This past Saturday I photographed a gorgeous wedding reception in Canton, OH at the Quarry Golf and Country Club in Canton, OH. The beautiful newlywed couple had chosen to get married in Panama City, FL. because they’ve always vacationed there and they brought the beach theme with them into the lovely reception I had the honor of photographing.
Looking at the wedding cake, you can see the hand-made starfish on the side and the blue “water” flowing down the cake. At the base is Sugar In The Raw which looks like sand and delicious chocolate seashells scattered around the base. The cake topper was, of course, beach-themed with a casual look. All of the guests were treated to goodie bags filled with sugar “sand” and chocolate seashells. For the meal, we had the luxury of eating the best shrimp in my memory with a pina colada dipping sauce on the side.
At the entrance to the country club is a magnificent waterfall and pond that made for ideal bridal party portraits. Terry, the lead photographer, placed them around the setting and shot photos using the prime angles, while I shot mostly off-center, candid angles. The grass around the stones was too wet to allow the ladies to comfortably stand in it with their 4″ heels, so they were positioned to stand on the large, flat stones, while the guys were arranged on the grass and surrounding rocks. The sky did a huge favor for us and passed a large cloud directly across the sun for the duration of our shoot at the waterfall, which allowed for even lighting and let the bridal party to avoid the need to squint. We then went back to the clubhouse we continued the bridal party photos, using the lake and surrounding landscaping as gorgeous backdrops.
During the reception, I used the building’s walls, pillars, and ceiling as surfaces to bounce our flashes off of, which make the photos have more even light on my subjects. Because I am able to avoid shooting the flash directly at my subjects the light isn’t harsh, like most flash photography, but instead is soft and even which makes for much more appealing photographs. In some photos I used a higher ISO and slower shutter speed combined with the flash to let the ambient light from the reception show, but still making my subject stand out. The evening finished up with a gorgeous sunset, and we had the bride and groom stand outside on a small knoll and used my flash as fill light to illuminate them while still capturing the sky.
All said and done, it was a really nice evening for everybody involved. They had the video of their wedding on the beach playing during their photos so their guests could see the ceremony. The DJ from Beach Boyz Entertainment was a real professional and moved the evening along with efficiency and fun (I wish they were all as good as him). There was dancing and laughter well into the early morning. May the happy couple find a lifetime of joy and love together!