Earlier this year, an Australian wedding photographer was sued for missing the money shot—the bride and groom’s ceremonial kiss at the end of the wedding. Initially, each party was suing for in excess of $6,000 in damages. In the end, the photographer had to pay the couple $750, and the couple had to pay the photographer $60. So, neither party got what they were asking for.
However, this got me to thinking… why are money shots missed? In order to take the perfect picture, you have to click the shutter button at precisely the exact moment. A quarter-of-a-second too early OR too late, and you’re done… you’ve missed it. Perfect timing is essential. While some obstacles are very complex, here is a list of simple mistakes you can avoid in order to get your money shot.
1. No camera access.
Either you don’t have your camera with you or if you, it’s not easily accessible. If even the slightest possibility exists that you’ll encounter a money shot, have your camera ready to go. If it’s in the trunk or the zipped-up camera bag, chances are you’ll miss the shot.
2. Insufficient memory/power.
Make sure you always have room on your memory card and always make sure your battery is charged. Even better, purchase an extra battery and memory cards.
3. Improper settings.
Even if you shoot in automatic or program mode, you’re still likely to miss the shot. Your camera simply isn’t smart enough to take the best picture in all lighting situations. Once again, I encourage you to learn to shoot in manual mode. You’ll be glad you did. And so will your pictures!
4. Leaving the lens cap on.
As soon as the action begins, take off the lens cap and put it in your pocket. If you’re anything like me and you put the lens cap anywhere else, you won’t be able to find it for 10 or 15 minutes.
What is that? Chimping is a term used to describe the action of taking a picture and immediately reviewing your LCD display. This is the BEST way to miss out on what’s going on around you. While it is necessary to check your exposure and histogram periodically, it’s not necessary after each picture.
If you want to make sure you kiss is caught on a memory card… follow these guidelines and make the sure the kiss is more than a peck!
Here are a few of my money shots!
I started Ata-Girl Photography Co. in 2010 and I am a San Antonio based wedding photographer who is available for destination weddings. In addition to wedding photography, I also specialize in high school seniors and family portraits in San Antonio and the surrounding areas. I am a professional photographer who enjoys documenting the important milestones and captivating moments in people’s lives. I firmly believe that the unique set of circumstances I have faced in life has prepared me to take a personal and genuine interest in my photography clients. When I’m not photographing a wedding, family or high school senior, I enjoy watching my daughter play softball, hiking, cycling and listening to Elvis!