The colour of sun and wheat

As a wedding photographer, there’s one thing that I notice every time I step into a church: tones and colours. 
Here in Denmark there’s a lot of white and grey, sometimes blue tiles, sometimes red bricks, and a lot of dark wood: usually, the atmosphere is quite cold.
In the warm south of Europe the dominant colour is yellow. The colour of sun and wheat.
Where I am from, it’s very common to find old buildings made of tuff: palaces and churches with big, rough, porous bricks. It looks like a soft sponge that you can squeeze. 
In some other areas, like in Sicily, the most common rock is yellow marble.
These rocks contribute to give your photos a sense of warmth that you couldn’t achieve otherwise.
And as a wedding photographer, that’s very important.

The importance of details in wedding photography

When we think about wedding photographs our mind goes to the main events of the day: the ceremony, the cake, the portraits.
Between these big moments though, there are small elements that are as relevant, and there is one thing that a good wedding photographer should never overlook: the details.
Shooting weddings is stressful, there is so much going on in one day. But months and months of planning go into that single day, and capturing all the aspects of it becomes crucial. It’s our job as wedding photographers to freeze in time something that took so much time and effort: couples may have dreamt about this day for a long time, thinking about every single detail, pondering over every aspect of their wedding day. Yes, even the place cards at the table.
It’s something they want to remember, and it's our responsibility to create their memories.
Many wedding photographers for example take lots of photos of the bride's dress, and then they neglect the shoes. If we try so see things from the bride's point of view, we'll soon understand the importance of details: she has carefully chosen her shoes among many, because of their fabric, colour, whatever. She wants to remember them. And yes of course she will have hundreds of photos with her shoes on, but a photo of the shoes before she even wears them will preserve their memory forever: it will be like the first time she saw them.

Making decisions

Yesterday I met a couple getting married next year, to talk about their wedding photos. It was our first meeting, so we talked a bit of what we do and what we like, and I explained them why I love shooting weddings: because it’s very challenging. 
During a wedding you have no control over the location, the weather, the light, the rain, the mood, the development of the event. You can’t decide where and when to take photos: if it’s outdoor and in bright sun, you’ll just have to adjust to that. You can’t waste time deciding what to do, or you’ll miss the moment, and the “moment” is the very core of wedding photography. 
It’s a matter of making decisions as fast as possible.
This picture I’m showing you was taken in very poor light conditions: there was no direct light on the couple and - stupid me - I didn’t have the time to go get my flash and put it on my camera. It was so dark that my camera had issues with the focus. Luckily for me, my camera can deal pretty well with high ISO, so the only option was: high ISO, combined with the largest aperture possible. 
There.

Why weddings?

When you start in photography they all tell you the same thing: you have to find your sub-category, since you can’t do everything in the huge photography world. 
For me it was imperative to take pictures of people, somehow: no matter whether it was fashion, weddings or corporate photography, I need to interact with people, or I would get immediately bored.
There is only one sub-category in the immense photography field where you can experience so many different kinds of emotion: weddings. 
Because it’s your stories.

What if it rains?

In Italy, especially in the south, if you plan your wedding between May and September you have almost no chances of rain. But now I live in Denmark and it rains A LOT in the nordic countries.
It took me a while to get used to shoot under the rain, but as a wedding photographer you have to work with what you get. When I finally stopped complaining about the rain, I noticed the endless possibilities that the “bad” weather gives you: the light is simply amazing, the rain makes all the colors pop, photos with umbrellas are nice and cute, people are more spontaneous and they tend to completely forget about the photographer. Besides, imagine the awesome story you will tell about how you nailed a big storm on your wedding day.
Like they say: wet bride, lucky bride.

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Fairy tales

“In the land that created fairy tales, we just started our own” 
Cit. Rufus Gifford

We all know it: Denmark was the first country in the world to allow gay couples to formalise their unions, in 1989. Today, most of the battles have been won here, and LGBT couples can have equal rights. They even have the blessing of the Danish Church.
I was born in a small catholic town in south of Italy, and after 4 years in Copenhagen it still feels amazing to have this freedom and acceptance. Working as a wedding photographer in Scandinavia I have seen that people look at gay weddings for what they really are: celebrating couples committed to one another. That’s it.
I must say, never in my life in Italy I would have imagined to experience this sense of inclusion, and also to be the one documenting it with my camera.
It really feels amazing to be part of it.

Your stories

When thinking about wedding photography, people usually believe that it’s always the same routine, the same things, the same poses, the same photos.
Truth is, you’ll never get bored at weddings. There’s always something going on and every time you get to meet new people. Moments of joy and happiness are so natural that you don’t need to create the event, things are happening on their own. And everybody is part of the story: there’s so much more than the bride and the groom, and as a photographer you see everything, whereas the guests have eyes only for the newlyweds.
The emotions you get to photograph are not fake, people are truly happy and their smiles sincere.
And it’s a pleasure to take these photos.

Ritual

The tradition of the wedding cake comes from ancient Rome, where guests used to break a loaf of bread over the bride’s head for fertility’s sake.

I am not really a cake person, I’d rather have a sandwich. 
Every time I shoot a wedding though, I eat a slice of the wedding cake: its flavour has been chosen among many, its design meticulously selected, and the pastry chef carefully picked. 
It’s not just a cake, it’s a wedding cake. It's a ritual itself. It’s a piece of art. 
Therefore it is a very important detail of the whole wedding day, as much as the bride’s dress. 
So next time you see a wedding cake, think of how much thought and work were put into it.
And then, only then, taste it.

Ambrosia

According to the ancient myths, Ambrosia is the food of Greek gods, said to bestow immortality.

I haven't got tired yet of telling anyone the story of that magnificent wedding I shot in Sicily a few weeks ago, probably because it was the most beautiful wedding I have ever seen. Every thing was just perfect, not too much and not too little: the venue, the food, the atmosphere, the bride’s anxiety, my camera’s batteries.
And it was so easy to fall in love with Sicily, again.
Imagine flying from Copenhagen to Catania, to find a wonderful sun and the volcano in eruption, the taste of the sea and the smell of the fruit.
Imagine the market stalls in the streets, plenty of fresh tuna.
Imagine a timeless land, where you can breathe ancient Greece, Islamic culture and the ruins of the Spanish Empire at once.
You wouldn't get tired of that, would you?