A blog about light. Or the lack of it.

Photographers are obsessed with light.  Not just light – good light, beautiful light, seeing the light, finding the light.  And light, when it’s good, really is a photographer’s dream.  But good light can be a rarity.  This can be especially true for a wedding photographer. There might be beautiful light over there, but you have to take the photo over here. An hour ago may have had just the right quantity of light, but you have to take the photo now, when it’s practically dark.

Some days, especially in winter months, any light can be a rarity.  And while, as photographers we’re taught to take quality over quantity any day when it comes to light, just what do you do when there’s neither quality nor quantity of light?

This blog explores how I deal with no light, low light, bad light, and bad low light. A lot of what you’ll see here is light created by me, but it won’t all be. Every now and then we’ll remind ourselves that the world can be kind to us and gift us good and plentiful light, leaving us to just use it to our best advantage. So there will be shots here which are entirely lit by nature. And there’ll be shots that are entirely lit by me (using small flashes, usually).  The vast majority of shots here will actually be a bit of both.

Join me as I break down those shots, and explain what I lit, what I didn’t light (often more important), how I lit and why I lit as I did. There’ll be good shots and not so good shots. Things won’t always work out and the stars won’t always align.  That’s another reality for a wedding photographer: near misses, and there’ll be those for sure. But stick with me, and whatever about the photos, I promise you’ll learn a bag of tricks to give you the best chance of overcoming non-ideal light and capturing A Shot In The Dark.

Inspiration and information with no secrets.

Posts will generally fall into one of two categories.

  • Understanding light – educational posts building the basis for understanding all about light and lighting
  • How it’s lit – technical posts breaking down in detail how an image was created and how I built up the lighting in a methodical way.

There will be no secrets, and I’m not one for holding back how I did something for fear someone else might do it better.  I learnt all I know about photography from fellow photographers who were kind enough to share, and most of them are still better than me.  And if I’ve outshone one or two of them on occasion it’s been a combination of luck, skill and hard work on my part, rather than me simply copying what someone else has done.  So please, do go and try these things at home. Or on a job. And if you nail it, we’ll all be happy.