Wedding photography in Pittsburgh, is always a little bit risky. Especially in March and April. One day you can have rain, the next day sun. The following day snow. Its a beautiful time of year for weddings, but it does carry a bit of risk.
I was sitting at home editing. I was pushing hard because I had to meet up with David Burke to drop off a light stand that I had borrowed. Right as I was preparing to leave, the phone rings and he asks if I want to shoot with him. It just so happens that we had just been talking about shooting as much as possible, while staying focused on a story. This is harder than it sounds. Your wedding day is a fantastic story. Its about families coming together, often meeting for the first time, its about friends becoming husband and wife, dancing, and commitment. With that in mind, how could I say no?
Often times, wedding photography is lots of beautiful portraits, photos of details, and a few moments filled in with snapshots. When you focus on telling a story, you have to find ways of showing the moments, capturing the laughter and tears, while still including the guests. Its harder than it sounds. As a storyteller, I have to be better than snap shots. At the end of the day, a wedding should be able to be told through 50-100 images, and nothing should be left out.
Each day I shoot, its pushing closer to that. Editing becomes harder, as I hold myself to higher standards, and as a documentary wedding photographer, I have to work as hard as possible, because at the end of the day, the portraits are nice, but the story is your true legacy.
Congratulations David and Stacey.
David, thanks for having me along brother.
Ceremony at St Patricks Church in Cannonsburg
Reception: Bella Sera
Video: Keith Parish: Diamond Weddings
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In photography, lighting is the most important aspect of your work. As a Pittsburgh wedding photographer you have to be able to work with lights because the weather here isnt always cooperative. Some days you wake up, the sky is blue, and it looks like its going to be an amazing day. But by the time the reception rolls around, the light is gone, clouds moved in, the wind is blowing, and rain is pouring down. In those situations we still have a duty to our clients to create beautiful work. So we always bring a supply of portable lights and modifiers with us, and they live in our car. If a flash breaks, no problem got a back up. Pocket wizard wont fire, pull out the chord. Both flashes die, or get stolen, we have some work lights that create beautiful light when pushed through an umbrella. While the situation may not be ideal, it is our job to give our clients our best work. I heard recently that we dont get an A for showing up and being friendly. Clients expect us to be professional, polite, and make great memorable images of their day.
As a story centered wedding photographer, that makes the need for lights a little bit less, but during portrait time, and during the reception, we have to make the venue, the people, and the couple look incredible. The images have to be able to bring back memories years down the road. More importantly, they need to tell the story of the day, after everyone that attended has passed away. Wedding photography is about a legacy. It is about documenting a story for the future. Its about Grandma and Grandpa being able to look fondly back on the photos and tell the grand kids about the life they lived together.
Today I shot a few portraits of my wife, just to brush up on my lighting skill. I dont use lights often, I prefer nice beautiful natural light. But sometimes a flash is the only available light that we have.
For more information on Pittsburgh Wedding Photography visit www.DanSpeicherPhoto.com
Presidential candidate Mitt Romney visited Horizontal Wireline services in July, and I was on hand covering the event for the Westmoreland County GOP Events like this re-energize me, and help to remind me why I love photojournalism. Any time the elections come up, supporters get energized. That energy comes to loud applause and cheers durring events like this.
Romney Supporters show their support for local jobs, angry over recent EPA regulations that they consider to be a "War on Coal"
Presidential Candidate Mitt Romney speaks to supporters at Horizontal Wireline Services in Irwin Pa
Last year I had the pleasure to photograph Jahmar and Mindy’s beautiful wedding as a second photog for David Burke. The day was a blast, and we got some amazing photos, but one of the things that I loved, was setting up a photo booth at the reception, and being able to have everyone coming through for portraits.
This is a great way to get group portraits of friends and family, while still keeping your traditional portrait session to a manageable time, and letting guests come when they are ready. Props can be used, or not, depending on your preference, and all that is needed is a 12ftx12 space near a wall and outlet. This photo booth style is awesome because you have a photographer actually manning it, and it doesnt take much time to set up.
For more information, please inquire.
Dani and Tom were married back in September, at her families beautiful home in Ligonier, Pa. After a day at the local Polo for the Kids event it was awesome to head over to the house and spend a beautiful Saturday with Dani, Tom, and their family.
Tents, catering, linens, and staff were all provided by Elegant Tents and Catering and according to Dani, “They did everything from bringing chairs, tables bartenders and the food. They can even do the flowers. Thats what is so nice, they can do everything.”
Her flowers were provided by a local farm, and fit the season beautifully.
*EDIT: immediately after posting this I got a comment from Dani: “awe miss that day!! Thanks to you we have some GREAT photos:)”
That is just one of the reasons I love documenting these moments in peoples lives. As you catch a glimpse of your wedding photos as you pass by them on the way out the door, a rush of memories come to mind from your special day. Thats what its all about. “We do not remember days, we remember moments.”~ Cesare Pavese