This past weekend my family traveled from Kansas City to Cedar Rapids, Iowa for my brother’s wedding. Both my kids and I were a part of the wedding party and my loving husband played chauffeur and cook and whatever else was asked of him. I was not responsible in any way for capturing memories from this event but as a scrapbooker I had big ideas about what I would be able to take away from the wedding in terms of photos.
I decided that I would not take my DSLR with me to the wedding. I didn’t want to have to keep track of it or ask my husband to keep track of it and when you have a big camera people notice more easily when you are taking photos. I wanted to get some candid shots that maybe the photographer (who happened to be the bride’s father) wouldn’t get. This is something I wish I had more of from my wedding. I have recently upgraded to the Samsung Galaxy S6 and am much more confident in the camera capabilities of this phone so I opted to go with this as my camera. I had pockets in my dress (LOVED that!) so I was able to carry this with me without fear of setting it down somewhere and forgetting it. Biggest downside: battery life. I had to charge up once during the day and my phone was dead by the end of the night. Biggest upside: size and ease of use.
I did get some good photos of the bridal party in the waiting moments. I even bought a selfie stick but was too busy or not in reach of my things to get it out, although the kids and I did get a few the old fashioned way. Yes, my son does have a black eye from an unfortunate and ill timed encounter with a tennis racquet but that is a whole separate story. I also captured short videos of my daughter twirling in her dress and the groomsmen doing an excellent lip sync of “I Want it That Way” by the Backstreet Boys which just makes me happy.
What I didn’t get: photos during the ceremony (because I was in it), more pictures of my extended family or a photo of me and my husband. BUT, and this is a big but, I enjoyed the wedding without obsessing over the photos. And the beauty thing is that the photographer got many wonderful shots that I will be able to get copies of , including large group photos of our extended family. Nearly everyone else had their phone out at some point too taking photos and they shared them on Facebook for all of us to enjoy. This is a big change from when I got married and a good one.
I know most of us that scrapbook feel at least some responsibility as the family historian and so we tend to spend all of our time behind the camera. My advice for any big family event whether it is a wedding, family reunion, etc is to hire a good photographer who will let you share photos. At the very least ask a friend or someone more on the periphery of the event that can handle a camera to take photos. This way you’ll be able to put your camera down and enjoy the event and maybe be in a photo or two.
What’s your secret for capturing family events without making yourself crazy? Do you ever get in the photos? We love to hear your stories about how you make these things work or the challenges you see in capturing events like these.