Nothing captures the raw emotion of a wedding day quite like vintage wedding photography. By ditching formal poses and heavy retouching, these photos have an old and classy feeling to them. It’s less about having the perfect posed or edited photo of a wedding and more about capturing some real and candid moments. Laughter and tears alike are preserved with striking intimacy
If you are considering having some vintage wedding photography on your own wedding or want to learn more about being a vintage wedding photographer, you’ve come to the right place!
What is Vintage Wedding Photography?
Vintage wedding photography is a style of photography that captures the essence of classic, timeless, and romantic images. It is a popular choice for couples who want to add a touch of nostalgia and elegance to their wedding album.
Vintage wedding photography is all about capturing the beauty of the moment, and it often involves using vintage props and accessories to create a romantic atmosphere. You want to have a feeling of the “old good times” without any modern hassle.
While current photography gets edited a ton (just have a look at almost any model’s Instagram…), vintage photography is only edited with slight effects to give them a timeless and romantic feel. This might involve adding sepia tones, softening the focus, or creating a vintage film look.
In summary, vintage wedding photography is a style that captures the timeless beauty of the past. It is all about creating a romantic atmosphere, using vintage props, and capturing candid moments that are full of emotion and personality.
Essential Equipment for Vintage Wedding Photography
As every wedding photographer should know, capturing the perfect vintage wedding photography requires the right equipment. Here are some essential tools that we recommend for achieving that timeless, classic look.
Choosing the Right Camera
For vintage wedding photography, we recommend using a full-frame camera with manual controls. This will give you greater control over your settings and allow you to capture more detail in your images. We suggest investing in a camera with at least 24 megapixels, as this will ensure that your images are sharp and detailed.
You could also go with an analog camera for the extra vintage style, but you should not only depend on it, as you’re quite limited with its options.
Importance of Lenses
Time to spend some money! Lenses are perhaps the most important (and most expensive!) aspect of vintage wedding photography. We recommend using prime lenses with wide apertures, as these will allow you to create a shallow depth of field and achieve that dreamy, romantic look. A 50mm lens is a great all-purpose lens for weddings, while an 85mm lens is perfect for portraits. We also suggest investing in a 35mm lens for wider shots and a 135mm lens for capturing details.
Lighting is crucial for creating the right mood and atmosphere in your vintage wedding photography. We suggest using natural light whenever possible, as this will give your images a soft, romantic feel. However, it’s also important to have some additional lighting equipment on hand, such as a flash or reflector, to help you create the perfect lighting setup. We recommend using a flash with a diffuser to soften the light and avoid harsh shadows.
Mastering the Art of Vintage Wedding Photography
Okay, we’ve got our equipment now. But how can we actually shoot vintage wedding photography with it? The vintage style has a unique aesthetic that can add a touch of nostalgia to your client’s special day. So let’s get you started on the essence of ‘Vintage’!
Understanding the Vintage Aesthetic
To create stunning vintage wedding photographs, you need to understand the vintage aesthetic. Vintage photography is characterized by a soft, dreamy look with muted colors and a slightly faded appearance. You can achieve this look by using the camera settings and lenses mentioned earlier, as well as some editing later on. Additionally, you can make use of props and accessories that reflect the vintage era. If you need some inspiration, here are some ideas for nice vintage props:
- Old-fashioned car
- Vintage clothing, especially the wedding dress
- Old cameras, maybe offer your clients to bring some, if you have any!
- Vintage bicycles
- Vinyls and recorders
Creating the Perfect Composition
Composition is one of the best things for photographers. It gives them some space for their creativity! Vintage wedding photography is no different. You need to create a composition that reflects the vintage aesthetic while also capturing the essence of the couple’s love story. You can achieve this by paying attention to the details, such as the angle of the shot, the lighting, and the background. You can also experiment with different poses and expressions to create a unique and timeless image.
Yeah, we said you wouldn’t need much editing for vintage wedding photography. This is mostly true, however, some effects could further enhance your best shots.
You can use various post-processing techniques to enhance the vintage aesthetic of your photographs. For example, you can use a film grain effect to add texture and depth to your images. You can also adjust the color temperature and saturation to create a soft, dreamy look. Additionally, you can use vignetting and selective blurring to draw attention to the subject and create a romantic atmosphere.
Challenges in Vintage Wedding Photography
As much as we love capturing the timeless essence of vintage weddings, there are some challenges that come along with it. If you want to dive further into this style of wedding photography, you should know how to handle it.
Dealing with Low Light
One of the biggest challenges we face while doing vintage wedding photography is dealing with low light. Oftentimes, vintage weddings are held in dimly lit venues or outdoor locations with poor lighting conditions. This can make it difficult to capture clear and sharp images without introducing unwanted noise or grain.
To overcome this challenge, you should use a combination of techniques, such as adjusting the camera settings, using external lighting sources, and shooting in RAW format. Also, make sure to scout the venue beforehand to identify the areas with the best lighting conditions and plan your shots accordingly.
Another challenge we face while doing vintage wedding photography is preserving authenticity. Vintage weddings are all about capturing the essence of a bygone era, and it’s important to ensure that the images we capture reflect this authenticity.
To achieve this, we pay close attention to the details, such as the wedding dress, decor, and props used in the wedding. We also try to avoid using modern editing techniques that may detract from the vintage feel of the images. Instead, we use techniques such as sepia tones or black-and-white imagery to create a timeless and authentic look.
Marketing Your Vintage Wedding Photography
There are many photographers specialized in vintage wedding photography. So how can you make sure you get a piece from the (wedding)cake as well? Of course, the answer is marketing. You have to get yourself out to your clients to get some customers!
Building a Portfolio
A portfolio is a collection of your best work that showcases your style and abilities. When building a portfolio, choose images that represent your vintage style and show your expertise in capturing candid moments. You can create a physical portfolio by printing your photos or an online portfolio by using a website or social media platform. If you need some help or inspiration, have a look at our guide for building a wedding portfolio.
Social Media Promotion
Social media is an excellent platform to showcase your vintage wedding photography business. Use platforms like Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest to share your work and engage with potential clients. You can also use hashtags to increase your reach and attract clients who are searching for vintage wedding photography. Consider running social media ads to target your ideal audience. If you want, reach out to us, and we will post your photos on our Pinterest if they are aesthetic!
Networking with Wedding Planners
Networking with wedding planners is an effective way to grow your vintage wedding photography business. Attend wedding fairs and events to meet wedding planners and other vendors. You can also reach out to wedding planners directly and offer your services. Building relationships with wedding planners can lead to referrals and repeat business.
Our Opinion on Vintage Wedding Photography
Vintage is an extremely cool style that has gotten quite some attention lately. You can see that with the recent rise in vinyl, vintage cars, or even old analog cameras! Therefore a vintage wedding – and therefore vintage wedding photography – is just a natural step!
We really like the vintage style in photos. Especially in a wedding scene, they bring out the romantic and the feelings of the couple. Paired with a nice vintage wedding dress and some of the props we mentioned, you can get authentic vintage photography of any wedding – even in 2023!
So, if you’re a photographer and want to dive further into this special style of wedding photography, definitely have some further reading on it and start filling your portfolio! Or, if you want to have a vintage wedding on your own, reach out to some of your local wedding photographers. We are sure they would love taking the photos you are looking for.
Also, have a look at our Pinterest, to stay up-to-date with the latest photography trends!
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the difference between vintage and modern wedding photography?
Vintage wedding photography has a timeless and classic feel that captures the essence of the past. It often features soft, muted colors and a romantic, dreamy quality that transports you back in time. In contrast, modern wedding photography is more contemporary and focuses on capturing the moment in a crisp, clear way, often with bright, bold colors.
What are some popular vintage wedding photography styles?
Some popular vintage wedding photography styles include film photography, black-and-white photography, and sepia-toned photography. These styles create a classic, timeless look that is perfect for vintage-themed weddings.
How can I incorporate vintage elements into my wedding photography?
You can incorporate vintage elements into your wedding photography by using props like antique cameras, vintage cars, or old-fashioned furniture. You can also choose a vintage-inspired venue or location, like an old mansion or a historic building, to add to the vintage feel of your photos.
What types of film are commonly used in vintage wedding photography?
Common types of film used in vintage wedding photography include Kodak Portra, Ilford Delta, and Fujifilm Pro 400H. These films create a classic, timeless look that is perfect for vintage-themed weddings.
Can a modern photographer achieve a vintage look in their wedding photos?
Yes, a modern photographer can achieve a vintage look in their wedding photos by using editing techniques like adding filters, adjusting the color balance, and adding grain. However, it is important to choose a photographer who has experience with vintage photography and understands how to create the desired look.
Is vintage wedding photography still in style?
Yes, vintage wedding photography is still in style and is a popular choice for couples who want a classic, timeless look for their wedding photos. Vintage photography has a romantic, dreamy quality that is hard to replicate with modern photography techniques.
How much does a vintage wedding photographer cost?
The cost of a vintage wedding photographer varies depending on their experience, location, and the type of services offered. On average, a vintage wedding photographer may charge anywhere from $1,000 to $3,000 or more for their services. It is important to choose a photographer who fits within your budget and has experience with vintage photography.