What kit do I need to be a wedding photographer?

What kit do I need to be a wedding photographer?

 

Sharing exactly what I use to shoot UK and destination weddings


Having the right equipment can be make or break for a wedding photographer. Unlike amateur photography, the demands of wedding photography extend beyond creativity, requiring precision and skill to capture never-to-be-repeated moments in time. As such, equipment should be high quality, robust, and reliable to ensure you deliver stunning imagery every time. But at what cost?

 

In this blog, I’ll break down the essential gear you need, guide you through what’s worth investing in now and in the future, and provide you with a shopping list to get you started. For an even more in-depth guide on all aspects of becoming a successful photographer, check out my comprehensive guide linked at the end of this article.

 

Keely and David at Aswarby Rectory. 

 

  • Cameras and lenses
  • Your camera and lenses are the core of your kit. There are many different types of cameras, but they fall into two main camps: DSLR and mirrorless. 


    Here’s what you need to know:

     

    Cameras

    Mirrorless cameras: These are lighter, easier to carry, and have advanced features without the need for lens calibration. They are the future of professional photography. 

    DSLR: While not as light or advanced as mirrorless cameras, DSLRs are still widely used for their reliability and range of compatible lenses and accessories. 

     

    Lenses

    Lenses also fall into two main camps: Prime and Zoom. 

     

    • Prime Lenses: These lenses have fixed focal lengths like 35mm and are known for delivering superior image quality, especially in low-light conditions. They are preferred for indoor and outdoor weddings because they excel in poorly lit spaces. However, prime lenses are typically more expensive.
    • Zoom Lenses: These lenses offer a range of focal lengths, providing more versatility. However, they generally have less aperture capability, allowing less light to enter the lens. While they are more affordable and convenient, they may not perform as well in low-light conditions. 
    • Kit lenses: Most mirrorless cameras have a “kit lens” option – a basic zoom lens included with the camera body. While these lenses are a good starting point, upgrading to prime lenses will significantly improve your image quality.

     

    Marina and Freddie at Rosewood London

     

  • The essential gear you need
  • Professional equipment is an investment, but it doesn't have to break the bank. Knowing what’s worth the investment can save you from unnecessary spending. 

     

    Below, I’ve detailed what I would buy and in what order:

    Starter essentials:

    Camera body with 2 card slots and kit lens

    Memory cards x2

    External hard drive for backup

    Here are all the links to my starter essentials

     

    Optional or next upgrades:

    • Additional camera body
    • 35mm/ 50mm prime lenses
    • Additional memory cards
    • Additional batteries
    • Case for additional batteries and cards
    • Photography specific bag
    • 35mm analogue film camera (I use take it easy to develop all film)

    Here are all the links to the kit I use every day

     

     

    Milan and Aarti and their destination Indian wedding 

     

  • Insurance
  • Public liability and professional indemnity insurance protect you while you work and are often required by many venues – even when second shooting. This coverage ensures you are safeguarded against potential claims and liabilities that could arise during a shoot.

     

    Why you need insurance

  • Public Liability Insurance: This covers legal costs and compensation claims if a client or member of the public is injured or their property is damaged as a result of your business activities.
    • Professional Indemnity Insurance: This protects you if a client claims your services were inadequate or if you made a mistake that caused them financial loss.

     

    Essential coverage

    Ensuring you have the right coverage is a professional standard in the wedding photography industry. For reliable coverage, I recommend Policy Bee. They specialise in insurance for photographers and offer tailored policies that meet the specific needs of wedding photographers. 

     

    Details at Middleton Lodge Estate

     

  • Culling and editing software
  • For editing my galleries, I use Adobe’s Creative Photography Plan, which includes both Lightroom and Photoshop. These tools are essential for refining images and ensuring they meet professional standards.

     

    Lightroom vs Lightroom Classic

    There are two main versions of Lightroom: Lightroom and Lightroom Classic. 

    Each has its advantages:

    Lightroom: Ideal for editing on the go, as it allows you to edit on your iPad or phone. This flexibility is great for quick previews and minor adjustments. 

    Lightroom Classic: Best for desktop editing and can be used without Wi-Fi, which is helpful when working in areas with limited internet access. It has robust features suitable for comprehensive photo editing. 

     

    Efficient culling process

    Culling photos (selecting which images to edit) is essential for managing your workflow efficiently. 

     

    Here’s a quick method using the app Photo Mechanic:

     

      1. Go through your gallery: Press “1” for each image you want to edit.
  • Filter by rating: After rating your images, filter by “=1” to view and edit only those selections. 
  • Export options: After editing, you can export full-resolution or web-sized files to share with clients. 
  •  

    What culling tools you need

    Essentials:

  • Editing software: Adobe Creative Cloud Photography Plan
  • Optional or next:

    • Culling software: Photo Mechanic

     

    1. Gallery delivery

    After the shoot and editing process, it’s time to deliver the images to your client. Choosing an aesthetic and on-brand gallery delivery service is really important at this stage because it communicates value to your client and enhances their overall experience. 

     

    Benefits of a good gallery delivery service

    • Easy sharing: Clients can easily share their images with friends and family, leading to more referrals.
    • Supplier collaboration: You can share images with suppliers, increasing your reach with your ideal client (always ensure you have permission to share).
    • Testimonials and reviews: Direct links to testimonials can increase the chances of positive reviews.
    • Sales features: User-friendly shopping can boost print sales and other upselling opportunities. 

     

    Recommended gallery providers

    There are many gallery provider options, but the most popular ones in the UK are PicTime, Pixieset and Shootproof. 

     

    Essentials:

    • Pixieset: Start with a free trial or plan to explore its features.

    Optional upgrade:

    • Pic time: Consider upgrading to PicTime for advanced sales tools and features to boost sales.

     

    Details at Norwood Park

     

    These essentials will set you on the path to success as a wedding photographer. Now that you’ve got the kit, you need a reliable process to keep you on track – even during the busy wedding season.

    For a complete guide covering the next steps and more, check out my comprehensive guide, “How to Become a Wedding Photographer,” available here

    Join the mailing list for an exclusive 20% off your first order. 

     

     

    This blog contains affiliate links. 



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