The day after the wedding

October 09, 2015  •  1 Comment

The most commonly mentioned "favourite thing" by our clients is our 24 hour turnaround so I'd like to describe how we manage to supply a wedding client with a selection of around 25 fully edited images within 24 hours of their wedding day, and why.

Preparation

We use Lightroom to manage our workflow, so every wedding client has their own catalogue which is saved in the cloud. The day before the wedding we copy the client catalogue to a laptop, which we will bring to the wedding. We charge the laptop fully because there's nothing more frustrating than a laptop that won't switch on. We also make sure to have packed a USB3 card reader and an SSD external drive.

On the wedding day

During the meal we import to Lightroom all of the wedding photos we have taken so far. We then duplicate them to the external drive.  This is a tense time because there's never enough room for a laptop and dinner, the risk of gravy on the keyboard is high.

Doing this kills three birds with one stone. First bird: we have images ready to select; second bird: we have backed up everything up to that point in two places; third bird: we'll come to that a bit later on (why the other birds don't scatter when the first one goes down, I've never understood).

Dinner can be anything from 2 to 3 hours so in that time one of us can look through the photographs and pick the images that 

  • are great
  • need little editing
  • tell the story of the wedding day succinctly

We also reject any images that aren't up to scratch, like an accidental shutter press or a test shot.

After dinner it's back to photography. At the end of the evening, whilst we pack up our gear, we import the rest of the images to the laptop and the external drive. No time is ever wasted, the drive home is an opportunity to look at the evening images and select the potential preview shots. The passenger does that.

Now for that third bird. Dropbox isn't that quick and Matt and I need to have the exact same set of files at both our homes. This is where the external drive really becomes important. I leave the external drive with Matt, who copies it to his PC and Dropbox folder. When I get home I copy the images from my laptop to my PC and Dropbox folder. We now have exactly the same files in two locations and on four devices. This is an uber backup. Then it's time for bed. Overnight Dropbox will synchronise the files with the server. In the morning we'll have the files in five devices and three locations. Super-uber-backup.

The day after the wedding

Either one of us can now finish the task. This process is so fast that we can, and have, produced images within 24 hours for back-to-back weddings. Using Dropbox means that the files are accessible and up to date for both Matt and I at any given point. There have been occasions where one of us was too ill to be able to process images the next day (mostly me), having those catalogues in the cloud meant that the other person (mostly Matt) could take over without any delay. 

Why do we do this

We have asked ourselves many, many times why put this pressure on ourselves. The answer is always because the clients love it. Having great images to share with family and friends the very next day means a lot to them. Many couples are now asking guests not to take photos during the ceremony or to post images on social media on the day of the wedding for reasons including

  • wanting guests to "really" be there
  • and not wanting the first look for evening guests to be spoiled.

With our 24 hour service the first images of the happy couple, the dress, the first dance aren't dull mobile phone shots, they're professional images curated to tell a story that everyone will enjoy.


Comments

Colin(non-registered)
Brilliant post! This is one of your USP's!!!
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