In a dimly lit chapel, the decision to go with natural light or flash will be based in part on the chapel’s rules regarding photography, as well as your preference or comfort level with using flashes/strobes. Depending on your gear, the available light in the church may be enough to allow you to capture great shots with adequate dynamic range. For example, a Canon 5D Mark IV paired with a fast lens, such as a Canon 35mm f/1.4, should allow enough light to reach the sensor with a relatively fast shutter speed so that your images will not suffer from motion blur. If you are allowed to use flash and need that extra kick of light, we recommend using an external battery pack to speed up the flash’s recycle time between shots. You don’t want to miss a moment because the flash is not ready to fire.
Note: Every step up with ISO decreases the color and dynamic range of the image.
Here are some quick tips for photographing a ceremony in a dark (low-light) chapel:
- Make sure bride/groom understand prior
- Use an external battery for flash recycling
- High ISO (based on camera capabilities)
- Fast lenses ideal
- Lowest possible flash power (for recycle time)
- Watch shadow detail, and highlight exposure on dress
- Bounce flash (ceiling above behind, or wall to side)