Wedding Photography Basics - Unobtrusive Shooting and Proper Planning

By now, I believe the world has seen the above video of the officiant that asked the photographers to leave the vantage point where they were shooting.  In review, I agree with the officiant.  Here's why:


  • As wedding photographers, we MUST respect your event as an event that is serious and precious to you.  


  • We must not become a distraction nor attraction.  We must be somewhat of a ghost during your ceremony to not take away from the emotions and traditions of your event.  The reason most photographers wear black at weddings is to attempt to fade into the background (proverbially). 


  • As Wedding Photographers, we must be equipped with the right tools for the job.  Looking at the above video (outdoors wedding), there are probably several other locations the photographer could of been rather than clicking away right behind the head of the officiant.  The officiant also has a job to do and I personally do not like anyone standing over me while I shoot an event.  The same thing applies here.  


  • As Wedding Photographers, we plan.  When you don't plan, you are not prepared.  Discussions should of been discussed with the client on what the "restrictions" were.  There are multiple opportunities before the wedding day to iron out these types of things.


As always, we're here to help and discuss and this was one I didn't want to let go.  Ensure you have the best possible CERTIFIED professionals managing media on your most important days.


Johnny West, CPP

Director of Photography

ArtsGroup Photography and Cinema




Johnny West

Specialties: Graphic Design, Photography, Business Process Consulting, Strategy And Execution, Education & Non Profit, It Program And Project Management Johnny is the Executive Director of ArtsGroup Inc. His work has been most served by military service of 13 years in the U.S. Navy where he provided a host of media and photographic assignments for the USO and Morale Welfare and Recreation departments. His events and assignments include project and event management that have hosted boxing events, support the troop shows (Def Jam, Sony Music, Nintendo) as well as a host of military media related assignments. As a Network IT Specialist, he has extensive experience in network management and intelligence communications. Additionally, Johnny held collateral duties as a media specialist. As a media specialist, he has over 10 years of experience with media related assignments and holds classifications as "Media Specialist" and "Navy Photographer" to his credits. Education: Central Texas College, B.S. Computer Science Art Institute of Houston, AAS, Graphic Design Berklee College of Music, Music Production and Engineering In 2001, with faith renewed, Johnny began seminary work with New Foundation Theological Center and in 2009, graduated with a Doctorate in Humanities and Religious Studies. About ArtsGroup inc ArtsGroup Inc is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization specializing in Arts education and training. This organization currently operates in charter schools across the District of Columbia providing services for AfterSchool programming. All proceeds from Arts Group divisions provide funding for equipment and instructor based salary for AfterSchool programming Company: ArtsGroup Inc Location: Washington, DC, USA Website: View LinkedIn Profile