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Wedding Photographer Romania

I firmly believe in the power of wedding stories as they are true visual inheritances. I have started walking this road in 2011. Wedding photography came as a natural calling ( find out more on my About Me page ). I had the chance of immortalizing the incredible stories of couples that trusted in me. More than that, I have photographed international couples every year. They found me thanks to having more than 30 photographed weddings present in the best online wedding magazines. These experiences highlighted my career as a wedding photographer Romania.

Wedding Photography | Photo Shoots

This was how I ended up holding weddings and photoshoots in Germany, Italy, France, Netherlands, Austria, Sweden, Sicily or Spain. This amounted to dozens of flights and thousands of kilometers via car every year. Hundreds of thousands of photographs and thousands of hours spent in front of the computer. And because I reached one of the most useful and efficient wedding toolkits ( which works for me, it is not a universal answer ),  I shall talk about it in the following. If you have ever participated at one of the conferences where I spoke or to one of the wedding photography courses I have hosted last year, we are already talking about an update.

Discover how I ended up making certain choices about my equipment, how I experimented and evolved, and also what were the bare necessities in such a journey. Evidently, everything was adapted to my minimalist style as a wedding photographer. 

Wedding Photographer Romania

Journey Planning | International Wedding Photographer Romania

In the image above you can see everything I use for a journey that can last up to 5-6 days in Romania or Europe, including plane travels. By the way, I buy plane tickets as soon as I sign the contract and after I have chased in the deposit for the wedding. I search for the best options so that my client does not need to pay extra, using sites as Momondo or even the ones of various airlines. It is a benefic thing to make this step early as plane tickets can become more expensive from one day to another. There is a risk, during peak season at least, to pay at least double. Planning can help both parties enormously. 

In order to evaluate lodging opportunities, I use Booking or AirBNB so that I can check in closely by, in a place with minimum comfort (air conditioning and a decent bathroom). I do not leave to hazard transport options to and from the airport; moreover, I also check transport opportunities in the cities where I shall hold the wedding photoshoot. Of course, there can be particular cases, where lodging and transport are difficult to solve, but solutions can be found all the time.

Professional Photographer Behind the Wheel

When talking about personal driving I will mention that I make an honest assessment of consumption in order not to give my client Taxi-like prices or urban/interurban ones. I plan my routes with the help of distata.ro and use Waze for navigation. I also use Google maps to travel around cities. Wherever I am, for quick transport, I use Uber or Taxi apps. I do not pick them up from the corner of the streets. The reasons speak for themselves, I believe. 

Depending on the transport I use, I aim to arrive one day early in order to assess the area. Maybe take even some photos. After the wedding I usually arrange a photoshoot with the new couple. 

Wedding Photographer Romania

What Is My Wedding Photographer Romania Backpack Made Of

When speaking about planning, I stick to my own diet and make sure to purchase food and sparkling water that I can take advantage of when I am at the hotel. During the wedding day, in order to focus on what is important ( if the body is busy managing distributive attention, focusing both on the story and digesting, it is not focusing enough on the photography elements ), I hydrate more than I eat. During the wedding I am more interested in my work, I have no preferences regarding my place at the table and receiving a full course. 

Many times, I ate together with the catering girls and discovered unique ways to immortalize a frame. I always carry with me a bottle of water and 1-2 protein bars that are essential in my diet. They also help me boost my energy. In terms of cutlery, I use the ones made of thick plastic. A swiss penknife would not be able to pass control at the airport no matter how amazing it is ( I do not carry hold baggage with me).

wedding photographer romania

What’s Important | International Wedding Photographer

A medicine kit is essential in my travels ( anti-inflammatory, pain relief, digestives, anti-allergic ). Because I do not have the necessary expertise I will not give any recommendations here. It is better that you ask a doctor. Many times, I think about offering aid to the wedding guest with these pills, but so far there has been no need. I also have cold medicine with me and patches to protect me against mosquitoes. The latter are essential for weddings held outside or in barns. 

Instead of chewing gum, I use a certain type of foils that melt on the tongue, made by a famous mouth wash producer. They are very useful and much needed, although unfortunately not available in Romania. Luckily, I make many purchases on Amazon. 

How I Protect Myself For 100% Focus

I use earplugs; the ones from Fender are designed specifically for musicians, they attenuate the decibels but also let you hear both the music and what the person next to you is saying. I have tried various options, from malleable silicone to foam; whereas the first can break, the others cover the whole ear and can lead to imbalance.

The headphones on the right are extremely useful when you do not want to hear the stories or laughter around, either on the plane or bus. They are produced by Beats, are wireless and have the function of reducing environmental noise. I am a passionate listener of music, and I prefer to relax when I travel. Another advantage of these headphones, besides the very good acoustics, is the fact that they use the same cable as the phone, and the battery lasts about 7 hours. Enough for a round trip, plus getting to and from the airport to the location.

travel accesories

Another Rucksack Accessories | International Wedding Photographer Romania

I use a dedicated external battery for my phone, which simply doubles its capacity (advantage on charging with the same cable) so in any situation I have at least 30-40 hours of guaranteed operation. I am currently using an Iphone 8, due to the Apple ecosystem (accessing and modifying files from any device connected to the same account is a bonus), but also because the battery keeps up for medium use. It has not crashed on me during a single day.

At the time I am writing this article it is 18:40, and I have still 60% battery from 6am. When using the navigation application, the phone is connected to the car charger, and in unknown urban areas it also uses the external battery (GPS activation consumes the battery at an increased rate).

As a secondary plan, I can always charge the phone from my laptop (a 13-inch macbook), and USB ports are found everywhere in case of an emergency.

Indeed, several times I charged what I needed in the airport, but I do not see a need for a stronger battery when traveling in urban areas, or for a period of time that would not allow charging from another source. I also have a 26000 mAh battery that can power the Macbook, but I use it up to 3 times a year if I go to the mountains.

Reduced Dimensions Means A Lighter Wedding Photographer Romania Rucksack

In the spirit of minimalism, but also of efficiency and of dropping the weight of hand luggage, even my charging cables are small. I mention here that I did not choose to be a minimalist, but my experience and way of life led me this way, and I do not regret any moment, even if I have very few clothes in the closet.

wedding photographer romania gadgets

An antibacterial hand gel, especially useful in summer when the rubber on the lenses and the lenses can easily dirty and become slippery, is desirable in the photo kit. An insulating band, useful in many situations (at a wedding in Bucharest I helped a guest repair a shoe sole).

bakcpack wedding photographer

Photography Rucksack | International Weddings

I use a Think Tank Airport Essentials backpack, accepted as size by all airlines I flew with (and there are about 7). Loaded with everything I need for a few days in Romania or Europe, it has almost 10 kilograms, which is exactly what is accepted by most airlines operating in Europe. As a tip, for a few extra lei, take priority in boarding for airlines that have this in their offer; this will ensure that you get your hand baggage in any situation on board, and even get rid of the measurements. I also used Lowepro (though it is more durable, the internal sponge is thicker and reduces the bountiful of storage space) and even Langly.

In the free space(picture below), fit in clothes for about 3-4 days without problems, rolled on the military model, so they can use all the space available in the most efficient way. I use a single pair of shoes, a pair of trousers, a few black T-shirts, other lingerie, like I was saying, I wash at the hotel. I chose something that is not easy to rumple and does not retain sweat. Moreover, it is affordable and can be found in Decathlon.

Although my equipment is black, the raincoat (breathable, durable, compact and light) is light and visible at night, if needed. As for shoes, I use shoes with foam soles, or mountain shoes, depending on the case. Several times I was overwhelmed by the rain with the wrong pair, but nothing serious or unpleasant happened. There are worse in this world that can occur.

what's in my bag

Camera And Photo Lenses | Wedding Photographer Romania

I started with Nikon D700, then Nikon D3s, Nikon DF, I also had the Nikon D600, D610 and D800, and now I use two Nikon D750 cameras. The sensitivity to light and auto focus are good enough for what I need. I also tried the mirrorless range, but for the editing part, for me, the DSLR was better. I do not know what the future holds, but I think I can make do with what I have, as long as there are still professional photographers using cameras that appeared in 2012 and are in the international charts of wedding photographers.

In case of lenses, I used Nikon 14-24, 24-70, 70-200, 85 1.4, 50 1.4 but also Sigma (I was pleased) 35 mm 85 mm and 50 mm. Indeed, Sigma’s objectives are very “sharp” and have a very fast focus, but are not mandatory for wedding photography. On the focus side, I’m more pleased with the Nikon lenses I’m using now: 35 mm 1.4 and 58 mm 1.4. Interestingly, for years I have refused to use the 50 lens, which give me a perfect fit and composition. Well, the 58mm lens, with the addition of 8mm, takes me out of the visual range of the subject, so I can surprise, not direct.

Yes, there was a time when I bought everything they wanted. Now I think I’m wiser and definitely more experienced.

Think Outside The Box For Maximum Ease

In order to always be prepared ( I usually do the same frame on both machines) I use a double textile harness. I’ve used leather over time, but the weight difference of 340 grams and stiffness are important when you travel to photograph a wedding. Now I use an Italian one with a strong grip system. I have a lot of experience with buckles and harnesses with problems, and even a Nikon D3s fell from a buckle during a wedding … I do not even want to think about it … This harness can also be used for a single camera. My spine thanks me, because I reduced the pressure that a standard photo strap creates.

I use 90% of the existing light, so a flash is almost useless to me. However, for extreme situations, I use a very small one from Godox, very smart and easy. I also use a snoot of my own production, with exceptional utility, but that’s what I talk about most during 1:1 mentoring sessions. The image also shows the level most often used by the flash.

photographer gear

Back-up Equipment | Wedding Photographer Romania

I use Lexar SD cards. The high-speed yellow (2000x UHS II) transfer rate is useful when I copy the frames photographed at the wedding with a card reader that supports this speed protocol. The time I gain due to these quick cards is precious to me (in 90% of cases, after I finish the wedding, I make backup copies of the frames on at least 2 independent sources, and if the internet speed of the location allows, on cloud as well). I always have enough cards with me so I can cover at least 4 days of photography (I had periods when I photographed 2 photo sessions and 2 weddings in 4 days). The card holder is light, flat, inexpensive, so as to occupy as little space as possible, but also to protect its cards.

I generally do not delete cards until the next event, and I do so only after I am assured that I saved the frames on 2-3 sources plus cloud. On the right there is a portable USB ssd, capable of a write / read rate of nearly 400Mbps. This offers time gain, while also being shock resistant, small and easy, and offering 480Gb of space.

memory card sd wedding photography

Spare Batteries

I only have Nikon original batteries in my photo kit, 8 in number. In the past I also used batteries from ebay, but their life is low. With just one battery, I can make about 2000-2500 frames, but at a wedding I can reach about 7000 frames (with 2 devices). The 8 batteries can provide 4 days of photography without carrying a backpack loader, especially when I’m flying. For flash I have 4 Eneloop batteries, but I did not need to change until now, due to the minimal way I use the flash. It looks like the Ikea batteries are the same as these (they are charged a lot and the recharge rate between the frames is very fast), but Eneloop is black, a strong and mysterious color, but also minimalist and a reminder of rock music. LOL.

wedding photography gear

Minimalist Wedding Photographer Romania

After successfully using an advanced PC system with 3 monitors (27 | 24 | 22), I decided in autumn 2016 to switch to the Apple system. After a few days, I wondered why I did not take the step before. Although I know there are better speeds and PC performances at the moment, I am content with what I have. Below, my work space, minimalist and simple. A 15-inch, calibrated monitor gives me good visuals for editing (most of my customers also use laptops, and this helps me look at the frames as they would).

A 16Gb DDRam i7 processor and a very fast 1Tb ssd (to 2GBps) provide me with the convenience of an efficient job. Because of the way I work, I manage to avoid procrastination or engagement in other activities such as the loss of time on social media networks during work.

Ramp Up the Volume

Because I’m an audition enthusiast, I have sound absorbing panels (made by me), kevlar membrane speakers set on vibration-suppressing supports, and the station is hidden behind the desk. Also, there I have an usb port, cables and an hdd with a capacity of 4TB. The lamp is programmable, can be operated with a simple application on the mobile phone, and is excellent as background light. I use lightproof black curtains and the air conditioning is mandatory. I have just read a study recently that demonstrated air conditioning / low temperature helps creativity and productivity with an overwhelming percentage in comparison to a sun-heated room without any ventilation systems.

minimal desktop workspace

For better productivity, my desktop is clean, minimalist and all applications are hidden. No notice system or item on the desk distracts me. It’s hard but possible. Batman inspires me, he’s the only hero who does not have super powers, and dresses in black like an … international wedding photographer.

Simple Minimalist Black With No Distractions | 

Wedding Photographer Romania

Desktop for wedding photographer

Even my phone is configured in order not to distract me from productive activities in my job as a  wedding photographer Romania; it is set to monochrome and in the first screen I have no application that will make me waste time. Drastic, but it works. I am the kind that relates better in writing anyway. As a former corporate employee, I believe that if I send an email I have more time to compose it without pressure or influence, so I avoid talking a lot on the phone. Yes, I come from a time when I had 100 important daily emails and 2 hours of talks, at least.

The clock I use is resistant to shock and water and the battery lasts about 2 weeks, so I do not worry about charging it (I used apple watch for a good time and it was meh). It has sports features, GPS, notifications, a clock design and a minimalist look. Useful when you leave your phone somewhere or receive an important SMS. I will not develop the subject too much, because a smart watch is no longer a novelty.

wedding photographer gear

Editing Wedding Photographs | Wedding Photographer Romania

For a consistent look, I use only one preset in Color Lightroom, a black one. The fewer I use, the easier the work is. Closer to the definition of minimalism. The preset is a personal creation, made for simplicity and uniqueness. I have a style of working that I have developed in a few years of wedding photography, which I detail in mentoring or when doing a workshop for wedding photographer Romania.

Lightroom for wedding photographer

Another Little Curiosity | Wedding Photographer Romania

Yes, even the toothbrush and toothpaste, perfume and antiperspirant are in black. A whole minimalist equipment that does not distract me from doing what I love which is telling wedding stories.

travel photographer gear

 

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