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  1. #1
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    Need help with my wedding pics- the photographer used iso800 film :-(

    Hi all.

    I'm new to this forum, And need some advice desperately..... I got married two weeks ago and we hired a pro photographer... While he was the taking pics i noticed he never used ANY flash at all........He also took only 35 pics

    He brought the pics back to us this week........And to be honest quite a few of them are a quite washed out and out of focus (While he was here showing us the pics i asked him what film he used, and he told me he used ISO 800 film) ....(now i'm nowhere near a pro photographer but even i know you DO NOT use ISO800 film for a wedding )

    I have reluctantly paid the guy the full price (but i nagged him for the negs and he eventually gave in and gave them to me)...... I am wondering if they can be corrected (to some degree) in a pro lab, if i get them reprinted ???

    Thanks in advance
    Last edited by pentaxpirate; 08-14-2004 at 03:35 AM.

  2. #2
    Be serious Franglais's Avatar
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    No rules except satisfy the client

    Quote Originally Posted by pentaxpirate
    Hi all.

    I'm new to this forum, And need some advice desperately..... I got married two weeks ago and we hired a pro photographer... While he was the taking pics i noticed he never used ANY flash at all........He also took only 35 pics

    He brought the pics back to us this week........And to be honest quite a few of them are a quite washed out and out of focus (While he was here showing us the pics i asked him what film he used, and he told me he used ISO 800 film) ....(now i'm nowhere near a pro photographer but even i know you DO NOT use ISO800 film for a wedding )

    I have reluctantly paid the guy the full price (but i nagged him for the negs and he eventually gave in and gave them to me)...... I am wondering if they can be corrected (to some degree) in a pro lab, if i get them reprinted ???

    Thanks in advance
    I'm a humble amateur so I hesitate before commenting on the work of a professional. However it seems to me that there is one basic rule - satisfy the client. Professionals are often economical in the number of pictures that they shoot but I don't think they should present results that are out-of-focus. A washed-out print might be correctable in the lab.

    You certainly CAN use 800 film for weddings (example: Fuji NPZ). It helps to avoid the effect of having the happy couple lit by the flash and while the church all around is in darkness.

    Using flash tends to kill the atmosphere and some photographers try to do without it. Personally I use a big torch flashgun all the time on weddings - at least you can see peoples faces.

    How many pictures you shoot doesn't matter as long as you have the essential events and people look good. At my last wedding I shot 9 films but I did the whole event over 7 hours. If he just shot 35 pictures on the ceremony itself + the group - he's being economical but they all have to come out.

    Charles

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Franglais
    I'm a humble amateur so I hesitate before commenting on the work of a professional. However it seems to me that there is one basic rule - satisfy the client. Professionals are often economical in the number of pictures that they shoot but I don't think they should present results that are out-of-focus. A washed-out print might be correctable in the lab.

    You certainly CAN use 800 film for weddings (example: Fuji NPZ). It helps to avoid the effect of having the happy couple lit by the flash and while the church all around is in darkness.

    Using flash tends to kill the atmosphere and some photographers try to do without it. Personally I use a big torch flashgun all the time on weddings - at least you can see peoples faces.

    How many pictures you shoot doesn't matter as long as you have the essential events and people look good. At my last wedding I shot 9 films but I did the whole event over 7 hours. If he just shot 35 pictures on the ceremony itself + the group - he's being economical but they all have to come out.

    Charles
    Hi Franglais.

    I wont pretend to know what i'm on about because i only class myself as an intermediate photographer at best...But from what i've read about doing wedding photo's- be it in books or online.....90% of what i've read seem's to suggest to use either ISO 160 or 200 at most.

    The wedding was on a brightly lit day......So the ceremony room was bright, and it was also bright outside....So maybe , like you say, there was no flash needed, But i i still cant work out why he used ISO800 film...such a fast film only introduces grain into the equation as far as i know.

    My local camera shop also had a look at the photo's.........In fact, they said the photo's were quite poor quality considering a so-called pro took them..they also remarked on how ISO 800 should not be used at weddings due to the grain they introduce into- say, a group wedding photo's where there is around 20+ people etc.

    As a sidenote,,,, i remember noticing he used a manual focus camera ( so i dont know if this accounts for the pics slightly out of focus)........or it was just a processing error.

  4. #4
    Be serious Franglais's Avatar
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    Look at this

    Quote Originally Posted by pentaxpirate
    Hi Franglais.

    I wont pretend to know what i'm on about because i only class myself as an intermediate photographer at best...But from what i've read about doing wedding photo's- be it in books or online.....90% of what i've read seem's to suggest to use either ISO 160 or 200 at most.

    The wedding was on a brightly lit day......So the ceremony room was bright, and it was also bright outside....So maybe , like you say, there was no flash needed, But i i still cant work out why he used ISO800 film...such a fast film only introduces grain into the equation as far as i know.

    My local camera shop also had a look at the photo's.........In fact, they said the photo's were quite poor quality considering a so-called pro took them..they also remarked on how ISO 800 should not be used at weddings due to the grain they introduce into- say, a group wedding photo's where there is around 20+ people etc.

    As a sidenote,,,, i remember noticing he used a manual focus camera ( so i dont know if this accounts for the pics slightly out of focus)........or it was just a processing error.
    Sigh. Here's a link to the Fuji web site with a description of NPZ :

    http://home.fujifilm.com/products/EM...heet_kbn=A&f=2

    Films have got so good nowadays that you can make 8x10 enlargements from 800 ISO films and not have any visible grain. Personally I use 400 ISO (NPH) because I prefer the colour. NPC (160 ISO) is even better but depth-of-field is starting to be a problem, flash distance, etc. I just use 400 ISO and bash away.

    Which brings me to another point - modern cameras have one wonderful feature. No, not autofocus, I'm talking about auto fill-in flash. I can leave the flash running the whole time and the camera will use the flash to fill in the shadows and give a wonderfully natural effect most of the time.

    So it may be that your professional is using an older camera and doesn't have these features. But before we start laughing too hard - a lot of professional wedding photographers use medium format cameras, which usually don't have autofocus or auto-anything. And have the potential to give you bigger, grainless images. Are your negatives normal 35mm or are they larger?

    Charles

  5. #5
    Seasoned Minolta Man Clemmie's Avatar
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    Geesh! This sounds too much like my own experience hiring a 'Pro' for my wedding in 1985. (The marriage didn't last - and neither have the poorly done pictures.)

    I shoot about one wedding a year, on average - usually for a friend or family member who couldn't otherwise afford a photographer. Always on 35mm. I shoot my normal everyday film, Fuji Superia - good colors, lifesaving latitude, and tight grain. Usually pack 200 and 400 for a wedding shoot - but NEVER the 800, which is too grainy for making 8x10's, especially from a darker indoor scene.

    I bracket the formal stand-ups that we know will be 'album material' - three shots, as metered and 1 1/2 stops over and under. Have never failed, using this margin, to get a good take for the album.

    Bracket the essentials, and shoot plenty in general. I usually shoot 3 or 4 rolls - 72 to 96 exposures. Usually 24-30 frames of that is the bracketed shots of the essential 8-10 stand-ups for the album - with the rest being the single frames, circulating around thru the festivities.
    ------------------------------------------------------------------
    In your case, it is good that you secured the negatives. A good Pro lab - at some cost, of course - can do wonders with them. They may not be able to fully correct for a poor shooting job - but they can do quite a bit with correcting for lighting, etc. For those that are a bit out of focus, they can work with adjustments and with certain print papers to make the soft focus effect quite pleasing.

    The final result, working from poor shots, probably won't be quite what you originally envisioned - but at least you won't be left without pictures. And, too, the lab may surprise you by managing to truly 'pull a rabbit out of a hat'.

    Good luck.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Clemmie
    Geesh! This sounds too much like my own experience hiring a 'Pro' for my wedding in 1985. (The marriage didn't last - and neither have the poorly done pictures.)

    I shoot about one wedding a year, on average - usually for a friend or family member who couldn't otherwise afford a photographer. Always on 35mm. I shoot my normal everyday film, Fuji Superia - good colors, lifesaving latitude, and tight grain. Usually pack 200 and 400 for a wedding shoot - but NEVER the 800, which is too grainy for making 8x10's, especially from a darker indoor scene.

    I bracket the formal stand-ups that we know will be 'album material' - three shots, as metered and 1 1/2 stops over and under. Have never failed, using this margin, to get a good take for the album.

    Bracket the essentials, and shoot plenty in general. I usually shoot 3 or 4 rolls - 72 to 96 exposures. Usually 24-30 frames of that is the bracketed shots of the essential 8-10 stand-ups for the album - with the rest being the single frames, circulating around thru the festivities.
    ------------------------------------------------------------------
    In your case, it is good that you secured the negatives. A good Pro lab - at some cost, of course - can do wonders with them. They may not be able to fully correct for a poor shooting job - but they can do quite a bit with correcting for lighting, etc. For those that are a bit out of focus, they can work with adjustments and with certain print papers to make the soft focus effect quite pleasing.

    The final result, working from poor shots, probably won't be quite what you originally envisioned - but at least you won't be left without pictures. And, too, the lab may surprise you by managing to truly 'pull a rabbit out of a hat'.

    Good luck.
    Thanks Clemmie, and Franglais.
    Your comments are very much appreciated guys.

  7. #7
    Moderator Skyman's Avatar
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    good wedding photography

    what makes for good wedding photography ?
    one simple thing
    the client is happy with the results.

    given the above maxim then i would suggest that this is not an example of good wedding photography.

    I could postulate and theorize about what makes a good photo and what film/camera/lens/lighting/composition/developing/printing will help but this is largely academic. it sounds like the person that shot the wedding was inexperienced. i draw this not from the quality of the photos (which i haven't seen) but the way you describe how he handled your request for the negs. if you are curios to see if they could be salvaged by better printing, find a local pro lab and get them to print them for you. if you would like more constructive feedback scan and post some photos. i have to add, i don't really know what recourse you would have if any, you have already paid full price and recieved the negs. i wouldn't be refunding you anything, as i would ask all photos to be returned when a client is requesting a refund. given that you have the negs i could never ensure all prints were returned. also you hired the guy. did you look at his portfolio first ? was it anygood ? is there a marked difference between his portfolio images and your prints ? that would be grounds for complaint. unfortunately there are many bad and or unscrupulous wedding photographers out there, and it is a cut throat industry which means many photographers are cutting corners on film, proccessing, even equipment. all of this might degrade the quality of the images they produce, however as long as clients are happy this is not really a problem. 35 photos is not many, did the rest not turn out ? why not ? was the number of prints specified in the contract ? was there a contract ? as you can see i could theorise all day, however i recomend getting some reprints made and scanning some images and posting them so we can give you more constructive feedback. incidentally i am by no means a fantastic wedding photographer and having seen many of the wedding images posted hear would never claim to be. i know that wasn't the most coherently structured post i hope it has helped you though.

  8. #8
    Sleep is optional Sebastian's Avatar
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    Hodgy used 1600 ISO film for wedding with INCREDIBLE results. He shoots 800 all the time as well. No way in hell I would ever hire anyone that shoots 35 pics. THAT is what is wrong with this situation, NOT what film he used.

    I suggest you find some better books, the ones you're using aren't very representative of the reality of wedding shooting, all sorts of films are used, for al sorts of different reasons.

    I would check to see if there's anything you can do with local area government offices. They can recommend BBB/arbitrators, etc. I am sorry you had such a bad experience, but it's just tough for peole like us to help suggest specific things to do due to how far seperated we are from your area and the situation. Pick up the phone book and start calling any sort of local consumer groups, and go from there.

    Good luck, hope it works out for you.
    -Seb

    My website

    (Please don't edit and repost my images without my permission. Thank you)

    How to tell the most experienced shooter in a group? They have the least amount of toys on them.

  9. #9
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    Skyman wrote:
    however i recomend getting some reprints made and scanning some images and posting them so we can give you more constructive feedback
    How do i post some scans of these pics onto this site??

    Alternatively- i could e-mail the scans to you Skyman........And whoever else would be interested in taking a look at them?

    Regards
    PP

  10. #10
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    i usually shoot 300 or so pictures at a wedding,digital ill shoot 500 or more easily.35 pictures is not enough pictures.most of my packages have a min. of 120 pictures,now days im digital ,and i offer even more.
    800 film,i dont ever use 800.its to grainy.but it can do a good job if you know how to use it.useing a meter helps.im curious,how much did he charge?
    WHY CANT WE ALL ,JUST GET ALONG!!

  11. #11
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    Hi Freelance 2004.

    The guy charged me 260 and i could have accepted that if the pics turned out ok- but they didnt

    I paid the guy the whole fee anyway- just to be able to get the neg's off him.....

    I have also had the neg's reprinted ( just out of curiosity) in a Processor's in town.........They came out sharper, but too red, and some a shade darker than the original prints........ ( while i was there i noticed the machine they were using was an AGFA FP 200 i think )

    I'm gonna have to find a lab with the Fuij Frontier that Clemmie talked about, and try having them developed on that.

    I'll post the results when i do find a lab with this machine

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