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lighting for wedding ceremonies


One of my pet hates of modern-day photography is the number of photographers that use too much background lighting in photos. No matter how good a photographer you are, sometimes you just can’t correct the amount of lighting that is in the background.

A camera is different to the human eye in that it is a machine and it only does what the photographer tells it to do which is contrary to what the general public think, but that is a long subject for another blog another day.

A human eye when looking at a photo is drawn to the brightest part of the image and if the background is over lit it detracts from the subject in the image. And that particularly is undesirable in relation to wedding photos.

Every couple wants to get married overlooking a striking scene with a spectacular landscape or seascape in the background. The fact is though the photographer is probably going to use bokeh (focus) to blot the background out so that the bride and groom are the centre of attention in the photos. Incorrect lighting can also lead to the couple being just a silhouette in the photos.

My advice to couples is to not have light streaming in onto the ceremony from a large window behind the couple, to have a seascape or the sun beaming in on you from behind your ceremony.

Place your ceremony in either in full shade or in direct sunlight. A photographer’s preference is usually full shade as it gives him/her more control over the light. Full direct sunlight is sometimes a no, no as well because the light can be too harsh which can also ruin photos.

Another no, no is half shade and half sunlight or having sunlight coming through trees causing shadows to form across people.

Wedding photographers are expensive, and I make no apologies for that knowing what work is involved. So making a few small adjustments can make your wedding photos so much better.

© Roger Dietrich Photography 2020