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The difference between Sunset photos and Mid-day photos for wedding and elopement adventure couples.
Yosemite National Park Wedding & Engagement Photography

epic Yosemite wedding photos taken by adventure wedding photographer Charleton Churchill at glacier point road

 

I just photographed a couple in Yosemite National Park yesterday. No this was not the proposal photo of the engaged couple that was in the news this week. I was here at sunset the whole time and didn’t see any proposal at that rock.  I was their photographer and this was their engagement session and they upgraded to the Adventure Engagement Session Package, which many of my adventure wedding couples purchase. They are getting married next year at Majestic Lodge in the Yosemite Valley, so congratulations to them.

When I photograph couples, the ideal time for me is near sunset. That’s my goal and intention for every couple. Not all couples during their wedding day or adventure sessions understand the importance of the quality of light during sunset, so I have to explain to them. Also, for many weddings, sometimes the schedule gets bumped or couples don’t have the time. Yes, we can photograph in any light, but in the mountains like in Lake Tahoe, Yosemite, or anywhere up at high altitude, you are going to get even stronger highlights on rocks and trees, white lighting, harsh shadows, etc. So I use all kinds of tricks and tactics to get better photos during the day.

However, if you are patient and wait until sunset, then you get all kinds of beautiful rays, warmth, color, and not to mention, softer light. The images look moody. It’s eye candy; makes you want to stare for a while.

 

Mid-Day vs Sunset Lighting

sunset photos for wedding and elopement couples photography

 

Okay, so it’s not necessarily mid-day, but it’s not sunset yet. Here above is an example of two images, one hour 12 minutes apart from each other. Both images were with the same couple, same outfit, same location, same day, same Nikon camera and lens, just about an hour apart. The sunset that day was 6:18p.m. I photographed the afternoon image on the left at 4:56p.m. The light was behind them. That image works. Most couples love these types of images as I see them on Instagram all the time. However, when you wait until 6:08p.m., just 7 minutes before the sunset, then you get this warm moody tone image where the sun warmth is memorizing. A major difference in color and light is just within one hour.

Sunrise has the same effect and I also photograph elopements and weddings during the early mornings, like in Yosemite or Lake Tahoe. You just have to choose the right locations where the sun will rise with the right photographer who can capture it properly and direct you to get that natural look, as well as process your image for maximum effect. Below is an image at sunset

 

yosemite epic adventure wedding photos at sunset at taft point engaged couple

If you’re interested in getting couples sunset photos, or want to book an adventure wedding or elopement package, please contact me above at my contact link. I’d love to hear from you.

Follow Charleton on Instagram here

 

 

Yosemite Wedding at Glacier Point
by Charleton Churchill

landscape photo of half-dome from glacier point by charleton churchill photography Yosemite wedding at glacier point with sun rays

 

Nick and Ali married in Yosemite National Park at Glacier Point.  We met and arrived at 6a.m. for an intimate wedding with both parents, the makeup artist, the officiant, and myself. Nick was a little nervous, but was expectantly excited for his bride Ali to arrive. Her father escorted her along the 7,200 feet in elevation trail, over-looking the Yosemite valley, Half-dome, and bridal Veil falls. While hikers and tourists gathered to enjoy the epic views Yosemite provided, they were also entertained by the wedding ceremony taking place.  It’s my passion to photographing these types of adventure weddings.

The road to Glacier Point was closed due to the Yosemite fire for the past weeks. Consequently, we were a little worried about the wedding plans. However, a day before their wedding, the road opened back up just in time.  Later we left Glacier Point road and traveled through the fiery smoke that was lingering on our drive down. At one point, we jumped out of our vehicles for a few photos in it. Then later, after smelling like smoke thought it was a bad idea.

To conclude our adventure, we ended up hiking to Vernal falls Mist trail. They wanted some waterfall images and some hiking photos. Nick and Ali both hiked in their wedding attire up the rocky mist trail, and they did it with a smile. Congratulations and blessings to both of them and their adventurous future.

 

wedding preparation at glacier point just before eloping wedding details groom portrait at half-dome getting ready to get married ireland style yosemite yosemite bride being escorted over rocky terrain before eloping flowers unique shoes for wedding day at glacier point yosemite bridal portraits at yosemite yosemite wedding photography at glacier point bride and groom at glacier point wedding glacier point wedding over edge after sunrise exchanging rings at glacier point trail wedding at yosemite adventure wedding in Yosemite epic wedding photography at yosemite glacier point adventure wedding photography in Yosemite National Park yosemite national park intimate wedding photos bride groom creative photos on top of glacier point over looking half-dome just after elopement beautiful yosemite wedding photos half dome and glacier point wedding photos family photos after wedding ceremony at glacier point wedding walking photo on top of Yosemite point creative forest wedding photos moody wedding photos in forest of yosemite elopement at yosemite with starburst of light through the threes walking through the yosemite fire after wedding ceremony yosemite fire while couple captures images in te middle of fire and smoke wedding day in Yosemite bride tying her shoes on way to mist trail and vernal falls yosemite wedding couple hiking mist trail into vernal falls adventure wedding in yosemite vernal falls wedding photos in yosemite adventure wedding photos at Yosemite hikers and crowds with wedding couple in Yosemite adventure wedding couple hiking the yosemite trails in suit and bridal gown

 

  • sslluzanne - So much sensitivity in all these shots! Wanted to share in a private post that I am so moved when I take a look at your photo shoots. You capture the couples in such a way that I feel like I would know them if I ever met them. Love love this photo shoot. His red hair long beard her beautiful face dimples and lovely hair…..so enhanced by you and your magic! All this to say, so proud of you and I know this is only the beginning of your career…..that you glorify God in all of thisl is unique to anyone who is amassing so much acclaim…..and so well deserved…..Love you Charleton Always waiting for your next adventure. Also, want to shout out to your wife who supports you in all of your endeavors. She is also the bomb.October 26, 2017 – 7:09 pmReplyCancel

    • Charleton Churchill - Thank you Suzanne, most appreciated, kind words, yes, I always thank God for allowing me to do what I’m doing, and my wife definitely is supportive, thank you!October 27, 2017 – 1:02 pm

  • Mark Johnson - Love this photo shoot! Always impressed by the work you put into your shoots. Beginning at glacier point and then ending at what looks like Vernal Falls on the mist Trail. Those are two locations that aren’t all that close together. I see it looks like you used a flash on a couple photos(?), but most look like natural light. I’m impressed how you can balance the light in some situations that are high contrast. Are you exposing for the background and then bringing up the shadows in post? Appreciate the high quality results. Much admiration! Beautiful!October 27, 2017 – 12:21 pmReplyCancel

    • Charleton Churchill - Thank you Mark, yes, I’m using natural light mostly looking for where the light is reflecting, but I’m also using some external lights for a little fill light with my Profoto B2 light. I used a Nikon speedlight for the waterfall, didn’t want the B2 wet. And I do bring shadows up where it’s dark when I’m fighting both light/dark areas absolutely. Thanks Mark.October 27, 2017 – 1:01 pm

  • Roman Badeshko - Such beautiful photography) This wedding a huge inspiration for me. Thanks!November 2, 2017 – 11:20 pmReplyCancel

    • Charleton Churchill - Thank you Roman for the compliments, much appreciated!November 7, 2017 – 10:54 am

  • Hoian Wedding Photographer - Wow! Amazing set in an amazing place. Good work!January 17, 2018 – 12:12 amReplyCancel

  • Paul Keppel - Such beautiful photographs, love those waterfall shots. I bet you were waiting ages so people weren’t in the pictures. 🙂March 15, 2018 – 5:55 pmReplyCancel

    • Charleton Churchill - Thank you kindly Paul, yes I do wait, but I also shoot in places where crowds don’t gather. Not sure which image you are referring to, but I try and skip the crowds as much as possible, but sometimes you can’t.March 22, 2018 – 10:09 pm