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Class Instroduction

Lesson 1 from: Wedding Photography Problems and Solutions

Roberto Valenzuela

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Lesson Info

1. Class Instroduction

Lesson Info

Class Instroduction

I want to say that before I introduced my fabulous group of students, which I'm so thankful that they came from far away and some from very short distances, right, when I say that I actually I'm super excited about this course not because of me, I want to make this course about you. I really want to make sure that you don't have to go through what a lot of us had to go through before we had creative life helping, except when I was starting in wedding photography, I had just received my ten years as a high school business teacher on when I told my wife that I was going to be leaving my career, which I had just gotten tenure for to become a wedding photographer. Pretty much everybody had a heart attack in my family, including my wife. What that means is there was a lot of problems starting out, and this problems took me a long time to solve, and it takes a lot of experience and, you know, you have to basically trade to get up to learn this experience and I and, uh so that's, it takes a l...

ong time, and the problem is I don't want I want to make sure wedding for talking first across the world. Get their careers and get him to take off right away, there's going to be still trips, they're still going to be false, but hopefully this course will really help you as a reference guide. This is going to be a complete reference guide for you to be able to go back to look at it on dh maybe will help you quite a bit, solving them some of the most difficult problems that we face. I have been pulling questions from facebook from the creative life junkies group hello, everybody there from the creative life along that group on from my facebook, but my facebook group called picture perfect practice by roberto valenzuela. I've also been talking to photographers all over the city and all over the world, and wherever I go to, I ask him to please give me a list off their biggest problems that they wish they could just having a clean place where they can just reference is that our having to search for in thirty five different ways on dh, I made this class for you, so I would like tio first introduce my students there are going to speak a little bit about why they chose this course, and and why why they're here, and I'm a little bit about themselves on, then we're going to go ahead and get started with that, so let's see sara lets see go ahead, tell us a little bit about your morning I'm sarah than austin and I'm super excited to be here for a bit roberto's class and um he has lots to teach me I started just recently a couple years ago and I still have many questions, so I'm very excited to be here and learned today um I m from the seattle area and I'm a wedding photographer I also do portrait sam boudoir and you can find me at www dot sarah van arsdale dot com thanks you hi, I'm david klempner I am from anacortes washington was a little bit north of seattle. I just returned from the republic of palau, which is what I was doing a portrait project I did a family portrait ce of every family on a really small island there um for the last three months and I've been living in japan before that doing photography as well although that was a second job. Um I'm excited for this course. I watched your last course ever though. And I really I really like the system that you had. So I'm excited to see you use that to get through problems on this course. I'm particularly interested in lighting people from a distance, especially during the middle of day and seeing how we knew do that outside um you can find me my portfolio sites being bill right now but if you go to india gogo and type in palau I have a project up there that shows all the photos I've been doing this winter so that's a good uh good way to see my current work hi I'm crystal albert um I am a wedding and portrait photographer and my website is crystal albert photography at dot com and I'm just really excited about this course because roberta this is the first book I had purchased and piece by piece and I was telling him earlier sentence spice sentence it's just valuable so when I heard he was teaching again and creative life I couldn't help it but try to be a student so I'm excited to be here hi my name is ashley fisher I'm from st louis in my web site is www dot actually fisher photography dot com um I am really excited for this class because when I first started my wedding and glamour photography I was too scared to ask a question so I just formed a lot and didn't really know what to dio so I spent a lot of time making mistakes over and over again they probably could have been avoided so I'm excited to take this class and then share the knowledge that I have learned from this class with everyone else hi my name is cecilia and I'm from all over as a texas mei mei my website is, um signature film's photography dot com and you could find me at twitter handle at sick films photo I am currently doing ah wedding photography and ah, portrait, I do all sorts of photography, but I'm really, you know, focusing on that. I've come across plenty of problems lighting ah, whether ah, spices of people just, you know, they're taller than the other person, what to do? Just plenty of problems and I want to I want to make sure that I have, like, something system that that will allow me to just fix those without having to give it too much thought or panicking on the spot. Thank you. Hi, everyone. My name is liam being gomez. I'm a wedding photographer and you can find me at lay on being moments that come. And the reason I'm here is because in some point I got tired to take the same photos because I was avoiding some, like, problematic, but but I really want to learn those tricks to challenge myself, to go wherever I want to go, to take a photograph and make it beautiful. That's the reason I'm here. Thanks. Thank you guys so much for being here. This is gonna be a really good class, really fun, I, um, wanna basically start by saying how when you're when you decide to get into this industry, by the way, this class is not just for wedding photographers, this glass is for anybody who has a human being in front of the camera. Uh, yes, we will have a bride and a groom and we will be going through the problems through the chronological order of a wedding but that's on purpose that's not because I'm a wedding a wedding photographer, but that's because wedding photographer you have the most amount of problems you can imagine, you have a problem from the start from the very beginning, you don't even know what the weather's gonna be like. You can't control the like in the studio's scenario also as a wedding photographer and you have to work with variable center always changing throughout the day you're changing variables all the time, even the energy off the people you're photographing could change. Maybe the brights made it got mad at the bride and they're angry and it is our job as photographers, not just wedding photographers but as photographers to be able to change, to change their attitude so we can photograph them the best we can. We need to make them look their best, whether they're happy, angry, sad or mad or whatever they are, and so as a wedding photographer, you have to have a lot of this psychological perspective and you have to be in tune with the people you're photographing because things can change right quick right under your feet they can just change quickly when you start photographing weddings and you start getting into the bright me into the brights room getting ready you know, everybody here knows and everybody in line knows it's a one big giant issue from the every corner of the room is full of problems that's why I can't even wait to get started on this because everything has a solution, everything has a solution, but I'm going to take a different approach I'm going to try to take the approach off, simplifying problems by really making them into a system into a system we can all follow a systematic approach will be really great because if I tried to talk about little specific details and shutters and this and that it's going to get confusing, I want to give everybody a good round, systematic perspective that we can all go to, like go to safety zones when we run into problems we have the safety zones, okay? One of things I wanted to uh discuss is for example, looking at polls that I've been pulling from people on been asking them this is just to give the audience online at idea off what kind off what kind of problems we're going to be tackling in the next three days we are also going to be shooting fashion models when I was shooting bridegrooms because I wanted to make sure people know that this applies to everybody okay? I always tell people the human body is the human body it doesn't matter whether that human body is wearing a white dress or a red dress, it doesn't matter if you know howto post if you know your lightning, if you know your stuff, you will be able to tackle anybody any shy, any shape, whether they're skinny, whether they're lovable, whether there, whatever you want to call it, it doesn't matter. Everybody has the same body parts well, boys and girls of different body parts, but you'll know what I mean, right? Let me read a few real quick uh, this is from teresa thinking, she wrote, um how do you get yourself into the habit of checking every little detail of a post frame when in the midst of a powershot now that's an interesting problem because everybody knows that when you could be you could be great, but when you show up on it's, go time on the coordinator or whoever is on your shoulder breathing down your neck on the pressure's on, we make everything kind of blanks who's there with me that everybody just blanks, you know, I mean on when you're trying to, um when you're trying to put together the mane the mane shot the main post or whatever that takes a lot of brain power when you're under pressure and then you have to add all these little details you have to look at every corner of the frame is there were distraction on the left is there a weird finger coming out of somebody's jacket? Is there a weird hand that you don't know where it comes from? We're going to be there's all these little details so the only way to solve that is to be extremely comfortable with your skills so when the pressure comes it doesn't even faze you you're sickly your brain will not betray you it will be able to pick these things up like like a red flag it would just be come up so that's an interesting question the other one is how do you get the bride and groom to loosen up and think and think that you're funny? You know like you that photographer why do they have to have the photographer be funny? Why do you think that is? Anybody who can answer that if you want yeah just so they can relax right? Relax, smile plus who wants a photo of anybody where you're doing a fashion shoot a senior porter of a wedding where everyone is just looking like they're pissed off or something you don't mean so by you making people laugh they will remove their defensive barriers see what I mean they would just remove the barriers go out the window they start making a connection with you people want to left if you are the source ofthe their laughter their going to automatically start liking you more they're going to connect with you more people don't realize the importance off being able to connect with your clients right away on by making them laugh they're going to like you for it nobody wants to be mad they want to be happy so that's interesting what is the best way to break the ice when meeting new clients? You know, how do we do that when meeting new planes? They don't they don't they don't have the best time for wardrobe what is the best way to help them get a good style outfit together for a shoot or how do you cope with a bazillion things you need to carry all that once when you're photographing clients when you don't know what you're gonna need? Uh this one's from crystal script see scripts key coaching this is interesting coaching natural laughter how do you coach no fake laughter natural after on the answer to that not that I'm going talk about enough, but just quickly the answer to natural laughter is creating awkwardness if I stare at you right now crystal you're going to get awkward see it's already awkward say found natural after it's just um if you create awkwardness you will you will be rewarded with a candid expression from your clients what does that mean ana situs last time if you have to embarrass yourself for five seconds in order for you to get on awkward moment toby toby alive and that makes them cover reaction that photo will last forever sometimes we're too serious you know oh I'm here and photographing about a job I'm not going to actually because that's not my style well you have to do something because they're not going to listen up for you you have to loosen them up yourself it is our job we are just as we are photographers and clickers and technical people we also have to be so we have to be dr fields right we have to be psychiatrists the entire time um here's another one this is from melissa montgomery before each wedding I strategize and go over post is we all do that right? We all strategies and go over posters and that's already a mistake we shouldn't do that I'll explain why I'm different ideas as to what I want to achieve for a location they have chosen um then sometimes in the moment my ideas for this post is vanishes in thin air for my brain in the heat of the moment what about some quick poses you can do in twenty minutes some go to you can use in any wedding now let me stop right there. First of all, we're not going to be memorizing poses in this course. This is not a memorized posters course, this is, uh, let's understand how the body works on this understand angles and then you will never run into problems again posing okay, it's super simple we all complicate posing way too much. We're going to simplify posing in this course we're going to simplify lighting and posing in this course because I want people to finally feel comfortable with those two things that seems to stomp everybody right? Um the reason why when you have all these ideas in your head and you go to a location, the reason why this ideas go out the window when you when you're under pressure it's because they're in a very, very tip of your brain, they're not in your long term memory at all. We don't spend time understanding the dynamics off the body we spent time trying to memorize poses it's like learning a language I know you're trying to do is memorize words, but you don't even know the grammar behind them to put them together, so in this course we're going to stop that I hope we can stop that my hope is that we can just clarify how simple posting really is on we can all feel comfortable on we can all make that go from the top of her heads to our second toe are second nature to our long term memory okay you see another one from todd harbert uh he says also thinking about speed lights I always have a problem trying to balance with a sixteen lighting I'm going to stop right there I was I just came back from judging the fbi photo competition on one of the reasons why people think you know I'm kind of a strict judge or whatever is that it's not that it was because we we learn to use her flashes we no we put the flash behind for rain lighting with two off camera flash right but we're not thinking howto balance the light that comes out of our flash which is daylight balanced on we don't think about howto blend it with the other different types of lighting the we deal with in locations when you have a nice warm tone room and then you have this crazy flash in the back of their heads and that spill's over their face that's going to look like the flash has his own identity the flash should not have its own identity the flash should be complimentary issue be helping you it shouldn't be let me take let me take attention away from the bride and groom because I am the flash and I am all powerful that makes sense let's learn the flash lis pull it out of t l or if detail works great by the way but sometimes it's okay to pull it out of t c I'll go to manual flash on dh learn some techniques to blend it and we'll discuss on lighting techniques today wait go one more here how do you propose large groups flash airings light settings for large groups in low light situations quick setups on dh diffusing difficult people now we all have difficult people let me tell you something about difficult people difficult people just want attention they don't get enough right? They're difficult because they don't get enough attention they want people to laugh at them they want people to look at them they want attention so just give him the attention they want. If they're jerks, you just be like oh yeah you really that's great you really get I get you I understand and what happens is people are like, oh, this person gets me and once you get once they get the audience they're looking for they chill you know what I mean? They just relax I deal with difficult people all the time I live in beverly hills my clients are not exactly the easiest people to deal with they think they own the world and some of them do they own half of beverly hills but they're so funny those people are so funny to me now like I'm just give him the attention they want give them the audience and you will have them eating out of your hand okay that's pretty simple you want to make difficult people laugh, make it awkward for them make him feel awkward for a second and they'll laugh you know um you want to blend your life, you want to be able to manage, posting and lighting beautifully don't worry about it what didn't you understand the body dynamics and he will go into your long term memory okay, so this is all going to be part of that I have a lot more in fact, if people want to see look at these pages on pages ofthe people pulling problems on just asking me non stop for all these issues they want to deal with on we're going to tackle them now the way I'm going to tackle them is this way I have a pretty hefty timeline that I developed for the pure purpose of helping you on dh addressing your problems you sent me, okay, but if I address problems number by number they can give that will get very choppy and that will not really work what I decided to do instead is grabbed your list of problems make a timeline based on all these problems and I'm going to be discussing them our solutions to these problems was the make sense, so we're not going to be like problem number twenty four blah, blah, blah, blah and then I'm going to solve it. That will not be a smooth class. We're going to go over the chronological order of a wedding, we're going to have fashion models as well, instead of instead of just pricing grooms, we're goingto have wedding parties to represent groups and families or whatever we're going to be addressing these problems based on this time line sounds good. All right, let me go ahead on dh get started with my quicky no here were brutal, that sounds great, but you know that for the hundred and one problems that you're going to talk about, our creative live viewers have one thousand and one more to ask you, you know, and they have some ready this one make sure you knew that I hope so. I want them to ask, I want them to ask I want this class is not for anybody else other than for the people watching on dh for you guys, I want people to feel like I'm here for them, I'm here to help them this is not about me, I developed this class, I love teaching, I love this industry, I want everybody to succeed andi, I'm going to make you like my life teaching mission to make sure wedding photographers are super respected artists because they're going to think of us as really masters of our domain they're not going to think that on ly fashion photographers are good at what they do wedding for talking first are also masters of what they do and remember this is not just a wedding class I just happened to be a wedding photographer, right? But I went to when everyone out there to be able to build a career, pay their bills no worry about paying the rent because they're not no one's booking them you know it's difficult it's a difficult industry there is no barriers to entry so people could just come into the industry and automatically their wedding photographers and then they lower their prices and have to compete with that and that's why it's so hard we have to learn how to separate ourselves. We have to be above and beyond what people expect and then people are going to say this person's worth that ten thousand dollars he's charging me if she's charging me or whatever. But if we keep this marriage photography thing, if we keep this levels four and five and six off ten andi trying to compete with that theo only two you're gonna have to compete will be your prices and that is not a good tool not a good tool it all you want your work, toby a necessity for the for your clients not a desire a necessity they want they need to be like I need to hire ashley fisher. I need to hire her not I want to hire her okay, during the third day we're gonna be doing a client meeting anything I'm gonna discuss how to get into your customer's brain not how to sell to them howto get and communicate with the decision maker part of your brain so you go from a desire and you become a neat okay? We'll talk about that too, okay for the day one this is what we're going to do how to set yourself apart during the getting ready section that's really important I'll discuss that later actually go over basics of light and its behavior the description of equipment used during the getting ready section ofthe bride or groom uh how do you know what the difference is in a big light source on a small light source on by the way, I just want to say that this guy here these guys are small light sources, not the big light sources we can make them big, but they come small so we're going to talk about how to make this small guys into really big light sources okay on the reason why we would do that um we're going to do one that a lot of people really want how to read a room for therefore for it for his photographic potential how to read a room uh we're going to talk about how to be more progressive more proactive when it comes to photojournalism okay, well in weddings waiting for the journalism whatever or even st photojournalism we're gonna talk about what are probably the best camera settings to be fast for journalism so you don't miss moments we're gonna talk about how to get the dress on properly we're gonna talk about keeping it clean and choosing the light understanding how to shoot pre visualize and execute for the album um I'll talk about this more in the third day but with my clients the first initial sales pitch is where I want them to hire me know where I tried to blow them out of the water with expenses and increase the album on dh expenses and so forth my job is to kind of get them to trust me to life me to hire me and then it is my job during the wedding to create so many great pictures so many great sequences so many great stories that after the wedding I had an album I used graphic story right? And I say we client sold about twenty layouts by the time I'm done they have thirty five forty layouts that's twice as much on they can say no because you did. You had so many stories so much going on that they feel like it will be such a shame not to have. Okay, so we'll talk about that, uh, here's, another big one. We're going to talk about howto push yourself creatively that's a big one, that's a big, big, big one. So I'm going to be pushed myself today just to kind of show I'm gonna push all of you to show. So once we do what we do, what we go to, like our little, our little comfort zone posts, I'm going to congratulate you for doing that, and then we're not going to do that anymore. We're going to be like, congratulations. We did go to remember my last creative life. I did. I talked about case hug, kiss, fountain park, deep kiss, hug, kiss, hug, kiss again. None of us are doing that here. Okay? We're gonna expand. Okay? We should make a song out of that cannon. I should start making a song out of that. Does that mean you're gonna play the way? I'm not gonna happen this time, their own segment. We're going to talk about keeping, keep yourself thinking and moving to the next set of photos. Now keep yourself thinking is thinking ahead while you're shooting you're thinking what is the next step kind of like michael jordan when he showed in basketball where his playing basketball he's he's not in the moment he's thinking ahead where is the ball gonna be afterwards she what I'm saying we're gonna talk about what the next step should be so once you do this what is the next thing you have to do for segment three we're going to talk about how to photograph a bride or a fashion model we're gonna have to too we're going to talk about the twenty one posting guide, which is part of my posting evolution product that I have that I have made for you guys were going to talk about shaping different faces, which is a lot of what the problems a lot of people ask me how do you shape around face a skinny face a regular face, a great looking face uh we're gonna think about how um I got like about hide what you don't want to show if you have a more if you have a girl or a guy that has more to love how do you how do you hide so you have a little less to love doesn't make sense you know more to love lest I think that was the most politically correct way I could have thought about that we're going to talk about beauty shots on dh no, a lot of people talk about beauty shows our wedding's beauty shelter really important that they are given to the person who doesn't make the hair and the makeup for the bright I'm the reason when we talk about that especially brights they want to look their best on they want to have close ups of them and if you want to book more and more clients you can have toe become better better friends with the make up artist the coordinators that everybody who gets involved in the weddings are going to be your your team and if you don't give them stuff that makes their job easier to sell their own products and services to people they're not going to hide they're not going to recommend you so make sense um we're going to talk about standing shots, sitting shots on laying down shots we're thinking about how to achieve expression, which is part of the problems that we had talked about before we're going to talk about positioning hands legs and had a position the spinal cord, the spine we're going to talk about understanding posture okay on of course bringing sexy back once you understand the spinal cord and posture it's easy to bring sexy back okay we're gonna talk about in group portrait ce making a guy look good a lot of people spend a lot of time with the bride bride, bride, bride but let me tell you something when the bride and the groom come to your house on dh there are thinking about hiring you or hiring somebody else if you connect with the groom and the groom goes out of the meeting and they're driving away from your meeting and the groom says I really liked that guy or girl I really connected with that person the bride is not goingto finally the groom gets involved and you think the bride is going to reject the one thing he really liked? No, that bread is don't say, oh my god, you really like that person I really did I connected with that person and they're gonna be like, okay, because what can a message which would she sent to the group? And she says, oh, you're really liked roberto that's great, we're not going with him I wanted you to get involved in the wedding on you finally did, but I'm rejecting your suggestion okay, then I'll just shut up for the rest of you see what I mean? I'll just be quiet from now on I spend so much time with the groom I fly remote control high performance, six foot five long helicopters on their killing machines they could cut your body off in half like that on dh before a client meeting I line up I have six of those I'm before a client meeting my clients come in on dh I have six helicopters lined up near where the meeting room is. So when the groom sits down strategically in a position where he can have access to the helicopters the groom will be like, what the heck is that? And I go oh you mean the helicopters oh yeah that's just super awesome hobby I do you want to see it that that that's like thirty minutes of talking and the groom is like already eating and he's just eating like a bird out of my hand see what I'm saying I mean is over the wedding has been booked by talking about flying machines who knew who knew yeah making the groom portrait I do spend a lot of time with the groom making him look really good the groom is your best ally to get a weddings booked I'm telling you um making like I look good achieve an expression using the location chart to creating it interesting portrait now I don't know if you guys remember the last time I talked creative life I talked about the location chart we're going to talk a little bit about that today if you want more information about the location chart, you can get my last course called post called location posting an execution okay that's the course where I go into detail on that um in this course, even though we're going to review it as a problem solving tool, I'm not going to spend three days discussing it because we have many more things and also here's another one using a very light, using flashes and using reflectors for portrait and when is the best time to use each? When do you use the flash is when you use the reflectors when to use a video light, what is the best time on dh second four we're gonna talk about how did the wedding party portrait that's all today, guys that's just one day that's just one day how did the wedding party portrait ce how to get them to interact on? By the way, how do you get them to interact? Remember what I said already? You do what you have to do, what you have to make it, make it awkward, right? Make a super awkward. I always tell people when I'm posing wedding parties you know everybody's just wants to go drink, so they're not into the photos. They just want to go drink so I just tell them because they have been drinking, especially wine and so forth weddings. I count on that because wine stains your teeth. So then I tell everybody to get really close and that's two stairs to stare at their teeth that makes them turn. Look at their teeth, you gets have self conscious, you can't. You can't take a used, are laughing out of awkwardness and then everyone's laughing hysterically because everyone's laughing at each other, and then you take their picture. Even the wind is your friend, right? You just don't know if they don't have wine. Bring a bottle of wine with you at the beginning of the day, but would you like some wine to stain your teeth? Um, individual portrait's off each, each with, with and without the groom and the bride. Okay, we're going to do about seeing apertura creatively for portrait. We're going to be talking about balancing composition, dealing with difficult wedding parties and finally, the key wendy a q and a at the end of the day, so we have a busy day.

Class Materials

bonus material with purchase

21 Point Posing Framework.pdf

Ratings and Reviews


Roberto is a great photographer and a great teacher. Roberto took me a little bit to get used to because rather than just memorizing, Roberto teachers you how to think like a great photographer. Roberto studies the best of the best photographers and painters and he incorporates it in his photography business and his teaching courses. Over and over, I have heard other top photographers referring to Roberto. Cudos to Roberto, for being the go to Pros,' Pro. Roberto is a great teacher and a great photographer that takes beautiful pictures with mastery of beautiful light, posing and composition.


Roberto is a photography mastermind. I'm very grateful for his CL courses that are available. He shares so much during these courses, I cannot help but making many, many, many notes and I'm sure if I rewatch it, I'll still learn new stuff. This course is not only for the wedding photographer, but the information he shares is applicable for all kinds of photography. If you want to learn how to make use of the gifts of any location (while throwing some very helpful posing advice in the mix), this course is for you. I'd also highly recommend his course "Location, posing, execution", which I saw before buying this one. And besides his very inspiring teaching style, he's also very funny! This course is a joy to watch.


Absolutely amazing. Roberto's background as a classroom teacher (and crazy OCD perfectionist) is a true gift to us, the students. He has analyzed, practiced, and tried/failed his techniques countless times and it shows in this course. I have become so much more aware of an environment's "gifts" after taking this course. I myself was a science teacher (and am also a goofball) so his style of teaching resonates with me. While some workshops are amazing at making us feel inspired and fantastic, these are short lived emotions. Roberto's preaching of get out there and practice is a no-brainer!! Best course to get me started on my wedding photography career! Thank you Roberto!

Student Work