Yesterday I had chance to do another couple shoot with my Leica M9 camera. We did an engagement themed shoot with model friends Raki and Terri. Neither of them had worked together before but they gelled together really well and it made for an easy to direct shoot.
For most weddings, couples do not set aside enough time to get a wide range of natural yet creative wedding portraits. Many couples are also on a tight budget so skip the engagement shoot option. I organise shoots like this one with Raki and Terri to show ‘real’ couples what is possible for them if they opt for either an engagement shoot or book me as their wedding photographer. I am not looking to shoot a wedding every weekend as I don’t want to mass…
Venue for Engagement Shoot: Coombe Abbey Hotel, Coventry + Coventry Studio
Pre-wedding engagement photography a using a Leica M9 camera. You may recognise Maria from past Flickr photos I have shared as she has modelled for me before. Maria asked if I could do a black and white studio photography shoot for her and Dior who recently got engaged. I agreed but recommended we also did an outside location shoot too as that is where the Leica Noctilux 50mm f1.0 v2 lens really comes into it’s own. With that all agreed we did a part one and part two shoot, with the first being in the studio and getting Dior used to the camera and the second at the popular Coventry wedding venue, Coombe Abbey Hotel as it is only down the road from them.
(You might note that this was also the location of Sukhi and Raechelle’s engagement session photos! Coombe has extensive grounds that are very diverse so give a broad range of potential photo oppotunities).
Part 1: Coventry Photography Studio
For the studio images the couple wanted edgy fashion posed looking photos in black and white tones, with less of the standard happy smiley engagement looking faces. I posed the guys and lit them accordingly.
Part 2: On location – Coombe Abbey Hotel, Coventry
For the location images the Maria and Dior wanted the traditional happy smiley (more commercial photography) looking photos. Again I posed the couple and but then also evoked the emotions to create the moment to be captured in each image. A couple can be madly in love with each other but if it is not visual it will not come across in the engagement photos. This also stands true for posing couples for wedding photography. Every couple is of course different and some make it easier for me than others. Maria and Dior are naturally very smiley and look good in front of the camera so that made for a fun shoot.
Sample Images – Part 1 – B&W
Sample Images – Part 2 – Colour
(There are more photos from both in the studio and at Coombe Abbey to come so I will add them to this post when I get chance).
To follow up on my last blog post from Craig and Josie’s wedding yesterday at Ingon Manor, UK here are the photos I promised. For the full write-up of the day see links related below (“My First Leica M9 Wedding”). To recap I used my Leica M9 for wedding photography the first time. I shot B&W JPEGs and DNG files. I like black and white photography so decided to use only the JPEG images. The Leica is pefect for documentary style wedding photography due to it’s small size when compared to DSLRs. I really enjoyed shooting this wedding are here are some of my favourites –
MatthewOsbornePhotography – Leica Wedding Photography, UK
May 3rd, 2014
Wedding Venue – Bartholomew Barn, Sussex
Leica camera equipment used on the wedding day:
> Leica M9 body
> Voigtlander Nokton 35mm f1.2 ASPH ii lens – 75%
> Leica Noctilux 50mm f1.0 v2 lens
This wedding was very soon after my Leica Noctilux 50f1 lens purchase. I was concerned from all the out of focus/ soft focus example images posted on Flickr using this lens and from the reputation of the Noctilux being a soft lens wide open. I thought it might not be useable for paying clients. As such, I chose to use the CV Nokton 35f1.2 as my primary lens on the wedding day but tested the Noctilux lens for some detail photos and less important candid photography during downtime.
May 17th, 2014
Wedding Venue – Hatton Hall, Warwickshire
Here are a selection of photos from the wedding day. The couple opted for a mixture of digital wedding photography and film photography.
Digital photos – Leica M9 + Noctilux 50mm f1: (Every photo except one (marked with 15mm) is taken with a M9 + Nocti 50f1.0 v2 lens. Almost all photos except the big group photo were taken with the lens wide open at f1)
Matthew Osborne Photography – Coventry Wedding Photographer
UK Leica Photographer – Leica Wedding Photography, Fashion Photography and Portraiture. Clients receive professional Leica quality documentary style wedding photography, fashion photography and portrait images.
Leica Camera – Leica cameras are made in Germany and have excellent optical and build quality. They lack the mod cons of modern mass produced cameras and use manual focus lenses. They are build in smaller numbers to very high specification so have a high price tag. Due to the small size, discrete styling and quiet action they are popular for documentary style photography. The lack of addition buttons and auto settings lets me concentrate on composing each photo before taking a picture. I find the Leica M9 perfect for my style of wedding photography.
Leica Wedding Photography – Leica M9 digital photos have a unique almost film like look to them. As a film photographer I value this style that cannot be achieved using standard DSLR cameras. I believe in quality over quantity so do not over shoot weddings. Using a manual camera such as a Leica slows down the speed at which I take photos so I have more time to consider each photo before pressing the shutter. As a Coventry Wedding Photographer visiting wedding venues in Coventry and Warwickshire but also across the UK and overseas I benefit from being able to travel light with the small compact Leica camera bag.
Black and White Photography using a Leica Camera – My preferred style of photography is black and white. Using the Leica M9 for wedding photography gives my clients a set of timeless looking film like images. Black and white photography places more emphasis on light, textures, shape and form. It captures all the emotions without the distractions of colour.
Leica Film Photography – I now offer clients 35mm film photography using my beautiful 1951 Leica M2 film camera. I favour colour Kodak Portra 160 colour film for the most flattering skin tones and shoot various black and white film types including Ilford FP4+ for a grainy look and Kodak T-Max 100 for a smoother finish.
How will this site differ from my website or BLOG? I will use LeicaWeddingPhotographer.co.uk to share my Leica wedding photography photos and experiences from each of the weddings I attend from 2014 onwards. For Leica wedding photos taken in 2013 please visit my BLOG at MrLeica.com