar to lay down your work plan during the slower months too.

B. Promote Your Services Early And Often 

Many couples begin planning their weddings well in advance, so it’s important to get your name out there as early as possible. Get listed on wedding vendor directories and reach out to potential clients through advertising, social media, and word-of-mouth marketing. Have an updated portfolio with your best work and market your brand effectively by building a strong online presence.

2. Create a Pricing Strategy

infographic stating to maximize your earning potential, make sure that you’re charging what you’re worth

One of the most important aspects of running a successful business is pricing your services correctly. If you charge too little, you won’t be able to make a profit. But if you charge too much, you may price yourself out of the market. So how do you find the sweet spot? 

Here are a few tips to help you price your services for a profitable wedding season:

A. Know Your Costs

Make sure you’re aware of all the costs associated with running your business, from equipment and supplies to advertising and marketing. This will help you determine what your minimum price must be to cover your costs and make more money.

B. Do Your Research

Take a look at what other photographers in your area are charging for similar services. This will give you an idea of what the going rate is and help you stay competitive. This is the time of year when you can really maximize your earnings potential, so make sure you’re charging what you’re worth.

C. Consider Your Value

In addition to looking at what others are charging, also consider the value you bring to the table. What makes you unique? What sets you apart from the competition? When you’re clear on your value proposition, it will be easier to justify charging a premium price. 

D. Offer Package Options and Discounts

Offer a variety of services and package options. By learning how to price your wedding photography packages and giving your clients the flexibility to choose what works best for them, you can increase your bookings and profits. Add package deals that include an engagement session shoot, wedding day coverage, and a post-wedding shoot to appeal to couples who want to capture more than just their wedding day details. Offer early booking discounts to encourage couples to book their date with you well in advance. 

Suggested Read: How To Set Wedding Photography Prices For Profitability

3. Market Your Brand Effectively

infographic stating market your brand effectively to take advantage of the wedding season

To have a profitable wedding season, you need to market your brand effectively both online and offline. Here are some tips to help you prepare your marketing strategy:

A. Start Marketing Your Services Early

Reach out to bridal magazines, wedding planners, and other potential clients in the months leading up to the wedding season. The earlier you start marketing, the better your chances of booking wedding season clients.

B. Build A Strong Portfolio

Have a profitable wedding season by ensuring that you showcase your best work to couples looking for wedding photographers. This will help you attract potential brides and grooms who are looking for a particular type of photography, aka your ideal client. Build a website that is both informative and user-friendly and includes pricing information and an easy-to-use online booking system.

C. Improve Networking

Learn how to build relationships with wedding coordinators. Start building relationships with local wedding venues, planners, florists, and other vendors who can help recommend you to their brides and grooms. Attend corporate events, bridal shows, and open houses, and collaborate with other vendors on social media campaigns to meet with potential clients face-to-face. You can also distribute flyers or wedding business cards to local businesses. 

D. Stay Active On Social Media

Build your social media plan and make sure you use relevant hashtags so that potential clients can find you easily. Run regular ads on social media or Google to promote your brand and services. 

E. Use The Power Of Word-Of-Mouth Marketing 

Ask your past couples to leave reviews on your website and social media pages, and offer referral discounts to couples who book you based on a friend’s recommendation or from referrals through other wedding venues. Give discounts to newlyweds or offer a free engagement photo session to nurture client relationships.

Further Read: The 3-Step Plan To Fend Off End-Of-Season Panic

With careful planning and attention to detail, you can book the most weddings for your business and have a profitable wedding season. In addition to being a great photographer, you also need to be a great business owner to run a successful and sustainable business, which means creating a strong game plan to boost profits even before the wedding season is on. But most importantly, before you book more weddings, make sure that you can handle all that extra work without compromising on customer service or quality or your well-being. Our advice? Do what you do best and outsource the rest!

Here at ShootDotEdit, we are passionate about helping you grow your wedding photography business. And one of the ways we do that is by taking care of your photo editing with our professional editing services. Learn more about our services by checking out our pricing plans.

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Bokeh Wedding Photography Tips And Tricks

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The creative introduction of an intentional blur can sometimes help make an ordinary image stand out. And one way to include strategic blur is through bokeh. Often talked about and widely used, wedding bokeh photography is one of the favorite styles practiced by portrait and wedding photographers. All the more because it instantly gives off a dreamy and ethereal vibe, which is a go-to for many couples. Thus, checking all the boxes of a great wedding photograph. To help you hone your wedding bokeh photo skills, this blog takes a deep dive into some bokeh photography ideas, tips, and tricks to help you get better at the art of bokeh wedding photography.

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Intentional Blur Photography Techniques + Inspiration From ShootDotEdit Customers

What even is intentional blur photography and since when did blur turn out to be a good element for your photographs? We get it – after years of conditioning to master the art of taking sharp images, the thought of adding intentional blur to your pictures could sound a bit perplexing. But as we gradually progress through this article, we’ll learn, when added strategically, how “blur” can be just the wow factor you might need to make your images stand out. Experimenting with the blurry photography style could capture fleeting moments in your frame or make memories appear timeless. Moreover, adding an intentional photo blur is more than just a happy accident; it is a style mastered with precision built on practice.

What Is In An Intentional Blur?

infographic stating an intentional photo blur is more than just a happy accident

To simplify, intentional photo blur is a strategic addition of blur of any form in an image through the means of intentional camera movement or subject motion in order to introduce a sense of ongoing movement. This creative side of photography is often explored so as to make memories come alive with the tasteful blend of moments and movement. And the skillful mastering of this technique could easily add an ethereal effect to your signature style.

How To Add An Intentional Blur To Your Wedding Photographs?

How to make your photo look blurry in a pleasing way? We found that the proper combination of the following four factors can do the trick.

  1. Lighting: Ever wondered if low-light situations can be of help to your photography style? Well, they can, especially when you are shooting at a slower shutter speed. A slow shutter speed allows the lens to be exposed to the available light for a longer period of time; therefore, it could lead to slight overexposure if the lighting is too much. Some of the best times to capture such photographs are during the early hours of the day or at dusk. Moreover, try to make creative use of the ambient light as well.
  2. Movement: Introducing a sense of movement and focusing on the direction of the movement is also an important focus area. First, the movement can be introduced by either the subject being in motion or by intentionally moving the camera. Both of which can result in different types of blurs. Moreover, be mindful of the direction of movement. Not every kind of movement looks good when captured as a blur. Often haywire movement or motion in the frame can create an absurd frame, leading to a jumbled-up scene.
  3. Shutter Speed: Before you begin experimenting with this blurry photography style, set your camera to operate in manual mode, especially, the shutter speed. In order to create a photo blur, try experimenting with different slower shutter speeds and monitor which one provides the desired result. However, in a classic motion blur photography scenario where you wish to freeze the subject in action with a background blur, it is essential to make sure that the camera is stabilized.
  4. Colors: When action blends as a blur, an image can appear somewhat similar to a painting. What gives the effect? The blend of colors in the scene – whether in the background or the subject. When colors that complement each other are put together in a blend of unfocused scenes, it can create a visually drawing scene.

Intentional blur photography can work wonders if you learn how to use it right. What distinguishes a crappy blur from a work of art? As it turns out, the rightful blend of lighting and colors, movement (direction of movement), and the camera settings.

Suggested Read: Photographing Couples In Motion: Inspiration From ShootDotEdit Customers

Creative Blur Techniques

When it comes to incorporating the blurry photography style into action, the options are multifold. Keeping in mind the four fundamental aspects described above, one can simply experiment with various applications. Given below are some of the ways you can creatively use this style.

1. Panning: Intentional Camera Blur

Panning is the movement of the camera from left to right or right to left direction either via hand movements or a tripod. This intentional camera movement when paired with the right camera settings such as a slower shutter speed can create a background blur as well as display the subject’s moving parts as an intentional motion blur. However, it is important to consider how fast is the subject and the background moving and adjust your shutter speed accordingly.

a newlywed couple holding hands and watching a fireworks display
Image Credit: ShootDotEdit Customer @jorgesantiagophoto

Ask yourself, what is it that you wish to bring attention to? The subject or the background? If it is the subject, then the aforementioned trick can work well. However, if you wish to focus on the background, try to stabilize the camera while allowing the subject to be in motion and the background to stand still. This type of blur can also include an abstract element, therefore, allowing the audience to depict meaning out of it based on their own perception.

2. Be Selective With Your Focus

Being intentional with your scene also means being selective with your focus. One such example of this technique is the bokeh effect. In bokeh, the background is photo blurred all the while drawing sharp focus to the subject. But not all bokeh looks good. So what is the difference between a good bokeh and a bad one? As it turns out, your choice of lens plays a major role in creating high-end bokeh. In addition to that, a good bokeh often has a smooth and softer background blur where light blends into smaller blurred-out circles.

Related Read: Creative Uses Of Narrow Depth Of Field: Images By ShootDotEdit Customers

3. Zoom Blur

a couple kissing in the middle of a street while the surrounding is motion blurred
Image Credit: ShootDotEdit Customer @jorgesantiagophoto

This creative blur technique allows the edges of a photograph to blur out, all the while keeping the center of the image in focus. This can be done by either zooming in on a scene all the while setting a slow enough shutter speed. When done successfully, it gives away the feeling of forwarding motion or a starburst effect that gives away the sense of moving into a tunnel. It often works well when your main subject is placed at the center of the screen and you wish the rest of the scene to fade out. To make the most of such a scenario, try introducing flash to the scene and direct it on the subject. By flashing more light in that direction, it will gravitate the viewer’s attention toward the subject.

4. Light Paintings

Another creative use of a blurry photography style can be light paintings. Just as the name suggests, this style allows you to literally paint with the use of artificial light. The three components required to make it possible include a dark scene, a movement of the light source, and setting your camera to capture a long exposure. You can incorporate this into your workflow during couples portraits in the dark or even during wedding reception dance scenes (especially if the guests are holding glowsticks). To make the best use of this creative blur technique, set up your camera to blub mode.

Intentional Blur Photography Inspiration From ShootDotEdit Customers

We have curated a list of photographs featuring ShootDotEdit customers to help you draw inspiration on how to include intentional blur in a wedding scene.

1. Wild Trail Studio

a bride twirls in her wedding dress while the groom looks at her smiling
Image Credit: ShootDotEdit Customer

This gorgeous monochrome image during a wedding reception is a beautiful snippet from the couple’s first dance hinting at just the right essence of motion. With the background and the groom still as the bride twirls along with the frills of her wedding dress makes for such as dreamy wedding shot.

a couple kissing in the foreground while their friends are visible in the background
Image Credit: ShootDotEdit Customer

This image by Wild Trail Studio highlights the creative and smart use of selective focus and intentional blurring. Moreover, the right framing and the priceless expressions of the bridesmaid and the groomsmen further add to the scene.

2. Abul Wedding Photography

a intentional blurry image of a couple looking at each other while the bridal veil floats in air
Image Credit: ShootDotEdit Customer

Ever thought an image could work with the subject blurred? Well, with the right combination of tactful framing, subtle colors, soft light, and camera settings, Abul just made it a reality with this photograph.

3. Olson Design Photography

a black and white image of a couple embracing each other
Image Credit: ShootDotEdit Customer @olsondesignphotography

Everything about this image has ‘dreamy’ written all over it! It is also a wonderful example of how you can introduce blur into an image even without wanting to highlight a movement. And how a moment comes alive by adding a little bit of blur.

a couple kissing in the middle while their friends roam around them in a circle
Image Credit: ShootDotEdit Customer @olsondesignphotography

By introducing motion blur, Olson Design Photography transformed this scene from a classic couple’s pose with bridesmaids and groomsmen to an absolute stunner. We wonder about the multiple takes that lead to this masterpiece and applaud the photographer’s creative instincts.

a bride in wedding attire holding the hand of the groom
Image Credit: ShootDotEdit Customer @olsondesignphotography

Want to introduce intentional subject blur in an artistic manner? You can draw inspiration from this image by Olson Design Photography. The color scheme, the hint of movement, and the tasteful addition of grain – everything works to add an ethereal effect to this scene.

4. Brandi Allyse Photo

a mole's eye view of couple holding hands and a airplane can be seen between them
Image Credit: ShootDotEdit Customer @brandiallysephoto

Talk about experimenting with a unique camera angle + adding an intentional blur in the best possible way – Brandi Allyse managed to blend all the elements into this stellar frame. 

Further Read: Photography Angles & Techniques: Understanding POV, Framing, & Composition

Practice & Keep Experimenting

There is no doubt that making use of intentional blur photography can be tricky. For every creatively blurred image, there is a chance that you might end up with many badly blurred pictures. However, the trick to mastering the blurry photography style lies in constant practice. Especially if you wish to showcase it as your signature style to your clients. The more you practice creative blur in different scenarios, the more likely you are to get better at it. Moreover, even though the above-mentioned techniques can help you start your journey to introduce strategic blur in your photographs, experimenting will keep you going. 

Here at ShootDotEdit, we always aim to keep you up to date on the latest trends and information on the wedding photography industry. We also look forward to helping you lessen the photo editing load by taking it off your workflow. Take a look at how we can be of help to you by checking our pricing plans.

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Flat Lay Photography Inspiration From ShootDotEdit Customers

Flat lay photography inspiration infographic alongside ShootDotEdit logo

Has a bride ever asked for your suggestion on what props she should include in her wedding flat lays? Or, did a couple bring in a bunch of wedding details that they wanted you to photograph to include them in their album? If so, you might already be aware that what they’re asking you for is flat lay photography. However, if you are not familiar with this style of photography, let’s break it down for you. Think of it as still life photography, only that in this case, the objects are arranged in a visually pleasing style on a flat surface and photographed from above. The focus is on cutting out the distractions and enhancing the aesthetics to make the image look appealing and attractive. These details could include invitation suites, save-the-date cards, wedding rings, any other jewelry, items of sentimental value, getting-ready elements such as perfumes, tiaras, cufflinks, or even decor items. Now, if you are wondering how to photograph perfect flat lays and still make them look different and unique each time, we’ve shared a few tips for you and some flat lay photography inspiration from ShootDotEdit customers. 

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Bridal Veil Photography Techniques + Photos By ShootDotEdit Customers

Bridal Veil Photography Techniques and Photos By ShootDotEdit Customers

Dramatic, romantic, intricate, delicate, feminine, elegant – a bridal veil can be any or all of these things. A wedding accessory with historical and traditional significance, not every bride chooses to wear a veil, but if you’ve got a bride who does opt to add a veil to her attire, try to make sure it gets the spotlight it deserves. Even if the veil is simple, use your creative vision to find a way to make it stand out. Plus, veils are a great way to add some variety to the bridal portraits too! Some brides also choose to wear a veil that was worn by their mother or grandmother, so make sure you know if this is the case with your bride. If you are running low on ideas and inspiration on how to photograph the wedding veil, we (and some of our customers) have got you covered. Read along to see some prime examples of the different techniques you could use to photograph the wedding veil.

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Photography Basics: Shutter Speed Explained

Photography Basics: Shutter Speed Explained

A camera’s shutter is a device that allows its lens aperture to open to let light in and expose the film in film cameras or the sensor in digital cameras. Your camera shutter can move the same way every time you take a photo but may not necessarily move at the same speed each time. Why? Because different situations and actions by your subjects can create the need for them to be captured differently and at various shutter speeds. You may use a specific setting to get a sharp image and use a different speed to create an artistic blur. But if you are new to photography or need a quick recap, this blog takes you through how it is measured, how you can adjust it, and how you can work with different shutter speeds to get the images you want.

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How to Pose Couples With Height Differences in Wedding Photos

How to Pose Couples With Height Differences in Wedding Photos

Wouldn’t it be great if there was a set formula or guideline to pose couples in a way that always works? While you may have some go-to poses, unfortunately, there’s no guarantee. A pose that works for one couple simply might not work for another. Posing is no math – it’s an art. When posing, you are working with people, and people are diverse. They are of different shapes and sizes. So, your best bet might be your improvisation skills! Especially when posing couples with a significant height difference. But where there’s a will (or a couple with a major height difference), there’s a way to pose them too! In today’s blog, we bring you some tips that could help you better pose couples with a height difference in the wedding photos. Let’s dive in.

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Rehearsal Dinner Photography Tips To Plan and Prepare Better

Rehearsal Dinner Photography Tips To Plan and Prepare Better

Intimate toasts, laughter, and gorgeous dinner table setting – a rehearsal dinner has it all. For the bride and groom-to-be, it is the day to rehearse the timeline once again and make sure everything goes as planned on the wedding day. For a wedding photographer, aka you, however, it is an opportunity to photograph the couple and their family and friends up close and personal. Often, rehearsal dinners give way to some unfiltered moments that deserve to be captured authentically. But if this is your first time or you just need a quick recap on photographing these dinners, this blog offers some rehearsal dinner photography tips that could help you out!

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Wedding Reception Shooting Tips: How To Photograph The Dances & Toasts

Wedding Reception Shooting Tips How To Photograph The Dances and Toasts

Wedding receptions are all about the fun, the dancing, and the party. Even though you can photograph groups quite easily during the cocktail hour or when everyone gets on the dance floor, what about photographing the first dances and the toasts? Wedding receptions are often fast-paced, and in those few hours, a lot goes down, which means that there’s a lot that you need to photograph too. Since things are happening so quickly, getting the proper lighting and set-up in place and managing the wedding reception timeline isn’t exactly a piece of cake. Therefore, in this blog, we take you through some wedding reception shooting tips on how you could improve the way you shoot first dances and the toasts. 

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Understanding the Art of Wedding Photojournalism

Understanding the Art of Wedding Photojournalism

Some photographers love a perfectly posed portrait, others look for the key moments during weddings, and then there are those who look for moments that happen in between. Wedding photojournalism may not be every photographer’s style of shooting, and you may not even agree with it, but it’s undoubtedly a beautiful way to capture your couple’s special day. Photojournalism is about documenting moments as they unfold without interrupting the moment. And similarly, wedding photojournalism is about going beyond the critical moments of a wedding and capturing moments just as they are. Portraits are essential, but they are not the whole story, so if you are looking for some guidance on photographing a wedding using the photojournalism style, here are some things you should know. 

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