The first of a new series of blog posts telling the story behind an image. I will begin with this bridal portrait, taken at Skibo Castle.

So, this image had a lot of interest, and I wanted to go into more detail on it. Rachel and Rex were married at Dornoch Cathedral, and the rest of the day’s events took place at Skibo Castle

It truly is a stunning venue, so when I saw this wedding dress in the morning. I was pretty excited about the possibilities, and I knew it would lend itself to steps, in fact it needed steps to really show how fantastic it was. With the beauty of the dress came a problem. It was very, very difficult to move about in, and took a lot of setting up for each shot, so time was of the essence. The problem was, we didn’t have much time as it was a long ceremony, and we were getting late in the day when we arrived at the Castle. By the time we got out to this spot, light was fading fast, so we eventually got Rachel set up on the steps. As the army of bridesmaids and helpers laid out the dress, I had taken an ambient light exposure reading, and decided on ISO 400, and 1/100th of a second at f5. This underexposed the background by about one stop, to get the feel I was after. I then set up the QFlash to f5, and I was ready to shoot. A few last second tweaks to the way the dress was lying and we were shooting. I was on the 16-35mm f2.8 lens, and absolutely needed the full width of the 16mm end to capture everything in the shot. I had another body with a 50mm lens on as well, shooting more close up images with the ambient light.

For the photoshoot part of the day, local designer Sandra Murray created a stunning tartan jacket, and provided a top hat to complete the look. I added the hat for this image just to give the icing on the proverbial wedding cake.

This image was pretty much as it was shot in camera, with just a vignette added to give it more mood and atmosphere.

Because the dress was so big, it did limit my time with the couple considerably, as more time was spent setting it up than taking photos, but because I had planned ahead, I was able to produce a large number of images in a very short time. This was definitely my favourite image of the day.

The full wedding blog is here if anyone wants a look:   http://johnbaikiephotography.com/skibo-castle-rachel-rex-wedding-photography/

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