Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Making Light of the Moment

Shooting an evening wedding the week after daylight savings time closes out means you will have to get creative with lighting. We were able to shoot a few series of getting ready shots and some formals before the sunset. And it got dark in a hurry!

Launi and Jeremy chose to see each other all decked out for the first time just prior to the ceremony, so we accomplished our formals shoot as well as a few minutes for them to be together. As an aside, I think this can be a wonderful way for couples to share in the excitement of the day together, to experience the touch of the person whom before God and man they will make a lifelong covenant. I have never shot a couple who regretted having those special moments together, especially the tender photographs we make of them laying eyes on the other for the first time.

Back to light--in a large venue with very high ceilings, we employed a few lighting methods that brought out some unique looks and made for more dramatic images. I snooted (i.e. made a narrow tunnel of light) one of my strobe flashes by attaching it to the end of a monopod and then having my assistant hold a 3' long poster tube in front of the flash. We worked in tandem on the dance floor, my shutter wirelessly tripping his flash from a range of distances. In the top image, we managed to squeeze a little light in between a crowd of dancing guests to penetrate just to the groom's hands clasped around the bride's dress. I kind of like it! The second image took a different approach. My assistant held the flash on the monopod, but this time we put a red gel over it to provide a more dramatic, club feel. I again triggered his flash as he backlit the couple, but I also snooted my own flash to throw some clear light onto just the subjects without overpowering the red light coming from behind. A color contrast is a fun way to add some more ooomph!