Tag Archives: 6D

A Galveston Wedding – The Big Day: Hairstyling and Makeup


My day of photography did not start until 10AM, when I met the bride, her mother, her daughter, and bridesmaids down in the resort’s spa for a morning of hairstyling and makeup.

The salon portion of the spa is relatively small – or rather, I should say it’s styling cubicles are relatively small, so one of the things I had to watch out for was accidentally getting in the way of the shot. I photo-bombed myself more than once, I’m afraid.

Working The Photo

Since this was an interior photo op, I increased the ISO to 500. I had my Gary Fong dome diffuser attached to the flash on my 1-DX, but never used it as it would have reflected in the salon’s mirrors.

Bella In The Chair

Hair and makeup sessions make for great ops, despite the above considerations. Make use of the mirrors and their reflections. Frame your compositions at different angles for some variety.

Reflection of Valerie

Bonnie Hair Mirrors Reflections

Valerie's Updo

And try to get images that the ladies would like (i.e. try not to take unflattering straight shots of faces without makeup – if you do happen to get those shots, then make sure you’ve added a little interest or humor to the comp).

Maegan and Bella at Hairdresser

Becoming Beautiful

I was there from 10AM to about 12:30PM. After that, I was off to photograph the groom and his men.

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Filed under Equipment, Life, Photography, wedding

A Wedding In Galveston: The Gear

Newly Wedded

Originally, I had written a 2800-word blog post (give or take). Yikes! Way too long! I think the human attention span tends to get a nervous tic over anything past 1200 words (which is the length I try to stick to but oftentimes never successfully manage). I personally can’t stand reading uber-long posts, no matter how helpful they may be; I tend to skim over them and just look at the pictures. I’d forgotten about this, though, in my 2800-word zeal to get everything down about my experience photographing this wedding. Then, I started reading some short but neat blog posts by Scottseyephotos about his photographic trip to Hallo Bay, AK, and I realized I was far more interested reading his numerous, interesting short blog posts than I would have been had he combined all of his bear articles into a single post. So, I’ve separated this original post into several shorter ones.

Here’s the First Post, which I hope whets your photographic-blogospheric appetite for the next post:

I had the great fortune to photograph Josh & Maegan’s wedding in Galveston, Texas, back in late April (2013).  The venue was the San Luis Resort.  I reserved a room for the weekend and prepared for the event.

What I took with me:

I’ve written a TripAdvisor review including photos of my room and the resort.  Suffice to say that I enjoyed my stay, liked my room, loved the view, but wished they had provided me with a different type of coffee maker .  A small complaint, but coffee is a mainstay for me when traveling and working with photos on my laptop.   I usually pack my own coffee and filters with the assumption the room has a 4-cup coffee maker.  It didn’t work with this particular room.

Setting Up The Wedding Venue

Looking down at the wedding venue from Josh & Maegan’s 16th-floor penthouse suite.

Now you have the location and the venue.  Next post:  my first photo op with the bride and her crew.

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Filed under Equipment, Events, Photography, Portraits, wedding

A Canon 6D Body, A Canon 14mm Lens, And A Wedding

  The Bride The Groom And The Bentley

I recently had the pleasure of photographing a wedding at the San Luis Resort in Galveston Texas.   The weather was perfect, the bride was stunning, the groom handsome, and the entire event went off without a hitch.   It was an awesome day, as all wedding days should be.

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I’m a list maker.   This task helps me remember events, appointments, and what gear to take with me for various events like said wedding.   As I reviewed my camera/lens list, I thought about  how neat it might be to rent a really wide-angle lens to capture the guests, the ceremony, basically the whole wedding venue.   So I went on to my favorite Lensrentals.com and reserved one Canon 14mm f2.8L II lens.

A couple of weeks later, as I was reviewing my gear list for the umpteenth time, the thought dawned on me that the two cameras I planned on utilizing during the ceremony would already each have a specific lens on them.  Wedding ceremonies are one of those events that brook no do-overs of the day, and I sure as heck didn’t want to waste valuable time switching out lenses between the 14mm and one of the other two lenses (the Canon 24-70 f2.8L II and the Canon 70-200 f2.8L II).   So, I went back to Lensrentals.com and decided this wedding might be a great opportunity (and also kind of fun) to try out the new Canon 6D full-frame camera  onto which I would affix the 14mm and just leave it there.

Canon 6D Body

Ok, my bad: I did *not* think to take a photo of the 6D next to my 5D Mk III and 1-DX camera bodies.   Mea culpa.

Out Of The Box:

· It takes a SD/SDHD card.  Period.  I figured as much, since Canon’s other small cameras have accepted only that particular type of memory card.

· Suffice it to say that the 6D is a little camera.  It’s smaller than the 5D Mk III, and miniscule compared to the 1-DX.  It fits my small hands perfectly, but I think anybody with larger hands might find it a little awkward to handle.

· The buttons on the camera back are positioned a little differently – I got a bit confused trying to find the delete button.

· The battery for this camera is the same as the battery for the 5D Mk II and the 5D Mk III (that was good, because I have a number of spares).

In Use:

· It’s much quieter than my 5D III and literally silent compared to my 1-DX (one of the noisiest cameras I have ever used).

· It’s slow.   Probably as fast as the 5D Mk II, but definitely slower than the 5D Mk III, so I don’t know that it would be so great for sports or wildlife action shots. If you used a flash, then sure it would probably be fine.   Oh, and there is n0 built-in pop-up flash, btw.

· It’s got GPS and WiFi capabilities. I turned on the GPS menu function to tag my locations.  I never used the WiFi function, but both are pretty neat, considering the lack of either on my other two cameras .  I can’t believe the 1-DX doesn’t have at least GPS.  Heck, for the amount of money I paid for that camera, it should be able to make me a cup of coffee in addition to taking pictures. ;-).

· Because it is small, and because the 14mm lens is light and relatively small, too, the combo fit nicely into the Lowepro Slingshot 202 AW backpack I carried with me during the wedding day.

· The camera does a pretty good job with low-light situations but I still had to use noise-reduction software for those images.

· The AF points are like the 5D Mk II.

· It’s got in-camera HDR settings.  Unfortunately, I could never get it to work correctly for me and I forgot to bring along the instruction booklet.  Oh, and  the 6D  doesn’t let you make an HDR in Raw – it’s jpg only.


This is the kind of camera I would carry around with me in my purse.  It would make a nice little back-up camera and would definitely make a great full-frame starter camera for someone wanting to make the leap to full-frame but not willing to fork over the dollars for a 5D Mk III or 1-DX.  Of course, this camera doesn’t have all the bells and whistles that my other two cameras have, but this camera does have WiFi and GPS.  The resolution is somewhere between the 1-DX and the 5D Mk III – well, allow me to amend that: the megapixel count is somewhere between those two cameras – resolution looks about the same what with all the improvements made to the newer digital SLRs nowadays.  I don’t like the fewer number of AF points on this camera; I personally like the multitude of AF points of my 5D Mk III much better.

If you want a detailed review, try Ken Rockwell’s review (although I don’t always agree with everything he has to say about a camera or lens and I know some photographers get quite vitriolic over Mr. Rockwell’s reviews).  DP Review also has a much more detailed, in-depth discussion of this camera which I really like. You can also check out Lensrentals.com’s short review of this camera.

Ok, so now, what did I think of the Canon 14mm f2.8 Lens?

I LOVE this lens!  It’s fun!  I have never used such a wide-angle lens before and I was able to get some funky shots with it on the 6D.  I think I might have to rent this lens for one of my upcoming trips this year.  The only caveat is that because of the curvature of the lens glass, I’ll have to use a special rear filter for any polarizer shots.

What is this lens like on a full-frame camera?  You know the wording you  see on a car’s passenger-side mirror: “Objects in mirror are closer than they appear”? Well, that’s true of the 14mm. I ’d have the camera/lens to my eye getting closer and closer to my subject, and when I’d bring the camera down from my face, I found I would be standing practically on top of my subject.

On The Dance Floor

To get this shot above, I lay down on the dance floor (narrowly avoiding the feet of a couple of dancers) and aimed the camera up toward the bride, groom, the bride’s brother and his wife (who was also the bride’s matron of honor).  Funny story which highlights  the previous remark about objects being closer than they look.  I was on the floor, snapping away and all of a sudden this little face looms large in my lensview.  The bride’s 7-year old daughter was looking down at me intently (her face must have been practically on top of mine) and finally she said “Hey, did you know your face is red?!”  LOL.  I was hot and sweating, so I’ll bet my face was, indeed, red.

There is no image stabilization with this lens, so my modus operandi was to aim, focus, and hold down on that shutter button for 4-5 shots in succession. Of course, in good lighting (like outdoor lighting or flash), any lens shake shouldn’t be a problem as long as the shutter speed is high enough or the aperture is bumped up.

The color, clarity, and depth of images produced by this lens are really sweet. Take a look for yourself!


This is an HDR image of my hotel room at the San Luis.  For this, I had attached the lens to my Canon 5D Mk III because I wanted to use a tripod and this camera had the L-bracket to fit onto my tripod.  I had forgotten to bring a tripod plate for the 6D.  Oh well, that was the only thing I forgot, so I was doing pretty well.

San Luis Resort Entryway

The resort’s entryway

Outside Entryway

Right outside of the resort’s glass-enclosed entryway

The Ceremony

The bride’s procession down the rose petal-strewn grass aisle

The Ceremony

The Officiant presenting the bride to the groom

The Ceremony Wide-Angle

The ceremony

Ceremony Over

Ceremony over.  Cameras and cameraphones pulled out!

Reception Hall - Mainsail Room

The reception hall

I’ll have a separate blog about my wedding session and the gear/lighting equipment I used for that day.  Stay tuned!


Filed under Canon Lens, Equipment, Photography, wedding