How lighting can affect your wedding day photos and why its important

For your wedding day photos to be absolutely stunning it may seem not seem immediately obvious , but it is important to plan around light. This article gives more info on how lighting can affect your wedding day photos. It does not only apply to your wedding couple photos, but also to the reception hall , ceremony area and where you will be getting ready. Here are some tips to make sure you have the best possible lighting for your photographer on your wedding day.

Plan around the golden hour for your wedding couple photos

Most wedding ceremonies take place around 3/4pm in the afternoon. Do you ever wonder why this is? As a wedding photographer this works out perfectly for me to then take the couple photos around the “golden hour”. This is the time of day about an hour before sunset where the light has that beautiful afternoon glow . So if you want those romantic couple photos taken with this kind of light and around sunset its best to plan your ceremony so that you can go into your couple photos around this time without making your guests wait too long for you.

Make sure your reception Area has a white ceiling and lots of light.

If your reception area has a white ceiling this is an added bonus for your wedding photographer. This means we can use equipment to bounce light off the white surface and light our subjects much easier. Whereas if you have something like a thatch roof this will be much more difficult as this is non reflective – so the images would end up much darker. The opposite is also true for very reflective surfaces like glass . This can actually cause too much reflection and create flares in your image which you don’t actually want

Get ready for your wedding in a room with lots of space and light – as well as light curtains and furniture


Having light curtains and big windows in the room where you get ready will have both your photographer and make up artist praising you. Large light sources really help to give your photos a soft airy feel which is exactly what you want to show in your wedding day photos. Space and light coloured furniture also really help as the background can be nicely blurred if there is more space , and dark furniture can be distracting when you are putting on a white wedding dress

Have outdoor Ceremonies in the shade and around Mid afternoon

Outdoor wedding ceremonies can be awesome as they capture the beauty of a venue you have chosen, however there are a few things that can turn a lighting nightmare into really beautiful wedding ceremony photos. Firstly consider where the sun will be .It should preferably be behind the ceremony officiant. Secondly try to make sure your guests will be seated in deep shade. Thirdly make sure you are under a roof of some kind. this is required my law in south africa – but a light draping is still very romantic and diffuse harsh light beautifully. Last but not least try not to have your ceremony at midday or close to it. Mid afternoon, around 3 pm onwards is best and the light is much more manageable. If you arent sure what to do then ask your photographers opinion before setting your ceremony time and location.

For more info on how lighting can affect your wedding day photos check out this article on the importance of light for beautiful wedding photos



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