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The Knot Wedding: Reception

Lesson 19 from: The Complete Wedding Photographer Experience

Jasmine Star

The Knot Wedding: Reception

Lesson 19 from: The Complete Wedding Photographer Experience

Jasmine Star

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Lesson Info

19. The Knot Wedding: Reception

See how Jasmine overcomes challenges and walks away with some quality candid shots.


Class Trailer



Jasmine’s Background and Wedding Photography Inspiration


How to Define Your Photography Style


Shooting with Intent: Romantic + Editorial Wedding Photography


Shooting with Intent: Natural Wedding Photography + Fun Photos


Overcoming Shyness to Find Success as a Wedding Photographer




The Best Wedding Photography Marketing


Lesson Info

The Knot Wedding: Reception

So, what you're about to see is me literally, quite frankly, running into the reception. I had about five minutes to shoot the reception. Now, in a previous lesson, I spoke about how I talked, about how I educate my clients to give me 15 minutes. Well, I educated and it did not work out for me that way. And I knew that because it was a lot of moving pieces. Things were running delayed, it was really bright, and I wasn't given what I normally am given. I had to make the best of it. You're gonna see how all that unfolds. So let's talk about what we're gonna go into, and we're gonna see. We're gonna see me shooting elements of the reception in small details because we were working with a lot of broken light. We had bright light and then we had open shade. So because I'm going into that, I had to make the editorial decision to shoot a lot of tight photos. You're gonna see how I approach it. You're gonna see how quickly we do it in a matter of five to 10 minutes. I was working with JD and I...

was working without JD. You will also see me use a diffuser or a scrim for a lot of the photos. Because I knew I was gonna be shooting a midday, open, outdoor reception, I brought it and it was a complete lifesaver. So that's what you're gonna see me going into. We're also gonna be showing how we shoot the grand entrance and the first dance. We're gonna talk about toasts. You're gonna see us shoot the father-daughter dance. You're gonna see how we shoot dancing. So all the stuff that's usually, traditionally the stuff that's kind of like, yeah, I got it. Well, let's just up the ante and shoot it in full sun on a hot day with no shade whatsoever. That's what you're about to see right now. So what's going on right now is I have about a couple minutes to shoot everything. Once the bride and groom sit down, I need to get them. Everybody's worried about the flowers because it's so stinkin' hot. So I just need to make sure that I'm shooting everything in shade as to the best of my ability, but everything's broken light. I'm gonna choose this table because I think it's the prettiest and it's all continuous. So I've noticed that everything's already set. So I have the wine, I have the champagne. But I don't want bread rolls, so I'm gonna take the bread rolls out of it, and I'm just gonna shoot it to the best of my ability. I'm shooting this at a 200 ISO. I'm at 2.2. I'm gonna shoot the table number. Now, I have sweaters and jackets in the background that I need to remove and that I will place later. So the table numbers aren't... Okay, so I'm at 2.2. I'm at 1250th of a second in 200 ISO. I'm way too-- I'm at shutter speed. Now, okay, great. Oh, my God, this is gorgeous. So, we're gonna have you two sit. Sam, you wanna sit on the right? Yeah, it's perfect 'cause I'm right-handed. Taylor's left-handed. Perfect. This is how we always sit. Okay, Sam, so you just, yeah, you just... Oh, I can sit on the dress, I haven't tried that... What? Do we move umbrella off? Well, we get... They're not in shade anymore, so I'll try to... I can use the scrim. I can even use the scrim. No, not now. I need you to shoot this as well. Jay, I think I probably need you. So let's see, can we clear this side? And then Celeste, can you move those people out, please? So Taylor, can you put your right arm around her waist? And as quickly as possible? Celeste is way too nice. We need to rough that girl up. We really do. Okay, so Taylor and Sam, you guys will lead each other. Beautiful. And pause there, you guys are doing fabulously. Good. There we go. Relaxing the smile, Sam, relaxing the smile. Beautiful, eyes up at Tay. I just abbreviated his name! I just made Taylor shorter, how's that possible? Okay! Good, now, Samantha, can you have your hand on his chin? Yup, show off the bling, show off the bling. Yes, yes, there, there we go. JD. (camera clicking) There we go, there we go, pause, pause. (camera clicking) Heck yes. We'll just do that one more time, one more time. (camera clicking) Thank you, thank you. I want them to get to the party as much as possible. Oh, let's see. Jeanie? They're gonna go to press now. Oh. Okay. We're back here, we're at 2.2, 2000th of a second, 200 ISO. We have people out in the back in frame that I might have to move. (camera clicking) I'm at 3200 ISO, 2.2, 200 ISO. (camera clicking) I'm shooting horizontal, I'm shooting vertical. And we're shooting this table in particular because this is the table out of that has continuous light. There are people in the background, but I'm shooting it at such a shallow depth of field that I can blur them out, hopefully as part of the background. So now that I have this, I'm gonna move the table number. I'm gonna shoot it by itself. It's important for me to keep the table details both with and without the table numbers. The Chateau is a major sponsor, so I'm gonna shoot the wine. And I really wanna do a good job for all the vendors because this will be hopefully the photos that they use on their website, which could eventually turn into more business. (crowd chattering) And now, there's people in the background. (crowd chattering) I'm just gonna squeeze in a little bit tighter and blur them out in the background. (crowd chattering) Is it ready out there? Yeah. Can you get a couple shots of it? Okay. So they're placing the food. So I'm gonna wanna make sure that I get a photo of this. So I am shooting the food for the Fairmont. The Fairmont's catering, so I need to make sure that I get a solid shot of this. And then I also wanna get a menu to indicate that we're starting with the Sonoma Valley Heirloom Salad. (utensils clattering) (camera clicking) Great, so let's move this back. Butter back. Sweater, jacket back. (crowd chattering) Okay, I did not a photograph of this centerpiece, but because there's food already here, I don't wanna take this one. So I'm gonna go to a table where they don't have food on the table already. This light is broken and I have back light. Let's go to this table. Excuse me. So I'm going to remove butter, salt, pepper, bread, and then I'll to make sure and replace it. One thing I did notice is there's a long table in the background that's in full sun, so I'm gonna have to shoot in full sun, but I need to make sure that I'm shooting it... That I'm gonna be shooting in full sun and I know that I'm doing that and I have about 30 seconds to do that. I'm gonna shoot it this way because if I shoot it this way, it will be back lit and all this is shaded in it. It doesn't look exactly right, so I move the wrong... Cups. (glass clinking) So the light hasn't changed. So I'm gonna shoot it still the same at a 2.2, 2500, we'll see what we... I'm gonna get into 2000 the best I can. It's slightly darker here. Great, so now, I just need to replace everything back in the order in which I found it. This is not gonna be a pretty photo. It's a beautiful table, it's just not gonna a beautiful... But at least I don't have food on it. And I just dropped a bread roll. Celeste, could you have the team move back? JD! JD, I need you real quick. I'm moving this child's chair because that never looks good. I'm gonna have JD move this as quickly as possible. Tammy and JD, can you handle this? This table moved to the side, please. Hold on, Tammy, hold on, Tammy. Okay. I'm gonna shoot this at a 2.8, ISO 125. No. I'm doing a test shot to see what my light is. I'm still, it's way... 3200th of a second. Celeste! Even more. (camera clicking) So I'm just doing this test shot. (camera clicking) Have a vertical of it. Tammy! There's people in the background right now and I just have to get over it. It's the Knot crew, the irony. (crowd chattering) (music plays in background) (camera clicking) I know, are they giving you a hard time? They're broadcasting this over... Oh, just kidding. Okay, it's all good, we'll just have to take care of that and post if necessary. So I got a straight on. I'm gonna shoot down at it. (camera clicking) I'm gonna change this to a 3.5. One second! 10 seconds, 10 seconds. (camera clicking) Thank you so much for your patience, I appreciate it. Thank you. I need to take in an overview shot for everybody. The overview shot for the reception and it's just not gonna work out and I just have to be okay with it. I asked for the coordinator and she's the one that gave me approval not to be concerned about it because the market umbrellas are actually blocking... Are blocking all of the centerpieces. So what I'm gonna do is instead of having a lot of people walking back and forth, I'm gonna have to wait 'til everybody's seated. And so hopefully, once I have everybody seated under the umbrellas, it will make it look like more like a lively atmosphere, which the magazine will probably, hopefully, wanna use in some capacity instead of half people sitting, half of it in shade, half of it in light. As long as I can sell the lifestyle of the idea, then that's what we'll do. So I'm not gonna stress out about it. Well, guests are getting seated right now. I'm gonna go and shoot the cake and a few elements of the cocktail hour. So I need to stylize this. This is their guest sign-in and so I need the light to be... I need scrim. So I wanna do is I wanna wipe down everything. Can I just grab these? Okay. Just way above it would be great. Am I in that shot in the bottle? Slightly, but I'm gonna see how I can shoot this. I'm at 2.2, 640th of a second. 200 ISO, let's see where we put that. Oh, this is great, okay. (camera clicking) This is annoying me. You wanna get that bottle to move? Okay, there, there we go. There we go. Okay. Babe, over it. You want this tied down? Yeah. Here, Tammy, go ahead, go ahead and pull, there we go. Great, so guests are coming over. That was a much better call. So JD, the... My personal stylist. We had, like, kinda, like, a dead flower, so he just pulled something else and it just made the biggest difference. (camera clicking) Great, so I'm shooting it vertical. I'm gonna shoot it horizontal. (camera clicking) I'm gonna shoot up close. (camera clicking) Great, now, guests are getting seated. I'm gonna shoot the cake. Oh, I need you to shoot the groom cake. Let's put those flowers back over here where they were. I'm not gonna use the cutting utensils. I just looked and they're Vera Wang cutting utensils, so I'm gonna have to shoot them separately because chances are, somebody spent money on them. And so we wanna make sure that we document that, but it's not gonna be important in relation to the cake right now. Back it up. My settings are gonna be the same. This actual edifice is not branded for the wedding, so I'm just going to cut it out. I'm gonna crop and shoot the cake. (camera clicking) I'm shooting this at a 2.86, 40th of a second, 200 ISO. Yeah. Yeah. So people ask how I meter. And I simply just look behind my camera and see if I like what I'm getting. I'm gonna shoot just the topper by itself. Now, I'm not gonna shoot the top. I'm gonna shoot the topper in one way just to show you why I wouldn't shoot it this way. It's blown out behind. I'm gonna scoot over slightly this way to get a darker background, so that the topper pops out from what's going on. JD, pop in one second. (camera clicking) Great, I'm gonna shoot the cake now. Now, I'm gonna shoot the cake top to bottom. Oh, sorry, I'm sorry. Could you give me a little bit of space? Thank you. I'm gonna shoot this at a 2.8. So I probably didn't act so nice to that photographer, but she's been around us all day and so just kind of feel like, I just needed to work as quickly, as efficiently as possible. So I have top to bottom. I'm just doing base to top of the cake. (camera clicking) I'll just move in a little closer, cut out the base of the cake. (camera clicking) So there's this tree in the background and the cake wasn't centered to the tree. So if I shoot the cake at a perfect center, the tree's gonna be on the right side, which is kind of not the best situation. So if I were to shoot the cake now centered to the tree, it might not be that head-on angle, but I wanna shoot it both ways. Now, I'm gonna shoot a close-up of the topper. (camera clicking) Awesome. So let's just take a little bit of a breather. We got cocktail hour. We got the reception to the best of our ability. The beauty about working with an experienced coordinator like Jeanie, she just said, shoot what you can, do the best you can, but given the light, given the market umbrellas, and a few minutes ago, the umbrellas just toppled over. These are the things that she's taken in consideration and saying, we're doing the best we can, given what we can. So when somebody gives me that amount of grace, it, like, relieves so much stress. I know, at the end of the day, The Knot will be producing images, maybe not in a wide shot, maybe the wide shot, hopefully might be, maybe of the ceremony, maybe something that is bright light, but still is all contained. This broken light is gonna be very difficult to get a really wide shot. But the fact that we can get small, little details and piece it later together and post to tell a complete story is going to be a good thing. So now, what we're gonna do is we're take a little bit of a breather. Guests are getting seated. They're gonna do a grand entrance. JD and I will be shooting the grand entrance, but we also know that a special celebrity artist is going to surprise them during their first dance. So because we know this, Jeanie told us in advance, what we wanna do is JD and I will be shooting the couple as they come in for their grand entrance and then they start their first dance. And then the band has been instructed to stop. And they're saying, you know, we can't do this as well as we should, we're gonna bring on somebody we can and he is a country music artist. And we're gonna actually go right now, so we'll let that be a little teaser. Okay, let's go! Here we go. So right now, it is full sun, it is bright light. This is not normally how we shoot, but you know what, we just have to roll with it. So they're gonna do a grand entrance and I believe it will just be of the bride and groom. They're gonna do a grand entrance of the bride and groom, they're gonna go directly into their first dance. Now, I have to understand them and try to position myself in such a way that I don't get really distinct shadows. I don't know how that's exactly going to unfold. We're gonna kind of roll with it. So the idea for me is to, maybe, perhaps shoot from this angle, get the band behind them, and be able to salvage some of the blue sky. If I cannot and if I just feel like it's just not a good situation, I don't care shooting them with the sun directly behind them and blowing out the back of the sky, as long as her skin is exposed well, the dress is exposed well, that's what I'm definitely gonna go for. I'm shooting with a 50 millimeter. I'm shooting this and at 3.2, ISO 100, 2000th of a second. I'm sorry, turn your attention over there. My apologies. And let's welcome in our newlyweds, Mr and Mrs St. Clair. (crowd cheers) (guitar solo) Just step a little bit, she falls in his shadow. (music cuts) Sorry, sorry, sorry. You know we have a better idea. Sam and Taylor, we have actually a special guest who's here to sing you your first dance song. Let's turn our attention, everyone. Put your hands together and welcome our special guest. Put your hands together and welcome our special guest. (crowd cheers and applauds) Mercury Nashville recording artist, Canaan Smith. (crowd cheers) He just flew in yesterday to perform this song. He's heading to Raleigh tomorrow, on tour with Dierks Bentley. (crowd laughs) (Canaan Smith's Love You Like That) Hey, God bless y'all and your marriage. Congratulations! (crowd cheers) (crowd applauds) Sam and I, you know, wanted to welcome each and every one of you here. And thank you, guys, from the bottom of our hearts for all of your love and support. The last three months, six months or so, it's been an absolute amazing time for us, but hard as well. But I mean, we've had support from... Everyone. Every single one of you guys that are here. And we love you guys all from the bottom of our hearts. Thank you. I'm the loud one up here. So thank you, guys, for being here. Let's raise a glass, I don't have a drink. I would love a drink, let's do it. Oh, there we go! Right up out here. Perfect. Honestly, everything about this day is perfect. And having you all here is the most amazing thing ever. And we really appreciate it. And we welcome you guys. Cheers! Yeah, cheers! (crowd cheers) JD. JD, do you wanna pop on that side? Sam, Tay, could you guys take a step back? All right, there we go, there we go. Thank you, guys. (music plays in background) (camera clicking) (crowd chattering) (crowd cheers) So good. So good. Can you guys kiss? Sam. Hold it out towards me, can you hold it out? Turn it around so I can see the inside. Oh, inside. (camera clicking) Thank you, babe. (camera clicking) That's brilliant. Okay. That happens really fast. Good lord, so we went to first dance, we went to celebrity dance. We went to a thank you and to cake-cutting and now, we're going back to another thank you. Am I singing? Is it karaoke? We just, I mean, we cannot even put into words how thankful we are to everyone here, friends, family, vendors, everyone, for creating this amazing day for us. It truly is our dream wedding. We have to give a huge thank you to The Knot. I mean, that doesn't even suffice to say thank you. They've done so much and they've made this such a memorable experience, today and everything leading up to today. To Chateau St. Jean. I mean, it's beautiful. How can you ask for a better wedding venue? And to the Fairmont, who has been incredible in accommodating our guests and all the food that you guys are about to enjoy. It's just been perfect all around thanks to everyone coming together on this. We just really, really, really appreciate it. So thank you! So cheers again! (crowd cheers and applauds) Okay, so now, we're gonna see. If people take the dance floor, then I'll definitely shoot this. But the food has already been serviced, so I'm... Actually, people are getting up. This is gonna be a party. I'm gonna switch to the 35. Great idea, guys, I like it. Okay. (Calvin Harris' Summer) Very good, very good, very good. (crowd applauds) Let's keep it up, guys. Okay, so I just stepped away from the music real quick to kind of give an update. So if you can see right now, there's small, tiny bits of clouds that are covering the sky so you'll see that the light is shifting so wildly on the dance floor. So every time I see a shift of light, I have to make sure to compensate. Right now, I'm shooting this at a 3.2, ISO and I'm varying anywhere from 1600th of a second to 2800th of a second, depending. So right now, it's shaded, slightly shaded, I'm at 1600th of a second. When the sun kind of peels back, it hits its full force like it does in about three, two, one, bright light, here we go, I'm gonna pop back up to 2500th of a second. So according to the schedule, we have dancing as guests finish their salads. So I'm gonna shoot this as much as possible and by the time the second course is plated, then that's the first time that I'll probably take a break for the entirety of the day. So we're cruising about, right now, we're shooting, like, six, seven hours without a break and that's okay 'cause they're a great couple. So I'm gonna get some dancing photos. JD's shooting on the other side. I'm shooting with a 35 right now, but I think I might swap a lens with him and start shooting with a 24. When I shoot with 24, he shoots with a 35. Here we go. (Bruno Mars' Marry You) I'm gonna come up and get an ambient shot. The crew from The Knot is in the photo and there's nothing I can do about it. I'm gonna shoot this with a 35 at a 4.0, 100 ISO. Much like 2000th of a second. I'm just gonna try to set an ambient shot, kinda create... I'm too dark, I'm gonna go for a 1250th of a second. That's where I wanna be. I'll go to 1000th of a second. I wanna kinda create the environment and make sure there's people on the dance floor. The light is shifting ever so slightly 'cause there's a cloud over. We'll drop to 640th of a second, F40, 100 ISO, there it is. I'm gonna shoot a horizontal. I'm gonna shoot a vertical. This light right now is so pretty. And the sun just came out again. We're best friends and it's her birthday today. Oh, we have to get a photo of you two. Couldn't we? Absolutely. Let's do that right now. I'll send my assistant right now with you. Okay. Okay, so I actually had to stand here because I wanna get more of an aerial perspective. And I'm short, I'm a short girl. But this is gonna give me an extra three to four feet, which is awesome, all without a ladder. Now, in post, during-- In another lesson, I'll be able to show both angles and then y'all who are watching at home can see which you guys prefer. The sun came out again, so I have to pop this back to a 1000th of second. Here we go. Good, so that's my establishing shot. So JD is gonna be shooting Jessie, the best man. I'll be shooting reaction shots until I tell JD otherwise. JD. We're going to speeches right now. JD's gonna be shooting the best man. I'm gonna be shooting the bride and groom to get their reactions. I gotta speak loud. You got me? Hi. I know it's just a little tacky, but I'm gonna read it from my thoughts. I just wanna, you know, say hi to everybody. And if everybody doesn't know, I'm Taylor's brother. I'll try to keep this short. So yeah, first of all, I just wanna say thank you to The Knot for making this all possible. This has been quite the day. It's pretty amazing. I know Taylor and Sam are more than appreciative. And it's just been awesome over all and everything's been great. So if anybody doesn't know, I'm Taylor's younger brother by two-and-a-half years. This was the right age difference for us to, you know, not be, like, right on top of each other's, you know, in each other's business all the time. But just close enough where we were around each other enough, shared a lot of the same friends. You know, we were there to help each other out, lend a helping hand, and probably, you know, annoy each other just once in a while. I'm sure it was always me that was annoying a little bit more than him. Sorry, I'm not too good at this, so. (crowd laughs) So anybody with siblings knows that, you know, it can be a little bit difficult to feel like once in a while, you're in your sibling's shadow. And it was a little bit difficult not to feel like that with Taylor sometimes because he was always so awesome at everything. So like, GPA in high school, there's no chance I was ever getting close to his. (crowd laughs) Baseball stats, like, there was no chance I was coming close to his either. Always there to, you know, give me a good helping hand with school or whatever, whatever it was. Yeah, and he was always a humble guy too. Like, you know, a lot of people that are as good at as many things as Taylor is good at can be a little cocky. And you know, he can be cocky to certain people in the right situation. Like, in the Chinese restaurant near the Kimball Manor. Yeah, he got that one. (crowd laughs) So he was never one to, like, rub his successes in anyone's face. Like, that also made it pretty easy to just handle the fact that, you know, I had an awesome older brother that all the girls in my grade would always tell me how hot he was. And you know, it was a little tough to deal with, but he was pretty awesome to everybody, so... And move out to California, which was difficult for me because I knew that that would be the time that I get... In the off seasons, I always enjoyed him being, you know, pretty close by or a little more accessible. (camera clicking) (Leon Redbone's Dancin' on Daddy's Shoes) So right now, we're shooting father-daughter dance. I'm shooting with a 85, I'm shooting at 3.2. 1600th of a second, 100 ISO. (crowd applauds) I like their taste in music. All these songs were selected by the couple today. And lucky for us, they have wonderful taste in music. Oh thank you, thank you, thank you, guys. Now, I'll like to invite Taylor and his mother. Also a great song! So I try to shoot each dance from, like, three different locations. We started from one, two, and three. So now that I'm already here, I'm just gonna back it up and go three, two, and one. So we're gonna end up right where we started the last dance. (crowd cheers) (camera clicking) (Tom Petty's Wildflowers) So right now, I'm just gonna make sure that I'm getting a focal point on the mom. And then as they twist, now, it's on Taylor 'cause her back is to me, so my focal point is on Taylor. And then as they twist, there goes momma. I have my focal point on her. When they twist, now, I want my focal point to be on momma, right about now, there we go. I have a tendency to shoot a lot of vertical. And I'm gonna shoot now horizontal to make sure that I have everything covered. Focal point on Taylor. Now, hopefully she'll twist around... So they're talking, so I need to shoot at least three frames so that I get a smile. So this is not the best angle 'cause I'm getting... There we go. Waiting for mom to turn around. So we're going to go into the bouquet and garter toss. Now, we're gonna wait for some girls to arrive. I will be shooting the bride. JD always shoots the reaction. I'll be shooting with a 35. He will likely be shooting with a 24 or the 50. So we're gonna head on in. (Roy Orbison's Pretty Woman) (crowd cheers) (Al Green's Let's Stay Together) (crowd cheers) Let's hear it one more time, guys, for Sam and Taylor, everybody. (crowd applauds) This way, can you guys face this way? Come here. Girl, you weren't even gonna come out here. I can't even. I can't even. You guys, move this way, can you guys look at me? Beautiful. Thank you, guys. JD, I need the card. Tammy needs that one. This one? Yeah. Tell her there's a photo booth. So right now, this is the last dance or the second to last dance, so I wanna make sure that I do a big swoop in a circle. JD's shooting with the 24, I'm with the 35. I'll be standing on the stage to hopefully get to shoot over guests to make sure that I'm getting a photo of Samantha and Taylor. (Zac Brown Band's Whatever It Is) High school and college, so I'm sure Taylor can back me up when I say that they don't have the most savory reputation when it comes to girls. So, but, no, no, no! (crowd protests) However, however. Just come over and take care of him, Taylor. (crowd laughs) Don't act like that's not true. So when Sam told me that she was in a long distance relationship with a semi-professional baseball player who lived in Arizona, and was totally her boyfriend, I had my doubts. But to Taylor's credit, he put them all to rest. Sam being the amazing friend that she is, a couple of years ago, she threw a massive birthday party slash Christmas party for me 'cause I'm one of those unfortunate late-December children. Yeah, I never get celebrated, but Sam went out of her way. She threw a party for me and said, oh yeah, oh, it's also Christmas, but whatever, okay. I see that Sam, the amazing person she is and the friendships that she has and how much you all mean to each other. He said, I want everything with Sam. I want to be in there with all of you. So the reception, it came together. I walked into the reception thinking that I was not gonna be able to deliver and at the end of the day, we did. And we did because it was a group and team effort and I'm very appreciative for it. But let's talk a little bit about the things that we faced. During the grand entrance, it was bright sun. The sun was directly on their faces, so I tried to expose for them the best I could. When they went into the first dance, we had shadows. I had shadows across Samantha's face half the time. I had shadows across Taylor's face. There were a few moments where they were both able to look out. I will say that my exposure wasn't exactly where it should be all the time because not only were they moving, the sun and the clouds were changing on us as well. However, when it comes to a curatorial perspective, I know that I shot with three different lenses. I shot with the 50 millimeter, the 85 millimeter, and the 35 millimeter. And I know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that I nailed one photo with each of those lenses. I have a wide, I have a tight, and I have a mid-range. Knowing that, I'm gonna walk away from this situation, saying, I did what I came to do. That also goes to show for the father-daughter dance and the mother-son dance. I photographed those with the same lens, with the 85, to get more of an intimate feel between parent and child. And I photographed it from three different locations to offer diversity. Do I think that I nailed at least one photo in each of those three locations? The answer's yes. Now, taking that same approach, when it comes to the cake-cutting, there were so many people. There were literally six to seven different film crews. There were photographers, there were coordinators, there was the entire team from The Knot. So I just found a position and I didn't move. Now, I did notice that the bride and groom came in and they were instructed to stand a certain way. And once the producer from one of the other shows that were here had positioned them, I said, Sam and Taylor, can you take a step back and open up towards me? By doing that, I was able to reposition them according to my camera and nobody else's. Am I okay doing that on a wedding day? Absolutely. Am I okay getting the photos that we got as a result from them? Absolutely. I feel okay with it. We got verticals, we got horizontals. We got both of them feeding each other. And overall, it was a pretty cake and good light, delivered on all ends. They kissed at the end. I think that I'm pretty good with it. As far as dancing photos go, they're okay. It's bright light, people are having fun. For everything that I liked technically, all I wanna do is make sure I capture lifestyle dancing photos. Do I think we delivered on that end? I do. And I owe a lot of that to JD, who's actually shooting right this very second as I'm out here talking to the cameras. So we're gonna scoot back into the reception and we're gonna finish off this day, hopefully with a bang.

Class Materials

Bonus Materials: Shooting Guides

The Complete Wedding Photographer's Experience Keynote
Gallery Access
Shooting Guide: How to Pose a Curvy Bride
Shooting Guide: How to Shoot a Tall-Short Couple
Shooting Guide: How to Shoot in the Worst Light
Shooting Guide: Shooting with Intention

Bonus Material: Syllabus


Ratings and Reviews


Do not just watch this video. Eat it up, live it and breathe it. I am a recent Jasmine Star convert (a.k.a. evangelist) and a newbie photographer. I was looking for inspiration online and her name had come up before in conversations with another photographer and I am SO GLAD I stumbled upon her blog, her store and her Creative Live classes. I have to say that in the 9 months now that my business has been in operation, she's been with me every step of the way (in internet spirit) and although I've never spoken to or corresponded with her, her online presence has served as a guide for many steps in my business. I am not a high-end photographer or teaching my own classes, like I said I'm brand-spanking new to the industry, but her blog and this class has helped me develop a clear vision and plan for my business, and to me that is half the battle. If you want to feel good about your business, know what you stand for, your style of photography…if you want to know your 2-minute why-hire-me speech in an elevator full of brides or whoever your audience is, listen, really listen to what she has to say. Then DO DO DO what you need to do for yourself a successful business takes a lot of work. But if you love it and it's a passion of yours, then you can make your business what you want it to be. Thank you, Jasmine Star and JD for being an amazing beacon of light to many photographers around the world and for being my wedding day warriors who amp me up on the mornings of my professional shoots! All the best from Ohio, Donna May


Remember when Magicians kept all their secrets to themseves ? Well its as if Jasmine said enough is enough I'm doing a 30 day class on the A to Z of Wedding Photography and I'm not holding anything back baby!! I'm even going to wear a mic and speak my thoughts out loud! Is this really happening? Creative live said its free the first time around? Am I dreaming? Jasmine your giving us a wealth of knowlege and I cannot thank you enough I love and look forward to your teaching everyday Talk about step by step! Jasmine your the Tony Robbins of Wedding Photography, You've inspired me to pick up my camera once again Thank you so much for doing this course for us and explaining everything so clearly and sharing every tip you know with us I feel like i'm shadowing you on the shoots :) Thanks to creative live and JD too An awesome class that I will be buying Highly recommend!

Charlie Ketchen

WOW! So inspiring! This course really shook things up for me! I've never seen a live wedding, meeting, engagement/bridal shoot before and it was so valuable. Edited nicely, easy to follow and so relatable. It's been truly inspiring to watch this over the past few weeks. I purchased the course and I am so glad I did, the course materials saved me making 1,000s of notes, but I still had documents open to make notes because EVERYTHING she says is helpful/moving/game-changing. Don't skip the Q&A's at the end of each session, or the last sessions as she either recalls and compounds what we learned over the 30+ lessons and there is value in all of it! I can't be thankful enough for Jasmine, JD & the CL team for bringing this to us in a shiny, clean format for us to enjoy. For bearing all, for wearing your hearts on your sleeves and pulling back the curtain on how the J* brand operates and came about. So so so so inspiring. BUY IT!!!

Student Work