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This Is How: ‘Father of the Bride’s Speech’ by Steven Rooney

In the twentieth of our regular series of documentary wedding photography tips we’re excited to have the fabulous Steven Rooney with us, telling us all about how he captured this emotional image. We love his thoughts on not only this specific capture (including his flash setup, and tips on context, composition and storytelling), but also weddings themselves; of being a Father himself and wanting the best for his three children. Thank you for sharing, Steven:

Weddings are really about people and the relationships between them; monumental days in anyone’s life that strengthen the bonds between family and friends. They also give the opportunity for people to wear their hearts on their sleeves and say things out loud that they may not have told each other before. As a father of 3 (two girls and a boy), I often think about the future and I hope that my little munchkins find someone who makes them happy. I have plenty of other wishes for them too, and Sally (my wife) and I do everything we can to nurture these three free spirits who will (hopefully) be ready to go out into the real world and make a good go of it. So I particularly relate to speeches from fellow Dads at weddings. This was Suzanne’s Dad’s second father of the bride speech in as many years. His two daughters grown up, successful and happy. What more could a father want. As he spoke of his love and pride for his daughter and his family there were more than a few tears shed.

About the image:

The wedding breakfast setup was all round tables in a room with a fairly low ceiling at King Stree Town House in Manchester. I used flash to light the bride and counter the halogen spotlights. I had a second flash for the speaker. However, the father of the bride was roaming a little. As the speach progressed I tried my best to get a position between the tables where I could see both subjects. I feel that it was important to include the speaker in the shot to provide context.  I would have liked to see him a little better but he was now facing away from the light source. I’m happy with the result though as I want the viewer to see the bride fisrt of all and then to infer the context. Equipment: Canon 5D with 135L.

You can see more of Steven’s work on his website, and on his This is Reportage profile.

If you enjoyed this post, we have lots of other ‘This Is How…’ posts by our TiR members over here.

Aga Tomaszek

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