End of my wedding season / some observations

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Aug 19, 2013
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A very detailed list of observations. I found items 1, 4, 6, and 13 the most interesting. For me, items 6 and 13 are similar. The fascination/idolization of the "cell phone" for this generation is a mystery to me.

It is nice to hear that love is blooming the "second time around".

I can't grasp the fascination with tattoo's either. But art is art and perhaps they can't grasp why I walk around with my camera;)

Mike
 
Joined
Feb 8, 2010
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Lansing, MI
I relicensing this thread a few months late, but as a future second-time bride, I had to laugh at number one. When we first started talking about marriage, my significant other told me that he absolutely did not want another big wedding. (This will be his third marriage.) I asked him, "What if it's my fondest hope and desire?" He said, "Then I would ask what your second fondest hope and desire was!"
 
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Melbourne, Fl
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Danny W. Burdick
Russ

Well, here is another one:

A while back a woman calls me and insists I should hire her at my newspaper because "I have a great camera and it takes great pictures!"

I told her several times it wasn't the camera that takes great pictures but, rather, the photographer - but, she wouldn't hear of it. So after several attempts I finally said "OK, what kind of camera is it?"

"Oh, I don't know. It's a Japanese camera," she replied. "I think it's a Kawasaki."

"Ma'am," I said. "That's a motorcycle."

I gently returned the phone receiver to its cradle and never heard from her again.

I couldn't resist telling this famous photography story...
One day Ansel Adams and Ernest Hemingway met (true story)
Ernest Hemingway told Ansel "What kind of camera do you use, you take pretty good pictures" ?
Ansel said "What kind of typewriter do you use, you write pretty good books" ?
 
Joined
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Warwick, N.Y.
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John DeSanto
Well, since Philinnz asked - and it looks like Phil and I joined the NikonCafe on the exact same day 12 years ago - here are some things that have changed since 2013.

1) I practically never visit Nikon Cafe anymore. I retired from my job as DoP at the Times Herald-Record in July, 2015 and entered the ranks of freelance photographers. But apparently I suck at retirement because I am busier than ever with photography-related jobs. I shoot stuff for businesses, real estate and feature and sports assignments for the local newspapers and magazines. So I shoot more for publications and less weddings.

2) The total amount of weddings that I shoot has dwindled every year. But most of that is my fault: These days I advertise less - actually not at all - and I am more selective of what I shoot. This year I will photograph 12 weddings when all is said and done, way down from the 29 I shot in 2013. But then I took June, July and August off to have knee replacement surgery, so that's to be expected. Plus, I have completely given up on all social media postings and deleted every account. Since most Millennials use nothing but social media they can't find me. Oh, and I never answer my cellphone anymore - too many telemarketers. (So I am not exactly easy to reach.)

3) Some couples are waiting even longer to seek out photographers. I have gotten phone calls from people just weeks before their wedding date. (Must be a financial thing.)

4) It used to be that mothers-of-the-bride (MOB's) were the person you least wanted to deal with at weddings, but these days it's definitely the bridesmaids. They get a couple of glasses of wine in them - while the bride is getting dressed - and it turns into a poop-storm of "well, at my wedding we did this and I can't believe you are not doing that..." on and on. I've experienced this a lot in the past three years and I don't know how today's bride's put up with it. (The formula: A MOB with three glasses of wine in her is easier to deal with than a Bridesmaid with one.)

5) Truth be told, I'm definitely getting grumpier as I age.

6) The strapless-wedding gown era is definitely over.

7) As can be expected, smartphone usage is completely out of control at weddings. Since having a dozen smartphones over your shoulder can be distracting to the subjects, I have come up with a way of dealing with the hordes. I call them "The Paparazzi" and give them time after the formal shots. But for the other shots, I don't do that. So if I am in the way during the cake cutting, well too bad.

8) Speaking of posed shots, more and more brides consider good photography to be "smile-for-the-camera" photos. (I guess that's an outgrowth of the "selfie" sticks.) Since I am a photojournalist, I've always made my stock in trade by not having people smile for the camera. So nowadays, at weddings, I do both to keep people happy. But I am not sure when grinning at the photographer became considered good photography.

9) Old-time music has really taken hold at receptions - even more so than when I first noticed the trend in 2013 - but it feels like DeeJays all play the same music these days. There really doesn't seem to be much different about them.

10) I am finding photo booths are present a lot more at weddings then four years ago. Maybe 50 percent of the couples hire photo booths, but it's a fad that will phase out sometime in the next five years. They used to annoy me, but I'm over them now, because they certainly aren't competition for what I do.

11) I've had people say to me: "The money must be very good shooting weddings..." but the truth is that the "money" used to be good, but really isn't any more. Too many people with "nice cameras" have flooded the field and forced the market pricing down even further. I'm not sure when photography became "nice camera = nice photos" but it is what it is. (There is really no convincing people otherwise.)

12) My body is four years older (65 vs. 61) so it takes longer to recover from an 8-hour wedding shoot now. (Ice packs have become my friend.)

13) My hardware / software needs haven't changed much: I still shoot with two D700's with SB-900 flash units attached to two battery packs. (The overheating issue can be easily resolved by putting the plastic dome on backwards and manually backing the flash head away from the fresnel lens.) I don't really feel the need to go to bigger files but I would like higher ISO's. Plus, I am completely happy with the D700's responsiveness.But let's face it, I am at the end of my career and it doesn't make a ton of sense to be throwing money at equipment any more.

14) I still shoot RAW and process with Lightroom instead of Photoshop. I have "upgraded" to the Adobe Creative Cloud package and I also now tape over any Nikon markings on my equipment. Also, I have put a TSA lock on my Pelican case so nothing gets stolen. (I haven't had anything lifted but I know shooters who have had stuff stolen.)

15) It's always been true that weddings are for the bride, not the groom. But I swear, it's gotten worse. If they didn't tell the groom "hey, your friends will all be there and there will be free beer!" those guys would never show up.

I'm sure I could come up with a dozen more things but this is starting to read like a complaint list. (Yes, I am definitely grumpier than four years ago.)
 
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Joined
Aug 10, 2013
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EC
Thanks for the update John, the grumpiness is more like you are 'calling things as you see them', maybe? i.e. not dissembling quite so much.
 
Joined
May 1, 2005
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Warwick, N.Y.
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John DeSanto
Yes, Phil it WAS Uncle Frank's influence.

He had been asking me for several months and finally I figured I would check it out.

- John
 
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