Wedding photography stands out because of the social significance attached to the event. And no two venues are the same because everything else about the event is subject to change. You can be shooting in an expensive ballroom with an extensive guest list or a plain courthouse. You can be doing a backyard wedding for a small group of people or providing your services to a picky client who does not want your flash interrupting the moment.
Regardless of the venue, client preferences, or weather, the tool that will make your day a success is wedding photography lighting. Today, we will discuss in detail how you can capture beautiful and magical moments in all sorts of places.
In any case, you will need lights, and here are some constant lighting kits you need to take to the venue:
1. The VL150 kit will generate the most natural and even lighting in portraiture, throwing light out in all directions and producing the most natural look for a wedding video.
2. The Advanced Creative MINI30D LED Focusing Beam Light Twin Kit allows you to adjust the focus and use different projection (gobo and gels that can be purchased separately) to create a more dramatic and romantic look
Another thing you will need to set up is the background. Here are some options for you:
· Vinyl backgrounds are suitable for a group shot and also easier to clean. They are hardwearing, so no shoe heel will be able to punch a hole in it.
· Handpainted backgrounds are getting more and more popular in vintage and classic wedding setups.
· Printed backgrounds are also getting more and more popular.
· Traditionally, many wedding photographers still use a plain white background, with the muslin option suiting well for a soft background.
Now, on to the two types of shoots you will do!
Close distance shoots
We want to start with close-distance shoots because they are often of the couple, particularly the bride, and these photos might be taken in the bridal preparation room or a cozy space. Because you are trying to capture just one or two subjects, you can use a combination of flash with natural light.
Even if there is no natural light to speak of, the flash will add more contrasting and detail. For instance, if you are trying to capture the sparkle in the groom's eyes, you can manipulate the flash to bounce and reflect that.
Here are a few of the most coveted flashes that we provide:
i. The GIO1 round head Speedlite offers a more diffused light and softer look
ii. The CITI100 PRO is an off-camera flash, similar to a soft drink can.
iii. PIKA200PRO is the most popular choice for wedding photographers due to the fact it is small and powerful, and also more versatile. You can combine the two units to turn into a 400Ws flash and separate them to use as multiple lighting sources.
iv. CITI300PRO is the latest pocket flash.
Another important tool in your arsenal is a reflector. These can consolidate light to a specific position, so use a reflector if you wish to highlight something. Because of its portability and availability in 5 different colours, we recommend the following reflector.
For close-up shots while outside, make sure the natural light isn't exposing the subject too much. You can certainly use diffusers or umbrellas to reduce that exposure. These are highly effective tools in softening the light, and here are some of our products that you can confidently use:
i. If you are looking for convenience, use the 100cm Collapsible Portable White Beauty Dish S-Type
ii. An excellent choice is the 130cm Parabolic Black/White Umbrella with Removeable Diffusion
iii. For a client whose theme is all white, match the event colours and go with the 40" Translucent White Umbrella
iv. And then there is the 40" Black/Silver Umbrella
If the sky is cloudy, strobes or flash, coupled with studio lights, can make up for the underexposure.
There a few products we recommend that will create ambient lighting for all sorts of venues. If you are looking forward to capturing the couple and some of the backlight and background, use a low-powered flash or reflector.
Another important tip is how you use your flash. If you are shooting outdoors on a sunny day, you need to use a diffuser with a flash to make sure the light isn't coming too strong. A diffuser will spread out the light and soften it, and you can choose any that is bigger than your flash head. You can also simply take a Foldable Diffuser Panel to the wedding.
For lots of close distance shoots, you would need some backlight. You can use a dark background to accentuate the subject in the front.
Again, if you are shooting outdoors, you can use a fill flash or an off-camera flash to create special effects.
Most of the advice regarding the light remains the same for the group shoot. You want to capture each face and make sure the images are crisp. This can be difficult for large groups of people that are constantly moving.
Also, while you can use reflectors and other equipment in close distance shooting, shooting groups from a distance will require you to set up sidelights. We would recommend at least 400Ws flash and above to get perfect coverage. If you have a chance to do this on a sunny day, we will definitely recommend 600Ws flash to overpower any direct sunlight
It would help if you also had some elevation, so we suggest using a chair to get that extra height if you are shooting a group of 20 or more.
However, it would be best if you had flashes that are modified with umbrella on light stands for any size of the group. Therefore, you need two light stands, one positioned at the center and the other slightly towards the right. Since you will use reflectors in the process, the 240cm Air Cushioned Studio Light Stand with Reflector Clamp will suit your needs perfectly. Another good choice would be the 300cm Professional Heavy Duty C-Stand.
Once you are sure you can capture each person in full light by aligning the position of your tripod with the light stands, shoot away.
There are obvious overlaps between the equipment you need for close-distance and group photoshoots, but the key is to have a powerful flash and then modifiers to spread the light evenly. In addition, you will need stands to hold your equipment, such as studio lights, flash, and diffusers. In all of this, do not forget about studio lights. You must have the best-in-business flash, lights, and background to create a wondrous photo.
To learn more about the latest products in the industry and how they can help you as a photographer, please visit our website at https://www.essentialphoto.co.uk/.