As wedding season kicks into high gear, I felt like I needed to address a topic that’s critical to our industry and close to my heart.
I know, there’s probably someone out there thinking, “Ugh, don’t trivialize my art and my career by talking about something as superficial as shoes!” That person probably hasn’t ever climbed a fence to get the perfect angle for a portrait or shot an eight-hour wedding at four different locations. The right shoes are important. So in the interest of podiatry, and not because I wanted to go online-shoe-shopping and call it “work,” I polled a few of my photografriends and asked them what they like to wear while shooting. Here’s the roundup. (Click the shoes for shopping info.)
Crocs Mary Janes
RECOMMENDED BY: Me!
After rejecting Crocs for years, I saw another photog wearing a pair that didn’t look too hideous, so I decided to give them a go. OMG, they’re magical. I get it now. I shoot 90% of my weddings on the beach, and it takes about three seconds to shake the sand out of these. They’re warm enough for winter, ventilated for summer, and have enough grip for climbing on slippery jetties. And if I wade in the ocean, they’re dry again in 10 minutes. Love.
My current pair has been discontinued and replaced with this version.
RECOMMENDED BY: Jennifer at JellyBean Pictures in Westchester, New York
Jennifer has worn Converse on every single shoot – they’re unconventional (like her) and comfy enough for her high-energy shooting style. “Growing up, all the bands wore them, and I so wanted to be a rock star,” she says. “I have a mix of legit All-Stars and Target One Star’s, and my absolute favorite pair are from the Converse store in London — green suede with yellow star and stripe.”
RECOMMENDED BY: Carolina at Walk with Me Photography in Port Ewen, New York
Carolina does lifestyle photography, which means she’s usually moving at the warp-speed of a toddler. “As an on-location shooter, I need shoes that have the support of sneakers and the flexibility of ballet flats,” she says. This is her pair of choice.
Yosi Samra ballet slippers
RECOMMENDED BY: Tirzah at Photography by Tirzah in Salem, Oregon
“Their flats are perfect for a wedding — sooo comfy, like being barefoot,” she says.
Reef Sandy flip-flops
RECOMMENDED BY: Jennifer at Sweet Pea Pictures in Raleigh, North Carolina
Jennifer shoots outside in balmy NC summers, so she swears by flip-flops — and won’t wear any brand but Reefs. “There’s a joke in the south that it’s it’s above 32 degrees, it’s flip-flop weather,” she says. “I’ve seriously worn these bad boys to the point of the soles being 1/2-inch thin.”
Hunter Rubber Rain Boots
RECOMMENDED BY: Shannon at Cuddlebug Captures in Vancouver, British Columbia
On the other end of the weather spectrum, Shannon shoots in rainy Vancouver, so Hunter boots are perfect for keeping her feet warm and dry even when her subjects aren’t“They’re more comfortable than tennis shoes,” she says. “I’m so glad I live in a place where it rains all the time so I can wear them almost every day during the winter. I seriously walk miles at a time with zero blisters.”
If you have a favorite pair, link ’em in the comments below!