Curved house roofs are part of the Aegean architecture, so commonly found on the island of Santorini.
But it is not only the outer parts of many houses that are curved, but many of them have also curved ceilings.
The inside compliments the outside.
Such rooms make for lovely bedrooms and sitting rooms, and they – in turn – compliment the curvature of the female body.
I love creating images of brides in curved ceiling rooms, as I find them poetic, storytelling and romantic, all at the same time.
I also love black and white images, that provide a form and dimension of beauty by themselves and I am always on the lookout for them.
The way a woman looks at a man, can virtually change his life.
This is not a twenty first century thing, but a universal all-time truth, not an argument but and an axiom, something like an ever-existing law of nature, like gravity.
In fact, it has been around since women and men, first walked on the planet (and looked at each other)
Of course, there was no photography, to capture such moments back then, (…there were paintings…but it’s not the same…).
But we do have photography now...!
I photographed this beautiful, loving couple on the beach of Theros wedding venue in Santorini, a few minutes before sunset.
They got married on the sand, a few feet away from the waves, surrounded maybe a couple of dozen friends and relatives, who travelled all the way from the UK and Scotland to share their special day with them.
As the ceremony took place almost at dusk, we had less than half an hour for the after-ceremony shooting before the sun disappeared from the horizon and the couple walked up the stairs of Theros to join everyone else for the cutting of the cake and the wedding party.
As I had visited and studied the location on the previous day, I knew exactly what I wanted to shoot and I work really fast.
For this image, I lowered my body towards the sand, and cropped the frame, in a way that I would only include the waves and not the sand.
I placed a portable battery-powered flash on a small black tripod behind the couple, and just out of line of sight, and controlled it remotely from the camera.
I shot a few variations of the image, with more sky, less sky, more waves, fewer water, lower angle, higher angle etc., and this is the one that appealed to both the couple and me the most.
Sometimes you have the need to describe how you feel when you are’’ there’’, looking at that view, and you simply cannot find the words.
You may try using images, but while more informative than words, they may still not be enough.
There is no substitute for actually, physically, being there.
But my images are all I have to ‘’transport’’ you to that sunset.
I am doing my best.
Santorini sunsets can be so breathtaking, that make other sunsets, in other parts of the world pale in comparison.
In my opinion, they look even better when there is some cloud texture in the sky, as it reflects the rich colors that the sun creates, when it is getting ready to say ‘’goodbye’’ for the day and let the island welcome the night.
I, sometimes, find myself looking at a few images for minutes at a time, trying to decide which ones to select and send to my couples.
As was the case with this posting.
I must have spent more than five minutes, trying to make my mind up, which one to post and which one to leave on my hard drive.
I even threw a coin in the air, heads or tails…!
Eventually, and as I could not pick just one, as I love them both, I opted to upload them both.
Both images were created on the left side of Santorini Gem Wedding Venue, in Santorini.
White and blue.
That is Santorini’s colour ‘’landmark’’.
This wedding took place at St Irini wedding venue, a wonderful terrace on the left – when one is facing the ocean - side of Thira, Santorini’s capital.
The volcanic view from St Irini, is outstanding, making it a very popular wedding location.
The Bride is usually brought, by the limo driver, at the entrance on the top of the stairs that she descends on foot, passes through a little white arch and reaches the terrace. The whole distance is maybe a hundred feet.
A sunny day, beautiful fluffy white clouds in the sky, a little side wind.
Santorini at its best…!
The plainest of moments.
The simplest of gestures.
A few seconds that feel like a small eternity, as time seems to slow down.
The change of a life time.
Tying the Knot.
Movies are made of scenes.
So are Weddings.
There are the main scenes, like the arrival of the Bride, the exchange of the Rings, reading your Vows, the first Wedding Kiss, walking away from the gazebo being showered with flower petals, by friends and relatives.
And then there are many other moments, that are taking place, before, during and after everything.
Unexpected moments, fleeting moments, unscheduled moments, that form themselves suddenly, unique like snowflakes that may last for a few seconds and be gone without a trace.
Gifts, if you are there to see them and – perhaps – capture them.
If you are paying enough attention, that is.
And have a camera in hand.
Santorini is virtually a photo shooting playground, its locations ranging from ocean views, a stone’s throw from the Caldera, to meandering little streets and alleys in traditional little villages, such as Pyrgos and Megalochori.
Pyrgos is an ideal location for shooting, especially when getting married in venues such as Cavo Ventus, Santorini Gem and Santo Wines (in order of proximity to Pyrgos), and when couples have maybe just an hour available, for the Same-Day photoshoot.
Pyrgos village is climbing a little hill.
We create photographic opportunities on our way up, estimating the time that it will take us to walk back down to the parking lot, get in the limo and return to the wedding venue.
The spot in the photo is located pretty much at the top pf Pyrgos.
It’s a traditional all-white little church, worn from the wind and the sun over the years, that still stands firmly in place, overlooking half of the island.
For this image, I choose to go behind the main structure, a spot that not many photographers know about, so that I could capture the couple against the setting sun, not as silhouettes, but retaining the detail on their outfits.
It was the last shot of our uphill walk, a visual crescendo if you will, after which we headed downhill and back to the venue, to cut the cake and get the party started.
This couple eloped in Santorini and got married in one of the most beautiful wedding terraces on the island, namely Dana Villas. There were five people on the terrace, on their wedding day.
She, he, the Celebrant, the wedding planner and myself…!
I loved it…!
The couple had made its own dinner arrangements for the evening and had booked me for the ceremony, plus one more hour of photo shooting, in the nearby area.
This means that we had no time for driving around, or visit more locations, and we had to go anywhere that we choose on foot.
Thankfully, the nearby area is full of little wonderful spots, as is most of the west (volcanic view) part of the island, and we were spoiled for choice.
The time of the ceremony was carefully chosen, so that the photoshoot time would conclude with a wonderful Santorini sunset...!
There is something very special about the Mediterranean light, something like an unidentifiable quality, a secret sauce, a kind of radiance and warmth and vivacity that makes it pulsate, like as if it is alive.
Experiencing it is the only way to know what I mean.
It encompasses and embraces anything and everything that shines on and – when shooting wedding photos – it is my best friend and valuable ally, that helps me create the feeling that I want and deliver it in photographic form.
Golden color wedding crowns, photographed on white wall, outside the bride’s preparation room, Santorini island, Greece.
On old fisherman, in Santorini, once told me: ‘’If Santorini sunsets were red wine, I would be drunk, half the day, every day’’.
Every time I photograph a wedding couple in front of a sunset on the ‘’rock’’, his words echo in my mind.
A photograph is just a two-dimension rendering of such a scene, trying to convey, to the viewer, as much of what has been felt, as possible.
But no matter how many images one consumes, the sensation of actually being there, can only be roughly approximated, but never matched.
And then again, photography is my weapon of choice, in my life long campaign of capturing these moments, to the best of my ability, and deliver them to my couples.
I love joyful and playful couples...!
They have great chemistry and are willing to explore more photographic possibilities, and new ideas.
This is one of these couples, and they got married in Cavo Ventus Villa.
The shot was created a few feet away from the ceremony spot, after the friends and relatives had headed to the party area.
We had enough time to explore the nearby area on foot, and so we first created this image, and a few more, near the old windmill that stands in the middle of the estate.
After about an hour of shooting we returned to the anticipating guests to get the party started...!
I visited this terrace, where the wedding party would take place, during the day, a couple of days before the wedding. While the view was stunning (one could see a good part of the city including the commercial harbor), the colors – during the day time – were not too impressive.
But, it was all good, as the wedding party would start late in the evening and go on until late at night.
I had checked my angles and I knew exactly want I wanted.
I talked the couple, telling them what I had in mind, and a few minutes before the light was perfect, I ‘’borrowed’’ them from the friends and family.
I had them – just for me – for maybe half an hour, exactly when the colors were rich and wonderful and absolutely right for our photos.
The magic hour last almost that much, thirty minutes or so, after which I ‘’delivered’’ them back to their friends as the party had started to fire up..!