Photo Of The Day: A Stunning Wedding Dress Captured By Nathan Welton

Our ‘Photo Of The Day‘ is a carefully selected image to help inspire you for your big day. Whether you’re a couple getting married or a wedding photographer shooting your next wedding, we want to show you great wedding photographers that think outside the box.  Each image we share has a lovely story behind it, whether it’s the technical details behind each shot or how the photographer arrived at the creative decision to capture it in all it’s glory.  Here at WPS & the Select Bride we’re passionate about great images, great wedding photographers and inspiring you at every turn.

Nathan Welton Wedding Photography Colorado

I came from a newspaper background and take a journalistic approach to shooting weddings. I’m a firm believer that truth is a lot more compelling than fiction, and the thrust of my work is to tell stories and document connections between people. I shot my first wedding in 2003 I believe, and I’ve been shooting weddings full time since 2006. It’s a wonderful job and I can’t imagine anything I’d rather do.

This image came from one of my favorite weddings, which I shot at the Bahamas Beach Club on Treasure Caye. The bride and groom were wonderful, expressive, emotional, fun and extremely sincere people. So were their friends, and shooting the entire weekend was a real treat.

When I do destination weddings, I only offer one package due to the travel time involved: two days of coverage. I actually think this works our perfectly for destination jobs because I tend to shoot a lot of activities – golf, boat trips, etc — and really tell the story of how these two families came together. The day before this wedding, for example, we took a boat out to an unpopulated island, fished, snorkeled, and had a BBQ on a beach in the middle of the Caribbean. The resulting set of images has a greater story arc than a single wedding day event.

Wedding Photo

This wedding was at a secluded resort at the tip of a peninsula in the Bahamas. It was insanely bright out, with lots of reflection and glare from the beach sand and surrounding buildings, and it was all coming in harshly through a window that was the size of a wall. Once the thin white curtain was pulled across that window, the entire wall turned into a softbox and the light coming into the room became quite beautiful.

I shoot a number of weddings in the Caribbean and what strikes me the most when I’m down there is the enormity of the world. When you stand on the shore and look toward the sea, you feel tiny; the waves are huge, the clouds are huge, the ocean is huge. I live I the mountains in Colorado, and it’s a similar theme but things don’t quite seem as vast because hills and mountains almost “get in the way” and you can’t really see to the horizon.

Anyway, I wanted my detail shots to reflect a little bit of that feeling and sense of place. Everyone takes something different from a photo, but what I took from this dress shot is the same feeling inside when I look up at clouds and an endless sky.

This wasn’t a technically challenging shot, and I actually got pretty lucky thanks to the big room, open space, and soft light coming through the curtain. It can be a quite a challenge to get a good dress shot when the dress has a huge train and the room is small, and there’s furniture and stuff in the way. It can force the use of a super wide focal length, which can cause distortion. I prefer to shoot at 35mm as much as I can, and I was able to do so in this room.

I love symmetry and wanted the shot to feel symmetrical. Also, I think there is symmetry when looking out at an empty horizon because the earth’s curvature makes the center of your vision slightly higher. So, I wanted to put the dress in the middle of the frame and have lots of space on either side. I had enough space in the room to make that happen and to make the window as big as possible in the frame.

Technical Details

5d Mark II, 35mm f/1.4L @ f/2. The 35L has been my favorite lens for 10 years. Last year I upgraded to the 35L Mark II, which is an insane piece of glass. I felt like I suddenly put on glasses when I was looking at the shots. They are so much sharper, and fringing is nonexistent.  Manual, with a dose of new school back-of-camera chimping.

Very minimal lightroom adjustment – in this case I blasted the highs, dropped the shadows, and dodged the edges of the frame.

I really like this shot, though I can’t say it’s a favorite of mine. But it has won a few awards. Honestly, there are a lot more shots from this wedding that I’m far more drawn to, but the beauty of photography is its subjectivity, and we’re all drawn toward different things.

Nathan Welton

Wedding Photographer Colorada, USA
Website :
Location : Bahamas Beach Club, Bahamas

See More Photography Of The Day At Wedding Photography Select

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