documentary style wedding photography

Downtown Minneapolis Snowy Wedding In The Historic Lumber Exchange Building by Bradley Hanson

Illyas walks out on the roof of the Lumber Exchange Building as the snowstorm begins on March 9, 2019.

I’ve been photographing weddings for 20 years now. I’ve personally been to 600 of them. Yeah, I know. It’s gone by quickly since April 1999. Anyway, 13 years of that was in Seattle, the last 7 here in Minneapolis. As someone who grew up in Minneapolis, the feeling is often that there is snow on the ground 6 months of the year. It can start as early as October and it can happen as late is May. We don’t get the kind of heavy snow we used to get all winter when I was a kid, but we are getting wild extremes. This year, we had a bone dry December, then February was 40 inches of snow rather than the average of 7.

Snow gets old when you grow up with it, but it still has a magical quality to me, particularly the first snow of the year. There is a quiet and peacefulness that happens both from the visual minimalism and the sound deadening of the snow itself. It literally absorbs sound and the combination enhances the beauty.

When Anna and Illyas hired me to photograph portraits for them, it was a relatively humid day. They had just gotten a sweet little dog named Louie who didn’t want to be away from them during our time together.

Fast forward to a week ago. The wedding day, March 9th, came quickly and meteorologists forecasted a late winter storm of 8-10” in the Twin Cities. I was excited because I could finally take photographs of a bride and groom in the snow. Well, the serious part of the storm ended up hitting the part of the state south of Minneapolis and while we ended up with more like 5 inches of snow, it was beautiful: large, heavy and dense snow that fell slowly and accumulated quickly.

In a brief moment after the wedding ceremony, Anna, Illyas and I went to the roof of the historic Lumber Exchange Building to take a few photographs it was the opportunity I’ve been waiting for. I rarely use flash, but with snow it highlights every flake on its way to the ground.

I’ll be adding images to this blog post in a few weeks.

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.

FOR THE 5TH YEAR IN A ROW, I WAS A WINNER OF THE WEDDING WIRE COUPLES' CHOICE AWARD FOR 2019 by Bradley Hanson

This award is based on reviews from real clients from the 2018 weddings.

minneapolis wedding photographer wedding wire 2019 award

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.

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.

My interview with "So You Want To Be A Photographer" photography podcast by Gina Milicia of Australia by Bradley Hanson

So You Want To Be A Photographer podcast with host Gina Milicia:

“There are wedding photographers – and then there is Bradley Hanson. 

In this episode, we chat with Bradley, who reveals the approach behind his image and the art of photography. He shares his thoughts on starting out and how he felt shooting his very first wedding, essential gear, setting expectations with clients, pleasing the client and pleasing yourself, muscle memory and shooting intuitively, and developing a unique style. This show is all about inspiring and learning from the best in the world – and with 19 years experience and 600 weddings Bradley has lots of great stuff to say in this interview.

I first discovered Bradley Hanson when I stumbled across the excellent photography podcast he co-hosts with UK photographer Ian Weldon called Outerfocus.

I love the way Bradley sees his images and talks about the art of photography. I find myself reading his blogs and wishing I had thought of that!

This show is all about inspiring and learning from the best in the world and with 19 years experience and 600 weddings Bradley has lots of great stuff to say in this interview.”

He shares his thoughts on:

  • Starting out and how he felt shooting his very first wedding

  • Gear

  • Setting expectations with clients

  • Pleasing the client and pleasing yourself

  • Muscle memory and shooting intuitively

  • Developing a unique style

In this podcast, we discuss my Minneapolis, MN based photography business, my photographic history and beginning with film and darkroom experience, how I work and how I developed my documentary, fly on the wall style, and my thoughts on the industry. We talk about wedding photojournalism, mirrorless cameras, my favorite lenses and focal lengths and the importance of setting expectations with clients.

“I learned early on that showcasing a portfolio of images that speak to me will attract the kind of clients who share the same visual aesthetic.”

Link to the podcast and show notes: https://ginamilicia.com/2018/08/ep-212/

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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.