When I’m out shooting, a lot of my time is spent looking around at my environment and trying to work out how to take what I am looking at and make the very best picture of it I can. That may sound pretty obvious, but as someone who has been hired to document a very important day, the temptation a lot of the time is to just take pictures and more pictures to make sure you are covering every single moment possible. You have to make a conscious effort to slow down and take in your surroundings whilst you’re working away.
This week’s image is a case in point about how it can really be rewarding to take a moment to look around and take a few calculated risks. On this occasion, the bride, her mum, grandmother and bridesmaids were coming back inside after taking a few formal pictures outside the venue (the fantastic King’s Daughters Inn in Durham) when they suddenly stopped to button up the train of the dress. Luckily for me, they decided to do this in a stairwell in the amazing light that was streaming through the windows at the front of the house. I followed the party in, took a couple of frames and then looked around to see how I could take what I had and make it even better. I decided to go upstairs and see if I could frame the shot looking back down through the stairs using a wide angle lens with the bannister rails acting as leading lines to draw us into the image. I used a spot metre reading off the bride to ensure the exposure was right and waited for something interesting to happen. At that point, the lady in orange in the bottom of the frame came into shot and provided some visual interest with her brightly coloured dress. When the bride looked down, the image came together and I took the shot.
This is not your typical wedding picture, but it tells a story and the colours contrasting with the light and shadow really appeal to me. I was pleased to have taken the time out to put this together as it is one of my favourites from the day. Putting the effort in and coming away with something so personally rewarding is really a great feeling. It’s really the main reason behind why I do what I do!