a piece of advice from a professional wedding photographer
Written by Maloos Khonsarian
In this post, I want to talk about LIGHT!
I attended a photography conference a few years ago and I remember the speaker, who is one of the best wedding photographers in the US, said that a good photographer knows the language of light just like a good musician knows the language of notes.
Whenever I enter a room, the first thing I notice is the light and the quality of it. In the last 13 years, I have been training my vision to see everything in a frame with the right angle of the light hitting my subject. When I see something interesting with the light wrapping around it beautifully, I MUST photograph it. Beauty must be captured and preserved even with your iPhone. Thanks, Steve! LOL
Here, I want to share some information about lighting, that may come to help even when you are taking pictures with your phone.
Golden Hours: On sunny days, the golden hours, meaning around sunrise and sunset, are the best time of the day for photography. This is when the sun is close to the horizon, creating soft and warm light that casts everything in a magical glow.
engagement sessions can be scheduled during the golden hours.
Shades: Here is a fact: pictures taken in the shade always work! it is always safe to take shots without any harsh light hitting people’s faces. However, not all locations provide such an opportunity, and not all the weddings’ timelines would allow the photographer to create pictures in the shade.
Backlighting: Backlighting is my strategy when the light is not low and close to the horizon and when there are not any locations available in the shade. Simply positioning people in a way so that the sun is behind them is the best formula for getting beautiful pictures because their faces is still in shadow and the light from behind makes them stand out from the background.
The sun straight above: In the event that a photoshoot is scheduled right at noontime when the sun is shining from above and casting shadows from people’s eyebrows underneath their eyes (an effect called “raccoon eyes”), the solution is using the flash in front of people’s faces, which is my least favorite technique, but what else one could do_ besides begging to the wedding coordinator to schedule the portrait session in a better time of the day_? lol
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For couples’ portraits, one pose that works well when the sunlight is above is placing their foreheads together for a closed portrait. In this position, they are each casting shadow on the other’s face, which perfectly creates what I am looking for.
The photographer’s style plays an important role in creating a picture. Artists have different approaches. I know a great photographer in Chicago that his brand is famous for the pictures he takes with harsh lights.
I also know many wedding photographers in the Chicagoland area that are good at creating soft and airy images mostly taken in the shades.
My style is a combination of both.