I’ve seen that wedding dance one shared before. For the most part I like the left (professional) image better, we can nitpick, but the right one could look better lightened up, cropped so that light fixture is out of the frame, and the white balance adjusted to remove the yellowish/greenish cast… but the wedding party and guests in the background are too in-focus for my taste to where some of the attention is away from the couple. The photo too looks like it’s not very sharp. The left professional image I don’t think was the best mainly because the photographer caught them at a point in the dance where the bride’s face was totally obscured (not necessarily a bad thing unless that was the only image he/she captured of the dance) and the composition would have looked better if they were off to one side instead of centered. Their slight use of dutch angle makes it look unintentional and a mistake; it could have easily been straightened and cropped to omit some of the white space above.
The other one, where the couple is walking in with the flower petals, is obviously better than the snapshot version. Her dress is blown out however. If it was shot in RAW some of that could have been recovered. I see a lot of wedding photos where the dress is blown out. When I was helping my friend pick photographers for her wedding (that I’ll be in, so I won’t be shooting obviously) she was trying to figure out why a lot of the portfolios she viewed she just didn’t like… it was because all of them lost all texture in the wedding dress. When I shot my last couple of weddings I made it a point to not lose that texture.
As far as Sarah’s Sharp Shooting, yuck they’re all grainy and out of focus. She seems to have shot many more inanimate objects than people… which tells me she maybe wasn’t the hired photographer, or worse, had no experience doing portraits. Maybe she liked taking nature photos and her friends told her she was a “great photographer” and should shoot the wedding.
I posted on my photography page and on here the difference between three images that I shot (point-and-shoot, Rebel with kit lens on auto and no care to posing, and one shot with 5DII and nice glass with attention to the pose and composition) and got people telling me that experiment was phony because I didn’t try to get a good image for the first two… well no kidding, I was trying to mimic how someone who has no idea how to be a photographer might execute it! Lol.
PS I love the Mommy Goggles site. It explains in more detail what I had tried to explain last week also.