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Wedding Photography: Capturing the Story

Lesson 35 of 40

The Value of a Wedding Album

Rocco Ancora, Ryan Schembri

Wedding Photography: Capturing the Story

Rocco Ancora, Ryan Schembri

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Lesson Info

35. The Value of a Wedding Album


  Class Trailer
Now Playing
1 Class Introduction Duration:04:18
4 Shooting Philosophy Duration:09:22
8 Get the Right Exposure Duration:16:20
9 The Theory Behind Lighting Duration:10:19
12 Seven Fundamentals of Pose Duration:13:56
15 Flash for Indoor Photography Duration:18:59
25 Example Couple Interview Duration:22:49
27 Workflow Overview in Lightroom Duration:19:28
29 Export Pictures to Animoto Duration:04:28
32 Color Management in Photoshop Duration:03:04
35 The Value of a Wedding Album Duration:05:27
40 Wedding Album Workflow Duration:08:13

Lesson Info

The Value of a Wedding Album

It all comes down to this. It's the wedding album, the pinnacle of all of the stuff that we've been through in terms of shooting and post-production. Finally, getting that onto pieces of paper that are bound into a book and given to the client as their heirloom piece for that entire day, which is a really really important thing. So, we're gonna dive right into talking a little bit about album design. But, also talking about the sales aspect of albums as well, which I get the sense that some people get a little bit scared of. Would you agree with me guys? It's a little bit of a touchy subject with people. Especially, when we start talking about the amount of money that people can part with when it comes to albums. But, you think about the album itself and what the album means to the client and what it means to the photographer. You know, for the client it's all about having that heirloom of that day, that they can put away. They can pull out every now and then and look at. And really, t...

hat's been the presence of wedding albums over the last 30 or 40 years, you know? They all get put away in the cupboard. You know, with their little white gloves. And they get taken out every now and then to look at. And what we're trying to do is break that mold in terms of wedding albums a little bit. I'd love to have my wedding albums with my clients displayed the entire time being more like featured coffee table pieces, if you like. And that way it's out on display all the time for people to look at and reference to. And really I guess, have it there so that it's not just that thing that goes into the cupboard and gets put away for 10 years. Wedding albums are an immense source of pride not only for the wedding couple themselves, but for us as photographers. Would you guys agree? It's like, to see all those amazing shots worked perfectly, retouched to the nth degree. You know, Rocco's shown some great techniques in terms of doing all that. And then to finally have that printed on beautiful Adstock paper, and to live in this beautifully bound book. So, it's an immense source of pride for us as well. But, let's face it. It's an immense source of income as well. Because, we charge a certain amount to be there on the day and to shoot the day. But really, we can also gain a lot of income in terms of selling the product from that and what we're talking about here in terms of albums. So, albums come in all sorts of shapes and sizes and everything else. And I think the biggest part of my wedding albums, is that they become my best marketing tool. Because if you think about it, if you deliver an album to a client in a great short space of time, not too short, but not way too long, that marketing tool is intense, absolutely intense. Because what happens when people get married, they usually have people home after the wedding and take them around for dinner and all that sort of thing. And what are they gonna pull out after talking about the wedding? They are gonna talk about the album and show pictures of it, maybe people that weren't there. Even if they were there, they're probably showing it anyway. So, for us it's an amazing marketing tool and a way that we get great referrals from as well. Let's talk about the sales of it a little bit. Because, I think the sales of it can be a really scary topic for a lot of people. When we have albums in our studio that we show potential clientele, and clientele that have already booked us that then we're wanting to sell a wedding album to, we come back to one thing. And it's to sell big, you have to show big. There's no point in having a wedding album that has 10 pages or 20 pages in it, if you want to sell wedding albums that have 40 or 50 pages in them. If they can't see how that physically looks, there's no way they are going to buy it. Just absolutely no way they're gonna buy. The other thing with the album that has 20 or 30 pages in it, if you photograph the wedding correctly and you want to have a beautiful, clean looking album, there's probably no way that you're going to tell the entire story in 20 to 30 pages. Yeah? Unless you're putting 12 images per page and that way it's probably just looking like a proof book rather than just a wedding album. So, we want to have beautiful, clean designs in our albums But, we also want to have that entire story shown as well. So, that's why yes, a lot of our albums are big. The ones we have in our studio is 60 to 80 pages, okay? So, 60 to 80 pages that we show people. And that's what we tell people that's the average of what people buy from us, okay? That's the average of what people buy. So in their minds, we can tell them the price of that, whatever the price may be for you. I know for us we set it at around 100 to 120 dollars a page, okay? That's sort of the mock that we go with. If they, I mean we have a lot of people that freak out at that price as well, you know? They look at it and go, "100 dollars a page? "Oh my god! It's just paper and cardboard." We all know it's not, is it eh? There's a lot that goes into that paper and cardboard. So, it comes back to again reinforcing the importance of that photography. But, everything that goes into making that paper and cardboard and binding it all together so, the retouching time, the time to edit, the time to design. We need to educate our clients once again, on how much time that actually takes.

Class Description

Weddings are rife with storytelling potential. The gathering is inherently romantic and celebratory. People reminisce about the couple’s past. Spirits are high, music is playing, and as the night progresses, the dance floor fills with joyful motion. The emotional and physical energy of weddings makes for good photography, but a wedding photographer does more than simple, passive documentation of the revelry. Great wedding photography immortalizes the story of the event by combining a mastery of technical skills in a highly dynamic environment, and the social skills to put people at ease and capture genuine moments.

Join Rocco Ancora and Ryan Schembri for this in-depth class on wedding photography and powerful storytelling. 

In this class, you’ll learn:

  • The fundamentals of shooting a wedding - lighting, exposure, composition
  • How to maximize the use of natural and artificial light to create the mood
  • What to do once the wedding is over - image culling, album development, and sales
This class places heavy emphasis on developing strong posing and direction techniques, and deploying them in a natural, non-confrontational manner. Rocco and Ryan believe that the job of the wedding photographer is to understand the story of the evening, and to document it as a journalist would - with technical confidence and the mind on storytelling. All levels of wedding photographers will benefit from this class. Learn how to deliver the product that will most effectively tell the story of the client’s most important night.


Jerry Willis

Ryan & Rocco, in my very humble opinion, are THE best wedding photography instructors in the entire industry! I've been watching their work for years now, which just so happens to win a most grand-scaled competitions, and they somehow continue to keep getting better! I first drilled Ryan at WPPI inquiring about what made his workshop different from all the others. His response, me paraphrasing, "If you're looking for tools to learn, come to my workshop. If you're looking for inspiration and smoke blowing, don't come." That's exactly what I needed to hear. Straight tools, no fluff. THE BEST photography workshop I've EVER taken, by far. You want the best photography education, learn from the best. This CreativeLive workshop is the PERFECT complimentary refresher and companion to what I learned! Thank you so much for having them! It's not the same as the workshop, which it shouldn't be, but they ARE reinforcing many things that have slipped my memory! I'm for sure buying this! :-)

Neeraj Arora

WOW!!! I have started a few CL courses but not finished as I got distracted by "life" and it took me a while to get back and finish them. But these guys!! They were simply superb. I finished this course really fast. Amazing artists, they explain things so well, Ryan is such a charmer and engaging teacher, Rocco is a fountain of knowledge. I am an enthusiastic photographer with aspirations to start my own business soon. I learn't so much from this class that will help improve my photography even if I don't become a professional wedding photographer. Great job guys, keep it up. I will need to come back to the lessons and I very much appreciate the key note pdf. All CL courses should include the slides like they did here. Thanks CL.


I am a newborn photographer by trade, but I really want to venture out and photograph more weddings so I decided to purchase a wedding class on creative live. Of course when I typed in wedding, quite a few classes came up. But when I saw the image and title "capture the story" I was definitely intrigued. I've always been touched by the photographs that have emotion and that's what I'm passionate to photograph! Always a little nervous when you purchase a class because you don't want to feel like it was a waste of money, but this knocked it out of the park for me! Thank you to Ryan and Rocco for explaining so much, showing the pull backs, and moving your subject and explaining why! This has opened my eyes so much to how beautiful photographing a wedding can be and not so terrifying as I've been making it out to be. I'm really so thankful to hopefully being a great wedding photographer and making more income for my family, while having fun creating something beautiful