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  1. #1
    Captain of the Ship Photo-John's Avatar
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    Best Wedding Ever?

    On Saturday I shot the coolest wedding I've ever had the good fortune to be a part of. My friend mark and his then fiance decided to have a backcountry ski wedding. We took the lift to the top of the Alta ski resort, near Salt Lake City. And from there we climbed to a ridge and dropped into an out-of-bounds bowl full of untouched powder. Everyone had to carry avalanche gear (shovel, probe, beacon) and be an expert skier. It was the first actual backcountry skiing I've done. And of course, the first ski wedding
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Best Wedding Ever?-img_0732.jpg   Best Wedding Ever?-img_0647.jpg   Best Wedding Ever?-img_0721.jpg  
    Photo-John

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  2. #2
    Sports photo junkie jorgemonkey's Avatar
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    Re: Best Wedding Ever?

    Now thats a cool wedding!

    Looks like the bride wore all white ski gear instead of the dress?
    Nikon Samurai #21



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  3. #3
    Captain of the Ship Photo-John's Avatar
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    Getting There

    Getting in and out was half the fun of this wedding. Everyone who was part of it really wanted to be there. That's part of what made it so neat. There was some good symbolism involved too. It was supposed to be sunny and as you can see, it wasn't. And it was physically hard work to get in and out. In spite of the weather and hard work required, everyone had a great attitude and a great time. It was a fun, healthy group of people and I think the creative, fun spirit of the event speaks well for the future of the marriage.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Best Wedding Ever?-img_0549.jpg   Best Wedding Ever?-img_1415.jpg   Best Wedding Ever?-img_1426.jpg   Best Wedding Ever?-img_0762.jpg  
    Photo-John

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  4. #4
    Almost There...... ciddog91's Avatar
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    Re: Best Wedding Ever?

    Awesome shots. It looks like a great wedding to be a part of. It looks like a lot of fun. I am not a great skier, but that would be a cool time.

    Phil
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  5. #5
    Captain of the Ship Photo-John's Avatar
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    Ski Wedding Tech Info

    Since this is a photography site, and technically this was a challenge, I thought I'd share what I used and carried.

    I've never done any backcountry skiing so I bought a shovel, an avalanche probe, and a new ski backpack for the big day. A camera backpack wouldn't have worked for this event. Or, it would have required what I consider unaccaptable compromises. The backpack I bought (Camelback brand) is made for carrying extra gear, a shovel, has straps for skis, and has an insulated hydration compartment. The hose on the hydration bladder froze anyway

    I bought a larger backpack so I could pack my camera gear in cases inside. Over the years, I've found that large hydration packs that I can pack a small camera bag in work better that purpose-built camera backpacks. I'm still waiting for a camera case company to make a backpack with a hydration system that really works for me on the bike and skis.

    I carried my Canon EOS 40D with Tamron 28-75 f/2.8 XR Di lens, and Tokina 12-24mm lens in a small Tamrac hip case that I've been using like this for years. I carried m7 Canon 70-200 f/2.8L in a separate lens case and a 550 EX flash and off-camera cable in another small point-and-shoot camera case. All that, along with shovel, probe, food, water, etc. when in the backpack. I didn't weight it, but I would guess the backpack weighed 20+ pounds. Having that kind of extra weight definitely makes a difference at 10,000 feet and in technical ski terrain. It wasn't my greatest ski day ever

    I also carried my Canon PowerShot SD950 IS. Because it's not easy to drop the pack, open it up, secure gear from getting dumped in the snow, etc, a point-and-shoot camera makes a big difference. So I set up four times with the big camera and the rest were shot with the PowerShot - which I love, incidentally. You can read my review of it, here, if you haven't already. It's not a replacement for a DSLR. But it definitely serves a valuable purpose.

    I would have liked to use the Olympus E-3 for the wedding because the whole package - with the 12-60mm and 70-300mm lenses, is so much smaller and lighter. But I am not comfortable enough with it yet and I also had to have the off-camera flash capability. But I think the Olympus DSLR system is ideal for this type of photography because it's so much smaller and lighter. And with the E-3, I don't think there's any image quality compromise. If you haven't ready Larry Chen's Olympus E-3 review, you should. I'm working on a follow-up that's more about the auto-focus and outdoor shooting with the E-3. Keep your eyes open for that.

    I hope the technical info was useful. Feel free to ask questions. Ski photography is not something I consider myself good at - yet. I'm just learning. It's much more difficult than I expected and I am excited to be in the middle of a steep learning curve again. I sort of feel like a beginner

    This last photo was taken at a lunch, after the actual wedding. It was taken with the Canon PowerShot SD950 IS. It has had a fair amount of adjustment in Lightroom, Photoshop, and a little noise-reduction.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Best Wedding Ever?-img_1444.jpg  
    Photo-John

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  6. #6
    Captain of the Ship Photo-John's Avatar
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    Re: Best Wedding Ever?

    Quote Originally Posted by jorgemonkey
    Looks like the bride wore all white ski gear instead of the dress?
    That's right. She had a veil Velcro'd to her white helmet and white goggles with rhinetones on the strap. And the groom packed an old tux and red bow tie in his backpack. There were also plenty of Mardi Gras beads and some other fun clothing. It was informally formal
    Photo-John

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  7. #7
    Spamminator Grandpaw's Avatar
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    Re: Best Wedding Ever?

    This was a very unique wedding. This wedding was a natural high but I bet it will be all downhill from here out! LOL Jeff
    Check out my website Here
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    All images posted by me anywhere are Copyrighted by Federal Law and may not be copied or used in ANY FORM without my personal written permission. Jeff Impey
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  8. #8
    Senior Member OldSchool's Avatar
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    Re: Best Wedding Ever?

    Way cool!!!!
    Samurai #17 |;^\

  9. #9
    LRPS Alison's Avatar
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    Re: Best Wedding Ever?

    LOL how cool! No pun intended haha.

  10. #10
    Princess of the OT adina's Avatar
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    Re: Best Wedding Ever?

    okay, that's just about the cutest thing I've ever seen.

    Best wishes to the both of them!
    I sleep, but I don't rest.

  11. #11
    Senior Member Dylan8i's Avatar
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    Re: Best Wedding Ever?

    Wow looks like a great time.

    I just (this weekend) jumped on a ski trip to Powder mountain (55 miles nw of SLC) with my uncle and cousin and 6 other people. Im greatly looking forward to it. I just got in to skiing last year, but picked it up right away (Ive only been skiing 6 days total but can go off jumps etc), but im alittle anxious about skiing powder.

    im bringing my d200 on the trip, for scenic stuff, plus we are heading to arches to hike for 2 days after skiing, but i think i might borrow my rents cheap P&S to bring on the slopes.


    i can't wait to be back in Utah ( i lived in moab for 6 months in 2006), but that was before i skied.
    check out my photography website
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  12. #12
    Not Just a Junior Member
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    Re: Best Wedding Ever?

    Glad you enjoyed yourself and didn't have to use your avalanche gear. The picture of the bride skiing the powder is a very good ski picture in my book. The others give a taste of what backcountry skiing is like. We always did it on our regular downhill skis, but I notice some of the participants have bindings that allow their feet to left off the skis.

  13. #13
    The red headed step child jgredline's Avatar
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    Re: Best Wedding Ever?

    John
    Thank you for sharing...Those are some amazing photos for '' a beginner'' LOL...
    May I ask...Given the choice between the Canon PowerShot SD950 IS and the Canon G9, Which would you choose?

    Thanks a bunch...P.S. I love that Tamron 28-75mm F/2.8Lens you used...I have the pentax version and it rocks on..thAt is a lens that should be in everyones bag!
    εὐχαριστέω σύ
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    διοτι το γνωστον του θεου φανερον εστιν εν αυτοις ο γαρ θεος αυτοις εφανερωσεν
    τα γαρ αορατα αυτου απο κτισεως κοσμου τοις ποιημασιν νοουμενα καθοραται η τε αιδιος αυτου δυναμις και θειοτης εις το ειναι αυτους αναπολογητους

  14. #14
    Captain of the Ship Photo-John's Avatar
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    Powder Mountain

    I've skied Powder Mountain 3 times this season. When it's good, it's really good. Let me know when you're going to be there and maybe I can arrange to be there at the same time.
    Photo-John

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  15. #15
    Captain of the Ship Photo-John's Avatar
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    Re: Best Wedding Ever?

    Quote Originally Posted by jgredline
    John
    Thank you for sharing...Those are some amazing photos for '' a beginner'' LOL...
    May I ask...Given the choice between the Canon PowerShot SD950 IS and the Canon G9, Which would you choose?

    Thanks a bunch...P.S. I love that Tamron 28-75mm F/2.8Lens you used...I have the pentax version and it rocks on..thAt is a lens that should be in everyones bag!
    Well, I guess I'm not really a beginner

    You know I was skiing at the beginning of the season with both the SD950 IS and the G9. So I'm well qualified to answer that question :-)

    For me - the SD950 IS is the right camera. I carry it in a small pouch on the shoulder strap of my backpack, where it's always accessible. I don't have a case for the G9 that allows me to carry it like that. And it's just big enough that I don't know if I would, anyway. You could wear it on the strap under your jacket. But it would hurt to fall on it, I think. There are two reasons to buy the G9 over the SD950 IS, RAW shooting, and the lens. The G9's 6x zoom lens has more reach than the SD950 IS lens. The G9's image quality is better than the SD950's, but not be as much as you'd expect. I prefer the small size of the SD950 IS. But the RAW capability of the G9 means better color - and that makes a big difference in the snow. In low contrast conditions like the photos I shot this weekend, it's very hard to color correct the auto white balance from the SD950 IS. Shooting RAW with the G9 and then using Lightroom to convert to TIFF of JPEG results in much better color.

    I don't know if you've seen them, but I wrote pro reviews for both cameras:

    Canon PowerShot SD950 IS Review >>
    Canon PowerShot G9 Review >>

    I love the Tamron 28-75 lens, too. It's a sleeper. I am so happy I have it!
    Photo-John

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  16. #16
    The red headed step child jgredline's Avatar
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    Re: Best Wedding Ever?

    Quote Originally Posted by Photo-John
    Well, I guess I'm not really a beginner
    oH, I know..I was being sarcastic...

    You know I was skiing at the beginning of the season with both the SD950 IS and the G9. So I'm well qualified to answer that question :-)
    yes, I remember reading that.

    For me - the SD950 IS is the right camera. I carry it in a small pouch on the shoulder strap of my backpack, where it's always accessible. I don't have a case for the G9 that allows me to carry it like that. And it's just big enough that I don't know if I would, anyway. You could wear it on the strap under your jacket. But it would hurt to fall on it, I think. There are two reasons to buy the G9 over the SD950 IS, RAW shooting, and the lens. The G9's 6x zoom lens has more reach than the SD950 IS lens. The G9's image quality is better than the SD950's, but not be as much as you'd expect. I prefer the small size of the SD950 IS. But the RAW capability of the G9 means better color - and that makes a big difference in the snow. In low contrast conditions like the photos I shot this weekend, it's very hard to color correct the auto white balance from the SD950 IS. Shooting RAW with the G9 and then using Lightroom to convert to TIFF of JPEG results in much better color.
    Just yesterday, I drove down to Samy's to pick up a G9 and they were out of them.. Then today, I went to order one from B&H and got distracted at work and forgot about it...Infact there has been atleast 4 occasions over the past two months where I went to order the G9 and I ended up buying Glass for my Pentax instead.. I guess a part of me really wants the Sigma DP1..Right now the only P&S i have is the Fuji S9100 and it is flat big and does not fit in my shirt pocket..

    I don't know if you've seen them, but I wrote pro reviews for both cameras:

    Canon PowerShot SD950 IS Review >>
    Canon PowerShot G9 Review >>

    I love the Tamron 28-75 lens, too. It's a sleeper. I am so happy I have it!
    Oh, Yes...I have read them quite a few times. It was your review along with LIZ's recommendations on the G9 that had me looking for one these past couple of days...I do know that If I buy the G9, I will likely get murdered by my wife if I also come home with a DP1...
    εὐχαριστέω σύ
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    διοτι το γνωστον του θεου φανερον εστιν εν αυτοις ο γαρ θεος αυτοις εφανερωσεν
    τα γαρ αορατα αυτου απο κτισεως κοσμου τοις ποιημασιν νοουμενα καθοραται η τε αιδιος αυτου δυναμις και θειοτης εις το ειναι αυτους αναπολογητους

  17. #17
    Senior Member Dylan8i's Avatar
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    Re: Powder Mountain

    Quote Originally Posted by Photo-John
    I've skied Powder Mountain 3 times this season. When it's good, it's really good. Let me know when you're going to be there and maybe I can arrange to be there at the same time.

    We are going to be there, flying in sunday march 23 (easter) skiing mon, tues, wed, thursday, then driving to moab on friday, back to SLC to fly out on monday the 31. im hoping the snow is good... but ive only skied on east coast ice so.... i bet for me, it will be.
    check out my photography website
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    Please feel free to edit or change any of my pictures to show me how to improve them.



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  18. #18
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    Re: Best Wedding Ever?

    ooooooh . . . . Photo-Mom so envies everyone at that wedding! - P-M

  19. #19
    mod squad gahspidy's Avatar
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    Re: Best Wedding Ever?

    What a great and unique wedding. Thank you for all the great technical info and ideas about traving in this situation with all that gear.
    What an experience . . .
    please do not edit and repost my photos


    gary


  20. #20
    Captain of the Ship Photo-John's Avatar
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    Re: Best Wedding Ever?

    Quote Originally Posted by gahspidy
    What a great and unique wedding. Thank you for all the great technical info and ideas about traving in this situation with all that gear.
    What an experience . . .
    I was pretty excited about the wedding and the photos and couldn't wait to share. And I also thought it was a pretty unique experience that people would be curious about. It's not likely I'll shoot another wedding like that anytime soon - if ever. But I'll definitely be carrying all that gear and shooting in the backcountry again. That's where the best ski photos are to be had. Next time I'll probably take the E-3, though. Every ounce of weight saved makes a difference
    Photo-John

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  21. #21
    sqrt -1 greghalliday's Avatar
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    Re: Best Wedding Ever?

    That rocks my friend.

    Great images. Alta is so very near heaven, it seems natural to be married there. Close as you can get (unless you want to try out the tower of Babel again), and good thing she's not a snowboarder.

    BTW, how do you get all the cool gigs?

  22. #22
    Captain of the Ship Photo-John's Avatar
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    Re: Best Wedding Ever?

    Quote Originally Posted by greghalliday
    BTW, how do you get all the cool gigs?
    The groom is a long-time mountain bike friend from the Bay Area. He went to the U of U for college and moved back here a few years back. So when I moved out here we started mountain biking together. When the snow came, we started skiing a bit together. So it wasn't a paid job - just a favor for a friend. I was happy just to be included

    Let us know if you're coming back to SLC to visit. I was hoping you'd be here when I moved. I'm not going anywhere now, though. SLC is my home.
    Photo-John

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  23. #23
    Moderator of Critiques/Hearder of Cats mtbbrian's Avatar
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    Re: Best Wedding Ever?

    Good stuff!
    Brian
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  24. #24
    Ex-Modster Old Timer's Avatar
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    Re: Best Wedding Ever?

    John sorry I haven't comment on these sooner. I first saw them in the gallery and thought they were awesome. You truly are our fearless leader and captain of the ship.
    Don't forget about the Gallery. Are your photos there??


    Nikon Samurai #13

    "A photographer is known by what he shows not by what he throws. The best photographers have the biggest trash cans." Quote from Nikon School sometime in the early 1970's.

  25. #25
    MJS
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    Re: Best Wedding Ever?

    Great shots again PJ. I enjoy seeing the snow through your eyes on the computer while staying nice and warm here in Miami. The last time I saw snow was when my partner needed help fixing a road to one of our cabins in NC. I'll to looking at your photos. Maybe some day I'll get to shoot an underwater wedding.
    Michael
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