My favorite part to capture in a wedding is usually the end of a reception party. This is when most people finally let their guard off and show a side of themselves that only appears only at this moment. I captured these images during the last hour of my first Indian wedding in Pennsylvania.
The reception is usually preceded by several hours of work that requires the most intense focus and concentration from all parties involved. The wedding couple can be nervous as they hope that everything will be just right on their special day. As a photographer you are fully aware of your responsibility to hopefully capture all of the key moments as history is made for your client and couple. So by the time of the reception I definitely feel a bit drained from hours of intense work. But I always feel a resurge of energy when I see the joy and exuberance on people’s faces as they celebrate this special and joyful occasion.
From the technical point of view I usually set my camera on full manual mode to capture just enough ambient light without pushing my ISO too hard to avoid too much digital noise in the images. I like to keep my shutter speed fairly low to capture a sense of motion as people dance the night away. Then I use my flash to as a fill in to give the photos a punch. By setting my Canon 600-EX speed lights on a second curtain sync mode, I can add nice light trails to the images. Finding just the right balance requires some experimentation but once I hit the sweet spot, I get onto the dance floor and fire away… while trying to stay out of the way:)
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