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The wedding photography industry has undergone a significant transformation over the past few decades, especially since I got married myself in 2002! and the advent of digital cameras in the early 2000s. In this article, we’ll take a trip down memory lane working as a South Wales wedding photographer whose dad worked in the industry during the 1980s and 1990s, before the invention of digital cameras. We’ll also explore the impact that digital cameras had on the industry and the reasons why Kodak, a giant in the photography industry, went bust.
Wedding photography in the 1980s and 1990s was a vastly different experience than it is today. Cameras were film-based, and the process of taking and developing photographs was much more time-consuming and challenging. Wedding photographers often shot with medium-format cameras, which used larger film negatives than standard 35mm cameras. The larger negatives resulted in sharper, more detailed images that were perfect for wedding albums.
Shooting with film required photographers to carefully consider each shot, as they had a limited number of frames available. Photographers had to be skilled at setting the correct exposure, as there was no instant feedback to let them know if they had made a mistake. After the wedding, the photographer would develop the film in a darkroom, carefully selecting the best images to print and present to the couple.
In the year 2000, everything changed with the introduction of the first digital cameras. Digital cameras offered instant feedback, making it easier for photographers to adjust settings and capture the perfect shot. They also eliminated the need for developing film, allowing photographers to take an unlimited number of photos without worrying about running out of film.
The digital revolution had a significant impact on the wedding photography industry. It made it easier and faster for photographers to deliver their images, and it also made it easier for couples to share their photos with friends and family. However, it also meant that there was a flood of new photographers entering the industry, which increased competition and made it more difficult for established photographers to stand out.
Kodak was once a giant in the photography industry, but the rise of digital cameras had a devastating impact on the company. Kodak was slow to adopt digital technology, and its focus on traditional film products left it struggling to compete with new digital-focused companies.
In 2012, Kodak filed for bankruptcy, marking the end of an era for the company that had once dominated the photography industry. While Kodak still exists today, it is a shadow of its former self, with a much smaller presence in the industry.
Today, wedding photography continues to evolve, with photographers constantly exploring new techniques and technologies to enhance their work. Drone photography has become increasingly popular, allowing photographers to capture unique aerial shots of the wedding venue and surrounding areas. Mirrorless cameras have also become more popular, offering the benefits of digital cameras with the quality of film. Despite the changes in technology, the core principles of wedding photography remain the same. It’s still about capturing the special moments of the day and creating a beautiful, lasting record of the event.