One of the most challenging things about wedding photography is reading the "Photography situation" and being able to make adjustments quickly. Because it's ever changing, and if you blink, you will miss a moment. That also happens to be one of the things I love most about wedding photography! I was so fortunate to capture the recent wedding of Katarina and Lucas in PA. Laumont Farms had a perfect Bridal portrait location and it was absolutely stunning. What you would think is a collaboration project where vendors get together to practice their craft, and add the photos to their portfolio or enter the images into a contest for publishing, was not. We weren't suppose to have access to this area, but since the venue didn't book this other space, they were kind enough to still decorate it and give us access to it. In other words, no chance to see it during scope, and mentally prepare. Here's a picture of us walking into the area.
It was a completely tree covered nook, shadowed with shrubbery and tree shade, but beautifully decorated with ponds, decor, chairs, and bridges. The problem? Not enough light, and the tree shade casts a green tone to the skin and clothing.
The first thing of business was to get an accurate white balance. Didn't have a white balance card in my pocket, yep, left it in my bag. But luckily most of our brides bring their own white balance with them. Made a quick manual white balance setting against her dress, and we were ready to start the session.
For her bridal portraits, I decided to use this beautiful chair, and position it where the light peaks into the background through the trees, knowing later this would brighten up the background perfectly.
For her bridal
portraits, I decided to use this beautiful chair, and position it where the light peaks into the background through the trees, knowing later this would brighten up the background perfectly.
If I had used a camera mounted flash, the light would have been too centered, and harsh for my distance, so I needed the light source to be off center, and further back. Using a soft box and remote flash, I set it it up high and to my left so the light would not cast shadows with the shrubs, and voila, you have your first image shown above.
For this next image, I really want to show some difference of light, as if it was super sunny outside, and the sun was shining brightly through the trees. It wasn't, it was an overcast day, but repositioning the soft box to my far left and having her look towards the light gave us this beautiful image.
Mark McConnell is the owner and lead photographer for Life Reflecting Images Studio based in Northern VA. Specializing in Wedding Photography, and Portraiture, he has quickly become one of the top wedding photographers in the Washington DC Metro area with his natural use of light, and composition.