This week’s image is of a father and his baby daughter at a Winter wedding in London. I’ve never really seen this image as a wedding photograph as such. To me it’s a moment between dad and daughter which, in many years time and possibly on her own wedding day, she will be able to look back on and see just how much she means to her dad. It just happens that this moment took place at a wedding.
The guests had just alighted from a London bus just outside of the venue and were walking through the building on the way to the back terrace for the drinks reception. There were a lot of people quickly moving through the venue and because of the strong Winter sunlight and busy backgrounds there was little opportunity to get good pictures in this situation. In cases like this, which happen quite a lot at weddings, I will often seek out pictures away from the main action. If the light or backgrounds aren’t conducive to getting good images I will look for places where I can photograph. Simply snapping away without thought isn’t an option. Our pictures have to be of a certain standard. That is really important to us.
The man in the picture is a guest at the wedding. He was helping his daughter to walk through the building and the interaction between them caught my eye. She was getting a little distressed at all of the people around them and he picked her up. There was my picture. I wanted to show the intimacy between these two and so shot the image back through a mirrored panel that was part of a large piece of furniture I was standing next to. The abstract patterns of light were caused by the edges of the mirror catching the sunlight. These reflections helped to isolate the two of them from everything else while adding a dream like quality to the image. I also think the picture has quite a voyeuristic feel to it.
The light on the two of them came from several large windows which opened out onto the terrace. It was a soft rim light with the baby’s dress acting as a kicker pushing light into her father’s face. Flash would have absolutely killed this image and it would have also made them aware they were being photographed. For me it is important that they were totally unaware of my presence so that I could explore the interaction between them. Compositionally it works best as a vertical image; the lines are all running top to bottom, and because the mirrored panel was a vertical rectangle we are seeing what the mirror saw.
This image for me shows the images that can be found just by observing, being patient and not being drawn into the mindset of recording everything that moves.
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