Real people, real moments, real stories; capturing life's most precious moments.
Welcome to my blog - hopefully I've updated it recently. If not, it's probably because I'm too busy - sorry!
The picture is mine, but the words have been taken from a blog written by The Tudor Barn, a beautiful wedding venue in Bucks.
Every wedding has certain guests. There’s the portly uncle who struts around the dance floor like Patrick Swayze. The quiet ‘Goth’ cousin, sitting in the corner, who you only invited because your mum told you to. And the tipsy bridesmaid who has a little too much prosecco… at 9.30am.
But there’s one kind of guest who can make or break a wedding. The child. They can be either delightful or demonic. So how do you keep the kids engaged so that they don’t ruin your special day? Here are some ideas…
If you have a wedding to organise, I hope this has been helpful.
Don't you just love when it snows? That excited feeling waking up in the morning and knowing that it's snowed without looking outside, because of the special quietness after a snowfall.
I took my long 75-300 mm lens along with my sister and dog to try and get some real action shots. We chose a spot with lots of snow and a reasonable background and Jane started throwing snowballs at Dora the dog. It's much harder than it looks! I kept the aperture fairly small (f7.1) because I know from experience that I won't be able to get sharp images when the dog is moving so much. I put the camera on burst shooting to maximise my chances of getting a good shot, but then found that the focus point was sometimes moving on to the background. So I put the lens on manual focus which worked well, so long as Dora stayed roughly in the same plane. Here are a few of the images I got:
There was quite a bit of fiddling necessary in Lightroom afterwards as the contrast was huge with white snow and a dog that's nearly black! I lifted the shadows quite a bit, increased the clarity and warmed the images up a bit as it makes me feel better! I hope you like them.
This picture was taken in front of a wall mural at The Vineyard Hotel and Spa at Stockcross near Newbury. The mural depicts, as is written on the hotel website:
"Judgement of Paris
In 1976, in small room in a Paris hotel, a strange thing happened.
Something that changed a centuries-old status quo and rocked the 'civilised' world to it's roots.
A cataclysm, or a revolution, depending on your point of view.
In a blind tasting with some of the leading French wine aficionados of the day, Californian wines were chosen over France's very best. Big names were knocked right out of the park in a comprehensive whooping."
On first looking at the photo the background appears to be guests, with very strange expressions! I love the young couple's oblivion to their busy background - they only have eyes for each other.
There were many beautiful places inside and outside to take pictures of the bridal couple and I have many more favourites from this wedding!
This is a difficult one to get right - the photographer/s need to be close enough to be able to see what is going on but far enough away not to impose on proceedings. I tend to come in with the bride and stay towards the back of the aisle to get full length shots of the couple and the room (be it a church or register office).
My assistant comes in with the groom and stays towards the front to get pictures from the other side. Sometimes these two angles line up brilliantly!
Simon has kept the depth of field small to let maximum light in, but you can still see the lovely expressions of the bride's family in the background.
From the back of the church I use my long length lens which is perfect for zooming in to get "closer" to the action.
This church was a very colourful Catholic church on a hilltop town in Italy.
For smaller registry office weddings I don't bring an assistant along and try to be as discrete as possible by keeping back from the bride and groom but using my zoom lens again.
Posed pictures are really nice to have, but I love capturing the emotions of the day through photographing not only the bride and groom, as above, but also family and guests sharing the celebrations with their loved ones.
Tears are not always bad!
Photographing the wedding ceremony is not always easy as we don't use flash, which would be far too intrusive. Instead we have to work with whatever light there is and make the most of it.
Isn't it great to be able to document these amazing times in a person's life? I often have tears in my eyes, even when I've only met the couple once or twice! I feel very privileged to be a part of these days.
Last Saturday I took some pictures of Mayella, who is in the process of building a new website for her healing business. The pictures had to be natural looking, show Mayella's spirit and sense of fun and also, of course, to make her look good! We went to Lacock as I know the good spots for background and light as I teach portrait photography there with Lacock Photography.
For this first picture I got Mayella to turn her face towards the light; the shading on her cheek gives good definition and helps to narrow the face. The shade of a tree takes away light from above.
We then moved into the open and I put the sun behind Mayella. To give sparkle to her eyes I shot through a metallised reflector to light the face.
What a different shot! The light is softer and more even which is good for more mature subjects. The sun makes the hair appear white. The background is far enough way to make it appear soft and diffused. The reflector is an important part of getting the light right, but you could use anything that reflects light back into the face - even a white t-shirt on the photographer would help!
For this next shot we walked down to the stream in Lacock and had a little play. Hands are often difficult to photograph well - what do you do with them?! Leaning against something helps, especially if your model also leans towards the camera which makes for a flattering picture.
On our way back to the car we walked up an alleyway at the top of the village and stopped by the gate for a picture. The light here was good, but not quite where I wanted it, so I asked Mayella to look towards the light and laugh hysterically - it sounds ridiculous, but you have to wait until a natural laugh takes over - try it! I moved Mayella around so the background bushes would frame her. The lighter background gives depth to the image.
We had a lot of fun taking these images, and many more, and Mayella loved Lacock, which she had never seen before. I look forward to seeing them on her new website.
« Older Posts
© Anna Durrant Photography
Recent Posts8 ways to keep your smallest wedding guests entertained. Family photography in the snow Why I love this picture Photographing the wedding ceremony What a difference the light makes Bath Botanical Gardens wedding Rainy day photography Easy natural light photography Why I love this picture Wiltshire wedding