Canon EOS 450D for wedding

Discussion in 'Canon EOS' started by jemy_chan, Jun 26, 2008.

  1. Hi everyone,

    A friend of mine is having a wedding, and asked me to make some photos for them, there will be a profesisonal
    photographer but they just wanted me to take some more pictures, it don't have to be very professional . . its
    just some bonuses for them, and something for me to do during the day.

    Currently I only have the Canon EOS 450D with he kit lens, I wanted to know if there are any suggestions for me
    to get me set for the wedding day . . I think the outdoor pictures shouldn't be too much a problem, but im kinda
    worried about the indoor pictures ( low light ). I would like ask for suggestions about the following things:

    - A lens for getting good indoor pictures ( it will be very busy so no tripod probably ) in low light condition
    - A flashlight ? if so . . any recommendations?

  2. A 50mm f1.8 has got to be a great (& cheap) starting point for this. I am about to buy one for just this purpose.
  3. If you are just taking some informal photos and there is a professional photographer there as well, I wouldn't worry about
    upgrading just for this. Your kit lens will likely be just fine for this purpose. Unless your friend is expecting you to come up
    with results that rival those of the professional photog, your 450D, kit lens, and internal flash will do well for this purpose.

    As you wrote: "it don't have to be very professional . . its just some bonuses for them, and something for me to do during
    the day."

  4. Personally, I think that out of respect for the hired pro, you should just be taking grab shots--candids. Don't shoot over the
    pro's shoulder and don't set up formal shots.

    If I were you I'd just set the ISO to about 1000, and shoot using the on-camera flash with your kit lens. That'll get you
    some really nice candids that your friends should be happy with, and shouldn't threaten the livelihood of the pro.
  5. Thanks for the suggestions. Peter, you made a good point . . I think it will be a little be awkward if the hired photographer see me doing formal pictures .. I will probably be just annoying :)
  6. To piggy-back on Peter's comments, it just so happens that my daughter's wedding was this past weekend. Awwww.... ;-)
    We hired professional wedding photographers and they did a fine job. (I was otherwise occupied - something about walking my daughter down than aisle and so forth.) But I did bring my camera - a 5D with the 24-105 and the 580 EX II. I mostly did shots when the "hired guns" weren't there - at the rehearsal and as people were getting ready, but I did shoot a few frames after the wedding.
    To avoid confusion, I spoke to the wedding photographers ahead of time and during the event and told them that I had no intention of grabbing their shots or getting in the way, and I resisted the temptation to shoot stuff that they set up. In the end, I got a ton of really wonderful photos that will be different from but complementary to the work they did.
    Oh, and I did take one shot of the two of them photographing my daughter and new son in law. If you go there soon you can see my photo of them and the photo that Katy (the photographer) was taking at that moment.
    For the second time... awwwwww...
  7. What's the height of the ceiling? What's its color?

    If under 4-5m and white/soft colored, I would recommend a 430EX directed towards the ceiling. You also have the
    benefit of AF assist plus no red eyes

    If not, also the 430EX with a diffuser (handmade?) but directed towards the subject.

    For me, a lens with adequate specs for candid shots during a wedding would be, for example, a 70-200mm f2.8
    (Canon, Tamron, Sigma?). You can take your shots quietly, without interfering...
  8. I have tested the kit lens, on-camera flash and the default white balance for flash photography on the XSI, and I was thoroughly satisfied with the result. It looked very good as long as you dont shoot too far from the subject.

  9. If you are going to buy anything, the suggested 50mm f1.8 and the 430EX would be good. Don't photograph anything the pro is photographing, or at least, get a different angle or take on it. Watch carefully so you aren't in his or her way. Otherwise, have fun and shoot all the different and alternative shots you can think of, particularly if the pro isn't covering those parts.
  10. Another vote for the 50 1.8. It will give you two advantages your kit lens doesn't have. Very nice bokeh (blurred background) when set at F 1.8, 2 or 2.8 for portraits. And ability to shoot with faster shuttrer speed indoors and maybe not need flash so much. For $80 it's the best lens bargain out there. Everyone should have one, and once you get it, you'll realize you should have had it with our without this wedding shoot.

    Try to shoot at ISO 400 or less for most of it. But you can go 800 or 1600 for indoors if it's dark. ISO 1600 will actually yeild better shots than ISO 1000 because the in between steps add noise.
  11. I have a 50mm prime, but if I were trying to do what the OP described ("they just wanted me to take some more pictures, it
    don't have to be very professional . . its just some bonuses for them, and something for me to do during the day") I wouldn't
    use it for this - I'd go with the zoom for flexibility.

    Always important to keep in mind the needs of the person posting the question...

  12. William Michael

    William Michael Moderator Staff Member

    My suggestions, being budget conscious and having maximum flexibility are: the EF28mmF1.8 for the lens and the
    430EX for the Flash.

    If you are really budget conscious then the EF50mmF1.8 is a less expensive lens, but also will be less flexible
    inside, and that I understand, is one of the main concerns the part of your question asking for a Lens and Flash

    BUT: My better suggestion is you consider IF you will use these items AFTER the Wedding and buy (or not) with a
    view to long term usage, not just buying for a one off.

    IMO, you can adequately get nice pictures, outside, with what you have. You will be limited indoors, but depending
    upon the available light, it is not an impossible task.

    How much light you have and your skill level will be the deciding factors as to if you can use the kit lens inside and
    get results. You might be able to visit the site earlier so you know how much light you will actually have.

    This thread expands on the use of the kit lens, in low light:

  13. Though there are good suggestions I cannot suppress the urge to do another:

    How about a slightly longer fast lens for headshots and distance candids?
    You can leave the wide angle group stuff to the professionals and concentrate on capturing expressions and intimate moments.

    You might want to consider the 100mm/f2 or even the 100mm/f2.8 macro.
    The first is a relatively tiny telelens with great portrait and low light performance. (And could also be fun for medium-tele-street photography.)
    The second gives you an extra set of options in the macro range. Maybe not so much for the wedding as for the rest of your photography life afterwards.

    Anyway, the important thing is to have fun. The work part is already handed out to the hired gun,

    Regards, Matthijs.
  14. Hi again,

    I referred a 70-200mm f2.8 as near ideal zoom for a wedding, I wasn't thinking about the budget factor, as you
    didn't refer it. The problem with the kit lens is that its maximum focal distance 55mm (1.6x = 88mm) doesn't
    allow you to shoot from a "safe" distance, with risks of interfering with the wedding party "flow" - better leave
    that job to the pro.

    Additionally, one of the things that most annoys pro wedding (or other events) photographers is the post-event,
    when people start comparing their photos with others taken by some invited fellow: with hundreds of taken photos,
    even a very good pro will have some crappy shots, but even a drunk guest will have some nice shots. Therefore,
    there's always the risk of "even my drunk buddy took better shots than you" type comments!

    Summarizing, I would maintain a "reasonable" distance to my subjects and try to let the pro think that is the
    only one taking pictures in a systematic way.

    Lenses suggestion: the 100mm lenses referred by Matthijs are also good suggestions, especially the f2.8 macro.
  15. >>and shouldn't threaten the livelihood of the pro.<<

    That is not going to happen :) The OP will be what is 'affectionatelly' known in the trade as "Uncle Bob"...

    I too suggest to just use your kit lens, walk around and take lots of candid shots. The moments that are sometimes
    missed during the hurried, must-have shots the pros must take of families, friends, etc...

    You could actually provide a very valuable addition to the couple's memories of such special day. But, let the pro
    take the pro shots and do your part by taking advantage of your situation. Do NOT try to duplicate the shots the pro
    takes. Do your own thing, in your own space and out of the way. Since you are not bound to having to take certain
    'must have shots' that pros have to produce at every wedding, you can actually have a lot of fun by choosing unusual
    camera angles, moments, people, situations, etc...

    Your lighter, self-contained kit will allow you to move about easily and without interfering with anyone or anything.
    Just use the kit lens and you are done.
  16. Flash has the advantage of blasting away problematic lighting such as fluorescents, but you'll have to be careful to avoid
    dark backgrounds or decide to like them.

    If the room is lit by halogen downlights, those have a true colour temperature and are easier to correct for.

    If you do decide on available light, either shoot raw or make sure beforehand you're happy with the camera's white balance
    correction for JPEGs. The compact fluoros, which are replacing incandescent bulbs here in Australia, can be very tricky to
    correct for in Photoshop - the canned corrections don't always work.

    Obviously a thumping great shoe-mount flash makes bounce easier, and a second thumping great flash off camera can fix it when bounce
    isn't possible. I bet if you get a really interesting shot the pro missed because he coudn't predict a stranger's behaviour no-one is going to
    quibble about black backgrounds.
  17. You want to shoot in low light, right? Get the 50mm f/1.4 instead of the 1.8. The extra half-stop just might be enough to avoid having to use the flash in some situations, and you will have a good lens that you can use for a long time after the wedding.

  18. Another vote for a 28 1.8. This lens get some mixed reviews but it produces very nice color and is a great focal length on a
    1.6 crop camera. This lens will allow you to do some nice natural light shots and allow you to get wide to normal shots with
    out really being in the way.
  19. Folks, read the original post!

    "Uncle Bob" (Thanks, Giampi... :) is NOT trying to emulate professional wedding photographers. He is taking casual shots
    at one wedding for fun and to "amuse himself."

    He doesn't need to acquire a flash unit that will let him do bounce flash. He doesn't need to acquire a f/1.4 prime for this
    purpose. He sure as heck doesn't need to think about the 70-200mm f/2.8 L IS.

    My non-photographer sister used her little point and shoot and came up with great shots of my daughter and me coming
    down the aisle. These are the kinds of shots that you hope for from someone like "Uncle Bob," and you'll be very pleased to
    get them. "Bob" doesn't need to buy any new gear to do this.

  20. Just have fun Jemy. Shoot and shoot don't worry about low light what have you. If you have flash use it. You can get the 50mm/f1.8 it's cheap but if you don't have time to get it just use your lens kit.
  21. Hi.

    I'm Uncle Bob.

    I show up to weddings with a PILE of equipment. I snap away like a drunken fool.
    First, because I *am* a fool, and second by 30 minutes into the reception I *am* drunk!

    If you are taking candids and your primary goal is to "have fun", then you won't be interfering with the photographer. You won't be taking his livelyhood. You won't be roaming the church during the ceremony, right? You won't be taking formals between the ceremony and the reception, right? Just let the photog do his job. . and everything will be cool. When I have been at weddings, I chat with the photographer (just for a few minutes; usually just to be nosey about his equipment; not so much to stop him from doing his job; not so much to stop me from drinking and partying)

    For this type of event, the best addition will be a 430EX flash. The kit lens is fine. The on-board flash is fine. But in terms of "bang for the buck"; the biggest improvement will be a 430EX pointed towards the ceiling.
  22. Can you rent or borrow 17-55/2.8 IS? If not, go for the 50/1.8 and 430EX. The 28/1.8 USM is a nice lens but is considerably more expensive and is less sharp wide open. It's also more flare prone.

    Happy shooting,
  23. Thank you all for all the suggestions, they are very helpful ! It's true that I am doing it just for fun, but since it's one of my good friends I feel like doing the best I can. Since I still got one month to "prepare" I will take time and considered the given suggestions.

    I have never worked with flash. I even hardly use my kit flash because I think the photos look so unrealistic. Ofcourse its true that I never figured out how flah works . . maybe its time to do that :) so I will have to consider if I will be able to use it accordingly.

    I started this thread yesterday night before I went to sleep, I live in europe so probably time difference with most of you here. Anyway, thank you all, hope that I could be helpful here in the near future :)

  24. I just took a look at G Dan Mitchell photos, Excellent ! I hope I will be able to get some good shots like those, im so excited now haha cant wait :)
  25. I think you have the enviable position of not being responsible for anything but have an opportunity to be an absolute STAR.
    Your friend chose to hire someone that does this as a profession however chose you specifically to do the kind of shotsw that they know you can do and love you so much for which is why you were specfically asked to do the job.
    and learn from it.

    You have a very capable machine in your hands, what do you see through that lens is up to you.Photograph it. That is what yor Friend wants YOU to do.

    Again HAVE A BLAST. :eek:)
  26. I also have the same setup that you are working with. Let your friend who was hired do his thing. Try and stay out of his way and take the nice fill in pictures.. Practice on your indoor technique and get familiar with your camera before the wedding...You are in the best of both worlds for this wedding, you get experience and a chance to take pictures without the major bottom line responsibilties of the hired photographer. Have fun and learn......
  27. Outside during the day? Your kit lens should be find for what you are doing.

    Inside, dark or night (or want an excuse to invest in your camera)? Consider a faster lens.

    How much flexability do you want? Do you want a zoom to get in and out or are you ok at a fixed focus.

    How close you you want to be? If you get a prime lens... 10-30mm is in their face 31-59 is in the middle and 70 and up is shooting at a distance.

    How much so you want to spend? With lenses you get what you pay for. The faster and higher quality glass costs more.

    #1 Prime ...On the cheap -- The 50mm 1.8 for 80 bux (keep in mind that is is a prime lens... you use your feet to zoom in and out) Overall best value.

    #2 Prime ...Spend a little and get either
    30mm 1.4 sigma
    50mm 1.4 canon
    85mm 1.8 canon or 1.4

    #3 Zoom 24-70mm 2.8 canon or the 70-200mm 2.8 canon

    Good luck
  28. William Michael

    William Michael Moderator Staff Member

    I like Jim Larson`s `biggest bang for the buck` angle on the question, and his delivery of it.

  29. As for the professional vs do it yourself approach, what do you think is better for a wedding? I don't have much pro experience with photography, but I have taken some very nice pictures in the past. My daughter is getting married and neither our family nor the groom's has a lot of money to spend on the "extras" in the ceremony. We've been looking around and trying to decide if we can afford one, or should take a chance and have me shoot the wedding pictures. What do you think?
  30. William Michael

    William Michael Moderator Staff Member

    "As for the professional vs do it yourself approach, what do you think is better for a wedding?"

    If it were my daughter getting married I would not want the burden of taking the Photos. I would give the Camera to a trusted Friend for that duty.
    However I suggest you look at hiring an experienced Professional for a short coverage of the key elements of the Wedding your Daughter wants – be that the Ceremony and a few Formals or what ever. Although not my usual method of working I have done this a few times, to suit a client’s budget.
    If you do take this suggestion, I think you would be better to look for quality work and for a couple of hours than a “budget” all day coverage. You might find quality Photographers will be more inclined to do a short time shoot, if the Wedding is not scheduled Prime Time - for example two hours on a Friday afternoon: not Saturday or Sunday, which are usually peak times.
    There will be very few folk still reading this thread now and for more opinions you might post the question as a new thread.
    Good luck with it.

  31. Thank you very much for the response. I know it's an old thread, so thank you extra much for taking the time to read and reply! I have gone with your idea and gotten a photographer to do a few hours of coverage. You're right, I don't know how I was really planning on doing all the mother-of-the-bride activities AND trying to shoot a camera when my eyes are getting misty!

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