The title of this entry can't be argued with, it is a fact. The line however is anything but thin. It's 2016 and everyone has access to a camera, the grey area is where and when it is acceptable to utilize it. The past two months I have dodged more Ipads, cell phones, and entry level DSLR cameras than I had to endure 5 years ago. I'm all for people attempting to capture memories but when I wake up on the morning of a wedding day I shouldn't have to consider how many devices I will dodge or have ruin a potentially award winning shot.
The cell phone market is making advances left and right and I'm not here to boast as to which phone you should buy or what is the superior device. I'm simply stating that the longevity and capabilities of your cellular device will not outlast or outperform the flagship cameras in which so many people in the professional field utilize. I could simply write leave your damn phone in your pocket but there are so many more problems at hand. Yesterday my LG G4 got stuck in a boot loop and then decided to permanently die. I lost countless photos and videos, all of which are lost forever, not backed up to a cloud or external drive, I'm not in shambles as anything that I truly wanted documented is diligently backed up from SD cards that I captured with other cameras and proceeded to store on to an array of 5 drives. It's more than megapixels folks, your images are special to you, they are special to all of us, if we didn't feel the need to document things would any of this really matter?
The primary issue at hand is similar to the recent string of comedians who have requested no cell phones allowed at their performances, if I had the funds to lock away all electronic devices at weddings I would invest in such an avenue however it isn't practical and you will always face the rebels who elect to go against the grain. At every wedding this season I have experienced what I will refer to as "vultures" they are individuals who to an extent exhibit the same level of passion that at one point I started with. They will piggy back off of every shot and only cause in increase in difficulty of my job. They take up space in small quarters where couples get ready, they interfere with shots, their pop up flash fires my slave strobes and at times has lead me to not even get strobes out. I'm all for people being passionate and trying to document things but when you show up with 6 lenses and tripods that scream unnecessary i'm not at all intimidated but simply wish you had somewhere else to be. I'm all for people pursuing passion, indulging in photography and trying to perfect their craft however "vultures" tend to simply leave their camera in auto, snap an excessive amount of photos with no real artistic intention and then posting the images to Facebook the moment they conclude celebrating. Keep in mind they were so busy preying that they didn't truly indulge in celebrations because they were so busy touting their camera and seeking attention in an effort to make memories. Perhaps I am the only person who feels this way, however I don't think I am alone.
I could go to the extent of posting images from the Samsung S7 that I purchased yesterday and compare them to the raw files from the A7 and a few people would appreciate it (the genuine pixel peepers) while the rest of you would simply ignore it. This entry could be a mile long and a handful would read it, if anything this is the medium in which I can vent and stress an issue that manages to be never ending.
The worst offenders are when the "Vultures" sit in the aisle of a wedding, I have planted my knees on the ground positioned in a prime location between the groom and the bride as she proceeds down the aisle when suddenly, a point and shoot camera manufactured 6 years ago all of a sudden takes up two-thirds of my framed shot. Immediately in my mind I say "Are you fucking kidding me?" It is at this point in time I wish I had super powers. I would pause time and remove the individual from the ceremony. However when a "vulture" decides that nobody else down the aisle needs to witness something so pristine it causes me to face palm. If I can see your arm extended then without a doubt it has taken the groom's focus off his soon to be wife to count how many charms are on your Pandora bracelet. Please be considerate, if you want to rattle off photos then please sit in the back or out of arm's reach of the aisle. There are people who are being compensated to do exactly what you're attempting to do. I think a snapchat is acceptable as long as you don't find the need to stand up mid prayer to do it.
In an ideal world, everyone who isn't being compensated to document the day would leave their cellular devices out of reach during such memorable moments. I'm absolutely confident the bride and groom don't want to sit and watch their big day from the perspective of your iPad. I also am confident that you don't plan on downloading the footage from your iPad into a linear editor so please make an effort at not looking obnoxious and make an effort at finding a more appealing case for that piece of under-powered hardware.
I've attempted to keep this brief but for those of you too lazy to read this entry, it comes down to one thing, enjoy the celebration and stop doing what you think you need to do.
I'm almost wrapped up with wedding season and have overhauled the PC, details of my build as well as what to expect in the coming months will be detailed next week!
Here's to a fantastic Fall!