Wednesday, August 03, 2011

No Excuses For Not Getting The Shot: Rainey Day Woes Part 2

Good Afternoon Everybody,

It’s been a busy morning with the three BIG announcements today.

1 - The first BIG announcement is about our PhotoPro Expo [link] happening February 2012.

PhotoProNetwork Website Ad High Res As president of the PhotoPro Network [link], I’ve reached out to the top trainers in the country including Scott Kelby, Vincent Laforet, Jerry Ghionis, Joel Grimes, Sarah Petty, just to name a few and have put together an unbelievable talent line up – 4 days, 12 speakers, all for only $139 till midnight August 31, 2011.

You won’t want to miss this exciting event! You can get all the details right here!

2 - The second BIG announcement is to introduce my brand new Summer Success Collection [link], an unbelievable collection of training, software, and business building resources guaranteed to help any photographer take their work and their business to the next level!

PhotoWalk 2011 3 - And finally, my Scott Kelby Fall Photowalk coming up October 1, 2011.  That’s right, I just posted it last evening and quickly Tweeted it out.  If you want to join me, you’ll have to get registered right away.  There were only 8 seats left.  Here is the link to register right here.

Whew!  That’s a lot of news today and thanks for hanging in here with me through all the announcements. Now it’s time to get on with our regular post today.  Here we go…

No Excuses For Not Getting The Shot: Rainey Day Woes Part 2

Last week I began a series [link] on a pretty important topic – always coming home with the shot regardless of bad weather, poor lighting, or what ever else may crimp your style when shooting a wedding.

Hwang RainLast week’s topic was on bad weather, particularly rainy days. and, in spite of those lousy conditions, we still must capture some breath-taking, exceeding their expectations images for our clients.  This week I want to take that a step further.  Last week we stayed out of the rain and still captured some great outdoor images. This week, how about if you have to actually shoot in the rain.

I had to do just that more than once in my career. How do you handle it?  How do you keep the gear dry?  How do you protect from electrocuting yourself or your assistant with the high voltage flash gear?  OK, maybe I joking a bit with this last question – if it’s raining that hard, I’m not going to be taking any photos ;~)

In these few images I’m showing, we literally took the photographs in the rain, not a heavy rain, but still an uncomfortable fairly heavy drizzle.  Thankfully is was a Chinese wedding and we were able to use the bridesmaids parasols to keep them somewhat dry.

Hwang Rain2 The secret is working very quickly to keep the wedding party as dry as possible.  More importantly, always check that you have NO rain drops on the front lens element.  You could get into some serious trouble when shooting with water spots on the lens of your wide angle lens shooting at smaller apertures. The result would be little specs of “out-of-focus-ness” in your images.

Hwang Rain1 In the images I’m showing today, it was important for the bride to get as many outdoor photographs as possible.  We all made the sacrifice, got a little damp, and got the images she wanted. Also, notice how the colors become so saturated on these super cloudy/drizzly days.

We did have a Plan B for this shoot too.  The bride didn’t see the groom before the ceremony for photographs and the rain only got worst as the day wore on.  I suggested to the bride that we get together with she and her husband a few weeks after their wedding, head to one of the local parks, and do an entire series of wedding images of just the two of them. 

Hey, making the photographs after the wedding gives us complete control of the lighting, weather, and time.  We got some fabulous images on the second shoot – in fact one of my all time favorites photographs came from that session.  Here it is below – it’s now one of our signature studio images. Not bad when you’ve got perfect weather, a perfect sunset, the perfect time of day and don’t have to rush on to the reception.

Hwang Sunset

While on the subject, I’ve got one more image I want to share with you. In the image below, it was once again one of those rainy/drizzly days.  The weather was not cooperating at all.  Every time we thought we had a break in the rain and headed out for a few photographs, it started to come down again – pretty darn frustrating.

As we headed to the reception the drizzle seemed to slow down a bit – at least I thought so.  Maybe I still had a chance to pull off an outdoor photograph for the couple.  I knew what I wanted to do and I just needed the couple for just a few seconds to pull it off.

They had just pulled up to the drop off area of the country club.  I approached them about the possibility of getting a great shot in spite of our slight drizzle and asked them if they wanted to give it a try. They graciously obliged.  My assistant and I needed to leap into action.

I only had a small patch of trees to work with as my background so I needed a long lens to compress the background and throw it slightly out of focus.  I chose my 70-200mm IS lens, racked it out to 200mm, and opened it up to F4.0.

I showed the bride and groom where to stand once my assistant and I were in place. Once we took up our positions, me about 60 feet in front of them standing in the parking lot and my assistant about 12 feet behind them, I called to the bride and groom to move to the predetermined location.

I wiped the lens clear of any rain drops and asked then to hold on to each other at their waists, and look at each other.  We fired off a few images and got some great photos.  Next I asked the groom to give his bride a big hug and kiss and got the best photograph of the day – the one you see below.

Rainy Day3What makes this photograph so cool not just the expression and backlighting, but also how that problematic drizzle just lit up with the backlighting.  Each little drop looks like nature’s confetti making it’s own joyous contribution to the wedding day celebration. I love it!


Hey gang, that’s it for me today.  It’s been a long day at the keyboard and my fingers need a break ;~)  Don’t forget, we got our big webcast with Charles Lewis tomorrow – I sure hope your registered.  I know we may be at the 1,000 limit but you still might make it on the waiting list – it’s worth a try because it’s going to be a great time!  Hope to see you there!

Have a great rest of the day and I’ll see everybody tomorrow,  -David

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