Winter Wedding Photography
This blog post is all about helping you with your winter wedding photography needs and expectations.
Planning a Winter Wedding? Don’t know where to Start? So your tying the knot and your thinking of having a winter wedding. You love the idea of having a crisp frosty even snowy wintery wedding day. I’ve photographed my fair share of winter weddings and I have to say I do love them but there is some aspects you need to take in to consideration when booking your winter wedding.
First off its the Venue
Choosing the right venue is so important for the success of your winter wedding. The main thing that can impact on your day is the weather. More than likely in the autumn and winter months the weathers probably going to be chilly and maybe wet. So having a venue that has plenty of room inside for all your guests to be comfortable is a must. Wedding Photography wise its important that you have some where inside that you like for photographs. Big windows are a bonus for letting as much natural light in as possible. Ashton Memorial is a fantastic venue all year round because of its huge windows and wonderful architecture. This doesn’t mean to say you need to get married in a green house though.
Alternative Wedding Venue
There are lots of alternative venues that create a completely different atmosphere. Manchester’s Victoria Warehouse being one. I love this venue. It’s very challenging photography wise as it is dark with hardly no natural light but the atmosphere is awesome. There’s plenty of room for lots of guests to wait inside while they are waiting to be seated for the ceremony and afterwards for the drinks reception. I also love that you can but your own stamp on it. But with venues like Victoria Warehouse don’t expect to have nice airy imagery its not going to happen. The images will be darker more dramatic and take in more of the ambient light, from lighting candles etc, rather than day light. Some images from Victoria Warehouse Wedding.
Heres a few shots from a wedding at Manchester Museum
Having a venue that is different and has the WOW factor inside is perfect for a Winter Wedding, this wedding at Manchester Museum was awesome and definitely different.
I would suggest going to look at your potential venue at a similar time of year to when you’ll be getting married. Don’t fall in love with a venue when you’ve seen it on a lovely sunny day enjoying a drink on the terrace over looking a beautiful garden as chances are that for your winter wedding it will look completely different.
So you’ve spent days picking your favourite dress. You love everything about it. Have you taken into account any other aspects of your day when choosing your dress? Does it have a long train? Are you going to be really precious about getting your dress dirty? When you look at your dress in the bridal shop you’ve always seen it laid out with its train perfectly placed and you love it. So this is how you want it to look on your winter wedding day. Only on your wedding day the floor will be dirty. Even more so it the weather has been wet which is more likely to happen for a winter wedding.
My advice would be to realise your dress is going to get dirty but you will have awesome photographs that show it off in all its glory. If you spend all day carrying your train around because your worried about it getting dirty then definitely choose a venue that has enough space for your dress to be shown off indoors or maybe choose a shorter dress that doesn’t touch the floor.
Embrace the Season
If your having a winter wedding and you want to embrace this beautiful season you don’t want to be so cold that you can’t go out and make the most of the frosty snowy weather. Be prepared and get something to help keep you warm theres lots of cover ups – shawls, shrugs and jackets that are around now that look stunning and really complement a wedding attire. Choosing venue decorations why not use something wintery, like snowflakes, or holly and berries in your flowers. Your florist will be great at coming up with something different. Using flowers that aren’t in season I think looks a bit odd especially for a winter wedding. Christmas weddings are exciting I love to use the decorations in my images where possible and not always in the way you thought I’d be photographing them. Again trusting your photographer to capture the right shot.
Your Winter Wedding Photography
You want to book a photographer thats going to tell the story of your day the way you have always imagined. You may of had a wedding photographer in mind. Maybe someone your friend had for her wedding in June. Great that you have someone in mind but a winter wedding is completely different to a summer one. The light is different and more limiting, the weather, the venues can be darker. These sort of situations don’t suit all photographers. In fact some photographers just don’t shoot winter weddings at all as they don’t go with their style and brand. Speak to your photographer before you book see if they are confident in shooting these situations. Do they have any examples of winter weddings they could show you.
What to expect from your photographs
As for the photographs, you may have been lucky and had some sunshine and had some shots outside GREAT!!! Or it might be raining,I would trust your photographer to tell you whats going to work best. You might of had some where in mind for your photographs inside but more than likely your photographer will try and find some natural light. this might be in a hotel corridor or in the smoking shelter under cover from the rain. This is when you need to have confidence in your photographer. The right photographer can make a shot in a smoking shelter look completely different and have a WOW factor. They will always keep an eye on the weather. So if you do have a dry spell drop everything and get out there with your photographer and trust their judgement.
Timings of your Day
Timings are also massively different from a summer wedding mainly due to the day light hours. So for your winter wedding photography you need to take into account your ceremony time. Make sure you have enough time after your ceremony to when you sit down for your speeches/wedding breakfast for photographs. If your getting married at 3pm then its more likely going to be going dark if not dark when you come out of the ceremony. If your wanting naturally lit images then get married earlier. For my summer weddings I like to do some bride and groom portraits later on after the meal before the night do guests arrive. Giving them more time to enjoy their drinks reception. For winter wedding photography this isn’t always possible so I get all the must have photographs done straight after the ceremony. Then sometimes do some night time shots later on.
Here’s a few example images of some of my winter wedding photography