Shooting Weddings workshop in Cork ~ Pictures & techniques 1

Apr 7, 2009 | Flash, Location, Wedding | 7 comments

Simple lighting with a Speedlight and a high viewpoint from taking the picture with the camera overhead

Simple lighting with a Speedlight and a high viewpoint makes this picture stand out. I held the camera over my head and shot using my 16-35mm lens at a 20mm setting. The Speedlight was connected to the lighting stand using my flash bracket. ISO 200, 1/200th second at f/11. Click on the picture if you would like to download the full size image from my Canon 5D mk2.

I was invited to lead a special shooting weddings event at Fota house near Cork in Ireland. I decided to concentrate on shooting challenging light and creating ‘the big picture’. Shots like this, with the WOW factor really lift a website or portfolio. take a look at the rest of my shortlisted pictures…

A bright picture like this disguises the dim dismal shooting conditions.

A bright picture like this disguises the dim dismal shooting conditions. ISO 1600, 1/40th second at f/4. A simple diffusion layer in Photoshop has added to the soft lighting effect.

Never let dim lighting conditions stop you from shooting natuural light shots like this.

Never let dim lighting conditions stop you from shooting natural light shots like this. ISO 1600, 1/60th second at f/3.5. The two windows just out of shot in the background provide a lovely back lighting effect. I stepped way back into the room and used a long lens to ensure the windows were out of shot.

Don't take one shot when there is an option to sell two. I used a low angle viewpoint from the side to shoot the same pose as above

Don't shoot one frame when you can sell two. I chose a low angle viewpoint from the side to capture this shot of the pose above. I was careful to keep the distant windows out of shot. ISO 800, 1/40th second at f/2.8 Using a 50mm f/1.8 prime lens would have given me the opportunity to shoot at 1/80th using f/2 and keeping the ISO at 800. This is a good alternative to using high ISO if you have an old camera. The latest cameras like the D700 and 5D mk2 look great at ISO 1600 and this can be used with confidence.

This simple pose is a great way to shoot a casual couple shot on a staircase.

This simple pose is a great way to shoot a casual couple picture using a staircase. Lit with natural light ISO 800, 1/40th second at f/2.8

A low angle adds a bit of drama and style to this couple shot.

A low angle adds a bit of drama and style to this couple shot.

We had a bit of a moment in the green room as the delegates really didn

We had a bit of a moment in the green room as the delegates really didn't like the wonderful wallpaper. This is so bad it's good again. Natural light ISO 800, 1/30th second at f/3.5. I also shot some flash frames in this room to great effect.

We shot into a window for this high key frame. The delegates removed filters from the front of their lenses

We shot into a window for this high key frame. The delegates removed filters from the front of their lenses to get enough contrast for the picture to work. ISO 800, 1/30th second at f/3.5

Tungsten

Tungsten light from my favourite Arri Fresnel 300w Junior lamp created this colour contrast. I always shoot with this light at ISO 800, 1/60th at f/4

After lunch we went outside to shoot in the grounds of this wonderful venue. I like to shoot details rather than big scenes, so my figure in the landscape pictures have little clues as to the location.

Inside a tree shooting into the light with the camera on manual gives me the opportunity to shoot one of my best known pictures

Inside a tree shooting into the light with the camera on manual gives me the opportunity to shoot one of my best known pictures. I gave this picture a dreamy after glow to lift it into the realms of a fantasy style.

A caught moment of fun like this is a perfect accompanyment to the more formal picture above.

A caught moment of fun like this is a perfect accompaniment to the more formal picture above.

It would have been a crime to have not taken this picture. It is more of a post wedding shoot picture but if the weather is good then any bride will see the benefit of the effort required to get the shot.

It would have been a crime not to have taken this picture. It is more of a post wedding shoot picture but if the weather is good then any bride will see the benefit of the effort required to get the shot.

It looks great in black and white too.

It looks great in black and white too. ISO 400, 1/200th second at f/18. I suppose ISO 100 would have been better but to be honest there is no noise to speak of and you'd never notice the difference in print.

We just had to finish the shoot with a classic Lovegrove wide shot lit with a single Speedlight. I chose to use my 15mm f/2.8 fish eye lens for this final frame.

We just had to finish the shoot with a classic Lovegrove wide shot lit with a single Speedlight. I chose to use my 15mm f/2.8 fish eye lens for this final frame.

Please feel free to comment on the pictures or techniques used. If you have a wonderful location that you think I should run a workshop like this email me in the first instance. If I take up the idea, you’ll get a complimentary place.

7 Comments

  1. Elliot

    Hi,

    Lovely photos – Shooting one cam, with my S2 there too as backup/lens holder :)

    Ell

    Reply
  2. damien

    Thanks Thorsten for your patience with my ‘diva’ demands :)

    Yep I only have one camera at a wedding. So does Julie. We have a spare camera in the car though, ( a Fuji S2)

    Reply
  3. damien

    Hi Steve, I like a bit of grain in my pictures but the 5D mk 2 shots at high ISO are wonderful so I have to use Photoshop for the grain. I can recommend the MK2, I’d say 2000 ISO is as good as 800 on the MK1. Don’t change for the sake of it. Get 3 years or 100,000 frames out of your 5D first.

    Reply
  4. Paul, Portrait and Wedding Photographer

    Absolutely stunning images again. As you say Damien, images must have the WOW factor and yours certainly do.

    I really like the high key shots of the bride in the foliage of the tree, I have tried this myself and had reasonable results, nowhere near as good as yours. I think it was down to not dialing in enough compensation.

    I have to agree, the higher ISO’s on the 5DMk2, open up endless possibilities. It has certainly aided me when adhereing to the “no flash” policies of some clergy.

    Reply
  5. Thorsten

    Yet another wonderful set of images from your trip to Cork. Must admit, one of the most interesting (and possibly revealing) things I picked up from you on this occassion was that you only shoot with one camera at a wedding. It’s also my preferred way of working but so many other pro’s use two and sometimes more cameras when covering a wedding!

    Reply
  6. Steve Hale

    Great Images as always Damien, interested in what you said about ISO 1600, is it significantly better on the 5d mark ii? I try to avoid using it on my mark 1, scared that the bride will ask for a large reprint where it might really show. Please don’t say yes it’s amazing or I will have to give Canon another 2 grand!

    Reply

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