Classic make-up for bridal photography
Well it’s that time of the year when the student makeup artists from West college Scotland Greenock campus start looking for photographers to shoot their portfolio. As usual, one of the first tasks is to create a bridal look. Bridal make-up is deceptively difficult. The Make-up has to be sympathetic to the dress and also reflect the style of the wedding. This weeks ‘bride’ wore a traditional beaded gown so Lee Dempster, the make-up artist created a classic look. It took her about two and a half hours to produce this natural flawless look. Make-up artists will tell you that one of the hardest looks to get right is the ‘natural ‘look.
We started with some straightforward shots in the studio. Although, maybe not so straightforward. The dress was a tad tight for the model so the poor girl was a bit restricted in her movements. I had to be very careful with posing, so as not to ruin her modesty. I think adding the veil in the later shots was a master stroke by Lee and I love the shots with the veil over the face.
Outside the mariners home
Eventually the weather cleared up enough (it was still a bit ‘smirry’!) for us to venture outside. First stop was The mariners home The mariners home was bequeathed by Sir Gabriel Wood in the mid 19th century. The home has delightful gothic charm despite only being built in the 1850’s and it is literally at the end of my road. It was shift change time at the carehome so we gave the workers a bit of excitement. Especially when the reflector went flying off in the wind.
Next stop was the Lyle kirk where we made good use of an arched door to the side of the church just beside the bins. I think using a church in bridal model shoots adds a bit of authenticity to the shoots. We didn’t stay out long because it was absolutely freezing and the poor model had bare arms. It was also starting to get a bit late and dark. (It gets dark in Greenock just after 3.30pm at the moment and we’re not that far north really.) And although I was using flash to light the model I was also using the ambient light to light the scene. It’s one of my favourite techniques.
Lighting set up
For any photographers who read my blog, due to the cold and wind this was a one extra light set up. My trusty SB600 flash was used. This time not in full manual as I normally do but in Commander mode using the hotshoe mounted flash to sigmal the speedlight. I decided on this technique for a couple of reasons. One: I need to get more familiar with it. I am totally happy with setting up flashes manually with a lightmeter and balancing for ambient. I like the control! But, I know there will be times when understanding the commander mode for off camera flash will be useful. Ie when I can’t meter or just for speed. Anyway, it never hurts to have a couple of aces up your sleeve. The flash was bounced in a brolly to spread and soften the light. In most cases the light was feathered across the face although the wind made it difficult to keep the brolly in the optimum position all the time.
All in all, we had a great day even if we did get a bit cold and wet at the end.