Dagmara & Hans

Dagmara and Hans were married this past September at Northern Lights Christmas Tree Farm which, despite the wintry name, is an awesome wedding venue all year ’round! River frontage, a sprawling farmhouse and some old rustic barns give Northern Lights a nice ‘country’ feel only a few minutes from Eugene. Check them out! Here are a few images from that day.

 

Northern Lights wedding. Eugene wedding photographer, Portland wedding photographer; © Matt Emrich Photo Northern Lights wedding. Eugene wedding photographer, Portland wedding photographer; © Matt Emrich Photo Northern Lights wedding. Eugene wedding photographer, Portland wedding photographer; © Matt Emrich Photo Northern Lights wedding. Eugene wedding photographer, Portland wedding photographer; © Matt Emrich Photo Northern Lights wedding. Eugene wedding photographer, Portland wedding photographer; © Matt Emrich Photo Northern Lights wedding. Eugene wedding photographer, Portland wedding photographer; © Matt Emrich Photo Northern Lights wedding. Eugene wedding photographer, Portland wedding photographer; © Matt Emrich Photo

Ariel & Jon

Ariel and Jon were married on Jon’s parents’ property outside Junction City, Oregon. When I first met them there, to create a shot list for the day and to see which locations and lighting would be best, I thought there was no way they’d transform the property into a viable wedding venue in time for their wedding. Boy, did I underestimate how much work they’d be able to do! Here are some sample images from that day, taken last September.

 

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Weddings in 2017

The Oregon Wedding Showcase is happening in three weeks at the Lane Events Center in Eugene and I’ve already been inundated with requests for photography; brides are hoping to lock in their dates earlier and earlier every year! If you’re still looking for a photographer, or just want to score lots of free swag, stop by the showcase; I still have dates available. I’ll have a raffle at my booth (right next to David’s Bridal) and who knows what may be on offer 🙂 Last year I gave away a free engagement session.

Here are some fun photos to remind everyone that winter will soon give way to spring, then summer!

 

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Jasper House

Jasper House Farms is a new arrival on the Lane County wedding venue scene and it’s spectacular! I really like how many shady areas there are for mid-day photos. This image was taken yesterday and I thought I’d post it here, before the bride and groom left for their honeymoon.

Jasper House Farms

Jasper House Farms wedding

A great entrance

I love when a bride (or groom!) makes a grand entrance. At this wedding, near the town of Lebanon, Oregon, the bride elected to arrive via horse drawn carriage. Perfect!

 

Shallow Depth of Field

I’ve just returned from a wedding interview and the bride-to-be asked me a question about one of the images she saw in my slideshow (see below). She asked how I was able to create such a blurry background, yet have the subjects in clear focus. I explained the difference between f-stops, as well as focal distance, and she was very interested; so much so that I thought I’d post the photo here and give some lens data. When photographers talk about a fast lens they are referring to its minimum f-stop (aperture); how wide open the lens will go. The term fast simply means it’s easier to shoot at a faster shutter speed with an f2.8 lens than it is with an f4 lens. The wider a lens opens, the more light gets in, which means a faster shutter speed is necessary to properly expose the image. For example, say an image shot at f4 needs a shutter speed of 1/125th-of-a-second for proper exposure. That same image could be shot at 1/250th-of-a-second if an f2.8 lens was used. Not only does this make it easier to capture sharper images while hand-holding a camera, the f2.8 lens will have a softer bokeh (ie, blurry background) than an f4 lens. This is where depth of field comes in. Depth of field is simply referring to how much of the image is in focus, based on linear distance from lens to subject. A shallow depth of field (ie, f2.8) will only contain a small area in focus while an image shot at f16, for example, would pretty much render everything in sharp focus, provided the subjects were standing completely still. However, if I were to have shot the image below at f16, the bride and groom would not have looked so sharp, since everything behind them would have been in focus as well. Additionally, at f16, I would’ve had to have used a very slow shutter speed (1/30th-of-a-second, for example), and the entire image would have suffered from motion blur.

I used a Canon 70-200mm f2.8, Image Stabilized lens on my Canon 5D MarkIII for this shot, and I was zoomed all the way in to 200mm. Image stabilization helps reduce motion blur when hand-holding a camera. I’ve already explained how shooting at f2.8 creates a blurry background and a nice bokeh. Using a telephoto lens compresses the foreground and background, further enhancing the bokeh when the lens is zoomed to its maximum distance. By compression, I mean optical compression, not digital compression; it’s the effect of the glass itself that creates the compression, not a digital algorithm (which a lot of point-and-shoot digital cameras use, making enlargements look very fuzzy). For this image, which was taken in Flowery Branch, Georgia, I had the couple stand on a bluff overlooking the lake behind them. I stood about 30 feet away and zoomed in so they almost filled the frame. The woods and lake in the background are over 100 yards away from the couple but they look closer, thanks to the compression-effect of the telephoto lens. Shooting at an f2.8 aperture meant I only had a small area that would be in focus, but the telephoto compression actually gave me a bit more leeway. If I’d used my 16-35mm lens for this image, shooting at f2.8 would have been a disaster: I would’ve had to have stood within a few feet of the couple, and only a part of their faces would be in focus since I wouldn’t have the benefit of compression.

So that’s Depth of Field 101, with a bit of telephoto compression thrown in 🙂

Eugene wedding photographer

First Dance

The first dance between a newly married couple can take many forms, from energetic and playful to slow and close. Whichever form it takes, the first dance is always momentous; it’s usually the first time the newlyweds are together with all eyes on them. This first dance, at the Atavista Bed & Breakfast in Brownsville, came just before the clouds opened up and moved everyone indoors. I converted the image to black and white, and put in a slight Gaussian blur, because I felt it added more drama to the sky.

Atavista Farm wedding

Eugene wedding photographer, Portland wedding photographer; © Matt Emrich Photo