Hi, I’m Klaus from Germany.
I love to ride my bike through Berlin with my camera bag over my shoulder, heading to a shoot in the government district or in the Tiergarten.
For a wedding, though, I usually rent a car – here in the city you luckily don’t need one of your own.
As a trained journalist, I started photographing weddings when it became clear to me that the tools of journalism also fit perfectly on the day of a wedding ceremony. The precise eye of the photojournalist, the rapid pace with which the day rushes by, the empathy that is always so important when dealing with other people…
I always understand myself as a participating observer at weddings – mingling with the guests, documenting the day as it unfolds.
There is nothing I want less than to intervene in the events of the day, to direct people on their big day or to push them around, or even to place myself as the centre of attention.
The equipment I have been working with since last year also helps me here. After years with Canon, I switched completely to Sony’s mirrorless full-frame bodies. The precision and speed of the cameras, the missing shutter noise, the smaller dimensions and the overall inconspicuousness fit perfectly with my style of working.
(And by the way: Even when working as a portrait photographer for companies or magazines, I’m always happy about how reliably the autofocus in these little beasts works for me now.)
For weddings, I carry two Sony bodies in my Compagnon Messenger leather bag – the a9, and the a7 III as a backup and secondary camera.
To give the little finger something to grasp, I equipped both bodies with the Sony Grip Extension from day one. This makes the whole thing ergonomically much more comfortable without adding much weight.
I love the Sony FE 28mm f/2 as a handy reportage lens. The focal length has now become my favorite one, and as it is so small and light, I also like to have it hanging in front of my chest during holidays or leisure time. (Good-bye Ricoh GR!)
Both cameras are attached to a simple Think Tank camera strap. They don’t slip off the shoulder, and I can simply place one of the two cameras down when I don’t need it.
My other favorite lens is the Sony FE 24mm f/1.4 GM. I simply love this wide-angle look with an aperture wide open on the full frame sensor. And yes, I’m more of a wide-angle guy. I think there’s nothing better than being close to the action.
When I need some distance from the action, or when I need a slightly more flattering focal length for portraits, I grab the Sony FE 35mm f/1.8, which I really like, too. In my opinion, it’s a perfect compromise between image quality, speed, size and weight.
Lenses on mirrorless cameras just shouldn’t be any bulkier or heavier, I believe.
As I mentioned above, my job is all about remaining as inconspicuous as possible. Shooting from the hip with a small device and mostly using the display, I can do this much better than with a classic DSLR with a heavy lens in front of my face.
One of the Sony FE 55mm f/1.8 and the Sony FE 85mm f/1.8 usually sits on the second camera body, though they sometimes stay in my bag.
Both are great focal lengths for portraits, deliver a nice bokeh and are almost always with me. But have I mentioned already that I am more of a wide-angle guy?
As for the flashes, I use them almost exclusively on the dance floor at weddings and events. One or two off-camera strobes in the room help enormously to reproduce the mood on the dance floor as it felt at the party. And sometimes it just helps to be able to counter the red LEDs of the DJ.
On camera, the small Godox TT350S has exactly the right dimensions and weight for a Sony body, and it delivers more than enough power, as I usually only fire it at the lowest level to freeze the movement anyway.
It triggers one or two Godox TT685S off-camera at the same time, which I place across the room (sometimes I just hand them to guests) – and the party can kick off!