Book Reviews

Roberto Valenzuela’s Wedding Storyteller, Volume 1

October 26, 2017

By Jim Cornfield

Photo © Roberto Valenzuela

“Masterful wedding storytelling encompasses more than just technical knowledge,” reads the introduction to Roberto Valenzuelas’s latest book. “It relies on an inquisitive mind, heart, and soul.”

Wedding Storyteller, Volume 1
By Roberto Valenzuela
Rocky Nook | 384 pp.

One popular trend in photographic education, and the scores of new book titles that splash along in its wake, has been to mingle instruction with first-person narratives. The authors, experienced teachers and veteran shooters apparently trust their own career journeys as the basis for meaningful teacher-student dialogue. Photographers are inveterate talkers, and the power of anecdote and personal experience is often more useful than the boilerplate textbook approach for unpacking the mysteries of our craft. Popular portrait and wedding imaging maven Roberto Valenzuela is on this same page with his Wedding Storyteller, Volume 1.

This book is the launch of Valenzuela’s three-volume series devoted to what he’s calling his “Three-Part Skill Components Program,” and, even though it has his private stamp of the formula approach to creative work (as we saw in his Picture Perfect Posing, Picture Perfect Lighting, etc.), here he seems to default to the human, subjective foundation a photographer brings to this specialty. It’s still as informative as ever.

If you know Valenzuela’s work, which is likely given the best-selling stardom he’s enjoyed for the last few years, then you know that this book series will cover all the bases, ranging from the crucial client relationships and the underpinnings of the wedding trade to the minutiae of controlling a bit of light reflecting onto a pensive bride from the walls of some hotel suite. All of this is driven by the distinctive theme of telling stories—from an author who’s created a comprehensive learning experience by telling his own.

Price: $49.95