(Above is a picture from a wedding… done 5yrs ago)
Oh how times have changed.
Back in 2005 I did my first wedding. By september of 2005 I was doing the 3rd? wedding… i think. My prices were a bit lower (and by a bit I mean the geo metro vs. steam roller comparison) But you know I’m a bit better (queue similar comparison)
Now and then
It was funny to edit an egnagement shoot I took this week compared to re-selecting re-editing pictures from 5yrs ago. I end up with more useable and awesome pictures in a simple engagement shoot than a full day wedding.
(Above – from engagements Done this week August 2010)
The thing is I never had complaints… not even back then. They always seemed to be very happy with what they got. Most all of them are still great friends and follow the blogs and communicate on facebook. They know the deal they got back then, back when they were poor college student and 300-500$ for a wedding was a the extent of their budgets and I was the right man for the job.
Photographers will often cringe looking back at what they did so long ago… and try to convince people they’re not the same person.
- What I’m doing is going back and saying maybe it’s not what I’m doing now but… a big part is the finished product…
- I didn’t have the lighting set ups i do now… Flashes or Reflectors
- I didn’t have bunch of $2k lenses i do now.
- I didn’t have assistants.
- I was using a D70 a kit lens 18-70 3.5-5.6
- There was no bluring of the backgrounds and I think this was even before my big purchase of a 50mm f/1.8
- Oh and did I mention the experience of 140+ weddings
But what can I do about it now??
Well I teach simple quick edits in lightroom to vastly improve pictures. There was no Lightroom when I did this wedding… the first Beta of lightroom even came out after this.
We can’t redo what we did 5yrs ago… but we can re-edit.
What do I have at my command now?
- A calibrated Monitor 30″ to improve my ability to really see the picture.
- I can focus on color quality of which the d70 vs d700 nikon has come a LONG way
- Using an old 17″ screen back in those days compared to my 30″ now I can really tell which pictures are in focus!!
- Lightroom can help me cheat back a bit of in-focusness into pictures.
- D70 had lots of noise so tadah the noise reduction of LR3
- I now know if the colors were butt ugly how split tones desaturations and even convert to B&W can help.
- Did i mention I can do all these things and re-edit a full wedding in a fraction of the time it took back then.
- Doesn’t hurt that I’m editing much mucho less pictures. Partly because I’m just choosing less and because I had less good pictures from weddings back then.
I know many are just skipping to the before and afters and skipping all this write up. But keep in mind these aren’t a before editing after editing… these are the finals that I gave them back in 05 probably editing on photoshop elements
Oh and keep in mind I’m re-editing JPGs
How do I feel about the past?
Ask me if I’m proud of what I did in 2005…. Do it… ask me?
Yes… yes I am. For what I had and the training I had, the equipment, the times of day I had to shoot. The situations… I rocked it! They certainly got their money worth. They were taking a big gamble on me and it turned out alright for them. All of them… I’ve always charged less than I could have. Which made the gamble and the investment a bit easier to bare.
Aint such a bad strategy to under charge and over deliver. After all I owe my career and lifestyle and dream job to the trust that these couples put in me. That and the 15hrs a day for 5yrs straight.
Should you pay for something like this now?
Would I hire someone for $300 for that level of work now? No way! The cameras are soooo much better… the color quality alone is crazy better. The amount of training available to people just 5yrs later… they better be tons better than that.
plus there has been 5yrs of a constant influx of better photographers and lots more good hobbiests. That that level doesn’t cut it for 2010 even for free. But for 2005 people were pretty happy with that stuff. And as we’ll see the framing and moments and stuff were still there. Not perfect but they were pretty snazy.
But dang that D70 had terrible colors (reminds me of the canon 50d bad) and that lens wasn’t sharp… but then again I was shooting at some high f-stops.
Imma gonna show some side by sides now… I’m about done reminiscing.
Deciding why they were the way they were.
These pictures almost look like I had started shooting RAW but hadn’t figured out that RAWs absolutely have to be editing because it’s required… whereas JPGs are already edited by the camera software. So I don’t think I knew how to handle working in raw quite yet.
That being said I’m not even editing the RAWs since I can’t find them. But I do have the JPGs so It’ll be a bit different to edit them.
(Above … the original of the same picture at the beginning of the post)
ORDER: New edit, (sometimes BW), Original Edit from 2005 (at the end)
To go through all old pictures and present re-edits of the pictures go here
Some more edits after the break