Wedding Photography in a heatwave. Can you ever have “too much sun”?

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2018 was a hot year! Very hot.

When it’s a sunny day, I’ll often have guests come up to me and say “perfect day for a wedding” which is true. Lots of lovely sunshine, everyone can enjoy the warm weather. And it’s so lovely to be able to chat with friends outside during the day and late into the evening and not have to worry about rain. It makes for wonderful natural photos of friends and family as a memento of a wedding day. However…… very few photographers will say this to couples, but the art of great wedding photography is to capture wonderful pictures in bad light. Yes, you heard me right. I actually just described that lovely sunshine at the height of summer as “bad light”! The thing is, strong light overhead may not be overly flattering.

The Talbot Inn is located in a lovely village of Ripley in the Surrey countryside. Surrounded by trees and a park just over the road. I always make a point of arriving at least an hour before I’m due to start photographing a wedding because things can change since the last visit and it’s hard to re-plan a shoot mid-wedding. The engagement shoot, three months earlier, went without a hitch on the lush grass. However, we hadn’t had much rain since and the once green lawn resembled a dry plain in the Serengeti. If I had kept to my original plan, I’m going to have hot and bothered looking wedding couple and not much greenery to work with. Time to re-plan…. (continued below)

It’s days like this where an experienced wedding photographer can make all the difference to your pictures. Having photographed well over 200 weddings, last minute changes it’s something I’m ready for. On this occasion, the trick is to use that strong sunlight and look for ways to make it work for you. I had plenty of time to stroll further into the park and look for more suitable locations. As these were further than I would like for a bride to walk in heels, I also plan a route back to the wedding venue via road. My own car has plenty of space for a bride and groom and it’s air conditioned! With my plan B in place we can confidently get on with business of concentrating on the wedding day itself and capture Gemma and Jason having a thoroughly enjoyable sunny day wedding!

Luckily we had some evening cloud which made for an ideal sunset picture!


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