Using A Drone For Golden Hour Photos- Image of the Week #442

We have had a wonderful few weeks of summer weather and that means lots of photos out in golden hour at weddings. This is the hour before the sun completely sets when the light takes on some enchanting qualities. It becomes softer and warmer in colour temperature plus shadows can be more dramatic.

Most of us will position couples with the warm light behind them or play with silhouettes but there are many other possibilities. Like here, where Lottie Judd has done the opposite of close, intimate photos. Instead, she used a drone to pull right back and encompass much of the landscape. This allows her to employ the long shadows from the trees, adding depth to this frame.

Timing is everything with this one as the couple need to be in that gap in the shadows in order to stand out in the composition and Lottie’s direction meant that they were walking together but with separation so that both subjects are visible.

It is a beautiful example of what can be done when you do not limit your thinking or go into a wedding with set ideas.

DJI Mini 2
ISO 10 | F2.8 | 1/800
Sam Docker Preset Pack V1

What Lottie said…”

The way the timings worked on this couple’s wedding day meant I found time to experiment with my drone which was crucial for this shot. Being at a venue surrounded by lots of space, and with some extra time on my hands, seemed the perfect opportunity to try something a little different.

Whilst guests were finishing the wedding breakfast, I went outside and tested out some different angles and fell in love with these beautiful trees that looked like we could be in the South of France, would you believe we were in Southend-on-Sea in Essex?! With golden hour on the horizon, I did a couple of test shots and found my composition. I went back inside to get the couple who were so excited at the thought of a drone shot. I directed them to walk in front of the trees with the bride slightly leading, all whilst I’m looking at the screen to see how the shot was lining up and waiting for that perfect moment. Just as the couple walked into the sunlight streaming through the trees, I asked them to glance at each other and the sunlight was still catching their faces. Everything aligned beautifully.

It really pays off to take the time to set up something a little more creative and trust in the process.”

The Tech Talk

“For this image, I was concentrating on finding a strong background. The shadows were creating beautiful leading lines that I could really emphasise by how I positioned the couple. By directing the bride to lead, it meant they were walking parallel to the lines on either side of them, making it look as though they were walking into the sunlight, and drawing the eye to the centre of the frame.”