black and white

WPJA Wedding Photography Contest Winning Images by Bradley Hanson

As this will likely be my last blog post of 2018, I should end the year on a high note. These were three winning images in the WPJA (Wedding Photojournalist Association) wedding contest. It is open to photographers from all over the world, not just wedding photographers from Minneapolis.

There is some continuity between thematic elements in the photographs in that two of the three are backlit and all three contain scenes that were photographed entirely as found, rather than directing the action, which is my preferred method of working. The color scene was the bride and groom’s first dance, in the unusual twist of being outside at one of my favorite wedding venues near Minneapolis, the Camrose Hill Flower Farm in Stillwater, MN.

You can follow me on Facebook, Twitter, VSCO, Pinterest, Instagram, and LinkedIn through the links on the upper right.

To see more Minneapolis/St. Paul, MN portraits, wedding photography and weddings all over the world, visit my main portfolio on bradleyhanson.com or email me at info@bradleyhanson.com or call me at 206-393-8292 and we can discuss your wedding plans in detail. My speciality is shooting family portraits in an unposed, natural style and wedding photojournalism. I photograph weddings as they happen rather than direct the action, which is often referred to as documentary style wedding photography. I’ve photographed weddings in Minneapolis, St. Paul, Seattle and many countries around the world.

To listen to the bi-weekly photography podcast I do with UK photographer Ian Weldon, visit https://www.outerfocuspodcast.com or search for Outerfocus on Apple Podcasts or Google Podcasts.

New Work From July 2018 by Bradley Hanson

July has been a busy month, including a 4100 mile drive to and from a wedding in Washington State at Lake Quinault on the Olympic Peninsula. My son Miles assisted me at the wedding, and it was a great road trip with some fascinating audiobooks, sightseeing and restaurants. While I'm sorting out what's going in the portfolio and what's going to be featured on the blog and what's going to be submitted to magazines, here is an assortment of 23 random highlights from the month of July.

Clicking any image below will open it up at a larger size.

St. Paul, MN

Badlands, SD

Lake Quinault, WA

St. Paul, MN

Ocean Shores, WA

St. Paul, MN

Gillette, WY

Ocean Shores, WA

Livingston, MT

Minneapolis, MN

Ocean Shores, WA

St. Paul, MN

Stillwater, MN

Seattle, WA

St. Paul, MN

Minneapolis, MN

Minneapolis, MN

Stillwater, MN

Minneapolis, MN

Seattle, WA

George, Washington

Columbia River Gorge in George, Washington

Badlands, SD

You can follow me on Facebook, Twitter, VSCO, Pinterest, Instagram, and LinkedIn through the links on the upper right.

To see more Minneapolis/St. Paul, MN portraits, wedding photography and weddings all over the world, visit my main portfolio on bradleyhanson.com or email me at info@bradleyhanson.com or call me at 206-393-8292 and we can discuss your wedding plans in detail. My speciality is shooting family portraits in an unposed, natural style and wedding photojournalism. I photograph weddings as they happen rather than direct the action, which is often referred to as documentary style wedding photography. I’ve photographed weddings in Minneapolis, St. Paul, Seattle and many countries around the world.

To listen to the bi-weekly photography podcast I do with UK photographer Ian Weldon, visit https://www.outerfocuspodcast.com or search for Outerfocus on Apple Podcasts or Google Podcasts.

Behind The Scenes: The Role of Lighting by Bradley Hanson

In photography, light is everything, even over composition. Light can dictate composition, control mood and determine where the eye is drawn to in any frame. The difference between a memorable image and a forgettable one is usually the role of light in altering how that photograph is perceived.

There are a number of reasons I didn't use flash in this image:

1. It would have destroyed the sense of depth.

2. It would have removed the most important component: the light on the groom's face, projected from the DJ's spinning lights, as well as minimizing the halo of lights from the ceiling.

3. A little movement is more romantic to me than harsh two dimensional lighting, particularly with dancing. In this case, I was handholding 1/15th of a second at f2.

4. Evening out the light with a pop of flash would have made the bride's back white, losing the importance of the eye light on the groom and the contour of her right bicep.

5. Because the groom removed his black jacket and is only wearing a white shirt, flash would have removed the contrast between his shirt and the shadow on his wife's back.

6. Using supplemental light would have also ended my ability to be invisible to the couple in this scene. The darker the room, the wider the pupils. Low light flash, in conjunction with dilated pupils means your bride and groom are seeing stars after only one shot. This is not a recipe for success or getting a good second shot.

While I prefer to work without flash, sometimes it is not only required, but like natural light, well-used flash can make or break an image.

This film image was used by Women's Health Magazine in April of 2009 as a double-page spread about life after marriage. The editor that contacted me about using it specifically cited the light on the groom's face as conveying the mood she was looking for with the text of the article.

You can follow me on Facebook, Twitter, VSCO, Pinterest, Instagram, and LinkedIn through the links on the upper right.

To see more Minneapolis/St. Paul, MN portraits, wedding photography and weddings all over the world, visit my main portfolio on bradleyhanson.com or email me at info@bradleyhanson.com or call me at 206-393-8292 and we can discuss your wedding plans in detail. My speciality is shooting family portraits in an unposed, natural style and wedding photojournalism. I photograph weddings as they happen rather than direct the action, which is often referred to as documentary style wedding photography. I’ve photographed weddings in Minneapolis, St. Paul, Seattle and many countries around the world.

To listen to the bi-weekly photography podcast I do with UK photographer Ian Weldon, visit https://www.outerfocuspodcast.com or search for Outerfocus on Apple Podcasts or Google Podcasts.

Marcus and Paige's Guthrie Theater Winter Wedding in Downtown Minneapolis by Bradley Hanson

Paige and Marcus insisted on all B&W coverage. In other words, my dream wedding (despite 3F degree January winter weather). They started at Hennepin Avenue United Methodist church and the reception was at the modern Guthrie Theater in downtown Minneapolis, overlooking the Mississippi River and Stone Arch Bridge. The reception area, on the 9th floor of the Guthrie, is known as the "amber box" because of it's dark yellow glass and bright red lights bathing it in light.

You can follow me on Facebook, Twitter, VSCO, Pinterest, Instagram, and LinkedIn through the links on the upper right.

To see more Minneapolis/St. Paul, MN portraits, wedding photography and weddings all over the world, visit my main portfolio on bradleyhanson.com or email me at info@bradleyhanson.com or call me at 206-393-8292 and we can discuss your wedding plans in detail. My speciality is shooting family portraits in an unposed, natural style and wedding photojournalism. I photograph weddings as they happen rather than direct the action, which is often referred to as documentary style wedding photography. I’ve photographed weddings in Minneapolis, St. Paul, Seattle and many countries around the world.

To listen to the bi-weekly photography podcast I do with UK photographer Ian Weldon, visit https://www.outerfocuspodcast.com or search for Outerfocus on Apple Podcasts or Google Podcasts.

Rachael And Josh's Downtown St. Paul Wedding At A'bulae by Bradley Hanson

Rachael and Josh didn't let a little November rain alter their mood. The light at A'Bulae in downtown St. Paul was in abundance, and we did sneak up to the roof in the rain for a couple moments. 

You can follow me on Facebook, Twitter, VSCO, Pinterest, Instagram, and LinkedIn through the links on the upper right.

To see more Minneapolis/St. Paul, MN portraits, wedding photography and weddings all over the world, visit my main portfolio on bradleyhanson.com or email me at info@bradleyhanson.com or call me at 206-393-8292 and we can discuss your wedding plans in detail. My speciality is shooting family portraits in an unposed, natural style and wedding photojournalism. I photograph weddings as they happen rather than direct the action, which is often referred to as documentary style wedding photography. I’ve photographed weddings in Minneapolis, St. Paul, Seattle and many countries around the world.

To listen to the bi-weekly photography podcast I do with UK photographer Ian Weldon, visit https://www.outerfocuspodcast.com or search for Outerfocus on Apple Podcasts or Google Podcasts.

New Images Added In All Galleries! by Bradley Hanson

SONY_A7II_35_oliver_neopan1600-7205383_1200.jpg

It's been one the busiest seasons of all time. I'm still digging through November weddings and family portrait sessions, but I've added new images in all galleries and will be working on a redesign of the website in the coming months, adding even more weddings, personal work, family portraits and landscape images from my travels.

You can follow me on Facebook, Twitter, VSCO, Pinterest, Instagram, and LinkedIn through the links on the upper right.

To see more Minneapolis/St. Paul, MN portraits, wedding photography and weddings all over the world, visit my main portfolio on bradleyhanson.com or email me at info@bradleyhanson.com or call me at 206-393-8292 and we can discuss your wedding plans in detail. My speciality is shooting family portraits in an unposed, natural style and wedding photojournalism. I photograph weddings as they happen rather than direct the action, which is often referred to as documentary style wedding photography. I’ve photographed weddings in Minneapolis, St. Paul, Seattle and many countries around the world.

To listen to the bi-weekly photography podcast I do with UK photographer Ian Weldon, visit https://www.outerfocuspodcast.com or search for Outerfocus on Apple Podcasts or Google Podcasts.

Jessica And Matt's Rainy Seattle Wedding On Lake Union's Skansonia Ferry by Bradley Hanson

Although the rain moved Jessica and Matt's wedding ceremony from the deck of the Skansonia ferry on Lake Union inside to the back of the boat, it was one of the happiest, most celebratory weddings I've ever been to in my 18 years of photographing weddings. I don't know if I've ever had this much fun at a wedding, or had the pleasure of being surrounded by people so vibrant and alive. Many thanks to the kind referral of my friend Lance Mercer for introducing the couple to me.

You can follow me on Facebook, Twitter, VSCO, Pinterest, Instagram, and LinkedIn through the links on the upper right.

To see more Minneapolis/St. Paul, MN portraits, wedding photography and weddings all over the world, visit my main portfolio on bradleyhanson.com or email me at info@bradleyhanson.com or call me at 206-393-8292 and we can discuss your wedding plans in detail. My speciality is shooting family portraits in an unposed, natural style and wedding photojournalism. I photograph weddings as they happen rather than direct the action, which is often referred to as documentary style wedding photography. I’ve photographed weddings in Minneapolis, St. Paul, Seattle and many countries around the world.

To listen to the bi-weekly photography podcast I do with UK photographer Ian Weldon, visit https://www.outerfocuspodcast.com or search for Outerfocus on Apple Podcasts or Google Podcasts.

Lakeside Family Portraits At Sunset At Mahtomedi Beach In Minneapolis by Bradley Hanson

You can follow me on Facebook, Twitter, VSCO, Pinterest, Instagram, and LinkedIn through the links on the upper right.

To see more Minneapolis/St. Paul, MN portraits, wedding photography and weddings all over the world, visit my main portfolio on bradleyhanson.com or email me at info@bradleyhanson.com or call me at 206-393-8292 and we can discuss your wedding plans in detail. My speciality is shooting family portraits in an unposed, natural style and wedding photojournalism. I photograph weddings as they happen rather than direct the action, which is often referred to as documentary style wedding photography. I’ve photographed weddings in Minneapolis, St. Paul, Seattle and many countries around the world.

To listen to the bi-weekly photography podcast I do with UK photographer Ian Weldon, visit https://www.outerfocuspodcast.com or search for Outerfocus on Apple Podcasts or Google Podcasts.

Oliver Loves Music! by Bradley Hanson

Oliver has been increasingly excited about music, starting, as many children do, with a love of The Beatles, Devo and The Ramones. He also loved the movie "Sing," which is about animals who try out for a singing contest to save a theater in financial trouble. His favorite song from that movie is a cover of Elton John's classic "I'm Still Standing," which he belts out at full concert volume, even in the car. The photos below were taken right after he heard me listening to the 1979 Gary Numan album "Replicas," so I showed him how to play the synth part from "Are Friends Electric?"

You can follow me on Facebook, Twitter, VSCO, Pinterest, Instagram, and LinkedIn through the links on the upper right.

To see more Minneapolis/St. Paul, MN portraits, wedding photography and weddings all over the world, visit my main portfolio on bradleyhanson.com or email me at info@bradleyhanson.com or call me at 206-393-8292 and we can discuss your wedding plans in detail. My speciality is shooting family portraits in an unposed, natural style and wedding photojournalism. I photograph weddings as they happen rather than direct the action, which is often referred to as documentary style wedding photography. I’ve photographed weddings in Minneapolis, St. Paul, Seattle and many countries around the world.

To listen to the bi-weekly photography podcast I do with UK photographer Ian Weldon, visit https://www.outerfocuspodcast.com or search for Outerfocus on Apple Podcasts or Google Podcasts.

Documentary Style Family Portrait In Seattle by Bradley Hanson

I have photographed these two sisters every year since 2008, since they were babies. They are now 9 and 11, and they are extremely active and energetic. With the same approach I take to weddings, I let them be themselves and do exactly what they want, and I look for key moments of interaction that reveal their strong connection and their individual personalities.

You can follow me on Facebook, Twitter, VSCO, Pinterest, Instagram, and LinkedIn through the links on the upper right.

To see more Minneapolis/St. Paul, MN portraits, wedding photography and weddings all over the world, visit my main portfolio on bradleyhanson.com or email me at info@bradleyhanson.com or call me at 206-393-8292 and we can discuss your wedding plans in detail. My speciality is shooting family portraits in an unposed, natural style and wedding photojournalism. I photograph weddings as they happen rather than direct the action, which is often referred to as documentary style wedding photography. I’ve photographed weddings in Minneapolis, St. Paul, Seattle and many countries around the world.

To listen to the bi-weekly photography podcast I do with UK photographer Ian Weldon, visit https://www.outerfocuspodcast.com or search for Outerfocus on Apple Podcasts or Google Podcasts.