Dave Getzschman Los Angeles, CA davegetzschman.photoshelter.com
The skills you need for photojournalism seem like a fit for weddings, but it was a difficult transition,” says Dave Getzschman of his switch from newspaper work to capturing nuptials. As a photojournalist, he says, “there’s not as much emotional investment in what’s happening because you go from assignment to assignment.” In 2007 he became an associate at the San Francisco-based studio run by Ben Chrisman, one of our top wedding photographers of 2008. He says Chrisman taught him how to “establish the intimacy that you need to get powerful emotional photographs.” Otherwise, “you can’t just stand two feet from someone and rattle off 20 frames without making them feel uncomfortable. I immediately introduce myself to people, make jokes and remember names so that people get comfortable with me.”
Getzschman avoids time-consuming equipment setups, shooting with an on-camera flash if he uses one at all. As he puts it, “If you’re setting up lights, you’re missing moments.”
Recently Getzschman moved to Los Angeles to extend the range of Chrisman Studios—and to study improv comedy. He credits wedding photography with the impulse. “It’s taken me from being a very shy person to being someone hungry to be involved in what is happening,” he says. Journalism, wedding photography and comedy all spring from the same root impulse, Getzschman says. “They strive for truth by capturing ephemeral moments.”
See the rest of our favorite wedding photographers of 2012 here.