Should you or should you not be the camera guy in a wedding party is the question. You will not get paid for the favor, so I am hard pressed to come up with one good reason why you should do it but I can give you many reasons why you should not.
Do not feel bad letting your friend or family know that you will not be able to take on the responsibility because for one it is the most important day of their life and they should really be looking into hiring a professional, not to mention working the camera and all the gear will pretty much ruin your chances of having any fun at the party.
But for some reason if you still decide you want to have the camera guy, here are some tips that will help you survive the day. First of all make sure you have the right equipment to do a semi good job. And by right equipment I mean at least a 5 to 7 megapixel digital SLR camera, so the resolution can support up to 8×10 pictures. If you can only have one lens, go with the 18 – 80mm, preferably high density lens to get sharp pictures. But if you have a choice of lenses then get 2 – 3 to cover close-ups, regular portraits and group snaps. For close up photography, prefer to get a fixed focal length 50mm or 55mm lens. For regular portraits, you can use a 28 – 80mm lens with low dispersion. And last but not least for group photography which is integral to Pakistani and Indian weddings, a wide angle 24mm – 28mm lens with low distortion would do fine.
Another thing to never forget is an external flash light for your camera. Reason for that is the mini built in flashes on the cameras do not have enough power to have much of an impact on your pictures at larger venues. You should also familiarize yourself with flash photography before the event as at times it can be very difficult to get the pictures with correct exposure and settings with an external flash attached on the camera. Your pictures will either fly out by excess light or will turn out to be too dark if you do not know what you are dealing with. Amateurs have their best chance sticking with automatic settings on the new super expensive DSLRs rather than trying their luck with manual settings. And last but not least do not forget to get a diffuser for the flash light to get that even tone across your pictures.
Quick check up list before you leave your house for the event:
– Camera with batteries
– External flash with diffuser
– Extra batteries
– Memory card and extra memory card (s)
Good luck, take your A game out there and remember to smile and try to enjoy the excursion.