Creative Bride and Groom Portraits
Some people are fine with settling for posed, cookie-cutter wedding photography, but that’s not you. It’s not me either.
At Raph Nogal Photography, we believe every single wedding is special and you deserve the photos to match. My style is heavily influenced by fine-art, high-fashion imagery. I use an editorial and photojournalism-based approach to create bold, artistic images that you’ll be proud to display.
Bold, Creative Style
We create a bold and creative style. We do this through a combination of experience, instinct and lighting. I love using off-camera flash, video lights, and reflectors; it’s my calling card. These techniques help me to create the edgy, eye-catching photos that I’m known for.
Couples who choose to work with Raph Nogal Photography want that striking style. They appreciate the skill and instinct involved in photography, and they recognize something special when they see it. My goal is to deliver that quality in every photograph.
The creative aspect of my photos is what lends so well to print. Not digital files – we’re talking real, hardcopy prints. Photos you can touch and feel. Every image I take is crafted with print in mind, particularly the wedding album.
This means I aim to create pictures for displaying on your walls and for you to enjoy them, not just on the computer. I want you to be able to boast about your wedding photos with pride. Every single one should be a contender for your living room wall art.
In doing this, I give my couples wedding photos they can show off every time a guest comes over, instead of pulling them out of the closet once every three years. More important than your guests, my images give you a creative reminder of the most important day of your life.
My inspiration comes for many places. I love music and the moods and feelings it creates. Cinematic lighting is a huge inspiration in my lighting style. I often analyze motion pictures to see how certain scenes were lit. Various photographers inspire and influence me as well, such as my mentor Jerry Ghionis. His workshop I attended in 2012 changed the way I look at light and photography in general. I take these inspirations and transform them into my style, creating unique and artistic images my clients want.
Making the Most of Your Wedding Venue
Oliver, my assistant/associate, and I have photographed in some incredible locations that make for perfect photography backdrops, such as The Fermenting Cellar in the Distillery District, the Omni King Edward Hotel, Steam Whistle Brewery Roundhouse, Evergreen Brickworks, Fairmont Royal York, Palais Royale, the Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO), Berkeley Church and Field House, One King West, Gladstone Hotel and many others.
Photographing in so many unique and stunning Toronto wedding venues
has given us a lot of opportunity. We’ve seen so many different architectural elements and décor trends that we’re always kept on our toes. Every space is new and it gives us a chance to constantly think outside the box and be sponteneous.
It keeps the inspiration flowing to see new ideas every time we shoot a new couple. I’m truly blessed to share and nurture my creative vision with such incredible clients.
Candid Wedding Moments
Weddings naturally lend to candid moments, which makes them perfect for a photojournalist photography style. My goal is to give as little direction as possible, so that every moment is authentic. At some points, you won’t even know we’re there.
I want to capture real moments, heartfelt and heartwarming; nothing staged, nothing posed. While I do jump in with directions when a great photo opportunity arises, the process is mostly organic.
Being able to capture moments as they happen is a skill mastered over years of photographing and years of experience. Oliver and I plan for each step of the day to make sure we’re at the right place at the right time. That instinct, honed over the years, allows me to anticipate and be ready to shoot those important memories.
What to Expect on Your Wedding Day
I like to keep as much of the wedding day as photojournalistic as possible. Oliver and I take what we like to call a ‘directed documentary’ approach. This means we stay hands-off as much as possible, but still step in to give advice when need or an idea arises.
This method applies most directly to the earlier sections of the day, such as the couple getting ready, the first look/reveal shoot and reception. After the actual ceremony, during the cocktail hour and reception, we will bring the bride and groom outside for more creative shots, but aim for in between courses. The idea is to keep things as natural as possible.
The actual wedding ceremony is completely photojournalistic. At this point, you won’t even notice Oliver and me; your focus can remain solely on your future husband or wife and your family and friends. I love shooting unscripted, genuine moments between loving couples and the ceremony is dedicated entirely to that.
You get the best of both worlds with our photography approach. For those that don’t want conventional, boring photos and value authentic moments, our editorial, documentary style does just that.
On the other hand, we recognize not everyone is completely comfortable in front of a camera at first, or ever. I’m not going to throw you to the wolves. I will give you the direction you need if you need it. Sometimes a beautiful Bride in bad light, is perhaps not a beautiful as shoe could be, in good light.
This primarily comes from building trust between myself and the clients. If you feel comfortable with me, you’ll feel comfortable with the camera.
Trusting Your Photographer
To get the gorgeous photos you want, it is so important to trust your photographer. This goes doubly true for ones like me. So much of our style depends on grabbing moments happening organically and an uncomfortable person will come across on camera.
When you trust mine and Oliver’s presence, everything becomes fluid – even for the most camera shy! This is why we insist on meeting our couples and having a good conversation before making any decisions.
Another way we recommend to build comfort and trust, is trying an engagement shoot before your big day. You can think of it as a trial run that ends with some awesome images! This way you know what to expect with your photographer, how they work and how you interact, before the main show.