As we’ve discussed in the past, wedding photography can make for an excellent career. Our post “How Much Do Wedding Photographers Make” from earlier this year points out that while salaries vary and it can take some work to establish yourself, it’s a rewarding job. As you might expect though, diving into wedding photography also requires a fair amount of research and preparation.
As we touched on in the previous post, you’ll need to give some thought to where you’re going to be working, and how much reach your business will need to have. You’ll also need to give some thought to what you’re able to charge or what different packages you might offer –– as well as how you’ll market yourself in the area you define as your territory. While these logistical matters will all demand your attention though, there is also a simple, fundamental question you’ll need to answer before you do much of anything else: What kind of camera are you going to use?
Mind you, this is not an end-all decision regarding your photography capabilities and photo quality. In time, you’ll also purchase a range of equipment to help you with staging, lighting, focus, and editing. Because it begins with the camera though, we wanted to explore some of the best options for aspiring wedding photographers heading into 2023….
Canon EOS R10
The latest in a series of RF interchangeable-lens devices from Canon, the Canon EOS R10 mirrorless camera is about as good as it gets if you want affordable quality. It’s an easy camera to handle, it’s been praised for “top-notch autofocus” and “fast shooting speeds,” and its easy compatibility with a range of lenses makes it perfect for a variety of wedding shots. Additionally, the EOS R10 has 10-bit 4K video, which makes it ideal for filming as well. Whether or not your photography business includes videography will be up to you to determine, of course, but it’s nice to have the capability –– perhaps even as an extra perk or add-on customers can consider.
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Sony A7 IV
Building on Sony’s popular A1 device, the Sony A7 IV is a smaller, cheaper, but almost equally capable mirrorless camera. Like the Canon EOS R10, it’s billed in part as an excellent hybrid for photography and videography. It is also popular among photographers, however, because of its capability to facilitate large-print images. The camera’s sensors enable it to capture photos that print in perfect clarity at a large size –– without the device being bogged down with massive saved files. Ultimately, there may not be any one thing that the A7 IV does spectacularly. But it does everything well, and will more than meet your needs for wedding photography.
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The Fujifilm X-series of cameras has had an excellent reputation for some time now, and the new Fujifilm X-T5 mirrorless camera has certainly lived up to its predecessors. While it is a pricier option (selling for about $1,700), you’re paying for quality. It’s a sleek, easy-to-use device, and its in-body image stabilization and Pixel Shift Multi-Shot mode yield particularly clear and beautiful photos. Of note for wedding photographers in particular, the camera is also compatible with a range of useful lenses designed specifically for the X-series. The device is also capable of recording up to 6.2K video.
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The previous examples are mirrorless cameras, valued for lightness, portability, fast shutter speeds, and video quality. A great DSLR, however, is still a viable alternative –– and one that can provide you with more accessory options and more dynamic shooting in different lighting and environments. In this category, the D780 DSLR by Nikon is arguably as good as it gets. On top of the benefits of a DSLR just mentioned, this particular model boasts excellent shutter speed, live view phase-detection, and top-notch autofocus, all of which will help you capture beautiful photos. We should note that Nikon also offers a device called the Z 6, which is basically a mirrorless alternative. But if you’re partial to DSLRs, the D780 is an ideal option.
There are plenty of other excellent cameras out there, for those who want to conduct a broader search. Any of these four will help you get off on the right track, however, as you work your way into the wonderful business of wedding photography.
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