Finding the best South Florida Wedding Photographer
Jeff Kolodny Photography & Video
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Jeff Kolodny Photography & Video

Finding the best South Florida Wedding Photographer

What makes the best South Florida wedding photographer?

When recently engaged couples start searching for their wedding photographer they get bombarded with potential photographer suggestions from everyone. Since digital photography became the norm it's very easy for anyone to walk into a store buy a camera and call themselves a professional. By definition a professional is often referred to as anyone who makes money with a camera. With all the new cameras of today anyone can get nice pictures. The question is can the photographer take nice pictures on command and in any situation? Usually the go-to when looking for a photographer is do you like their pictures? How do you find your best South Florida wedding photographer? By searching Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, and online galleries couples get to see a ton of nice pictures. Flipping through a photographers website gallery every photo displayed usually looks nice. All the pictures in your typical blog post look nice. The problem is wedding photography is made up of not one or even 30 nice pictures. Wedding photography should consist of several hundred photographs, Actually a normal wedding of mine is between 700 and 1300 or more images. Out of the 700 to 1300 or more photos how many do you think are, in focus, "perfectly exposed, Let's get to that later." What about good composition? The answer is All of them. I have a few standards that must be achieved in order for me to determine what is and is not acceptable. Let's start with "Focus" When looking at a wedding photo one part of the photo needs to be sharp. (In Focus). Ok - I don't care if 90% of the photo has motion blur, focus fall-off or "Bokeh" Ok - in a very rare case a photo that is 100% out of focus could be called artsy, because I guess in photography, everything goes in the name of art. Just not by my book. Another trendy image that is seen all over the web are "Light and Airy wedding pictures". Light and Airy wedding pictures are pictures where the pictures are very light and have a soft light and airy feel to them. The question with light and airy images is, Are they light and airy because the photographer exposed them correctly, and then balanced them to look light and airy? Or are they light and airy because the photographer doesn't understand exposure settings, and over exposed the photos as a result of the digital screen on the back of the camera? If the exposure is over by more than 1 to 2 F-stops at the point of capture then the result is blown out whites. This means that no detail will be visible in the white areas. So that $8000.00 wedding gown with the fancy beads and detailed work won't show the fine details. A white wedding gown should be photographed at 18 to 10% grey. Then the grey gown should be corrected to appear white. If a wedding dress is blown out at the point to capture, the detail of the gown can't be corrected. If the photographer tries to make a blown out gown show detail it won't happen, the blown out part of the gown with turn to grey mud. See the photo samples below.

The photo in the middle was shot with a good normal exposure. The one on the left was shot with a good normal exposure, then enhanced for light and airy. The photo on the right shows what a blown out exposure looks like after it had been corrected. The patch of grey at the bottom of the photo on the right shows the grey mud you get when you try to fix a blown out photo. Now remember, my raw images are shot correctly so the photo on the right was not really blown out at point of capture. I wanted to convey what a blown out photo would look like if it was over exposed and the photographer tried to fix it. Remember this, when you see a light and airy photo, look to see if there is detail in the whites. If the whites are completely white with the detail gone you have to ask yourself, did the photographer blow out the exposure? Camera exposures should be determined by the photographer looking at the histogram and not by looking at the camera screen.

How do you find the best South Florida wedding photographer for you?

I know I'm throwing a lot of technical stuff at you. But I'm going to make it easier for you to determine who is your best South Florida wedding photographer. Once you have found a photographer who's work you like, the next step is to read reviews. Wedding Wire is one of the most popular wedding vendor review site. By reading Wedding Wire reviews you will be able to learn some of the pressing question such as, are people happy with the finished results? Did the photographer arrive on time and deliver what was promised?

In addition to reading reviews in your search for the best South Florida wedding photographer you should also ask your potential photographer for the passcode to see some recent complete weddings. If you photographer says they shoot 1000 pictures, you should view all 1000. I was just hired by a bride who used to work for me. She mentioned that everyone gave her names of photographers. Because she worked for me she was more educated than the average bride. Because she was referred by friends she agreed to look at the photographers who her girlfriends referred. What she found was, great looking photo galleries and blog pictures. However the full wedding galleries (the pictures delivered to clients.) included pictures with lots of mistakes such as out of focus photos, bad angles and other silly mistakes including, blown out images.

Confirming you made the right choice.

Finally, do an engagement photo shoot. Once you get to work with a photographer and see the results you will learn the complete story. By doing an engagement shoot you will find out if your photographer can pose, has a good personality and is able to make you and your fiancé feel comfortable in front of the camera.

I would love to share more of my photography. If you want to see lots of really cool photos from Weddings, Corporate events, Charity Events, and other special events, check out my Instagram feed. I add new images all the time. I also have tons of scenic, food and Bat and Bar Mitzvahs.

Here is the link: My Instagram Feed.

Location: 485 Brickell Ave, Miami, FL 33131.