Sarah and Nick, Anna Maria Wedding

Sarah and Nick were married right on the sand of Anna Maria Island. It was a beach wedding from start to finish. The evening went very smoothly thanks to Sandy's skillful coordinating efforts. I had a tough time narrowing down the images to post here, so you've been warned: there's a lot. Let's dive right in.

Sarah and Nick agreed to see each other before the ceremony. This always helps when it comes to getting photos out of the way, assuming that everyone's ready on time (ahem, ladies...). These two were real fun and laid back.

We had to get some shots by the water, but unfortunately the sun was still a little too high making the light rather harsh. The flash helps to even things out.

Nick hangs out before the ceremony.

Since the ladies were taking a little extra time for their final preparations, I was able to stroll around with the guys and create a few unique portraits for Nick. There are plenty of ways to depict that beach atmosphere besides just plunking them down in front of the water.

Nick and his fellas gather around for a nice relaxed portrait.

Now it's Sarah's turn. Her dress, veil and bouquet were all very beautiful. And it's tough to find a better background than this.

But sometimes photos need more than a nice background, they need nice light. Sarah was kind of surprised when I suggested we shoot a few portraits under the hotel since it was mostly concrete and clutter. But it had the nicest light. The picture above is great for a lot of reasons, but as a photographer I want to make sure I also get shots like these. In the end Sarah trusted me and I hope she will think it paid off.

We didn't have enough time for a ladies portrait before the ceremony but we were lucky enough to still have some sunset left afterward. It was windy and a little chilly, but these girls were real troopers!

Just before the ceremony started, the sun was low enough for a few direct-light portraits. Harsh direct light can be unflattering at times, but if used correctly it can recreate that old Hollywood glam look.

Sarah and Nick play around before walking over to the ceremony.

All the guests will surely remember these amazing orchids and what they symbolized.

A perfect sunset provided the backdrop for the ceremony. And this sailboat was the icing on the cake.

Sarah and Nick pose for a shot under the bamboo canopy as they sky takes on that great post-sunset glow.

A slow shutter speed blurs the couple as they stroll to the reception

The reception was held right out on the beach.

As the guests ate dinner, I visited the bamboo canopy to capture a long exposure shot of it. The bamboo is lit by the moon and the lights from the hotel/reception. This gives you a pretty good indication of the wind that night.

And finally the happy couple makes their grand exit as the guests shower them with fire-balls, I mean sparklers. Geez, I thought I was going to catch on fire!

Congratulations Sarah and Nick! I had a blast at your super beachy wedding. Thanks for having Tampa Photo cover your day!

Shelly and Chris, Ybor Italian Club Wedding

Congratulations Shelly and Chris! These two were married at Christ the King Church and had a lovely reception at the L'Unione Italiana aka the Italian Club in Ybor. It was a wonderful day with only a few drops of rain.

We'll start with Shelly. Here she poses on the first floor of the Italian Club. There was some great ambient light bouncing around and I really liked the look of the light coming down the stairs. But the window light on our level wasn't bright enough. A flash is used to mimic natural window light.

The guys were ready for some photos before the ceremony so I was able to walk around the church with Chris and experiment with some cool setups.

The ceremony was very nice, but this moment struck me as exceptionally sweet. The kids shuffled to the ends of the aisles to get a good look as the couple receives a blessing.

Churches tend to have difficult lighting situations for formals. Balancing my flash to the ambient stained glass window ensures a nice background. And while it can be a pain to carry and set up umbrellas, they make all the difference in situations like this.

After the ceremony, we strolled around outside the reception location before the light disappeared. Shelly hams it up amid some traditional Ybor scenery.

Shelly works it as Chris gazes from afar.

The rain swept in just long enough to chase us inside. It was time to head in to the party anyway! What a nice guy.

As the girls work to bustle Shelly's dress, Chris pauses for a few quick portraits by the window.

I love it when the guests sit down to eat right at that perfect twilight hour so I can run outside and get some location shots.

A final parting shot of the cake. Carefully controlling the ambient and flash exposures allows me to highlight the cake, get that nice cool window background and remove all the other distracting elements in the room.

Congratulations Shelly and Chris! You know how to throw quite a party! Everybody was great; you two, your families and all of your friends! It was a pleasure to shoot your wedding. Thanks for having Tampa Photo there to capture all those special memories on film and video!

Sharon and Bob, A La Carte Pavilion Wedding

Sharon and Bob were married at the A La Carte Event Pavilion last weekend. A La Carte is a great place for a wedding, and a great place to shoot. There's always great natural light and they do a great job decorating the ceremony and reception locations. Sharon and Bob were a hoot to work with which always makes my job easier!

Bob pauses for a portrait before the ceremony.

Sharon takes her turn working it for the camera. Gotta love those columns and great architecture all over the lobby!

All the girls share a laugh. Some of these ladies were actually "groomspersons" so we called this the one for anyone wearing a dress.

Now the guys yuck it up. Likewise, we have a "bridesman" in this shot, so we'll call this anyone wearing a tux.

The Huppa was decorated in these lovely fall colors.

The newlyweds enjoy their first few pictures as husband and wife.

The weather was beautiful so we were able to use some of the great light out on the patio.

I love it when different light sources cooperate. The cake is in the middle of the room and gets enough window light for a good exposure. Luckily, the decorative orange lights are at about the same intensity, allowing for a nice background.

Sharon and Bob share their first dance. Since we were also providing video for this wedding, I was able to use Kevin's video light to draw attention to the couple. Flash would have overpowered the romantic mood created by the warm ambient light.

Aw yeah, let's get funky. It didn't take long for this crew to get down.

The lovely couple shares a soulful dance as things wind down.

Congratulations Sharon and Bob! You guys were a blast to work with! Mazal tov! Thanks for having Tampa Photo be a part of your special day.

Helena and Ali, Don CeSar Wedding

Helena and Ali were married this past weekend at the Don CeSar Resort in St. Pete Beach. It was a lovely ceremony and a great party with lots of guests ready to celebrate with the happy couple. And mother nature pitched in too with wonderful weather, a gorgeous sunset, and maybe even a rainbow or two!

I love mixing available light shots in with those lit by flash. The warm foreground is created by a typical incandescent table lamp. The cooler daylight comes in from the window to illuminate Helena and is accentuated by the blue ceiling. A wide angle helps to make the interesting geometry of the architecture even more dramatic.

Helena stands still as her bridesmaids lace up her gown.

With her back to the window while her veil was being adjusted, there wasn't enough natural light for a good exposure. A flash allows for a controlled yet natural image.

All the girls (and a guy) gather around for a quick portrait after getting ready.

The lobby at the Don always presents lots of great phot opportunities. A palm tree and a plantation shutter add just enough for a cool portrait without taking the attention away from Ali.

What a crew! It was no problem getting these guys to act like they were having a good time.

A lovely outdoor ceremony under the pink hotel and blue sky.

The live string trio provided the music for the ceremony. It's always fun to try and capture these details in a unique way. It can be tough to find that perfect shutter speed that freezes enough of the frame while still provided that great painterly effect.

A nice big family portrait.

It was a mad rush to try and get all the photos done in time for the sunset, but we did it. We even found a few minutes to make some more creative photos.

The bridal party poses with the Don in the background while the sun is still providing nice warm light.

Rainbows can be tricky to capture on film, but a flash allowed me to have two separate exposures; one for Helena and Ali, and one for the sky/rainbow. They got this great rainbow and didn't even have to deal with any rain!

Helena gave me a heads-up that there would be a dip at the end of the first dance. Great job guys!

A shot of the cake does double duty as a room shot by allowing the ambient light in the background to burn in.

A separate traditional Persian ceremony was held before the reception and made for some great photo opportunities.

Tampa Photo provided both photo and video coverage for this event. For this image, I exposed for Kevin's video light. The video light provides me with another lighting method to add variation to the coverage of the wedding.

Congratulations Helena and Ali! I wish you the best of luck in the many years to come!