Outdoor weddings seem popular because of the gorgeous settings and extra space they bring to the event. From mountain sceneries and beaches to well-manicured lawns and pretty sunsets, the king of beauty that outdoor weddings bring is often unmatched. The unique settings of these weddings also present perfect opportunities to capture stunning photos.
Even though photographers don’t normally have to worry about shooting blur photos in dimly lit venues, outdoor wedding photography has its own challenges. From bright sun and uneven lighting to dark shadows and, on some occasions, weather changes, photographers have to find ways to take great photos of the events to make them memorable for the spouses-to-be.
But how can this be successfully done? If you’re a wedding photographer, here are some useful tips to help you take stunning outdoor photos in any wedding event.
- Give Your Advice On The Best Time To Take Photos
Taking stunning wedding photos in an outdoor event starts not on the day of the event but months before. As a wedding photographer, you have to visit the venue early and advise the future spouses on the best ways to set the event up to facilitate proper light. While it’s not up to you to plan the event, you could give advise on locations that would work well for outdoor photos and the best time to take photos.
You may inform the couple of the time of day that’s most ideal to shoot outdoor photos, which is later in the day and not noon. If the wedding venue has plenty of shade, the photo shot timeline may be more flexible. Either way, you may share insights during the planning process so the couple knows what would and wouldn’t work. This would enable them to make informed decisions as they plan the day. However, it’s important you ensure you have sufficient light to take formal photos just before the sun sets.
- Keep Your Focus On The Subject
Since they take place outside, outdoor weddings have plenty of open spaces. This means there’d be more distractions – cars, road signs, power lines, among others. To take stunning photos, you’d need to always check what’s lurking in the background. If you don’t do this, you might end up with photos requiring a lot of photoshopping after the wedding. For distractions that you can’t avoid, using compositional tools like angle adjustments and lens swapping could help in reducing the distractions and making the subjects the priority.
- Showcase The Venue With Wide Shots
Most outdoor wedding venues have beautiful backdrops that make photos look stunning. As a matter of fact, there’s a reason why couples pick those venues – they want you to capture that beauty in your photos.
The best way to do this is to use different cameras to capture different aspects of the venue. Leverage your camera’s wide-angle lens to take a shot of the entire venue. Try to find creative ways to get shots of the whole event. For instance, you could use a balcony in a nearby building to get a shot from a bird’s eye view. Combined with close-up photos that capture details of the event, such shots tell a complete story about the wedding day.
- Use Foregrounds To Give Photos A Context
To take stunning outdoor wedding photos, you need to give them a context that leads viewers to the main subjects. One way of doing this is to use foregrounds or what is commonly referred to as layering in photography. Layering enables you to create a dramatic feel and even tell better stories.
Your foreground can include anything – from graphic elements to people to vegetation. Try to take your photos a few feet from the foreground item so that you frame the subject while giving your viewers a sense of the scene. Though the layers could be challenging to employ, they’re extremely powerful when it comes to taking stunning outdoor wedding photos when used well.
- Dress Comfortably
Dressing may not seem like a serious issue in photography. But if you’re out there shooting photos for an outdoor wedding and you begin to experience discomfort, chances are you wouldn’t be able to focus on bringing out your creativity.
When you’re going out to do outdoor wedding photography, you need to be well prepared and dressed comfortably. Consider the weather and the changes that could happen during the day and try to dress in such a way that you stay dry, warm, and comfortable throughout the event. This would enable you to give your clients the attention they need.
Weddings are special events for the couple to be married, as well as their families and friends. The photos taken during such events become permanent reminders for those special occasions. With every click of the camera, photographers help their clients create memories of their special day. For outdoor weddings, the photos can be stunning when taken by photographers who know how to do that right. If you’re a wedding photographer, try to apply the five tips discussed above to give your clients stunning outdoor wedding photos.