Gather ‘round today because I’m going to dig into one of the most worrisome worries wedding couples have about their wedding day.
Because today’s topic is a question I see all over on wedding website blogs:
“What if it rains on my wedding day. What can we do about taking wedding photos when it’s raining?”
But oh my goodness the answers some wedding photographers give!
Apparently, if it rains on your wedding day, according to the consensus of all these photographers, you should pop open your umbrellas – because won’t it be fun to accessorize your wedding portraits with umbrellas in the downpour, kiddies? – and make sure the umbrellas are colorful so they look pretty, and you know what else? Bring a couple of towels too, just in case you get soaked. Oh, and a big plastic bag so that when the photographer asks you to sit on the ground, you won’t get wet. And wear rain boots in a coordinated color, matched to your bouquet. Or umbrella.
And yes, I swear that’s what I read.
Okay, look. Allow me to part these rain clouds and spread a little sunshine. Sure, sure, sure, a little impromptu photographing in a light rain can make for some really nice unique images, and my little creative mind is right this very moment whirling, envisioning refractions of light and reflections in puddles and raindrops on glass all making their way into the image. Like my friend Robert DiScalfani photographed below. And yes, that looks amazing and pretty cool and very creative.
But what I don’t want to see are people posing in the rain with umbrellas. in. every. photo. No, nuh uh.
What for? There’s nothing especially cool about having a bunch of wedding images with each and every one of them having an umbrella stuck in them.
Get a couple of unique images in the rain, yes, absolutely, for sure – and then get out of the rain.
First of all the longer you’re out mixing it up in Mother Nature’s elements the bigger the chances you’re going to get soaked and splashed and that’s not what we want when you’re wearing your gown or suit and about to make an entrance into your reception in a few minutes.
But indoors… sure obviously you’re safe. Dry. Warm. But there’s something better about getting photos done indoors and believe me, you want to know about this. So let me let you in on a number one top photography secret. It’s so top secret that apparently all those photographers out in the rain don’t know about it, which is why they stay out in the rain.
That whole idea of having to be outdoors for photos… I don’t know where it came from but as a photographer, I can control lighting way better when I’m indoors. And lighting is key to great images. “Photo” means “light.”
If you live in NYC or Hollywood you might’ve run across a film set out on the streets working on some latest soon to be released blockbuster hit of the summer, and if you’re like me, photo aware, you noticed how the cinematographer has the shots set up and you took note of where the lights are in relation to the actors and you looked to see how the camera was positioned… and then you may have also noticed… the scrims.
Scrims are devices used to control the light by reducing it or blocking it when you’re photographing out in daylight. Helps the cinematographer direct where the light goes and where it doesn’t go. They create the look they want with these tools. But guess what?
Scrims need to be huge to be effective at blocking out the sun. Plus they require people to set them up and move them around and that’s why they can do it on a zillion dollar movie budget, but it makes it kind of prohibitive to do for a few wedding photos, you know?
So we go indoors instead. Indoors has its own built-in scrims. Things like… walls. Doors. Curtains. Off switches.
So what I’m saying is…
If it rains on your wedding day you don’t have to resign yourself to having every single wedding photo taken with an umbrella and trying to feature the umbrella as a prop. There’s only so far you can go with that. There are other things you can do in the rain besides that which makes for way more creative wedding photos than does popping open an umbrella anyway.
And also if your photographer knows better than to think for some reason they have to keep you outside for the entire duration on portraits when it’s raining, now you know a knowledgeable, skilled photographer can create far more amazing looking images when they know how to control light indoors.
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