It's a long day that goes by so fast. There's no room for error. No one will stop the ceremony and ask the bride and groom to kiss again. No one will stop the first dance for a battery change. The bouquet will only be tossed once and there will only be one chance to get that picture of Uncle Bob from Alaska.
No matter how crazy the day is, I love it. I love it all. I can hardly wait to get home and edit the images. I always like to pick out my favorites and edit them first. There's just something so rewarding about getting that perfect shot that totally matches the idea I had in my head. It's always even more beautiful than I could have imagined.
There's also a lot of preparation that goes into that special day. The photographer doesn't just show up and hope it all goes well. No, there's a lot of prep. Here's my checklist to make sure I am fully prepared for the big day.
I never want a battery to be low or fail. I have 3 batteries for my camera. I have a battery back on the camera itself that holds 2 batteries and another battery as an extreme back-up in my bag. They are all charged the night before, even if I just charged them a day ago, I need to know that I am ready.
2. Memory cards
I have several...like a lot. I go through each one the night before and make sure I have all previous images off the card and format it for the big day. Even if I know I formatted it a week ago, I do it again. I can't be too careful when it comes to a wedding. My camera will also record to 2 memory cards at the same time, so I make sure I can...the whole day.
3. Back-up camera
I have a back-up camera that also needs batteries. I make sure all batteries are charged and everything is in good working order. It's not the best camera in the world, but it will do the trick in a pinch.
4. Shot list
I don't know all the family members and I especially don't know them by name. I've never met any of them. Having a detailed shot list helps me wrangle them all and make sure I don't forget anyone. The busy and hectic day makes it really easy to forget little things, so having a detailed family shot list helps me not make a mistake.
5. Camera Bag
I always double check that I have my lenses, batteries, memory cards, flash, diffusers, business cards, Tylenol, safety pins and many other personal items that I or the bride may need during the day including an extra water bottle. Wedding photographers are moving ALL DAY LONG. They need water.
So that's my checklist in a nutshell. Anything you would add?