Having fun with lighting to create dynamic images!
It should be no surprise for anyone whose ever picked up a camera or anyone whose ever thought about getting beautiful images captured, that lighting is the key ingredient that will affect all photos in all situations. It has an influence on the time of day we shoot, where we shoot, the angle we shoot, our aperture, shutter speed, ISO, and our white balance. Carefully considering all of these is what it takes to create a beautiful image with a certain feel that you may be looking for. Being a professional requires more than arbitrarily picking settings and hoping things work out like your favorite photographer's instagram. It means understanding all of these factors, and how to manipulate them to work together flawlessly in an effort to create an image your client will love! In this article we will touch on a few different techniques that can be used all within the same shoot to give a different look to your images.
In the above and below image, we were in Megan's Bridal suite that she will be using for her big day at Jeter Mountain Farm. Top to bottom, side to side, it was a beautiful room styled with antique and rustic furniture alike along with plenty of space for a bride and her bridesmaids to get ready. Lastly it had amazing natural light from the windows which overlooked the the scenic property you are on. Once we walked in we instantly started envisioning some of the creative ways we could utilize this natural light, made better by the addition of soft white curtains that acted as a natural diffuser for the light, softening it's touch helping Megan glow as we can see pictured above and below. The time of day was about 90 minutes before sunset and the light was a little harsh for what we typically like, but the curtain helped soften the light and helped create a beautifully elegant feel to Megan's photos lightly bringing out the soft details and complimenting her natural complexion.
Moving to the opposite end of the spectrum, we have one of our other favorite features of light, which is lens flares! As you can see below, aiming your lens right towards the sun and having the light go directly into your lens can create a much more dramatic effect. When the light enters your lens and reflects off the glass inside, it can sometimes lead to random color and light effects within the frame of your photo as you can see here. It's something that starting out as photographers we would sometimes run into and hate because it would ruin some of our photos but as we've progressed, we've learned how to adjust to have the effect be more minimal like the image on the left (minimal lens flare but still sunny and dramatic) and the image on the right (not as dramatic but but a lot of extra flare to create a an image that is a little more dynamic in it's own style)
The last type of effect we wanted to highlight (no pun intended) was adding a little haze to the image by letting the sun creep into the frame ever so slightly but not nearly as much as the previous section mentions. The soft haze adds a nice element to the image by upping the intensity of the light but still allowing for a softer lighter feel like in the first two images. The biggest difference is it can add warmth to your photo which may otherwise look somewhat cool.
Light is simply amazing. It allows us to do what we do, and sometimes it can be more difficult to work with than others, but never impossible! We always encourage our clients to consider the type of look they want to their photos as this can make a huge difference on the way they will turn out (as pictured above) when you receive the final image, so make sure to communicate with your photographer about how you would like the lighting and feel of your photos! Until next time, stay blessed :)
-Jenny & Joe