Engagement: Allie and Vilas

Vilas noted that yes, he waited 363 days since they were engaged to get around to taking the photos, but I think he made a wise choice, since it would be impossible to pick better weather for a jaunt around lower Manhattan than Saturday. We started and ended at the Corner Bistro, where they met and where, that day, I also met the new love of my life — Corner Bistro hamburgers. Unbelievable.

We had a great time strolling past packed crowds, at least two celebrities — Ira Glass of This American Life and some nameless Page Six celeb surrounded by paparazzi — as well as a High Line pulsing with people blinking in their first sunlight of the year. You’ll see them again soon, with a May wedding at the Tribeca Rooftop, and they only hope the weather is as nice!


Jolene Oldham - Beautiful work, as always!

Mmmmm … albums …

The wedding albums for Kristy and Mike’s gorgeous wedding at the Belhurst Castle came in this week, and I couldn’t resist the opportunity to show it off. These are from Kiss Wedding Books, one of the three main companies I work with and one that is very popular with my clients, because they do one thing and do it very well. If you like stylish, minimalist leather books with some great accessories, you like them, and I certainly like their great customer service.

I’ve been relaxing a bit to gather myself for the coming season, but I’m really aching to get out, shoot and shoot and shoot and try some new things. So here I asked myself “How have I NOT seen a lot of product photography done?” Well, I haven’t seen a lot of products shot at 1/8000th of a second to take advantage of high-speed sync flash. So I had a bit of fun:


Heather Parker - Great product shots!

Gemma Schipani - Yummy! Thanks for sharing! I’m just about to order a new sample album from kiss

Daniel Stark - nice—i dig their albums too! love these shots!

gabe aceves - ryan these look great. simple, minimalist and classy. good stuff.

Photo of the Day: Round and Round They Go

The Hudson Theatre is a very cool venue where you can be married a reworked Broadway stage. If you thought children tended to be performative at weddings any way, you should see what happens when they have a stage to play on.

Becca Dilley - The girl in the middle really tells a great story, and I love the whole composition. Cool work.

fotograf lublin - Again great low light shot.

Andrea - Great picture!

I just took a look at the link, and that’s a really great looking venue. Adding it to my list of possible NYC venues. Thanks Ryan!

Portraits: Stephanie in Pasadena

Here is are some more from my session with Stephanie. We wanted to just have a little fun in the warmer weather and get some new looks, including some fitness looks for her book. And of course I had to get a palm tree in there. We don’t see much of those in New York.

And really, who knew all this time she could kick so high?

Reminds me of a story. One time, when I was much younger, slightly more foolish, and constantly practicing karate, I said to myself: “I wonder *exactly* how high I can kick…”

WHAM! Right in my own face. Bloody nose. Luckily Stephanie has orders of magnitude more sense than a younger me.


Dognbird - Great session, love the determination in her eyes. PS the bloody nose story is a classic!

Phil - Why so serious?

Great pics as always.

gabe aceves - awesome photos ryan. i really love the first two images.

Photo of the Day: When Irish Eyes Aren’t Smiling

In honor of St. Patrick’s Day, here’s a photo I took of Jim Fisher, author of On the Irish Waterfront. A photo for this session was later used for the book’s author flap.

The clouds really looked like that. The only editing this photo has had is a white balance shift.

Kirsten - I loved this image when you first took it, and today I still love it. A terrific image every day!

fotografia ślubna - Very powerfull portrait.

FG - This is just such an amazing portrait. I really like the com, the treatment, and, indeed, the subject. Nicely done!

Photo of the Day: Stephanie, West Coast Girl

If one of my favorite subjects — actress and friend Stephanie Danielson — had to move to California, at least she did it a week before I headed out there, so we could finally shoot in warm(ish) weather. I love bringing out the color of the crazy lighting you can find at night. I love the natural feel of it, how good scouting can replace or ease the insane amount of work you’d need to deliberately recreate this, and how it feel like we’re exploiting new possibilities. In ye olden days, I might have needed to shoot this with T64 tungsten film — which would have required a full second exposure. Which would have required replacing Stephanie with a mannequin.

More to come soon.

fotografia ślubna - I see iso 3200, quite low iso like for You :)

Steve Koo - This is fierce. I like.

Portraits: Stephanie in Pasadena » Ryan Brenizer — New York City Wedding Photographer - […] is are some more from my session with Stephanie. We wanted to just have a little fun in the warmer weather and get some new looks, including some […]

Photo of the Day: When a Boy Eats a Lemon

I spent last week in the Los Angeles area for a Malibu wedding, which gave me opportunity to spend time with my brother and his awesome family. Here my nephew Dougie (voluntarily!) chomps into a lemon.

fotografia ślubna - I think it was his first and last lemon :)

Timothy E Kaldas - Hahahaha. That’s fantastic. The look of horror on his face is priceless!

Eric Kotara - Hilarious!!!

Avelaine Scyrup - haha awesome!

Mike - That could not possibly be cuter. Hilarious!

brett maxwell - I once ate half a lemon, rind and all, in a stupid high school contest. After that I hated even the faintest taste of lemon for several years.

Ginger Mauser - Love that!!!

Zainab - This is beautiful.

Tim - Dude, I got goosebumps!

Susan - This is a great capture! Love the look on his face. Perfect.

Jolene Oldham - Ooh! Just looking at him made my mouth pucker!

Photo of the Day: Multitasking

There will come a day when only the professional photographers know how to put the camera down and enjoy themselves unrecorded.

John Edgar - Great image Ryan, really great image!!! :)

Ryan Brenizer - Thanks, John!

Asma - LOLz totally loved it :)

I was doing more or less the same thing on my wedding ;)

scott neumyer - love this

Daniel Stark - great capture–love checking your blog for your “photo of the day” it’s a great way to start my day.

fotograf Łuków - WOW, superB shot but I think she has better :)

Kirsten - So classic.

Steve Koo - Ha! I love it!

Sawyer - way to see the moment…!

Photo of the Day: Depth of Feeling

Photos like these are why I am a “moment junkie.” This is a cheerful hug between the bride, her father, and her grandfather, right after Viviana and her grandfather had a featured dance. Is it envelope-pushing art? No. Is it a picture that will have meaning for Viviana for the rest of her life? I’d imagine so. Let’s not forget that weddings are about moments like these more than centerpieces.

But here’s a bone for the photo-geeks as well: This photo was taken on the D3s at ISO 10,000, with no noise reduction. The mixture of such a high ISO with flash is why the picture is sharp but still lets in all that colorful background ambient light. What a crazy camera.

Viviana - You are absolutely right. It will have meaning for the rest of my life. My grandfather struggled after my grandmother passed nearly 2 yrs go (they were married for over 60 yrs), and the thought of dancing at our wedding kept him going. He came from Ecuador for this day and since he’s returned he’s happier, doing well, and we all know why. Thank you, for capturing this moment. It seems like that’s not enough to convey what we feel, but it’ll have to do. :-)

almostinfamous - that’s such a heartwarming comment!

hooray for everyone involved :)

Ryan Gladstone - GREAT photo and equally excellent quote: “Let’s not forget that weddings are about moments like these more than centerpieces.”

Tim - This is a great moment and a wonderful response from the bride. Congratulations Viviana!
I am just curious about your settings here. Why shoot at 10000 ISO at 250th instead of a lower ISO and slower shutter speed? And where is the flash, on a stand, on the camera pointed up/back?
When a moment like this shows itself I know you don’t have time to sit down, consider all of the options and ask the group to hold for a moment while you put it together, you just need to get the shot.
Thanks for the inspiration, this kind of capture is the reason I am always checking your site for updates!

Ryan Brenizer - Thank you!

@Tim: Lower shutter speeds invite ambient ghosting. The flash was on camera, back and to the right.

Tim - Thanks Ryan!!! I’m hoping to get into one of your workshops sometime. Or maybe I’ll get invited to a wedding you are shooting and just follow you around all night!

fotograf Lublin - ISO 10.000 !!! But why flash ??

PJ - I choose flash with high iso because I love fill at times and there is an added “crispiness”(?) that makes the subject pop out. Really like the image Ryan, we all love these moments and following your lead.

Sawyer - Was the flash on camera? Settings please!! Thanks.

Sarah McGee - Ryan, this is why I got into weddings. Thanks for reminding me of that fact as I start this season.

Paul - That is an awesome moment captured. I had you pegged as primarily a prime shooter–70-200 on this one though?

Dustin Finn - Thanks Ryan, its the sharing of information from end to end (the creative through to the technical) that will keep you in the forefront of being the person to look to for gaining education on event photography.

I am thankful.

Steve Koo - I totally get what you mean about being a ‘moment junkie.’ This one is great! And the high-ISO performance on the D3 is really impressive.

Kyle - I love moments too. I also love beautiful portraits and mind-blowing artsy fartsy crap. I don’t think it has to be one or the other.

Graciela Valle - Estoy absolutamente de acuerdo en que esta sea una foto “especial”, en un acontecimieno como una boda que esta llena de emotividad, tener la sensibilidad de poder captar un momento donde en un abrazo se transmiten muchos sentimientos de los unos para los otros como los de agradecimiento, orgullo,respeto, y el mayor de todos: AMOR. Ese que nos profesamos en esta familia que estan representando 3 generaciones de VALLEs.

Wedding: Viviana and Henry at Fordham University

The wedding was at Fordham. The groom went to Fordham. I went to Fordham. My assistant went to Fordham. I shoot for Fordham.

(Sorry, Viv. Penn State is a good college, too.)

I knew Henry a bit when we were in school together, and I’d been looking forward to this one for a while. We’re talking about a couple who met in salsa dancing class — if that isn’t the recipe for an awesome reception, I don’t know what is.

And it didn’t disappoint. From a ceremony at the gorgeous Fordham chapel to a colorful and energetic reception, it was a blast the entire day. And that’s not to mention the groomsmen’s hilarious stop at White Castle on the way to the reception, or Henry bringing in a singer to re-enact a classic moment from one of Viv’s favorite movies: Coming to America.


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Hannah - These are really awesome, Ryan. I LOVE the one with her veil blowing about.

Dennis Pike - killed it. that first portrait of the two of them with the chapel(?) in the background i so good I want to hang it on my wall.

Kat Braman - too cool! what a fun couple. One of my husband’s groomsmen sang that same song to me at our reception!

Danielle Daigle - Gorgeous!! I love your work. I love the way you use light and capture moments. Just beautiful!

Steve Koo - Some beautiful stuff, Ryan. The reflections in the church shot are fantastic, and your portraits are great, too. The reception looked fun!

toks - I happened to stumble upon your blog. Nice set of images. I love the colors in the cake shot and the bride and groom on the dance floor. The framed portrait of the flower girls is lovely too.

leanna - me like me like :D

Kristina - The leading lines of that top portrait are simply exquisite. Loving your work!

Photo of the Day: Make Your Own Limbo

This one is all about the expressions to me.

Steve Koo - Love love love the faces of the two in the background. This is fantastic, Ryan!

Chris Lin - Oh man, this would be perfect for a TENSO image macro!

Ben Godkin - Love the expression of the lady in the back… Classic!

Jennifer Kitrosser - HA!! This made me LOL =)

toks - Ha, nice one. You captured a lot here including the framed portrait of the brides maid in the background. Niice

Photo of the Day: Shoes and Stripes

I shoot detail. I don’t really show a lot of it, especially on the blog, because … I don’t know, it just seems so easy, at least the way wedding photographers do it. Awesome things are presented before us, and we make them look the way they are. Not the hardest part of the job, but wedding publications eat it up. Too much of this seems unbalanced to me, like centerpieces are more important than love and friends and family.

Still, details are important, and shooting them is fun when you can be creative. And it was rarely more fun than with the geeky and stylish do-it-yourself details of Karen and Kamil’s wedding in Malibu yesterday. More to come.

PS: Since my hobby is making life difficult for myself, I made this not-easy by using an extremely touchy manual-focus lens and having to hold the camera upside down to get the flash where I wanted it.

remixoverdrive - What a great shoe! Awesome shot, too. The background and reflection you used worked great! =D

Kat Braman - awesome! love how the colors add to the comp.

I feel the same way about details, but the clients love seeing them.

Eric Kotara - This shot ROCKS!!!

andie - i shoot details too…the this shot is awesome and these shoes rock!!!! I would love a pair!

Kirsten - I love how you say shooting details is so easy yet you had to make this hard on yourself! This is why you’re incredible.

fotografia slubna - this is really great picture!!

Kyle - How did you use flash on this? It looks so natural light-ish.

Alan Meijer - Sometimes you just end up feeling like a ‘heel’. Great shot Ryan. Love the colors – a little unique for a bride’s shoe?

Ryan Brenizer - @Kyle: that’s a trick of the auto-fp. You’re not used to bounce at 1/800th.

Krista - WOW! The details are in the details–this photo simply ROCKS (like others have stated). It is dramatic, fun, playful, and colorful. I too want to hear how you lit this up as it looks natural-ish to me as well. I’m simply in awe; if I keep looking at your work and trying to live up to your standards, I might end up very disappointed one day. Nonetheless, I try…

Engagement: Karen and Kamil

Here is another case of “We just did the engagement shoot, and I’d better get the images out because the wedding is tomorrow!” It does have a certain efficiency to it.

Karen and Kamil have flown me out to California to document their Malibu wedding, and if I thought I was excited before, I’ve reached Ludicrous Excitement after how much fun our engagement shoot was at their alma mater, Harvey Mudd College.

Have you ever seen Real Genius? If not, go rent it. It’s one of the best movies of all time. If you have, though, you remember a scene with a dorm literally bursting with anarchic, geeky energy in every corner. A place like this could only exist in the movies, right?

Wrong. West Dorm, where both Karen and Kamil spent all four years, surpasses every stereotype of every college movie I’ve ever seen. There are pirate flags, and bonfires, and motorcycles, and shopping carts with Pabst Blue Ribbon cup holders. It is college at its most primal, both revelled in and enjoyed ironically.

For the first time, I actually can’t show some of my favorite images from the shoot, because so much of the West decor is Not Safe for Work.

So when I tell couples to find places that have meaning for them, and not just the prettiest possible place, I mean it.

Oliver Collinge - Great stuff as usual. Love it.

Dana Goodson - These are incredibly cute. I love that one up on the left with her arms grabbing the branch.

Timothy E Kaldas - Ryan, this is a fantastic shoot. I love the first shot of them kissing. It’s incredibly passionate. Also the shots of her in the carriage handing out the PBR are pretty awesome. And finally the portrait with the flare and blue is just fantastic.

Larry C - Hot! Fabulous work as always. Love the ones from the orange grove.

Daniel Stark - DANG!!–these are amazing!

Teresa K - Holy HOT pictures…that first kiss image is EPIC. I love the one where he is kissing her hair too…excellent work…just excellent!!

Eve - If you really want to top out the “bursting with anarchic, geeky energy in every corner” category, next you just need to get hired by a couple who were undergrads at Caltech . . .

Dennis Pike - Was not expecting a “Real Genius” reference today… glad I got one, you can never have too much of that movie. Ryan, ever consider shooting something crappy, maybe to mix it up a bit?

Eric Kotara - What a HOT kiss shot. And the flare on the blue shot. Man, great, solid work as always Ryan. I love Real Geniuses.

gabe aceves - awesome shoot ryan! the first two photos are really great, full of passion and emotion. great set!

Andrea - Ah Harvey Mudd. I used to walk though that campus on the way to classes at CGU. Did you see anyone riding unicycles?

Ryan Brenizer - Haha, I did!

Wedding: Karen and Kamil at Calamigos Ranch in Malibu, CA » Ryan Brenizer — New York City Wedding Photographer - […] you knew from their engagement that I was excited to fly out to California to shoot Karen and Kamil’s wedding, but it topped […]

Sam Hurd - i know this is an older post, but curious what lens you were using for that shot with the flare? i’m trying more and more to get some good flare going but all these nano coats are defeating me!

Ryan Brenizer - Pretty sure that was the Sigma 24mm f/1.8. It flares.

Photo of the Day: Party with the Ram

As I’ve said before, with flash composites (like most wedding photography), it’s not what you can do, it’s what you can do quickly. This was four shots, composited together for optimum lighting, and the whole thing was done quickly enough that you could stand on snow with open-toed shoes.

Maybe I’ll do a speed challenge at my April 16-17 workshop, which still has a few slots open. Sounds like fun.

Az - You’ve got this technique down to a fine art now Ryan.


Steve - Really nice, Ryan. I just checked my calendar for that April weekend, but I’m booked. Grr.

Alan Meijer - Hi Ryan,

Great shot. You mean these are four individual shots put together in PS? An individual flash pointed at each group or some other type of light?


Ryan Brenizer - Yup, four images, each group desperately lit by speedlights.

Robert Bromfield - Hi Ryan,
I was wondering if you used a tripod for these composites, to ensure that everything lines up?

Ryan Brenizer - It works best with a tripod, but sometimes I fudge it and auto-align in Photoshop.

Kyle Hepp Photography - […] excited about this one. The amazing Ryan Brenizer taught me how to do this flash composite method that he’s so good at.  I didn’t have a tripod with me, so it’s handheld and a tiny little bit off, but I […]

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Creating a Wedding Party Composite with Flash | Owen Cherry Photography - […] from yesterday’s post. I borrowed the idea from Ryan Brenizer, who uses this technique very effectively to achieve dramatic (but even) lighting over a group of people. This would be extremely difficult […]