Monday, January 17, 2011

How to Design a Wedding Album - the Story Telling Process

To be a wedding photographer means you have to be a jack of all trades! Literally. Its the incorporation of

1. Business, marketing, customer service, billing, legalities
2. Technical knowledge of cameras, lens, lights, techniques, and their roadmap
3. Writer
4. Graphic design, knowledge of photoshop and the artistic "eye" - The 2nd most important part of the trade

I'm in the middle of designing my albums from my 2010 Weddings and the process can be a bit time consuming. It literally takes about 25-30hrs to design one album. It may seem like alot of time, but I like to be meticulous with my processing and lines. It's unacceptable to have photos out of alignment.

There are templates out there but I like to start each page blank from scratch and build up the page like paint strokes on canvas.

I believe that an album should have a sequence and with it a story to tell of the day. There's a great affect to the photos when they are put in such context. The story telling then gives the photos meaning. And as most of us who have taken an art class knows. Art is nothing without a backstory or an explanation of why or how it came to be.

I recall taking a 3 dimensional art class at UW and saw the most hideous sculpture ever. It was actually mine. I reconstructed at small tree into two trees that had originally been cut down by my father on one of his landscaping projects.

I attached a men's tie on one and an apron on the other. It was horribly nailed together but it was a my representation of a family tree. Corny but it worked and gave the piece meaning.

So when designing an album, try to keep in mind that each photo should have a meaning to the story.

I like to mix in my artsy shots with the story telling pages. You need both to round out the album. And when possible I try to introduce a new location with the details from that location.

This is why I almost require a couple hours to do the artsy shots with the couple. These are the shots that you'll be proud of hanging on your wall or in a nice frame.

Each part of the day should be represented in the album. From the morning to the ceremony, the reception, the outing at a park, and the celebration after dinner should be part of your album design.

Then finish it off with a page that shows the couple on their way out, headed to a future life together.

The important thing to remember throughout the process is to tell the story of their day and to present the hard work and preparation of the little details that the couple was too busy to enjoy on the day of their wedding.

View my other albums here.

Made Media Albums

1 comment:

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