Welcome to my all new blog!
A place where I will share my passion for the photographic image. Whether you are planning a wedding, or you are a professional photographer, I hope you will find something to inform and inspire you.
Just when we were wondering if summer would ever start - wow, the temperature soars to over 30 degrees!
When the sun is out and the weather is warm it is great to celebrate a wedding outside. We are fortunate in the UK to have a profusion of wedding venues with fabulous gardens for wedding parties to enjoy. I have been lucky enough to photograph weddings in many grand formal gardens such as Blenheim Palace and Cliveden House. But so many of our venues have lovely outdoor spaces that make great locations for wedding photographs.
I picked out this picture of Rebecca and Mark taken at their wedding in Bradley House, Wiltshire. What I love about this picture is that it conjures up that lazy summers afternoon english garden feeling. There is a natural informality to the picture which I love and completely matched the personalities of this couple and the style of their wedding. To accentuate that natural feel I chose to photograph them through the grasses and wild flowers in the foreground. I also shot towards the sun to create that beautiful rim of light on their hair and shoulders that both adds to the mood and creates the depth in the picture. Of course it is Rebecca's smile and the look of love that captures the attention the most. I think it is a really charming intimate picture with a lovely summers afternoon vibe.
In the news recently was the Google Vice-President Vint Cerf, who has been warning about the degradation of the worlds digital files - a phenomenon that he calls "bit-rot". Mr. Cerf is suggesting that in the future, print might be the best format for storing data, if we don't want to run the risk of losing vital information.
I learnt my craft as a photographer before the digital revolution, taking pictures on film and printing them to photographic paper in the darkroom. These were happy days for me but there is no doubt that this was hard work and digital photography ushered in many process advantages and creative opportunities that have revolutionised photography. While I have no wish to turn the clock back, it is true to say that those days of film instilled in me was an ingrained love and appreciation of the photographic print.
Pictures professionally printed on art quality paper, mounted and framed by experts add something special
In the digital age we have so many more ways of sharing and enjoying photographic images. But for me, the printed image will always be something special, it has a tactile quality and a feeling of permanence; something that will endure and can be appreciated forever. There is something exciting and special about browsing through a set of printed photographs. Like many, I still have draws full of family prints that we never found the time to stick in to albums. But, even though they are in boxes, it is still a thrill for me and my family to get them out occasionally and relive the memories that they hold. For me, sitting around a table with family and friends looking at these prints is so much more meaningful than sharing them on social media.
A bespoke designed hand-made album is the perfect way to view wedding pictures
When it comes to professional quality photographs, I believe that there is no comparison between a picture viewed on a screen and a picture printed on top quality photographic paper and beautifully presented in a frame or bespoke designed album. And if we are to believe the remarks from Google, prints may well prove to be much more permanent than digital files: To quote Vint Cerf "If you have photos you really care about, print them out".
Spring is in the air! temperatures are rising, the sun is shining (almost) and I am looking forward to some fabulous outdoor weddings in the coming months. However, as we leave winter behind, I thought I would reflect on the special nature of the winter wedding.
As a photographer I love to photograph in winter because of the wonderful atmosphere that is created by the vanishing outdoor light and the warm cosy feel of the indoors. My picture of the week was taken during the wedding meal in the oak-panelled Ballroom at Hedsor House, Buckinghamshire. The romantic mood was enhanced by the couples choice to light the room with candles. To capture this mood it was important to photograph the scene using the available light - tricky to achieve; demanding a steady hand and the very best camera equipment. The rewards for this approach are evident and well worth the effort.
A good best man's speech will always entertain the wedding guests. By choosing to focus this photograph on the guests I was able to show what a great job this best man was doing. It is the response of the guests that is the story of this photograph. Of course the man himself is in the picture, with his microphone and notes, to add the context, but it's the smiles and laughter of his audience that makes this photograph a winner. The low ambient light, the illumination of the guests faces and the inclusion of the candelabras all add to the mood.
So, here is to the unique mood of a winter wedding and pleasure of a wedding speech well delivered.
© Mike Legg