landscape photography for wedding

Any photographer is constantly looking for a personal style, a signature one to let his work stand out.

Over the time I realized that landscape photography, taking scenic portraits in the wide spaces of Tuscany countryside, was not only a source of personal satisfaction, but also met the taste of our brides and grooms.

Images full of drama together with the contrast between the tiny size of the couple and the huge space from the surrounding environment, have gradually become a signature of my personal way to photograph weddings.

Obsessively crafting and designing our wedding albums, we discovered that a proper combination of narrow portraits with large and scenic ones, contributes a lot to the rhythm of any wedding story.

This approach to photography, that is most “horizontal” than “vertical”, has being guided by the many albums we have done in recent years.

Our wedding albums are produced by Graphistudio in three different formats: square, vertical and horizontal. Contrary to some years ago, when the square and vertical format were our standard, brides now often choose landscape/horizontal albums, offering us the right medium for full spread panoramic images, adding the “wow” effect we are constantly in search of.

Landscape photography for wedding, our recipe

Covering weddings in Tuscany, where you can find spectacular landscapes almost anywhere, certainly eased my personal path to landscape photography, allowing me to create my images in these modes:

01. Landscape photography with wide-angle lens
Using a lens such as the 17-35mm, is definitely the most spontaneous and immediate approach. It allows me to broaden my angle of view, while remaining close enough to my subjects, allowing me to guide them, to interact with them, unleashing emotional reactions, the right contents for the story I want to tell.

02. Landscape photography with zoom lens
This second mode may seem crazy (a 70-200mm zoom to take a landscape picture ???), but after some practice and experimentation, I definitely started to prefer it to the classic wide-angle lens. Certainly, not all the environments will allow you to create wide pictures using a large zoom lens at 200mm, but if you can get away enough from your subjects, you will love the result that can be achieved. A telephoto lens offers a sweet compression, driving your attention directly on the couple, that even remaining very small in the frame, will still be the main focus of your image, while the surrounding environment will melt in a beautiful bokeh.

03. Landscape photography – multiple exposures
If you can not get away from your bride and groom, how are you supposed to take panoramas while keeping a tele or medium zoom lens (24-70mm)?

In this case, I borrowed a classic technique from landscape photographers, creating multiple vertical exposures that I will later combine in Lightroom or Photoshop, to create a single stitched wide picture. This method certainly requires additional work, but it allows you to exaggerate the drama of your scene, far beyond the limits of any wide-angle lens. Combining multiple exposures, allows me even to create extremely high resolution images, which will printed as a double page album spread or as a framed product to be hanged on a wall, allowing you to print enlargements up to two or three meters !!!

Someone will find my approach to wedding landscape photography interesting, someone will find it awkward… but at the end, is not this the beauty of photography?

We are living a lucky age, in which technology has provided us many amazing photography tools, is up to us to experiment with them, to play with them, to finally discover our own voice.
At the end, each image is always taken by the photographer, not by the camera.

Maurizio Mannini

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