Find Flattering Ambient Light
To balance out our continuous flash on the dance floor, what we like to shoot a lot of ambient light photos. And those really help with preserving the mood in the images. So something like this, shot with a flash, is really gonna take away from the feel of that image.
Mood and ambient light really go together for us, and that's actually in our section on mood. I think every single one of those photos were ambient light.
Exactly. If it means pushing our settings, that's fine, that's what high ISOs and slow shutter speeds are for. Really wanna not take away from the way that this moment felt.
This is one of my favorite mood photos. This is in Miami, it's warm, it's a summer evening, just before the reception. You feel the wind because of the slow motion in her hair, the slow shutter on her hair. The warmth of the light, contrasted with the blue of the twilight.
Do you want to talk about it though? I didn't talk about it.
Sorry. Yeah so the idea here was really to showca...
se the warmth of the warm summer night in Miami and we just had the bride come out on the balcony, look towards the inside of the room which was emitting a lot of artificial light and slowing down the shutter, again, just helps preserve that mood of the wind and the warmth and balancing it out with the light in the background. Super, super simple, but even with ugly indoor lighting, there's always opportunities to create something a little bit more interesting. Just gotta use it in the right way.
This is almost like the reverse of window light. In this case the light was coming from inside and she's outside, so it still has that narrow direction to it, yeah, basically, the opposite.
Yup, and then on the dance floor, we just love to turn off our flash and really focus on the tiny bit of light that there is, be it color, or white light, or even here just the light from the ring on her finger. It just conveys so much more in terms of feeling rather than lighting up the whole scene and showing a little bit too much.
This is also great for variety, because you'll go from flash dance floor photos to ambient dance floor photos, it has a different vibe to it, so they're really gonna complement each other and allow us to have that variety.
We might not start shooting the dance floor this way, but an hour in, we have a lot of photos of everybody having a good time and dancing and it's time to take a little bit more risks and really experiment and turn off our flash and the success rate on these types of photos, especially when the lighting is moving around the dance floor, it goes from one out of ten photos to one out of 100 photos. You gotta photograph so many.
That's part of why we end up with so many photos at the end of the night. You know, again, ambient light just preserves the mood of that room. I really love this moment, it's just totally sideline action, and in between. They're waiting for the family to come for the cake cutting, it was so hot, July with no air conditioning in Los Angeles, and they're just waiting for their cake, and they're fanning themselves, and so in this case, I think the ambient light really preserves the mood and also allows for this artwork and the ostrich taxidermy to kind of show up as well.
The good thing is, weddings never happen in pitch darkness, there's always some kind of light, because humans need to see and if humans can see, our cameras can see also. And so it's just a matter of finding good quality of light and using that, if you have to push your settings, don't be afraid, technology has come far enough for us to be able to shoot in extremely dark situations, often darker than what the human eye can see. Push your settings, go and get that mood in the images.