Interview in Photoline Magazine by Isin Akpinar
Last year due to the pandemic there were many restrictions in the field of wedding photography.
It also meant that the work done was not as satisfying as it normally is. The wedding season generally runs from the beginning of spring until after the end of summer and this is when the professionals who deal with these events have the most concentrated work.
When the good weather starts and nature comes to life, what is considered the wedding “season” begins.
We, as Photoline magazine, in our April issue we wanted to make a report on wedding photography so as not to miss the season that is about to begin.
Inma del Valle, Mallorca, is a very prestigious wedding photographer in Spain @inmadelvallephotography. She loves to travel and is successful in wedding photography all over the world. We had a nice conversation with her about wedding photography and what it’s like to shoot couples.
-Işın Akpınar: Wedding photography is a very popular area that attracts many photographers from all over the world. What was your motivation for deciding to work on this subject?
–Inma del Valle: My life has always been linked to art. I started studying piano when I was very young and finished my high level lyric career 5 years ago. Then I started photography at the age of 18 and I was completely self-taught. I first used a compact camera. As I saw that it was a new world of expression for me, I bought an SLR camera and started to take a more serious interest in photography by doing autobiographical work related to music. I was lucky enough to take my first works to an art gallery and be selected to be exhibited there.
I have exhibited my photos for the first time at the International Fair in Munich “Munich Contempo” and I also exhibited them at “Art Madrid“. In addition, I had a personal exhibition at the Punto Gallery. Unfortunately, it is very difficult to exist and survive in the art world. With this in mind, I got into wedding photography and tried to add my artistic perspective to that field.
I have won important photography awards from international institutions such as Wedisson Awards, Apex Awards, Uniowep Awards, Mywed Awards, bodas.net Awards and this year Wedawards 2021. I have also been selected by five different wedding photography institutions with international prestige: MyWed, Wedisson, WPS, SLR Lounge, Wedding Photographers Spain, Fearless and UnionWep.
-Akpınar: The problem of “mediocrity”, which is very common in wedding photography, is sometimes tried to be overcome with forced poses and decorations.With this reflex action the result often fails, it is very important to capture the emotion of the moment in this type of photography.
-Del Valle: People who hire me do so because they want me to capture the emotions of the moment and because of the artistic side that characterises me. For me, at a wedding, which is something unique and unrepeatable, it is essential to capture the essence of the moment and turn everything that is breathed into an unforgettable memory. I want people to look at their photos 30 years later and feel the feelings of that day again, to relive that moment. Also I want people to understand that the only thing that remains of that day is the photograph, to understand the difference between emotional “live” moving pictures and some dull, emotionless photos that have been sitting in their wardrobes for years.
Let me tell you that I prefer not to do classic, superficial wedding photography full of poses.
In this type of photography, everything can be taken to a very superficial place. Sometimes we don’t give priority to what really matters in a wedding: the essence. It is possible to see many wedding photos with beautiful people and luxury on Instagram. But it is very important to reflect all the sensitivity of that moment in these kind of pictures.
My advice to wedding photographers in this interview in Photoline Magazine is to try to live the wedding from the inside. It’s very important to participate as a part of this story, not just as a photographer. If you put your soul into it, you turn photography into an emotional experience. We consider the emotional component in photography as a spice. Add joy, add passion, add creativity, add nostalgia. That way you can differentiate that moment from the others.
-Akpınar: It is normal for your couples to be nervous about having their photos taken. To have a good session it is very important to be prepared and to know how to manage the psychological part…
-Del Valle: I am always in contact with my couples from the first day we meet until the last. I love to live that day with them with joy and passion. If there is one thing that sets me apart as a photographer, it is not only the experience they will have with my photos later on, but also the experience they will have with me on their wedding day. I calm them down and convince them that they will have fun and enjoy themselves from the very first moment and throughout the whole process. Also I assure them that I will help them deal with unexpected problems and that everything will go smoothly.
I feel excited and I get excited with them. Why? Because to capture their emotions, you have to feel like them. I reach out to their family and friends so that they see me as someone familiar, not an intruder. I’m sure they will remember me fondly as their photographer and we will probably keep talking for years to come. This is very important to me, I am 100% involved in every wedding.
Always I like them to relive that day with my photos, because it all happens so fast and they don’t notice a lot of things. I want there to be music in my photos, I want there to be LIFE. Also I want them to see that everything they dreamed of for that day came true.
-Akpınar: We would like to know for this interview in Photoline magazine if you think that details should be very important in the whole preparation of the wedding photography.
-Del Valle: Yes, I always take care of the details, the lighting of the surroundings and the scenography in detail. The place where the bride and groom get ready is very important. It is much more convenient for everyone to be in the same hotel or in nearby houses. If there is too much distance between them, this day can be stressful for everyone. The place where the bride and groom will change clothes should be as spacious and bright as possible. It may be helpful to have a family member or a close friend present to help them at this time.
Too many people in the room creates a difficult environment for good photos. We often see brides and grooms getting ready in small rooms with no windows or little light. Natural light is always best for photos taken during this preparation process. It is essential for good and creative photographs.
At a wedding when it gets dark natural lighting can no longer be used. It is perfect if the cocktail and banquet area has good lighting in the form of a garland of lights or aesthetically placed light bulbs. The photos that come out with this lighting are the best. This is something that is very important to me. We usually go to the wedding venue with the bride and groom and together we choose the best lighting for the day. Sometimes spending a bit more money on these things changes everything for the better.
-Akpınar: What equipment do you use while working?
-Del Valle: I always bring double equipment to every wedding. I use a Canon R5, a Nikon D 810 and different professional lenses. aswell I usually use a 50 mm, my favourites are the 35 mm and 24-70 mm lenses. Usually I prefer 50mm for portraits. I also use a 70-200 mm because I like to go unnoticed at weddings. I generally like to shoot with a very wide aperture.
Akpınar: You do wedding photography not only in Spain but also in many countries around the world. You have received many awards and have held exhibitions. What would you say if we asked you to briefly summarise the secrets of this success?
–Del Valle: Being willing to learn and doing your work with passion is fundamental to succeed in what you do. Nothing can be achieved without passion. When you put your soul into those images you make a difference because no one is like you. I am very demanding of myself. When I get a job, I love to make it as perfect as possible. I believe in doing the job professionally and I always like to interact with people.
Before I started in the world of wedding photography, all my sessions had a carefully prepared script and a close relationship with the people involved.
I believe in the magic of personal relationships, I see myself as a person who builds trust. I have always found it very important to get to know people better in order to get the most out of them. The most important thing for me in my work with models is not a pretty face, but the emotion they leave in me because my goal is always to tell a story. I love to tell stories in my photos.
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