A Brit & A Blonde Photography unveils their magnetic photo album and share insights from photographing this stunning Berkeley Church wedding venue Toronto.
A curious mind is a quality that shines through in photography. As a viewer, your pictures have a quality of bringing out a sense of curiosity, being drawn into the moment the photograph was taken. What role does curiosity play in your work?
It plays a massive role. We approach each and every wedding with a curious mind. It allows us to see the uniqueness of each of our couples and find how best to tell the story of their specific day. To quote Lewis Caroll’s Alice in Wonderland we constantly grow “curiouser & curiouser” – it is so important when shooting in a photojournalistic style. Without curiosity the work would be flat and one note.
You mentioned that the wedding of Grace and Dustin at Berkeley Church was a relaxed wedding. Couples can aim to have their weddings relaxed but its a hard thing to have happen, this lovely wedding appears to have achieved this perfectly. How did your process as photographers help facilitate this goal and how did you ultimately show this relaxed atmosphere in your work?
We shoot the day as it unfolds. We are very much “flies on the wall” so to speak – for us that yields the best images. If you noticed us or if our presence changes the dynamic or course of the day – then we are not doing our job properly. Our goal is always to capture the big moments, the once in a lifetime moments, the fleeting moments, the mini moments & the moments between the moments – these all add up to telling the story of the day. In this case – it was an intimate daytime wedding – relaxed and casual.
Your photographs have a sense of timelessness. What are some of your techniques for this?
Thank you so much. That is a huge compliment. We always say that we want our couples to adore their images the day they receive them and 20-30 years down the road too. We strive for timelessness. Capturing real true moments – whether it is a sweet moment between the couple themselves, between two friends laughing their faces off during cocktails, the first time the father of the bride sees his daughter dressed as a bride, or the flower girl running around the reception with the family dog – a real true moment will stand the test of time.
What factors inform your decision to present a picture in black and white.
Some photos just beg to be in black & white and we oblige.
The emotional impact of the day are transmitted throughout your photographs. What are some of the ways you believe this happens?
A wedding day is chock fill with emotions – but you need to know how to anticipate and be at the right place at the right time – with the right angle and the right lighting and the right composition. Something that comes with practice and the drive to do everything possible to tell the story the best way possible.
There appear to be unhurried, quiet moments built into the wedding day. Is this something you look for?
We love those types of moments. These are present in all weddings – big or small. You just need to know how to look for them. Some photographers may put down their camera if it seems like “nothing” is going on at that moment. But the reality is – there is always something going on a wedding. We never put our cameras down. It is during the quiet moments that you can capture some pretty magical stuff.
The picture of the wedding ceremony where half the frame is white has the effect of inserting a space for thoughts and private interpretations, as if to say “look at what is happening in the frame and think about what it means”. Similarly, the pictures in the urban garden at the church utilize this effect with the textures wall and the nature. The viewer is invited to see the couple but is reminded they are seeing. How do you play with composition?
For us it is always about giving the viewer a sense of what it felt like to be there. A front row seat to all the amazing moments no matter how big or small. We want the composition of the image to lead you into the particular moment we find important.
The wedding was set in natural light. There is a painterly effect in the photographs where light is an element on your palette that you adeptly incorporate. What is in your toolbox as photographers to be able to achieve this?
People often say that photography is the art of painting with light. We love using shadows and light to create our images. We don’t use any gimmicky trickery – our toolbox essentially is the sun or any light source – that alone can yield endless possibilities.
The architectural charm of the Berkeley Church was given careful consideration in your photographs. Was this an important element for the photography at this wedding?
1000% – we know that our couples always choose their venues for a reason. So we always want to treat the location itself as if it were a very important guest at the wedding. And when you have an incredible space like the Berkeley Church – how can you not embrace the amazingness of the place.
The photograph of Grace and Dustin in front of the stained glass windows on the second floor is a meditation on light and exquisite composition. How did you conceive of this photograph?
Ahh shucks *blushing*. Thank you so much. The way the light was coming in through the stained glass was just too perfect. It had to be shot. The couple had designed the heart as part of their décor and that fit perfectly in the image to give it more of their story.
How did the element of having the ceremony unplugged affect the atmosphere in the Berkeley Church? Additionally, how did it change your approach as photographers?
We always suggest to our couples to consider having an “unplugged” ceremony. This way guests are present in the moment vs. feeling like they need to photograph every aspect of it which is distracting for the couple, the other guests and for us as photographers. Couples want to look out into the crowd and see the faces of their guests – not a sea of devices.
How did the couple communicate their vision for the photography of their wedding?
I am not sure that most couples would be able to explain or articulate what their vision would be for the photography of their wedding. It is our job as the photographers to get to know our couples well enough so that we can answer that question for them. And deliver picture perfect images that reflect them and their day beautifully.
Venue: Berkeley Church
Photographer: A Brit & A Blonde Photography