glowing bride on wedding day at SF City Hall - Photographer of Light
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Glowing Bride Hidden Flash

We used an off-camera flash placed directly behind the couple to get this glow behind the bride. The back lighting also provides some nice rim lighting around the groom and the bride's hair. This effect not only provides some drama to the photograph, but it also helps separate the married couple from the background. It makes the photo look more dimensional. In this case, when I used the term dimensional if am referring to the depth provided by this professional lighting set up. Exceptional photography often includes a 3-D look which makes the viewer feel like they can jump into the scene. This is why, when possible a good photographer should often avoid a solid background like a wall. This type of photographic set up can make the picture look like a mug shot.

Professional Lighting Techniques

The flash unit is controlled by a Radio Slave sending unit mounted on our cameras. We place it hidden behind the couple and set it on a lower power so it won't be overwhelming and too bright. Finding the best balance is the key challenge in this type of wedding photography. City Hall offers many backgrounds and opportunities to incorporate this type of lighting into the creative process. We feel our advanced lighting techniques differentiate us from less experienced San Francisco city hall wedding photographers. There are plenty others that are utilizing these same techniques, but I also frequently see other clients being photographed with direct flash. On camera flash can create flat faces and lack of depth in the picture. This would give you a result similar to a cell phone camera with the flash on. Try it on your own and see. Take a picture of your friend with the cell phone flash on and see how it comes out. Then compare that result to the pictures on this website and you will see the difference right off the bat.