Category Archives: Wedding

Boulder, CO | Chautauqua Wedding | Top Knots Photo Contest

I just entered some of my images from Kate and Brandon’s June wedding to the Photo District News Top Knots photography contest. This is one of the biggest contests of the year for wedding photographers. There is some really great work on display, but most of it is more traditional “posed” wedding photography, so I’m not sure how my documentary approach will go over.

The main website can be found here . If you would like to vote for one of my pictures in the “People’s Choice” category, you can click here.

Below are the pictures I submitted for consideration. The four pictures of the Bridal Party walking around in the rain were submitted as a series. I chose these because I felt they really held together well as a series, and they also do a good job of illustrating the documentary style that I use when shooting a wedding. In the portrait category, I chose this particular portrait because I think it is really pretty with nice soft window light, rich dark tones and bright highlights that retain the details in the dress. I also chose this picture because it is somewhat unusual, being a straight profile of Kate’s face.

Hopefully, the judges will find these images interesting, if a little different than the usual wedding photography fare. Let me know what you think of them.

You can click on any of the images to view them larger. Enjoy…

Tech Info:
Nikon F100
Nikon 50mm f1.4
Legacy Pro 400 (AKA – Fuji Neopan 400)
Processing and scanning by Richard Photo Lab

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Boulder, CO | Chautauqua Wedding | Final Album


It’s been a while since I put up a wedding photography post, so I thought I would give you a look at the album I designed to document Kate and Brandon’s beautiful wedding at the Chautauqua Community House in Boulder, CO.

As I was shooting the wedding on that rainy June day, there were a lot of images that I made specifically with this album in mind. It’s really gratifying to see so many of them make the final cut. Kate is a very artistic person, so I had her and Brandon make the final selection of images to include in the album. I don’t always work in this way, but in this case, I think it worked out really well.

The book contains about 110 images spread out over 50 pages and is laid out in chronological order from getting ready all the way through the reception. I find placing the images in context really helps people understand how the day unfolded, and also helps the bride and groom mentally “fill in the gaps” between the images.

I designed the book as a 12X12, but also made it available in 10X10, 8X8, and 6X6 for family and friends to purchase. The pages of the album are printed on real photo paper and the spreads lay flat with no seam in the middle. The font used for the text is the same font that Kate chose for her wedding invitations, so this helps tie the album to the other mementos from the wedding day.

As you can see, I used very little text, a simple layout, and only one design element – a very subtle sloppy border around all of the floating images. I think these pictures speak for themselves, and adding a complicated layout, or a bunch of extra elements would really detract from the story of the day. This tends to be my album design philosophy – let the pictures stand on their own.

Tech Info:
This whole book was laid out using Layered Photoshop Files
The sloppy borders were created using a Photoshop action
All but 11 images in the book were shot on film

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Boulder, CO | Chautauqua Wedding | Quiet Bridal Portraits

There is a trend right now to turn bridal portraits into edgy fashion shots. While this works for a lot of photographers, it is not really my thing. I really prefer quiet, authentic bridal portraits like the ones shown below.

We made these portraits after coming in from the rainy bride/bridesmaids portrait session before Kate and Brandon’s intimate wedding at the Chautauqua Community House in Boulder, CO. I had Kate sit down in a chair next to a window in the little cottage where the ladies got dressed. This gave me beautiful soft window light coming from camera right, a nice gradation of tone on the simple white wall in the background, and just a tiny bit of rim light coming from another window behind Kate’s camera left shoulder. This is very traditional, and beautiful, portrait light that was achieved simply by looking around and placing the subject in the right location. No artificial lighting necessary.

I shot these images as Kate sat and chatted with her bridesmaids. This kept the situation light, and made for authentic and interesting expressions. I really love the shot that shows Kate’s wonderful profile. The perfect hair, translucent veil, and lace shoulders of the dress combine to lend the picture a sense of delicate beauty. It has a timeless quality that will keep it from looking dated in the decades to come.

You can click on either of the images to see them larger. Enjoy…

Tech Info:
Very soft window light coming from camera right + subtle rim light coming from back camera left
Nikon F100
Nikon 50mm f1.4
Legacy Pro 400 (AKA Fuji Neopan 400)
Richard Photo Lab

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Boulder, CO | Chautauqua Wedding | Reception Photos

Below is the final set of images documenting Kate and Brandon’s wonderful wedding at  the Chautauqua Community House in Boulder, CO. These were all shot after the ceremony seating arrangement had been broken down and the room was re-set for the reception. It always amazes me how fast this can be accomplished.

The images were all photographed in my typical style – candid, natural light, and wait for a special moment before pressing the shutter. It is these special moments that make wedding photography interesting to me. Of course, I document the details and shoot the portraits, but capturing emotions, expressions and interaction, that’s where it’s at! The moments make every wedding different and give life and energy to the photographs.

You can click on any of the images to see them larger. Enjoy…

Tech Info:
Black & White

  • Nikon F100
  • Nikon 50mm f1.4
  • Mix of Fuji Neopan 1600 and Legacy Pro 400 (AKA Neopan 400)
  • Richard Photo Lab

Color

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Boulder, CO | Chautauqua Wedding | Bridal Party Portraits

Below are a few of the Bridal Party portraits from Kate and Brandon’s fun and intimate wedding at the Chautauqua Community House in Boulder, CO.

As you can tell from the photos, it was raining pretty hard throughout the day. We really wanted to get outside to shoot these portraits, but because of the weather, we had to work fast and be resourceful. Knowing that the forecast called for rain, Kate and I had both picked up clear umbrellas that worked out really well throughout the day. I think these umbrellas add a cool element to the images that help tie them together an make them unique.

Normally, I would spend a little more time with the bridal party working on variations, groupings, individual portraits, etc., but in this situation, if we had spent any more time outside in the elements, it could have easily turned into a “trash the dress” shoot – not a great idea for the wedding day.

We were all really happy to have such a great location just a few yards from the wedding venue. The muted light, saturated colors, and shiny wet surfaces, mixed with everyone’s great expressions, really made for some beautiful photographs that sum up the emotions of the day.

You can click on any of the images to see them larger. Enjoy…

Tech Info:
Nikon N90s
Nikon 35mm f2
Fuji Pro 400H
Processing and Scans by Richard Photo Lab

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Boulder, CO | Chautauqua Wedding | Documenting The Ceremony

Below we have a few of the images documenting Kate and Brandon’s beautiful wedding ceremony at the Chautauqua Community House in Boulder, CO.

I really like this little set of images. Kate and Brandon had a quick ceremony, and these pictures capture the moments and emotions that made their wedding ceremony special.

Without all the distractions of color, the black and white images really draw attention to people’s faces and let us focus in on their emotions.  For this reason, I really prefer to document the more emotional moments of a wedding day in black & white. Color works well for documenting details and setting the scene, but moments shared between people always seem to be more powerful in monochrome.

There are a few of the shots that I wanted to call out for you. I think the moment between the ring bearer and flower girl is really cool. Also, I love the light in that shot. The vertical picture of father and daughter walking down the aisle is very traditional – exactly what you would expect. I prefer the horizontal image below it. You really get to see a range of emotions, including on the face of the mother of the bride, over on the right. Finally, in the kissing shot, note the pastor’s face just over the grooms shoulder – he has a huge smile.

You can click on any of the images to see them larger. Enjoy…

Tech Info:
Nikon F100
Nikon 50mm f1.4 (Aisle shots)
Nikon 85mm f1.8 (Alter shots)
Fuji Neopan 1600
Processing and scans by Richard Photo Lab

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Boulder, CO | Chautauqua Wedding | Bridal Party in the Rain

Here are a few more pictures from Kate and Brandon’s wedding at the Chautauqua Community House in Boulder, CO. It was a very rainy day, but we were able to get outside and do a little bit of shooting because we picked up a set of clear plastic umbrellas after we had seen the forecast for the wedding day. These bubble umbrellas worked great! They kept the bridal party relatively dry, and because they are clear, they let light through so faces are not in deep shadow. I highly suggest picking up a set of similar umbrellas if you have any concerns about rain on your wedding day.

I have included a portrait of Kate that we shot immediately after coming in from the rain. You’ll notice that she isn’t drenched, and more importantly, she looks awesome! I really like these documentary images. They add an interesting feel to the album, and are pretty unique here in Colorado.

You can click on any of the images to see them larger. Enjoy…

Tech Info:
Clear Bubble Umbrellas from Target
Nikon F100
Nikon 50mm f1.4
Legacy Pro 400 (AKA Neopan 400)
Richard Photo Lab

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Boulder, CO | Chautauqua Wedding | Groom & Kids Getting Ready

Here are a few more of the getting ready images from Kate and Brandon’s wedding at the Chautauqua Community Center in Boulder, CO.

These pictures show the groom, the ring bearer and the flower girl getting ready and then waiting for the ceremony to start. I often find that after the mad dash to get dressed, there will be opportunities to document “quiet” moments with the bridal party just waiting and thinking. These types of images can really help control the pace when laying out a wedding album. They give the viewer a moment to pause and wonder what the subject is thinking about.

You can click on any of the images to see them larger. Enjoy…

Note: Fun pictures of the Bride and Bridesmaids getting ready over here.

Tech Info:
Nikon F100
Nikon 50mm f1.4
Legacy Pro 400 (AKA Fuji Neopan 400)
Processing and Scanning by Richard Photo Lab

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Boulder, CO | Chautauqua Wedding | Bride Getting Ready

The getting ready portion of the wedding day is one of my favorite times to photograph. I try to blend in with the furniture and document all of the activity. The bride and bridesmaids are talking and interacting, making for really interesting photo opportunities.

Here we have ten of my favorite images from the getting ready part of the day at Kate and Brandon’s wedding at the Chautauqua Community House in Boulder, CO. These images were shot in a beautiful little cottage right across the street from the Community House.

You can click on any of the images to see them larger. Enjoy…

Tech Info:

Black & White

  • Nikon F100
  • Nikon 50mm f1.4
  • Legacy Pro 400 (AKA Fuji Neopan 400)
  • Processing and Scanning by Richard Photo Lab

Color

  • Nikon N90s
  • Nikon 35mm f2
  • Fuji Pro 400H
  • Processing and Scanning by Richard Photo Lab
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Boulder, CO | Chautauqua Community House | Venue Details

I will be publishing a series of posts about a wedding I photographed at the Chautauqua Community House in Boulder, CO. In preparation, I thought it would be a good idea to give you a few details about the venue.

The Community House is a really beautiful old building (built in 1917) with lots of stonework and a cool front porch that overlooks a stunning courtyard filled with colorful flowers, huge trees and green grass. Inside, the Community House is a large room that can be used for a wedding ceremony, a reception, or both. There is also a kitchen for last minute food prep and a room that can be used for serving. A balcony circumnavigates the whole large room and off of the balcony is a room that can be used for getting dressed.

For my June 12th wedding, the Groomsmen got dressed in the upstairs room in the Community House, while the Bride and Bridesmaids put themselves together in one of the quaint little cottages that sit across the street from the Community House. This worked out really well, keeping the Bride and Groom separate, but giving me easy access to both of them.

The pictures below should give you a feel for the exterior and interior of this very unique location. It was raining the day of the wedding, so the exterior shots have very soft lighting, but the color really pops. Click on any of the images to see them larger. Enjoy…

Tech Specs:
Nikon N90s
Nikon 35mm f2 lens (first three shots)
Nikon 24mm f2.8 lens (overall room shot)
Fuji Pro 400H (Exterior)
Fuji Press 800 (Interior)
Film processing (+1/2 to bump the contrast) and scans by Richard Photo Lab

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