Creating beautiful light with Anna Fowler and the A1

31 August, 2018

Written by: Ailish Cook

Every day varies as a wedding photographer, where the location and lighting conditions change regularly. No matter what the day brings, it must always end in the same way – with great shots of the bride and groom. Editorial and wedding photographer Anna Fowler’s signature style is a light but dramatic look that conveys style and vibrancy. She uses the A1 to bring a natural look to her photographs where ever she goes, no matter the location or time of day.

Creating fairytale images

Anna's wedding style has evolved over the years along with her portrait and commercial work. She likes to approach weddings with the same main principles she takes with her to any shoot - exposing for flawless skin, looking for the perfect lighting and centring her work on portraiture creation. Adaptability and flexibility are also crucial to Anna's work, where shoot locations and atmosphere vary each time.

"I think it is important to adapt my style to the style of wedding I am shooting. A boho wedding is very different to a wedding at the Ritz, so I try and stay flexible in terms of how much flash a location needs."

To enhance creative opportunities at weddings, Anna's light of choice is the Profoto A1. It allows her to work at her optimum without having to worry about recycle time, battery power or flash duration.

"I know that the A1 is very quick to change between using the flash as a fill and using it as more of a direct light, so I am armed and ready to cope with all lighting situations."

Preparation is key

Planning shoot concepts is crucial to Anna's process as this gives her an insight into the life of the bride and groom. This enables her to highlight the couple's personality and individualistic characteristics whilst shooting throughout the day.

"I always take a look at blogged weddings from that venue online, as they will show the best of the venue from a photographer's point of view. I also have a thorough questionnaire that the bride and groom have answered for me so I know what they want. If we are staying close to the venue, scouting the location beforehand is always best."

Overcoming the big lighting challenges with the small

Anna explains that the greatest lighting challenge she faces when photographing weddings is capturing the ceremony that can more often than not be in a dark location. In churches, flash can't be obtrusive and has to be subtle to blend into the surroundings. The A1 allows Anna to operate in these conditions, as the power can be dialled down low to provide fill light without distracting the bride and groom from their vows.

"The A1 is a fab flash, super easy and quick to use. The quality of the light helps with creating flawless skin, and the design of the flash means that bouncing the light off any surface, wall or ceiling is incredibly adaptable. This means that I can create natural looking photos that replicate my natural light shots, but I can also use it directly to replicate my studio lighting."

Anna's wedding kit essentials

Anna suggests that adaptability is the most important to wedding shooting, and this reflects her wedding kit essentials.

"Between me and my husband, we do not travel light! We have 2 Canon 5d mark 4 and 2 Canon 5d mark 3 as backups. Then we both have 85mm, 50mm, 70-200mm, 24-70m, macro lens, 35mm. Currently, we only have 1 A1 so we fight over it."

The A1 allows Anna to overcome the inadaquate light that comes with certain conditions. She also highlights her top tip as keeping things simplistic.

"Most of the time you will be faced with inadequate natural light, and you will need to know how to use a flash in a way that suits your own personal style. The hardest thing I find about shooting weddings is the lack of control you have over everything, apart from the 15 minutes you get with the bride and groom. Flash gives you back some of that control."

Don't overcomplicate, you don't have time on a wedding day. Keep the modifiers in your pocket, so you can soften the light even more when needed and play around with the numerous angles you can bounce the light."

Why the Profoto A1?

The Profoto A1 delivers light that's both natural and beautiful, whilst being incredibly easy to use to create stunning images. Alongside this, the A1 has superfast recycling and a long-lasting battery so you will never miss a shot. Coming with a variation of light shaping tools, you can choose your set up in a matter of seconds. Easily click the light shaping tools on and off using the magnetic mount and start snapping your shots.

 

Thank you to Anna for featuring her work in Profoto stories! To see more of her work, visit her website or Instagram.

Written by: Ailish Cook

Products used in this story

Soft Bounce

Create soft flattering light with the A1

Dome Diffuser

Brings a softer, crisper light to the A1