Filters are for the lazy.

 Believe it or not, no filter. This was shot with a Canon 90mm TSE (Tilt shift) lens

Believe it or not, no filter. This was shot with a Canon 90mm TSE (Tilt shift) lens

 WGBH Live on Boylston Street

WGBH Live on Boylston Street

 Government Center MBTA Canon 8-15 Fisheye

Government Center MBTA Canon 8-15 Fisheye

I just got this question recently when meeting with a bride and groom.

Why don’t I have black and whites, sepia tones, filters on my photos? This is very simple to answer, look back in your phone a year or two. Do see all the random filters that you were using on your Instagram photos / Facebook posts; they’re awful.

     Tastes change, styles adapt and people move on from trends. These are some of the most important photos that you’ll have of yourself, why would I put a trendy filter on and especially one that is so overused by Pinterest focused wedding photographers. De-contrast, playing with the highlights and adjusting the color temperature to be a bit more yellow doesn’t make a classic photo in my mind. I’ve also seen a lot of photographers use this as a crutch when a photo is mediocre or missing something.  

     Sometimes converting a photo to black and white looks great provided you do it the correct way and know what you’re doing with levels, curves and also saturation of colors and a number of other things. But here’s what we photographers know, this doesn’t make any photo a classic or immortalized image. Being honest, the only time i’ve actually made a photo black and white in recent history is when I absolutely couldn’t do what I wanted with the photo due to a number of reasons. I reluctantly changed it and adapted it because it was a moment that I did not want to throw away. I will never myself change a color photo to black and white though just to wow someone. One more example, white or black vignetting on photos… cringe. 

     Now here’s the part where i’m a dick and say mean things about other photographers. I really do try to be positive, like way too much.. usually. I know a great number of photographers that are shooting the exact material they were two or three years ago. Most photographers that I know get better every few months, years or just plainly have breakthroughs of creativity that make me very jealous. But I see some wedding photographers that never try new things, never purchase new equipment or develop their post game (editing).  Wedding photography is simply put a gym for photographers, you’re regularly pushed to adapt, learn and get better, faster, stronger at your photography.  I can look back every year and see my deficits or where i’ve made improvements. So here’s where I tie that back into what i’m saying, filters are a huge crutch for someone trying to hide the fact that they aren’t developing themselves. For the sake of the bride and groom you should be taking the payment and rolling a good portion back into your own development and/or equipment. This is your one chance to capture someone’s wedding and why would you put an ugly filter on such a beautiful day.

     What I try to accomplish with my wedding photography is creating accurate representations of what the scene actually looked like. I use different lenses and compositions to showcase different moments. I’m trying to achieve as close to as possible correct color profiles, your flowers are rarely neon or muted colors; it’s somewhere in-between I hope. It would be too easy to add filters to my photos and claim that I’m an artist and that this is my art. What I do is document and record moments as beautifully as I can. I don’t have a particular unique skill that no other photographer could ever attain. What I bring to the table is knowledge, personality, skill and a pretty good amount of equipment to back it up. I do use some creative editing techniques that highlight certain aspects of a scene or cast a cold blue morning as a more warn and sunny one. The best editing in my opinion is the kind you can’t detect. 

     If you want to add a filter on your photos you’re always welcome to do so but as I started out saying, look at your images with filters and effects from a year or two ago.. cringe. :) Imagine your parents wedding photos and imagine what it would look like with correct color or your grandparents images if it wasn’t shot in black and white (yes, I know that may have been all that was available at the time). 

 

 

I shoot weddings and would love to shoot your wedding.

Click here to see my website and learn more.

     

 Moore State Park,  Canon 200mm 1.8

Moore State Park,  Canon 200mm 1.8

 My cafe mocha. Shot with Canon 35mm 1.4

My cafe mocha. Shot with Canon 35mm 1.4